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    A Functional Liturgy   by Bonnel Spencer


A Functional Liturgy

By Bonnell Spencer
Order of the Holy Cross

Foreword by E. R. Hardy
Berkeley Divinity School


Our present Prayer Book of 1928 is in effect the completion of the revision undertaken in the 1880’s under the leadership of W. R. Huntington, the three principles of which were the recovery of lost treasures, provision for greater flexibility in the public services than had been customary, and recognition of the needs and interests of modern America. These are all admirable aims, but they are principles of liturgical amendment rather than of liturgical construction. Professor Massey Shepherd has suggested in his Bohlen Lectures that the 1928 Prayer Book may well be the last proof-reading of Cranmer’s Liturgy, and that future revisions will have to proceed from more basic principles--much as in a related sphere it has occurred to others that the Revised Standard Version may well be the last revision of the Authorized Version of the Bible. There is no great point in simply going through the existing Rite and reflecting, “I would like it this way”—which was, as Dr. Shepherd hints, the weakness of the Prayer Book Study devoted to the Eucharistic Liturgy. Something deeper and more significant is needed to justify the labor of Prayer Book revision.
    The first question to ask in any piece of liturgical construction is, what is the main purpose of this action? What do we do when we assemble to make Eucharist, to baptize, to ordain, or to offer our daily sacrifice of prayer and praise? With an answer to this question in mind we are then able to understand the traditional forms more properly, and to decide what changes, revivals, or adaptations would be desirable. Cranmer’s work on the Ordinal is an excellent example of sound procedure—he wished to preserve the ancient Orders while at the same time clarifying and broadening the Church’s understanding of what Christian priesthood means (and incidentally the formal controversy about Anglican Orders is often confused when one side triumphantly points out that the Prayer Book Ordinal differs conspicuously from the Latin Pontifical and the other confines itself to replying that it is the same in essence). Two modern proposals have asked the right kind of question, although the results are weakened, I believe, by being based on somewhat unsatisfactory answers. The services of Christian Initiation recently put out by Committees of the English Convocations are based on the principle that for us, as for the early Church, adult Baptism after repentance and profession of faith should be the norm. This seems to me, at least, a misconception in that historically it confuses the common with the normal and theologically involves itself, as F. D. Maurice pointed out, in the idea that sin and unbelief are natural to man—which may be partly responsible for the rather cool reception that these proposals have met. Similarly in our American series of Prayer Book Studies the most worthwhile are those which do not merely mull over the existing services but dig deeper into what the whole business is about. Here the proposed Ministration to the Sick seems to let the pendulum swing too far towards an almost exclusive emphasis on the recovery of bodily health, whereas in some older forms there was an equally or even more deplorable over-emphasis on patience under affliction. But these English and American revisers have certainly both proceeded in the right manner, even though not achieving complete success. Before we commit ourselves to another official revision, which might turn out to be merely still another proofreading, there should be many experimental illustrations of the kind of thing which might be done, in order that the Church may duly come to a common mind as to what it really wants.
    We are glad to present in this issue of the Anglican Theological Review a suggestive, if not formally proposed, Liturgy for the Eucharist which represents the long-continued interest in this subject of a member of the Order of the Holy Cross, and is intended, as indicated, to be a functional Rite. Father Spencer begins with a brief statement of what we do at the Eucharist, namely to unite the congregation in the adoration of the Father and in the love of Christ. Until recently our common devotional practice has often been based on the idea that the purpose of the Eucharist was to bestow spiritual blessings on the individuals present, after suitable preparation for worthy reception. The Eucharistic Prayer, which should be the great moment of the service, has often been thought of as a necessary preliminary in order that Communion may be administered. This was not of course Cranmer’s central idea, still less Bishop Seabury’s. But it is what the service has often meant—so that even the phrase Holy Communion has come to suggest a blessing for individuals rather than the sacred sharing of redeemed mankind in the eternal sacrifice of the Lamb once slain.
    It would be a pleasure to comment on this Liturgy in detail, but that would be to insert my comments between it and the reader, which I do not wish to do. I would like to add, however, that attention to detail, including details of aesthetic structure, is necessary along with the proposition of basic principles. Fr. Spencer has properly given attention to both aspects of drafting a Liturgy, which like a church building should be both functional and attractive. One formal weakness of our present official Rite is the lack of variation after the Offertory, where especially at a said Celebration it almost has the character of one long speech by the priest, changing only on the days for which Proper Prefaces are appointed. Fr. Spencer’s provisions for greater variation and increased congregational participation in this part of the service are the kind of thing which we need. Another question for revisers is what is really wanted by way of preparation before the Liturgy proper begins with the Collect, in place of our present collection of odds and ends. I am sure Fr. Spencer is right in putting the General Confession here (as Roman Catholics and Lutherans do) rather than allowing it to interrupt the flow of the liturgical action as it inevitably does at any later point. A more radical question is whether it ought to be in the Eucharist at all, or in a separate and preparatory service—but that I will not go into here.
    My own suggestion would be that readers of proposed or suggested Liturgies should have in mind the outline of a basic or minimum Rite, represented by the service described by Justin Martyr, as slightly enlarged in the following period, and then consider at each point whether further material is necessary or desirable. The basic order would be something like this:

Prophecy, Epistle, or both


Intercessions (here or before Offertory)
Eucharistic Prayer (Sursum Corda to Our Father)
Thanksgiving and Dismissal

Every modern revision makes the actual Eucharistic Prayer more majestic and less penitential, in other words more truly eucharistic, than English 1662 or even American 1789. I am half-disposed myself to renounce efforts to make our Eucharistic Prayer better lest we should instead make it worse. Certainly in dealing with what the ancient Church often simply called “the Prayer” the greatest caution and reverence is called for, and also a certain devout boldness once the task is taken in hand, as Fr. Spencer has done. I would like to continue with further reflections, but enough is now said, I think, to indicate why we venture to commend Fr. Spencer’s “Functional Liturgy” to our readers as a contribution towards the development of our eucharistic worship, not only towards greater beauty and clearer order, but also towards the greater reality and meaning which will make it even more valuable as a means of building up the Body of Christ in holiness and love.

Professor of Church History
Berkeley Divinity School


The Reverend Bonnell Spencer (December 31, 1909-February 22, 1996) was a brother of the Order of the Holy Cross, and a prolific writer on liturgical and spiritual topics. His publication of A Functional Liturgy in Anglican Theological Review (No. XLIII, October, 1961, pp. 333-69) was an early effort in the process of liturgical revision that resulted in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. A Functional Liturgy was also printed separately by Holy Cross Press, and used experimentally in the OHC chapel at West Park, New York. At the General Convention of 1967, which authorized trial use of The Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper, Father Spencer was a member of the Standing Liturgical Commission of the Episcopal Church. He served on the SLC Theological Committee in connection with the Draft Proposed Book of Common Prayer, and was also a member of the drafting committee for the text of Holy Baptism.

This text was digitized by Richard Mammana in 2011 from a copy of the 37-page original (West Park, New York: Holy Cross Press, 1961) provided by Wayne Kempton, Archivist and Historiographer of the Diocese of New York. The text and photograph of Father Spencer are reproduced by kind permission of the Order of the Holy Cross.


Fr. Bonnell Spencer
Fr. Bonnell Spencer



West Park, N. Y.

