Sentences of Scripture are out

Common Worship: Times and Seasons provides all manner of useful goodies. But I am irked by a little thing in the Introduction, towards the bottom of page 3. There the Liturgical Commission, in telling us that they have kindly provided some “short passages of scripture” appropriate to each season, go on to say that:

[…] they are not intended to revive the practice of starting a service of Holy Communion with a sentence of Scripture, rather than with the invocation of the Trinity and the greeting of the people by the president.

Now, if you actually read Holy Communion Order 1 in the Common Worship main volume you find that the “invocation of the Trinity” that the Liturgical Commission are so fond of (near the top of page 167) is printed in that very pale and thin version of Gill Sans that means that General Synod decided to give more weight to other options (top of page 330) – in other words, Synod expressed a preference for us not to start with “In the name of the Father…” – and that it’s perfectly acceptable to use a sentence of Scripture appropriate to the season as part of the greeting (page 330, note 4).

Actually, when I’m looking for sentences of Scripture I tend to look first in the Church of Ireland’s Book of Common Prayer 2004, which has a decent and easily findable list on pages 78-82. The new Irish BCP seems, generally, an excellent place to look for liturgical material.


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