I’m guessing it takes me a couple of months for new things to start seeming “normal” to me.  At least that seems to be my experience in using the daily office.  When I switch my practice, which I’ve done a few times over the years, it seems to take a couple of months of daily use for the new norms to feel normal. (more…)

Here’s my sermon from this morning.  I don’t normally post them.  But it relates to how I’m doing Advent: (more…)

Well, I feel like I’m in Advent already!

Yes, I know, it’s still Thanksgiving Day, and Advent doesn’t come until this Sunday.  But at our service this morning, after talking a little about Jamestown and the first Thanksgiving Day, I shared a little reflection by Sam Portaro (again from Bightest and Best)  where he links Thanksgiving Day and Advent.  He begins with today’s gospel and the image of the lilies of the field.  And he links those to Mary and her pregancy which is a major piece of what we remember in Advent. (more…)

My wife Anne found a lovely Advent prayers of the people from New Song Episcopal Church in Coralville Iowa.  I know it’s probably early for this (though we are beginning our plans for Advent now), but if you are interested, you can find it here.

One of the good things about being less than full time is that I get to visit other congregations and see what they’re doing.  I think it was the end of last month I visited All Saints in Sacramento (as supply) and really enjoyed meeting the people.  Things were just enough different to keep me on my toes.  I enjoyed it. (more…)

It may be of no interest to anyone but me, but I started using The St. Helena Breviary last month.  I am, I guess, still an associate of the (Episcopal branch of the) Franciscans.  I have been for upwards of twenty years.  And for the last several years I have been using the pocket edition of Celebrating Common Prayer – an office book from English (Anglican) Franciscans. (more…)

Roshi talks about why we pray and what we really expect when we pray.  He begins by saying:

The basement of St. Mark’s coffee house was filled with Holy Doubt tonight.

We were reading from Acts, 1 John and John.

But it was John 15:16 that set the Spirit free and the debate poured out and flooded the basement. Here’s the Scripture that set off the debate about prayer, whether it works and why we pray: “…the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name.”

This promise of God granting our prayers occurs again and again in the Gospels.

But he also says:

One woman spoke of her mother dying of cancer. One man spoke of runaway children not returning. One spoke of fear that doesn’t go away. And I could not help but think of my Mother’s suicide. All spoke of prayer and prayers not answered.

If you want to see the whole thing, click here.

I’ve been reading an article from “The Abbey Letter (Easter 2009)” from St. Gregory’s Abbey in Three Rivers Michigan.  It’s called “Seven Times A Day I Praise You” by Brother Martin.  He talks about various books you can use to say the Daily Office, including The Book of Common Prayer (from the Episcopal Church), A Monastic Breviary (from the Order of the Holy Cross), The St. Helena Breviary (from the Order of St. Helena), Celebrating Common Prayer (from the Anglican Franciscans in England, which is what I’m using for Morning Prayer these days), Common Worship:  Daily Prayer (from the Church of England), Take Our Moments and Our Days:  An Anabaptist Prayerbook (from the Mennonites) and Benedictine Daily Prayer:  A Short Breviary (an adaptation of the office as set down in the Rule of St. Benedict).  It’s a useful review of what you can find in each one of them, and there is information about ordering the books at the end of the article. (more…)

Dean Brian Baker at Trinity Cathedral in Sacramento has linked to an excellent piece on using the daily offices by Derek Olsen.  You can see it here.

Returning to Roshi Doshi’s blog, open windows & unlocked doors, he had some interesting reflection on prayer.  If you are interested, you can find it here.