The principle on which this liturgy has been constructed is that the Eucharist is one continuous action which can be described in a single sentence. A congregation, as a local instance of the Body of Christ, is gathered in him to be lifted up to the Father in worship and to be united with him and each other in Communion. This action for further clarity has been broken down into six successive steps, each indicated by a subtitle. Captions for individual items have been avoided, however, since they fragment a rite into its component parts and destroy its continuity. The essential function of a liturgy is to keep the attention focused on the major steps of the on-going action.
    The first step is THE APPROACH TO THE ALTAR, the assembling of the people at the Mount rof God. It consists of two closely related parts: the recognition of the Presence of the All-Holy, ‘I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up;’ and the appropriate response of the sinner, ‘Woe is me, . . . because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.’ Accordingly the liturgy opens with a seasonal Hymn or Introit (approaching from where we are in the Church Year), and proceeds to the Kyrie (treated as an act of humble reverence, not a plea for pardon), and when suitable to the occasion, the Gloria in Excelsis. The Collect for Purity, which asks for clean hearts with which to worship God, leads naturally to the Penitential Preparation. This is functionally fitting here both to our recognition of the Holiness of God, and to the first stage of the liturgy. Indeed, just because it is a preparation, to put it later in the service creates the impression of making a new beginning, and therefore separates off what precedes from what follows. Placed at the Offertory, it reduces the Ministry of the Word to a mere preliminary. Where it is now in our Prayer Book, it divides the Offertory from the Consecration. When inserted before the Communion, it isolates that from all that has gone before.
    The priest and people, having been reassured by the mutual Absolutions that, if their penitence is sincere, they may approach the Holy Mount, now listen to God as he speaks in THE MINISTRY OF THE WORD. This is introduced by the Collect, which usually is a preliminary recognition of the need to which the lections give God’s answer. A Lesson from the Old Testament may be included. The sermon, when there is one, comes immediately after the Gospel which it is intended to expound. It may be followed by a hymn or doxology as a response to its concluding ascription. This serves the further function of permitting the ministers to assemble at the altar for the Creed, which, as the culmination of the people’s response to the Word, is required at all Celebrations. At this point notices may be given and, where it is the custom, the catechumens are dismissed with prayers and a blessing. Be it noted that they will have had a complete service of worship, penitence, instruction and prayer suited to their status, to which their final response appropriately is, ‘Lord; I believe; help thou mine unbelief.’
    The faithful, called by Christ the Word, now close ranks in the Salutation of Peace for THE OFFERTORY. This begins with the Great Intercession because it is important to realize that we approach God first as suppliants before we become offerers. Our needs are great, our gifts small. Only by keeping the latter in perspective will we avoid the Pelagianism which threatens the revived emphasis on the Offertory. To the same end, the recognition of the unworthiness of our offerings and the petition that the Holy Spirit unite us in Christ, who alone can make our oblation acceptable; find expression in the Offertory Prayer. In a word, we put ourselves into Christ’s hands to be lifted up to the Father.
    This he proceeds to do in THE SACRIFICE OF THANKSGIVING. Once more we start from where we are in the Church Year by incorporating into our initial participation in the heavenly worship the particular thanksgiving of the seasonal Preface. Then swept up to the Throne of God, we review in the consecratory giving of thanks his fundamental mighty acts—Creation, Incarnation, Redemption, Resurrection—and last but not least, the opportunity vouchsafed to us to participate in Christ’s perfect Sacrifice through the Eucharist itself. The institution narrative has been deliberately included in the same paragraph, and addressed to the Father by the insertion of the words ‘to thee’ into the passage on the bread.
    The prayer then moves inevitably to the anamnesis-oblation, with its petition that through its acceptance the whole Church may be renewed in the benefits of the Passion. And thence to the offering of ourselves, asking that the Holy Spirit may bestow on us the grace of a worthy Communion in Christ, thereby making ‘our bounden duty and service’ acceptable. The prayer culminates in the doxology (with the crucial addition of ‘in whom’), at which point and not before would come the great elevation if it is made.
    Although the Canon may seem at first glance to be considerably altered, it actually follows the pattern of our present prayer of consecration, except that the invocation, now intruded between the anamnesis-oblation and the prayer for its acceptance, has been removed. It has not been restored to its 1549 place, earlier in the prayer, because there it is equally intrusive, cutting off the institution narrative from the thanksgiving of which it is a part. The suggested Canon rests squarely on the thesis, widely accepted today and strictly biblical, that our Lord consecrates the Eucharist, as he did at the Last Supper, by taking bread and wine and giving thanks. The part that the Holy Spirit takes in the action has been duly noted in the Offertory Prayer and in the petition for his sanctification of the Oblation of the holy Church in the last paragraph of the Canon. In the Church Militant we live in the Spirit; it is by the Spirit we are united to Christ. For this we pray at the beginning and end of the process of consecration.
    But we must also recognize that Christ himself is the High Priest as well as the Victim of the one perfect human Sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, which he made once for all on Calvary, which he eternally presents in heaven, which he consecrates and offers sacramentally on earth in the Eucharist, and into which thereby he incorporates us. This the proposed Canon endeavors to express in three clear concise paragraphs, one for each step of the central eucharistic act: I) Christ consecrates the elements by giving thanks over them through his Body the Church, making his Sacrifice present once more to us; 2) the Church prays that its participation on earth in the pleading of his Sacrifice will be acceptable in heaven and fruitful to all its members; 3) we offer ourselves in Christ, praying that the completion of our union with him in the reception of Communion will bring to us its benefits now and forever.
    The next step, THE BREAKING OF BREAD, is the central hinge of the whole liturgy. Thus far we have been progressively gathered and lifted in Christ to heaven. Now taking off from the last paragraph of the Canon, the action starts moving back toward earth. In this section we both linger with Christ on the heights and descend in him to the world. We repeat our praise and surrender to the divine will in the opening clauses of our Lord’s own prayer, which we may boldly say because we are eucharistically one with him. But the petitions, beginning with ‘Give us . . . bread,’ turn our thoughts toward Communion and its fruits. Our attention now moves from the Father to Christ our Paschal Lamb, whom we first hail as our eternal Intercessor in heaven and then greet as he comes to be received. In the Humble Access, simplified and addressed to Christ on whom our minds at this stage of the liturgy remain fixed, we make a final recognition of our unworthiness. The prayer that follows in lieu of absolution recalls and pleads his promise to bestow on us, in spite of our sins, his peace.
    In THE HOLY COMMUNION, two hymns are supplied so that the penitential Agnus will not have to be used on festive occasions. After the priest has received and communicated those in the sanctuary, he gives the ‘Invitation to the people. This has been shortened and the 1552 Words of Administration fused with it. The administration formula is brief enough to be said to each communicant. Seasonal Communion Sentences are provided in order to suggest a theme for meditation and private thanksgiving while the ablutions are being taken. The Thanksgiving, carefully pruned, is said by the priest alone to balance the Collect, but the people stand and the Amen is expanded into a final burst of praise. This may help fill the void which will be felt by the shifting of the Gloria in Excelsis to the beginning. Although its repeated ‘have mercy’, which suits an initial act of worship, makes the Gloria most inapproprate as a thanksgiving for Communion, Anglicans have become so attached to it in this place that it will take much to dislodge it. There will probably have to be a rubric permitting its continued use here during the transitional period. The Dismissal, Peace and Blessing bring the rite to a close.
    Thus the determining factor in deciding the position and form of the component parts of this liturgy has been their function in relation to the total scheme. Nothing has been done twice. Rather each item has been placed where it will make its greatest contribution, usually on two or more counts, to the on-going action. Nothing has been included merely for decorative purposes, for subjective devotional values, or for antiquarian considerations. It is hoped that due respect has been paid to tradition—primitive, western, and above all Anglican which is where any revision of our liturgy must start. But no effort has been made to use things in the most primitive, most traditional, or most Anglican manner. Purists of any of these schools will not like this liturgy. Function in forwarding the essential action has been its ultimate criterion. Whether it has succeeded in producing a clean-cut, straight-forward expression of eucharistic worship is for the reader to decide.
    This liturgy also intends to be functional in a second way. It accepts the thesis that the Eucharist is essentially a corporate act; it therefore aims at maximum participation by the laity. Although it can be celebrated by a priest assisted by only a small congregation, it is designed primarily for a full ceremonial involving many assistants. There are significant parts for a deacon, an epistoler and a reader of the Old Testament Lesson, in addition to servers, acolytes, a master of ceremonies, and even (for it is hoped that Anglican noses will not forever remain Protestant) a thurifer. When thus celebrated, meaningful pageantry can be employed. An entrance procession brings the ministers to the altar for the opening worship and penitence. After this they may retire to the sedilia for the lections. A Gospel Procession should be used, and following the sermon, the ministers return to the altar for the Creed, the culmination of the first part of the rite. The deacon may proceed to the choir step to give the Salutation of Peace, to lead the Intercessions, and to receive the elements brought up by an Offertory Procession. A second procession presents the alms. The action then shifts for the offering of the Sacrifice to the altar, to which the people go for their Communions.
    But thus far only representatives of the laity are involved. It must never be forgotten that a congregation is just as passive when watching a spectacle, even though its representatives take part in it, as when listening to a monolog. How c,an this be avoided? To answer this question we must disabuse ourselves of the notion that participation means moving around from place to place. Dix is undoubtedly right when he says that action (by which he means physical motion) rather than words characterized the primitive rite. In those days that was quite natural. Accustomed as the early Christians were to the butchering of animals, the dancing and other activities that accompanied the sacrifices of the Jewish Temple and the pagan shrines, the Eucharist must in contrast have seemed rigidly restrained. Theirs would not today. An attempt at a procession in which each person presented his own offering would produce only meaningless delay and confusion.
    We must face the fact that we are heirs of a liturgy which for centuries has been primarily verbal. If such a form of worship makes congregational participation impossible, then to achieve the latter we must scrap the liturgy and substitute a ritual dance or imitate the holy rollers. Fortunately this is not necessary. For liturgical action can be expressed in words as well as motion. The answer for us to the problem of congregational participation is to give the laity their proper share in the recitation of the rite.
    This liturgy has been constructed with that aim constantly in view. Besides the Kyrie (dignified by using the ninefold form), Gloria in Excelsis, Confession (followed by the people’s prayer for the priest as well as his absolution of them), Creed, Sanctus, and Lord’s Prayer, the people also say the Humble Access. Again and again they are drawn into the proceedings by salutations, dialogs or biddings, and to every action they are given a response which often is longer than the traditional Amen. Hymns and chants are liberally provided, among which should be noted the psalm after the Old Testament Lesson, and the canticle which may be used for a Gradual. The Intercession is put into litany form, and even in the Canon the principle of having the people join in the Sanctus has been extended to let them share the anamnesis and the self-oblation. Liturgically speaking they have plenty to do.
    The suggested arrangements at the Offertory give another and still more important emphasis to the people’s participation. The current featuring of this step in the liturgy is rightly designed to recall that in presenting the bread and wine we are offering ourselves. But the elements are after all symbols, and there is grave danger that they may remain empty symbols. The dressing up of their presentation will not in itself put reality into them. The sacrament of self-oblation is sacrificial giving of one’s substance, which means at least the tithe, and often should be more. For what is the usual objection to tithing? ‘I can’t afford it.’ Exactly. To tithe one must reorganize one’s expenditures. But can anything less be an expression of real self-oblation? Is it enough to spend all we want on ourselves and then give God what happens to be left over?
    This liturgy therefore does not follow the usual current device of having the elements and alms brought up together. That too easily suggests that they are two distinct forms of self-offering, liturgical and (unfortunate necessity) financial. It also involves a pause while the chalice is being prepared which, after it has been done a few times, becomes meaningless and awkward. The important action here is not that the people watch themselves being poured into the chalice, but that they make a real sacrificial offering of themselves. So the Offertory rubrics here presuppose that the elements will be brought up first and exchanged for the collection plates. While the priest at the altar is preparing the symbols of their self-oblation, the people in the pews are putting reality into them. Then both the collection and the elements are presented at the altar together in the Offertory Prayer.
    It is realized, of course, that this liturgy involves revisions too extreme to be adopted in the near future. Its purpose is simply to put forth for consideration, correction, or if it deserves it, rejection, a possible ideal toward which we might be working.
    This liturgy is a by-product of several years’ research in the variations, proposed or accomplished, of the Prayer Book Communion Office. It incorporates many suggestions of friends as well. But the author takes full responsibility for it. If anyone thinks him presumptuous in undertaking a revision proposal single-handed, he is quite prepared to admit he has failed in his attempt. But he makes no apology for having tried. He is convinced by the history of Anglican revisions beginning with 1549 that a good liturgy must be fundamentally the work of an individual. Rites produced by groups have a tendency to emerge as camels—you know the old definition, ‘a camel is a horse put together by a committee.’




In the rubrics of the Liturgy the title Priest is used to designate the portions which shall be read only by the Celebrant. The title Minister is used when they may be read by an assistant, if there be one, but are to be taken by the Celebrant himself, if he have no assistant. But note, That he who readeth the Biddings, the Gospel, or the Great Intercession, or who ministereth the Bread or the Cup at the Communion, shall always be at least in Deacon’s Orders.
    The Liturgy shall always be recited throughout, by both Ministers and People, in a distinct and audible voice; but it is not intended, by the use in the rubrics of any particular word denoting vocal utterance, to prescribe the tone and manner of its recitation. When addressing the People, or reading from Holy Scripture, the Minister shall always stand facing the congregation.
    The signs V and R indicate that those portions may be recited alternately by the Minister and the People; or sung antiphonally by two parts of the Choir; or in unison throughout.1
It is strongly urged that nothing be added, whether recited publicly or said privately by the Celebrant, that shall hinder, interrupt, or alter the course of the Liturgy.


1 There is no other satisfactory way of indicating these alternatives in the text. This will explain the signs to any not familiar with them.



If no Proper Introit be appointed, one of the following shall be read. On Sundays any one of the seven may be used. It is suggested that 2 through 7 be used on Mondays through Saturdays respectively. But note, That a Hymn or other Anthem may always be substituted for the Introit.

THE hour cometh and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
V  This is the day which the Lord hath made.
R We will rejoice and be glad in it.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. The hour cometh, etc.

2. Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

V  O praise God in his sanctuary.
R Praise him in the firmament of his power.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Thou art worthy, etc.

3. Jesus saith, Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

V  O let thy loving mercies come unto me, that I may live;
R For thy law is my delight.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Jesus saith, Come unto me, etc.

4. Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

V  Surely his loving-kindness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
R And I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

V  Glory be. R As it was. All. Behold, the tabernacle, etc.

5. O that men would praise the Lord for his goodness; and declare the wonders that he doeth for the children of men! That they would offer unto him the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and tell out his works with gladness!

V  Praise the Lord, O my soul:
R And all that is within me, praise his holy Name.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. O that men, etc.

6. Through Christ let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his Name.

V  Praise the Lord, O my soul; while I live, will I praise the Lord.
R Yea, as long as I have any being, I will sing praises unto my God.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Through Christ, etc.

7. Seek ye the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near.

V  The Lord God is a light and a defence; the Lord will give grace and worship:
R And no good thing will he withhold from them that live a godly life.

V  Glory be. R As it was. All. Seek ye the Lord, etc


2 An initial seasonal act of worship is of sufficient importance to be required. At a sung Celebration an appropriate hymn will serve this purpose, or an anthem such as the Venite might be used. But when the service is said, Introits are needed. The traditional form has been followed, both because the repetition of the opening sentence emphasizes the seasonal note, and because the people can participate if they have the text before them. To this end the General Introits should be printed in the Prayer Book on the page opposite the beginning of the liturgy.

for the Celebration of the
with the Administration of the

The Altar shall have upon it a fair white linen cloth, and other furnishings meet for the Celebration of the holy Mysteries.


If the Introit (or a Hymn or other Anthem) be not sung at the entrance of the Ministers, the Priest shall recite the Introit responsively with the People after he hath reached the Altar. After the Introit shall follow,


V Kyrie eleison3
R Kyrie eleison
V Kyrie eleison
R Christe eleison
V Christe eleison
R Christe eleison
V Kyrie eleison
R Kyrie eleison
V Kyrie eleison


Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.

Then upon all Sundays (except in Advent, and from Septuagesima to Palm Sunday inclusive); upon all Feasts; upon days within appointed Octaves; and upon all days in the Festal Seasons from Christmas to Epiphany, and from Easter to Trinity Sunday inclusive: shall be said,

3 The English translation is incurably penitential. Even the more accurate ‘Lord, have mercy’ is little help. If the Kyrie is to be understood, the Greek must be restored. Since the English is retained only for the transitional period, it might as well be left in the traditional form that fits the music.

GLORY be to God on high, and on earth peace, good will towards men.4 We praise thee, we bless thee, we worship thee, we glorify thee, we give thanks to thee for thy great glory, O Lord God, heavenly King, God the Father Almighty.
    O Lord, the only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ; O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us. Thou that takest away the sins of the world, receive our prayer. Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father, have mercy upon us.
    For thou only art holy; thou only art the Lord; thou only, O Christ, with the Holy Ghost, art most high in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

Then shall the Priest say,

The Lord be with you.
People. And with thy spirit
Priest. Let us pray.

The People kneeling, the Priest shall continue,

ALMIGHTY God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid; Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy Name: through Christ our Lord. Amen.


4 Inaccurate though this may be, it is vastly better than ‘men of good will’, which suggests a nice chap who means well and is kind to animals, but who of course never goes to church. The Greek phrase is untranslatable, and the present form is as close as we are likely to get. Modern proposals for other changes in the Gloria have not been adopted, since they disturb the familiar text without improving its meaning.

    The Minister may read the following Sentences from Holy Scripture.5 But note, That the Ten Commandments and the Summary of the Law, as given in the Office of Preparation, may be used instead.

GOD spake these words and said:
    Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy.
And our Lord Jesus Christ saith:
    Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it: Thou shalt love they neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.
Hear also what Saint John saith:
    If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Then shall the Minister say,
Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.

    The Ministers kneeling down, all shall say,


5 These optional Sentences stress the continuity of God’s call through the Old Testament, Gospel and Church. They might be taken by the one who is to read the Old Testament Lesson.

ALMIGHTY God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men; We acknowledge and confess our manifold sins, Which we have committed by thought, word and deed, Against thy Divine Majesty. We do earnestly repent, And are heartily sorry for these our misdoings. Have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us,6 most merciful Father; For thy Son our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, Forgive us all our sins.7 And grant that we may ever hereafter Serve and please thee in newness of life, To the honour and glory of thy Name; Through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.


But, except on Sundays and Major Feasts, the following Confession may be substituted.8
O Almighty Father, Lord of heaven and earth, We confess that we have sinned against thee in thought, word, and deed. Have mercy upon us, O God, after thy great goodness; According to the multitude of thy mercies, Do away our offences and cleanse us from our sins; For Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen.



6 The deletions are today generally desired, but the repetition of ‘have mercy’ is retained for a poetic touch.

7 ‘Forgive us all that is past’ smacks of total depravity.

8 If this Confession were made familiar by use on weekdays, it might be usable in the sickroom, for which it is now provided.

    Then shall the People say,

ALMIGHTY God have mercy upon thee, Forgive thee all thy sins, And bring thee to everlasting life.9
    Priest. Amen.

Then the Priest (the Bishop if he be present) shall stand up and say,

ALMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, who of his great mercy hath promised forgiveness of sins to all those who with hearty repentance and true faith turn unto him; Have mercy upon you; pardon and deliver you from all your sins; confirm and strengthen you in all goodness; and bring you to everlasting life.10 Amen.


Then shall the Priest say,
    The Lord be with you.
People. And with thy spirit.
Priest. Let us pray.

Then shall he say the Collect or Collects of the Day.
Here, if Morning Prayer have not been publicly said immediately before the Liturgy, may be read the Old Testament Lesson therein appointed; which may be followed by a Psalm, or a portion of a Psalm. The Announcement of this Lesson and the People’s Response after it shall be as those for the Epistle.
The People shall sit for the reading of the Lesson and of the Epistle. Then shall the Minister read the Epistle, first saying,
A Lesson from the (—) Epistle (Book) to (of)——



9 This corrects the present anomaly of the priest making his confession and receiving no absolution.




10 ‘Through Jesus Christ’ is omitted because this is a declaration not a prayer.

The Epistle ended, the People shall say,
    Thanks be to God.11

Here may follow the Gradual, a Hymn or one of the Canticles of Morning Prayer.
    He who is appointed to read the Gospel may say privately,12
    Cleanse my heart and my lips, O Almighty God, who didst purge the lips of the Prophet Isaiah with a live coal; and of thy gracious mercy, vouchsafe so to purify me that I may worthily proclaim thy holy Gospel; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Then, the People standing, the Minister shall read the Gospel, first saying,
    The Lord be with you.
    People. And with thy spirit.
    Minister. Hear the Holy Gospel according to Saint ————
    People. Glory be to thee, O Lord.
    After the Gospel, the People shall say,
    Praise be to thee, O Christ.

Here followeth the Sermon, after which an appropriate Hymn or Doxology may be sung.

Then the Priest and People together shall say,


11 ‘Here endeth’ is not needed and a response by the people is. To say both sounds silly.

12 A few of the more desirable private devotions for the priest are provided, in the hope that the repeated interruptions of the liturgy some indulge in may be restrained.

I BELIEVE in one God:13
    The Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
    And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God; Begotten of the14 Father before all worlds; God, of God; Light, of Light; Very God, of very God;15 Begotten, not made; Being of one substance with the Father. All things were made by him,16 Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, And was made man: And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried: And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures; And ascended into heaven, and sitteth at17 the right hand of the Father: And he shall come again with glory, to judge both the living18 and the dead; His19 kingdom shall have no end.
    And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord, The20 Giver of Life, Who proceedeth from the Father through the Son;21 Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; Who spake by the Prophets. And I believe in22 One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church; I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins: And I look for the Resurrection of the dead; And the Life of the world to come. Amen.

    Here the necessary notices are given. On Sundays shall be declared unto the People what Holy Days, or Days of Fasting or Abstinence, are in that week to be observed. If a Celebration of the Liturgy be announced, the Exhortation to the Holy Communion may be read. Special Prayers of Intercession or Thanksgiving may also be used.

    If it be the custom of the place, the Catechumens may here be dismissed with appropriate Prayers and a Blessing. A Hymn may be sung.


    When there is a Deacon, he may stand at the entrance of the choir for the Great Intercession.

Minister. The Peace of the Lord be always with you.
People. And with thy spirit.
Minister. Let us pray for the whole state of Christ’s Church.

The People kneeling, the Minister shall face the Altar and say,

13 Alterations in so familiar an item as the Creed are difficult to accomplish. But its meaning should be unmistakably clear, as now it is not. The best plan is to make all needed changes at one time, relearn the Creed, and get it over. A paragraph is made at this point to assert our belief in one God before speaking of the Persons.
14 Every man is son of his father; Christ is Son of God the Father.
15 Pauses at the commas will avoid the misunderstanding, God of gods, etc.
16 Perhaps this is too drastic; but it is biblical (John 1:3). A new sentence is justified, since the first defines who Christ is, this speaks of his works. Probably nothing less, not even ‘through whom’, will convince people that ‘whom’ refers to Christ.
17 So reads 1549 and the text of the Gloria in Excelsis.
18‘Quick’ in this sense is totally obsolete.
19 Christ’s kingdom, not that of the living and dead.
20 The Holy Ghost is God (Lord), not merely Lord of Life.
21 On what authority do we use the filioque? No General Council has endorsed it; the Orthodox reject it. Do we here recognize papal authority? As ‘through the Son’ is acceptable to the Orthodox, it may claim ecumenical consent.
22 It is wise these days to assert that we not only believe the Church, but in the doctrine concerning the nature of the Church. All want to restore ‘Holy’.

ALMIGHTY and everliving God, who hast taught us in the Name of thy dear Son23 to make supplications, and to give thanks, for all men; We humbly beseech thee to receive these our prayers, which we offer unto thy Divine Majesty.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Inspire continually the Universal Church with the spirit of truth, unity, and concord; that it may ever keep the faith once delivered to the saints.24
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Give grace to all Bishops and other Ministers,25 that both by their life and doctrine, they may set forth thy true and lively Word, and faithfully administer thy holy Sacraments.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Dispose the hearts of thy People so to hear and receive thy Word, that they may serve thee in holiness and righteousness all the days of their life.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Hasten the fulfilment of thy kingdom, O Lord; and inspire many to labour, at home and abroad, for the spread of thy Gospel, and the knowledge of thy truth.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Direct the rulers of the nations in the paths of justice and peace, that under them the world may be godly and quietly governed.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Prosper and guide those who produce or distribute the necessities of life, that all may duly share in the gifts of thy bounty.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Endue with strength and patience all who, in this transitory life, are in trouble, sorrow, need, sickness, or any other adversity.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.
    Minister. Have mercy upon thy servants who have departed this life in thy faith and fear, granting them refreshment, light and peace in thy perfect service.
    People. Hear us, O Lord.

23 Christ’s promise that prayer in his Name will be heard is more germane than the present reference to the Apostle.

24 If these petitions at first seem abrupt, compare the Lord’s Prayer—give, forgive, lead, deliver. The final clause of this petition seems preferable to saying the same thing twice as at present. By eliminating groveling verbiage and duplications, more petitions have been fitted into a prayer of the same length.

25 As there are now more lay readers than clergy, it is a strange time to limit this to bishops, priests and deacons. Note that the prayers for the Church are kept together. There is no good reason why we should put the state before the bishops. The petition for missions makes a natural transition to the world. The adjective ‘lively’ is preferred to ‘living’, because the latter is so colorless in this context.

Then s hall the Priest say,26

FINALLY, O heavenly Father, we bless thy holy Name for the Virgin Mary and all thy Saints, the chosen vessels of thy grace, and the lights of the world in their several generations; beseeching thee that we, rejoicing in their fellowship, following their examples, and aided by their prayers, may be partakers with them of thy heavenly kingdom. Grant this, O Father, for Jesus Christ’s sake, our only Mediator and Advocate, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

Then shall the Minister say,
Let us humbly present our offerings unto the Lord.

26 This serves as the Collect with which a litany ends. When a deacon reads the litany at the choir step, it is closed by the priest at the altar.

    Here may be added one of these Sentences following.27
    Offer unto God the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and call upon the Name of the Lord.
    To do good, and to communicate, forget not; for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
    The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit: a broken and contrite heart shall he not despise.
    Or some other appropriate Sentence from Holy Scripture may be used.

    The bread and wine may be brought to the Minister by representatives of the People.
    The Corporal shall be spread on the Altar, and the Priest shall prepare and place beside it sufficient bread, and wine mixed with a little water, during which he may say privately,
    O God, who didst wonderfully create, and yet more wonderfully renew the dignity of the nature of man; grant unto us that, through the mystery of this water and wine, we may be sharers in the divinity of him who vouchsafed to be made partaker of our humanity, Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

27 This liturgy provides an honest Bidding to the Offertory in place of the subtle hint given by the Offertory Sentences as now used. The three Sentences included here are for use on festal, ferial and penitential occasions respectively, to indicate the nature of our offering when no collection is taken. With the Proper Preface following in a moment, the elaborate sets of seasonal Sentences sometimes proposed are unnecessary.

    Meanwhile the Alms of the People may be received, and an Anthem28 or Hymn be sung. The Alms shall be brought to the Priest, who shall humbly present them, and place them upon the Altar.

    Then shall the Priest offer and place upon the Corporal the bread and wine. During the Offering the People shall stand, and the Priest shall say,

THINE, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty.
    People. All things come of thee, O Lord, and of thine own have we given thee.
    Priest. Accept us, O merciful Father, in these our gifts, the fruits of the earth and of human toil, not weighing our merits, but pardoning our offences: And as the wheat scattered upon the mountains hath been made one loaf; grant us by thy Holy Spirit to be made one in Christ, our great High Priest, that he may render our oblation a sacrifice acceptable unto thee, who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.

The Alms shall be removed from the Altar.
Then may the Minister say,

28 The chief function of the choir is to lead the people in singing, not to substitute for them. The music of the people’s part of the liturgy should therefore be simple enough for them to sing. But there is no reason why the choir, if it can handle more elaborate music, should not make its special offering of an anthem, provided it be liturgical, not operatic.

    Pray, Brethren, for ——, and for all whom ye would remember before the Throne of God.

    It is recommended that no additional Prayers be said at this place. While the private Intercessions are being made, the Priest may wash his fingers,29 saying silently,
    I will wash my hands in innocency, O Lord; and so will I go to thine altar.
    That I may show the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wonderous works. Glory be.


Then, the People still standing, the Priest shall say,

The Lord be with you.
People. And with thy spirit.
Priest. Lift up your hearts.
People. We lift them up unto the Lord.
Priest. Let us give thanks unto our Lord God.
People. It is meet and right so to do.
Priest. It is verily30 meet, right and our bounden duty, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto thee, O Lord, Holy Father, Almighty, Everlasting, God.

29 Those who advocate putting the lavabo earlier are clearly not accustomed to using incense. After censing the offerings, the lavabo is often needed.




30 The correct translation is worth two extra letters.


    Here shall follow the Proper Preface, according to the time, if there be any specially appointed; or else immediately shall be said,
    Priest. Therefore with Angels and Archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify thy glorious Name, evermore praising thee, and saying,

The Priest and People together shall say,


HOLY, HOLY, HOLY, Lord God of hosts: Heaven and earth are full of thy glory: Glory be to thee, O Lord most high.31

Then, the People kneeling, the Priest shall say,

ALL glory be to thee, O Lord, Holy Father, Almighty, Everlasting God,32 for that thou of thine infinite bounty didst frame the worlds and madest man in thine own image; and of thy tender mercy didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to take our nature upon him, to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption, and to rise again for our sanctification: who made, by his one Oblation of himself, the one perfect sacrifice unto thee, and full satisfaction for the sins of the whole world:33 and did institute and in his holy Gospel command us to continue a perpetual memory of that his precious death and sacrifice, until his coming again.
    Here the Priest placeth his hands upon the bread.
    For in the night in which he was betrayed, he took bread; and when he had given thanks to thee, he brake it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, Take, eat, this is my Body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.
    Here the Priest placeth his hands upon the vessels containing the wine.
    Likewise, after supper, he took the cup; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, Drink all ye34 of this; for this is my Blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for you and for many, for the remission of sins. Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it, in remembrance of me.

Then, the Priest kneeling down, all together shall say,

THE death of Christ we commemorate; In his resurrection we rejoice:35 And we render unto thee, O heavenly Father, most hearty thanks For the wonderful redemption procured for us in him.

The Priest, standing, shall continue,

WHEREFORE, O Lord, according to our Saviour Jesus Christ’s holy institution, we thy humble servants, having in remembrance his blessed passion and precious death, his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension, and looking for his coming again with power and great glory, do make the Oblation thy Son hath commanded: we set forth before thy Divine Majesty this + Bread of life and + Cup of salvation.36 And we earnestly desire thy fatherly goodness mercifully to receive upon thine Altar on high this, + our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving;37 that we, and all thy whole Church, living and departed, may obtain all the benefits of his passion.

The Priest and People together shall say,

AND here we offer and present unto thee, O Lord, Ourselves, our souls and bodies, To be, in union with our Saviour Christ, The reasonable, holy, and living sacrifice unto thee38

And the Priest shall continue,

AND we pray thee by thy Holy Spirit so to sanctify this Oblation of thy holy Church, that we may worthily receive the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son Jesus Christ, be filled with thy grace and heavenly benediction, and made one body with him, in the glorious fellowship of the saints he hath redeemed.39 And although we are unworthy to offer unto thee any sacrifice, we beseech thee, who didst of old accept the offering of Abel, the faith of Abraham, and the oblations of Melchizedek,40 to accept this our bounden duty and service, through Jesus Christ our Lord, by whom, and with whom, and in whom, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, all honour and glory be unto thee, O Father Almighty, world without end.
    And all the People shall answer, Amen.


Priest. And now,41 as our Saviour Christ hath commanded and taught us, we may boldly say,

The Priest and People together shall say,

OUR Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, For ever and ever. Amen.

Then shall the Priest break the Bread, saying,42

CHRIST our Paschal Lamb, once slain upon the cross, and now exalted to the right hand of the Father, ever liveth to make intercession for us.
    People. Hosanna in the highest.
    Priest. Blessed is he that cometh in the Name of the Lord.
    People. Hosanna in the highest.

    Then the Priest shall kneel down, and silence shall be kept for a space; after which all who are minded to receive the Holy Communion shall say together,

WE do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord, Trusting in our own righteousness, But in thy manifold and great mercies. We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table. But thou art the same Lord, Whose property is always to have mercy: Grant us therefore, gracious Lord, So to receive thy most precious Body and Blood, That our souls and bodies may be cleansed and nourished, And that we may evermore dwell in thee, And thou in us. Amen.

The Priest, standing and facing the Altar, shall say,

O LORD Jesus Christ, who saidst unto thine Apostles, Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; Regard not our sins, but the faith of thy Church; and grant to it that peace and unity which is according to thy will, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.


Here may be sung a Hymn, or one of the following may be used.

V  We have known the Lord, Alleluia,
R In the breaking of Bread, Alleluia.
V  The Bread which we break, Alleluia,
R Is the Body of Christ, Alleluia.
V  In the Cup that we bless, Alleluia,
R We partake of his Blood, Alleluia.

Or this,

V  O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world,
R Have mercy upon us.
V  O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world,
R Have mercy upon us.
V  O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world,
R Grant us thy peace.

Nothing, not even Amen, and certainly not the Benedictus, should be intruded into this perfect link of the Sanctus with the Canon.
32 The effectiveness of the link depends on the exact repetition of the clause added to the Sanctus, heightened by ‘all’. Most modern revisions spoil this by inserting ‘and thanksgiving’. Consecration is by the act of thanksgiving, which is what the opening paragraph of the Canon is, not by saying the magical word. By addressing God with the titles used in the Preface, not only is another link provided, but the repetition is extended two words further.
33 This emphasizes the uniqueness of Christ’s Sacrifice without implying that it was offered only in the past on Calvary. It also avoids the suggestion that it was primarily propitiatory, and that he offered satisfaction to God. There are other legitimate theories of the atonement, and his Oblation is above all an act of worship, a Sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving which continues in heaven. This dual aspect is already distinguished in the next clause—death (atonement) and sacrifice (worship).
34 Surely it is time we changed ‘ye all’; most people think it means ‘all of this’. ‘Covenant’ is a better translation.
35 This is addressed to Christ in the liturgies from which it is taken. But the Canon should be exclusively addressed to the Father, since in it we are sharing in Christ’s perfect worship of him.
36 By omitting the customary adjectives the phrases are purely biblical.
37 Following Prayer Book policy, detailed ceremonial gestures have not been noted in the rubrics. But the crosses are important to identify ‘this, our sacrifice’ with the Elements. The notion that we are offering this sacrifice of our praise and thanksgiving must be avoided.
38 Christ’s is the one ‘reasonable, holy and living sacrifice’ in which alone we can offer ourselves acceptably to God. This belongs here: not at the Offertory before our oblation is consecrated; nor need it be postponed until after Communion, since one purpose of the Consecration is fully to actualize our baptismal incorporation in Christ, so that we can share in his worship of the Father, as well as receive him in the Elements. ‘Living’ is used here because ‘lively sacrifice’ suggests the wrong picture.
39 Some will miss ‘he may dwell in us’ etc., but this idea is more effectively expressed moments later in Humble Access. Our present Canon ignores the corporate aspect of salvation which, in place of the duplication, has been stated here.
40 The continuity of the Old Testament in the New needs emphasis today.
41 Instead of the less satisfactory traditional oremus, ‘and now’ marks the transition from the Canon.
42 If the traditional ceremonies are desired, the first breaking is at ‘Christ’, the second at ‘once slain’, the crosses during the next clause, and the commixture at ‘ever liveth’.

    During or after this Hymn, the Priest shall first receive the Holy Communion in both kinds himself, and proceed to deliver the same to the others in the Sanctuary. Then the People who are prepared to communicate43 shall be invited to receive the Sacrament, the Priest saying,

YE who do truly and earnestly repent you of your sins, and are in love and charity with your neighbours, and intend to lead the new life: Draw near with faith, and take this holy Sacrament in remembrance that Christ gave his life for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith with thanksgiving.

Then shall the Holy Communion be delivered to the People, all devoutly kneeling. And he that ministereth the Bread shall say,



43 The key word is ‘prepared’. This rubric asserts that opportunity for the people’s Communion is regularly to be given, but recognizes that there may be occasions, such as nuptual masses, when the congregation does not come really prepared to receive. Under those circumstances they would not be invited.

    The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ, given for thee.44 Amen.

He that ministereth the Cup shall say,
The Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, shed for thee. Amen.

    During the Communion-time there may be sung a Hymn or Anthem.
    When all have communicated, the Priest shall say the Proper Communion Sentence, according to the time; or it shall be sung. If no Proper Sentence be appointed, one of the following shall be used.

    If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.
    Jesus saith, Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
    We have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love: and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
Walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God.
    Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see God.
    The grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.
Jesus saith, Whoso eateth my Flesh and drinketh my Blood hath eternal life, and I shall raise him up at the last day.

44 The omission of ‘which was’ is to avoid the suggestion that Christ’s Sacrifice, now made sacramentally present, is exclusively in the past.

While the private thanksgivings are being made, what remaineth of the consecrated Elements, except such as shall be properly reserved, shall be reverently consumed, and the vessels cleansed.45
    Then shall the Priest say,

The Lord be with you.
People. And with thy spirit
Priest. Let us bless the Lord.

Then all shall stand, and the Priest shall say,

ALMIGHTY and everliving God, we most heartily thank thee, for that thou dost vouchsafe to feed us in these holy Mysteries, with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ; assuring us thereby that we are very members incorporate in his Mystical Body, the blessed company of all faithful people, and are also heirs through hope of thy everlasting kingdom. And we humbly beseech thee, O heavenly Father, so to assist us with thy grace, that we may continue in that holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end.

    People. Amen. Blessing and honour and glory and power be unto him that sitteth upon the Throne, And unto the Lamb for ever and ever. Amen.

Then the Minister shall say,


45 The passive voice is used to allow the deacon to consume the Remains at a side altar, as some prefer.

    Go ye forth in Christ.46
People. Thanks be to God.

    Then, the People kneeling, the Priest (the Bishop if he be present) shall let them depart with this Blessing.


46 This both emphasizes that we go in Christ to the world, and avoids the repetition of ‘peace’.

THE Peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God, and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord: And the Blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, remain with you always.47 Amen.

    It is the duty of every Communicant to receive the Holy Communion frequently, after due preparation; and to contribute regularly of his substance, as God shall prosper him, to the maintenance of the worship of God, and the spread of the Gospel.48
    The Priest shall instruct the People, as occasion shall require, concerning the Communion of the Sick, that they may not be in ignorance that the Holy Communion can be received in their homes, if they be unable for any just cause to come to the church.

    If any man, by reason of great sickness, or any other just impediment, be not able at any time to receive the Sacrament of Christ’s Body and Blood, yet if he do truly repent him of his sins, and stedfastly believe that Jesus Christ hath suffered death upon the cross for him, and shed his blood for his redemption, giving most hearty thanks for the benefits he hath thereby, he doth indeed eat and drink the Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ profitably to his soul’s health, although he do not receive the Sacrament with his mouth.




47 The omission of ‘be amongst you’ avoids the sacerdotalism of giving a blessing after Communion. The priest simply bids that the peace and blessing therein received ‘remain’.

48 A statement of a communicant’s duties ought to be included. The next two rubrics have been rescued from the Communion of the Sick (the first from 1928 English), and placed here in the hope they will be more often seen.



From the First Sunday in Advent until Christmas Day, except upon major Saint’s Days.

Introit. Behold, the Lord God will come with a strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.

V  Prepare ye the way of the Lord.
R Make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. Behold, the Lord, etc.

Preface. Because thou hast given unto us salvation through the coming of thy well-beloved Son in great humility, and by him wilt make all things new when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge the world in righteousness. Therefore with Angels, etc.50
Sentence. Blessed are those servants whom the Lord when he cometh shall find watching. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of Man cometh at an hour when ye think not.


From Christmas Day until the Epiphany.

Introit. Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his Name shall be called the Prince of Peace.

V  O Lord our Governor, how excellent is thy Name in all the world.
R Thou that hast set thy glory above the heavens.

V Glory be. R As it Was. All. Unto us a Child, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 77.
Sentence. God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, to the end that all that believe in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.


Upon the Epiphany, and seven days after.

Introit. Arise, shine: for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.

V.  All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship thee, O Lord;
R And shall glorify thy Name.

V  Glory be. R As it was. All. Arise, shine, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 77.
Sentence. All kings shall fall down before him; all nations shall do him service.

49 The Church already prints both a Prayer Book and an Altar Book. It is to be hoped that eventually it will realize that the Altar Book should be arranged for the convenience of the celebrant, and therefore not in the same way as is best for the people. A priest wants things where they come in the service as far as possible. Thus he will want all the Introits printed just before the liturgy; the Proper Prefaces (both with and without music) before the Canon; and the Proper Communion Sentences following those already given. For the people, however, long sections of alternatives are confusing and obscure the continuity of the liturgy. Therefore in the Prayer Book the Proper Introits, Prefaces and Sentences should be placed together after the liturgy. If Graduals are to be supplied, each set of lections should have its own, chosen to fit the context and printed with them.

50 Scottish, slightly revised.


Upon the Feasts of the Purification, Annunciation, and Transfiguration.51

Introit. The Angel said unto Mary, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

V Full of grace are thy lips;
R Because God hath blessed thee for ever.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. The Angel said, etc.

But for the Feast of the Transfiguration the Introit shall be as for the Epiphany.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 77.
Sentence. When the fulness of time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
But on the Feast of the Transfiguration the Sentence shall be,
We beheld his glory, the glory as of the only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.


From Ash Wednesday until Passion Sunday, except upon Major Feasts.



51 When Feasts of the Virgin Mary are provided, this Introit and Sentence will be used, but the Preface of Christmas, with ‘for our salvation’ substituted for ‘as at this time for us’.

Introit. Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you. Believe in the light, that ye may become the children of light.52

V Serve the Lord in fear:
R And rejoice unto him with reverence.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Yet a little while, etc.

Preface. Who hast sent thy Son to be a great High Priest who is touched with the feeling of our infirmities, being at all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin; that we may come boldly unto the throne of grace, to obtain mercy, and to find grace to help in time of need. Therefore with Angels, etc.53

One of the following Sentences shall be used,
Jesus saith, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me. For whosoever will save his life, shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake, shall find it.
Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling: for it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
We are debtors not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
This is a true saying, and worthy of all men to be received, That Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.



52 The warfare of light against darkness, as expounded by St. John, should be the heme of Lent. This is continued by repeating the phrase ‘children of light’ in the Passiontide Preface; and reaches its climax in the lighting of the Paschal Candle.


53 Liturgical Commission’s proposal.


From Passion Sunday until Maundy Thursday, except on Major Feasts.

Introit. But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.

V Ascribe unto the Lord the honour due unto his Name.
R Worship the Lord with holy worship.
Glory be is not said. All. But God forbid, etc.

Preface. For the redemption of the world by the passion and death of our Saviour Christ, both God and Man; who humbled himself, even to the death upon the cross for us sinners that lay in darkness and the shadow of death; that he might make us the children of light, and exalt us to everlasting glory. Therefore with Angels, etc.54
Sentence. Jesus said, I am the good Shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

54 Canadian, revised. It is taken from the first Exhortation.



Upon Maundy Thursday, and at Commemorations of the Holy Eucharist.

Introit. Jesus said unto them, I am the Bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

V He gave them food from heaven.
R So man did eat Angels’ food.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Jesus said unto them; etc.

Preface. Through Jesus Christ our Lord: who having loved his own that were in the world, loved them unto the end; and on the night before he suffered, sitting at meat with his disciples, did institute these holy Mysteries; that we, commemorating his precious death and sacrifice, may be partakers of his heavenly glory. Therefore with Angels, etc.55

Sentence. Jesus said, I am the living Bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this Bread, he shall live for ever: and the Bread that I will give is my Flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

55 This appeared first in Gore’s Prayer Book (1913) and has been adopted in revised form by many modern books. This is a further revision.



From Easter Day until Ascension Day, except upon Major Feasts.

Introit. This Jesus hath God raised up, alleluia; whereof we all are witnesses, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

V O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is gracious, alleluia:
R And his mercy endureth for ever, alleluia.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. This Jesus, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 78.

One of the following Sentences shall be used.

If we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.
I am the Resurrection and the Life, saith the Lord: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.
Now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.


From Ascension Day until Whitsunday, except on Major Feasts.

Introit. In like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven, alleluia; so shall he come again, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
V  God is gone up with a merry noise, alleluia:
R And the Lord with the sound of the trump, alleluia,
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. In like manner, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 78.
Sentence. Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.


Upon Whitsunday, and six days after.

Introit. Ye have received the Spirit of adoption, alleluia; whereby we cry, Abba, Father, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

V  The voice of the Lord is mighty in operation, alleluia.
R The voice of the Lord is a glorious voice, alleluia.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Ye have received, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 78.
Sentence. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, meekness, faith. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.


Upon the Feast of the Holy Trinity only.

Introit. The second of the General Introits.
Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 79.
Sentence. Alleluia: for the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him.



On Sundays not otherwise provided for, one of the following Prefaces shall be used.56

BUT chiefly are we bound to praise thee for the glorious resurrection of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord: who by his death hath destroyed death, and by his rising to life again hath restored to us everlasting life. Therefore with Angels, etc.

    Through Jesus Christ our Lord; who, after he had ascended far above all the heavens and was set down at thy right hand, bestowed upon the Universal Church thy Holy and Life-giving Spirit; that through his glorious power the joy of the everlasting Gospel might go forth into all the world. Therefore with Angels, etc.

    Who, with thine only-begotten Son, and the Holy Ghost, art one God, one Lord, in Trinity of Persons and in Unity of Substance; who hast created all things by thine eternal Word. Therefore with Angels, etc.

    Who on the first day of the week didst speak the Word, and there was light; and from the darkness of sin and death, didst raise up again thine everlasting Word to be the Light of men, even Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore with Angels, etc.

One of the General Introits and Communion Sentences shall be used.


Upon All Saints’ Day, and seven days after; and upon a major Saint’s Day not otherwise provided for.

Introit. Blessed are the people whose God is the Lord Jehovah; and blessed are the folk that he hath chosen to him, to be his inheritance.

V Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous;
R For it becometh well the just to be thankful.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. Blessed are the people, etc.

Preface. As in the Prayer Book, page 79.
Sentence. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ, if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

But for a major Saint one of the Sentences for Other Saints is to be used



56 There are too many free Sundays to use one Preface on all of them, so four are given. The first was suggested in I796 by Abernethy-Drummond. The second appears in many modern books as a substitute for the 1549 Whitsun Preface. (It incorporates the Sarum Preface.) But the American abridgment of 1549 seems more appropriate to the Feast. while this Preface, considerably revised will be useful on Sundays. The third is the South African form of the Trinity Preface for use on Sundays, slightly revised. The fourth is original.


Upon the Feasts of Apostles or Evangelists not falling within an appointed Octave.

Introit. They continued stedfastly in the Apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
V Their sound is gone out into all lands;
R And their words into the ends of the world.
V Glory be. R As it was. All. They continued, etc.

Preface. Through Jesus Christ our Lord; who into all the world sent forth Apostles and Evangelists, to proclaim his Gospel and to plant his Church: that all mankind might know and worship thee, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent. Therefore with Angels, etc.57

Sentence. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief Cornerstone.

57 An original composition.





On other Saint’s Days one of the following, or the Introit for All Saints, shall be used.

I. These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

V  The Lord preserveth the souls of his saints.
R He shall deliver them from the hand of the ungodly.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. These are they, etc.

2. Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

V O praise the Lord, all ye his hosts;
R Ye servants of his that do his pleasure.
V  Glory be. R As it was. All. Blessed is the man, etc.

If the day falleth not within a Season for which a Proper Preface is appointed, the following may be used,

Who in the righteousness of the saints hast given us an example of godly living, and in their blessedness a glorious hope of our calling. Therefore with Angels, etc.58

One of the following Sentences shall be used.

Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Christ Jesus.

He that endureth to the end shall be saved.

The Lord’s delight is in them that fear him, and put their trust in his mercy.

58 This is prefixed to the All Saints Preface in several books, but it makes that too long and complicated. It is a good Preface by itself.






At Celebrations for the Departed.

Introit. Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord: and let light perpetual shine upon them.
V Thou, O God, art praised in Sion, and unto thee shall the vow be performed in Jerusalem.
R Thou that hearest the prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come.
Glory be is not said.
All. Rest eternal, etc.

In place of the Bidding to the Offertory shall be said,
Seeing that we have a great High Priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Preface. Through Jesus Christ our Lord; in whom, dying to sin, we are raised to newness of life; and can walk even through the valley of the shadow of death in the sure hope of the glory that shall be revealed. Therefore with Angels, etc.59

    The first two Responses to O Lamb of God shall be Grant them rest; and the third, Grant them rest everlasting.
    The Communion Sentence and the remainder of the Liturgy shall be as follows, the People kneeling throughout.

59 The Roman Preface does not translate well. This is an original attempt at a new approach.


Sentence. None of us liveth unto himself, and no man dieth unto himself; For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.

When the vessels have been cleansed, the Priest shall say,

The Lord be with you.
People. And with thy spirit.
Priest. Let us pray.

O ETERNAL Lord God, who holdest all souls in life; Vouchsafe, we beseech thee, to thy whole Church in paradise and on earth, thy light and thy peace; and grant that we, following the good examples of those who have served thee here and are now at rest, may at the last enter with them into thine unending joy, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost; be all honour and glory, world without end. Amen.

Priest. Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord.
People. And let light perpetual shine upon them.
Priest. May they rest in peace.

The Blessing is not added.



If the consecrated Bread or Wine be spent before all have communicated, the Priest is to consecrate more, according to the following form.

HEAR us, Almighty Father, and vouchsafe to bless and sanctify, with thy Word and Holy Spirit, this bread (wine), that it may also be unto us the Body (Blood) of our Lord Jesus Christ.

At the Consecration of the bread,

Who, in the night in which he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks to thee, he brake it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, Take, eat, this is my Body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me. Amen.

At the Consecration of the wine,

Who, after supper, took the cup, and when he had given thanks to thee, he gave it to his disciples, saying, Drink all ye of this; for this is my Blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for you and for many, for the remission of sins. Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it, in remembrance of me. Amen.

If both Bread and Wine are needed, the last two paragraphs are to be included, the second beginning, Likewise, after supper, he took the cup, with Amen said only at the close.

60 Provision must be made for the contingency that one of the Elements be exhausted before all have received. This liturgy considers the Eucharist to be a single continuous act. The only way to have another Consecration is to celebrate it all over again. No matter how long or short the form may be, there is something basically magical in the concept that by repeating a portion of the liturgy Christ can be made present in the elements. But while the Eucharist is still in process, it is possible to indicate additional elements to be included in its act of Consecration. In order solemnly to do that this form is supplied. Since it is not another Consecration, there is no need for both kinds to be included, if only more of one is required. The key words of this form are ‘may also be’.


This Exhortation may be read by the Minister at the beginning of the Liturgy, in place of all that precedeth the General Confession.

DEARLY beloved in the Lord, we are gathered here before this holy Altar to give most humble and hearty thanks to God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, for the redemption of the world by the passion and death of our Saviour Christ, both God and Man: who took upon him our flesh, and humbled himself even to the death upon the cross for us miserable sinners who lay in darkness and the shadow of death; that he might make us the children of God, and exalt us to everlasting life.
    And to the end that we should always remember the exceeding great love of our Master and only Saviour Jesus Christ, thus dying for us, and the innumerable benefits which by his precious blood-shedding he hath obtained for us, he hath instituted and ordained holy Mysteries, as pledges of his love, for a continual remembrance of his death, and for a spiritual partaking of his life, that he may be one with us and we with him, to our great and endless comfort. In him therefore, let us offer, as we are most bounden, this sacrifice of thanksgiving unto the Father, submitting ourselves wholly to his holy will and pleasure, and studying to serve him in righteousness all the days of our life.
    But we who come to the Holy Communion of the Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ must also consider how Saint Paul exhorteth all persons diligently to examine themselves, before they presume to eat of that Bread and drink of that Cup. For as the benefit is great, if with a truly penitent heart and living faith we receive that holy Sacrament; so is the danger great, if we receive the same unworthily.
    Judge therefore yourselves, brethren, that ye be not judged of the Lord. Repent you of your sins past, and confess yourselves to Almighty God, with full purpose of amendment of life: so that ye may come holy and clean to such a heavenly feast, in the marriage garment required by God in Holy Scripture, and be received as worthy partakers of that holy Table.
    Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.

[All the remainder should be placed among the occasional services at the back of the Prayer Book.]

As this Exhortation has been arranged as a substitute for part of the liturgy, it might sometimes be considered useful. It has been revised so as to start at the altar and lead up to the Confession. Much of the last paragraph has been taken from the other Exhortation to give a stronger ending here.


This Exhortation may be read as an introduction to the Office of Preparation for the Holy Communion, or by itself in giving notice of the Celebration of the Eucharist, especially before the great Festivals. The paragraph in brackets may be omitted.

DEARLY beloved brethren, on—day next I purpose, through God’s assistance, to administer to all such as shall be religiously and devoutly disposed the life-giving Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ; to be by them received in remembrance of his saving cross and passion by which alone we obtain remission of our sins and are made partakers of the kingdom of heaven.
    Wherefore it is our duty to come to these holy Mysteries with most humble and hearty thanks to Almighty God, our heavenly Father, for that he hath given his Son our Saviour Jesus Christ, not only to die for us, but also to be our spiritual food and sustenance in that holy Sacrament.
    [Therefore, in God’s behalf, I bid you all that are here present, who are so lovingly called and bidden by God himself, and I exhort you, as ye love your own salvation, that ye will be partakers of that Holy Communion. It is an easy matter for a man to say, I will not communicate because I am otherwise hindered with worldly business. But such excuses are not so easily accepted and allowed before God. Those who refused the feast in the Gospel, because they had bought a farm, or would try their yokes of oxen, or because they were married, were not so excused, but counted unworthy of the heavenly feast. And if any man say, I am a grievous sinner, and therefore am afraid to come: wherefore then do ye not repent and amend? I beseech you therefore, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, that ye will not refuse to come to that holy Sacrament in which we spiritually eat the Flesh of Christ and drink his Blood.]
    But since this is so divine and life-giving a thing to those who receive it worthily, and so dangerous to those who will presume to receive it unworthily, my duty is to exhort you in the meantime to search and examine your own consciences, and that not lightly, in order that, whereinsoever ye shall perceive yourselves to have offended either by will, word, deed, or omission, ye may repent you truly of your sins, and confess them before God with a stedfast faith in Christ our Saviour, and with an earnest mind to offend no more.
    And if ye shall perceive your offences to be such as are not only against God, but also against your neighbour, then ye shall reconcile yourselves unto him; being ready to make restitution and satisfaction, to the uttermost of your powers, for all injuries and wrongs done by you to any other; and being likewise ready to forgive others that have offended you, as ye would have forgiveness of your offences at God’s hand.
    And because it is requisite that no man should come to the Holy Communion, but with a full trust in God’s mercy and with a quiet conscience, if there be any of you who by this means cannot quiet his own conscience herein, but requireth further comfort or counsel, let him come to a Priest and confess and open his sin and grief secretly;63 that he may receive the assurance of God’s Absolution, together with such godly counsel and advice, as may avail to the quieting of his conscience, and the removing of all scruple and doubtfulness.

This Exhortation might well be used occasionally. The paragraph in brackets may rarely be needed, but it is wise to have it to read at Confirmation instructions.


62 This clearer reference to Confession ought to be possible today. ‘Come to a Priest’ both simplifies the passage and makes it possible for a layman to read it.

There shall none be admitted to the Holy Communion, until such time as he be confirmed, or be ready and desirous to be confirmed.64
    If among those who come to be partakers of the Holy Communion, the Parish Priest shall know any to be an open and notorious evil liver, or to have done any wrong to his neighbour by word or deed, so that the Congregation be thereby offended: he shall admonish him, that he presume not to come to the Lord’s Table, until he have openly declared himself to have truly repented and amended his former evil life, that the Congregation may thereby be satisfied; and until he have recompensed the parties to whom he hath done wrong, or at least declared himself to be in full purpose so to do, as soon as he conveniently may.
The same order shall the Priest use, etc., as in the Prayer Book, page 85, except Minister is changed to Priest throughout.


64 The disciplinary rubrics go most logically with the exhortation to and preparation for Communion. The requirement of Confirmation should be printed here as well as at the end of that Office. In the next rubric a grammatical error has been corrected and the meaning clarified.


    The following Office may be used as a corporate preparation at some convenient time before the Celebration of the Eucharist. It may be introduced by the preceding Exhortation, an Address, or a Meditation. Suitable Hymns may be included.
    The Office may be conducted by a layman. It may also be used as the basis of a private preparation for the reception of the Sacrament.
    All standing, the Minister shall say,

IN the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
People. Amen.
Minister. I will go unto the altar of God;
People. Even unto the God of my joy and gladness.

Psalm 43 (printed out).

Minister. I will go unto the altar of God;
People. Even unto the God of my joy and gladness.
Minister. Our help is in the Name of the Lord;
People. Who hath made heaven and earth.


65 The Office of Preparation will not be used often in ordinary parish life, but that is no reason for discarding this excellent suggestion of the Liturgical Commission. It will be desired occasionally for conferences, camps, corporate Communions and the like; and it serves as a useful guide to private preparation. It is also needed as a repository for items which now clutter up the liturgy, but which should not be lost entirely.

    The above may be recited by the Celebrant and his assistants66 in the Sacristy before the Celebration of the Liturgy (followed by a suitable Collect), or at the foot of the Altar during the singing of the Introit.
    The Minister, turning to the People, shall say,

THAT we may approach the Altar with true and penitent hearts, let us examine our lives and conduct by the rule of God’s Commandments in the Old Law and the New, not only according to the letter, but also according to the spiritual import thereof, devoutly kneeling.

All shall kneel. Silence should be kept for a brief space after each Response, that a self-examination on the preceding Commandment may be made.

The Commandments as in the Prayer Book, page 68, with the portions in small print deleted. The Response to the Tenth Commandment shall be as for the preceding nine. It shall be followed by the Summary as on page 69, with the present tenth Response after it.

After a longer pause, the Minister shall say,

66 There is much to be said for using this with the choir, but out of earshot of the congregation.

Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.

    And the People shall join with the Minister in saying the General Confession of the Liturgy.
    The Minister, standing and facing the People, may say,—the Comfortable Words, as in the Prayer Book, page 76.67

67 These serve in lieu of an absolution when no priest is present.

If a Priest be present, he shall give the Absolution as in the Liturgy. Then the Minister, kneeling down, shall continue,

Wilt thou not turn again, O Lord, and save us?
People. That thy people may rejoice in thee.
Minister. O Lord, hear our prayer.
People. And let our cry come unto thee.

The Minister and People shall say together, Our Father, etc. Then shall the Minister say,

O GOD, who in a wonderful Sacrament hast left unto us a memorial of thy passion: Grant us grace so to celebrate68 these sacred Mysteries of thy Body and Blood, that we may ever perceive within ourselves the fruits of thy redemption; who livest and reignest with the Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.

Other suitable Collects and Prayers for special intentions may be added, and the Office concluded with the Grace.

68 This change from the traditional form makes this Collect more suitable in this context.




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