For Ash Wednesday: a reading from Augustine of Hippo

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This is a repost from previous years, for I find this excerpt from Augustine of Hippo from Faith and Life: Readings Compiled from Ancient Writers to be powerful:

In the night of this world a lion is prowling abroad, seeking whom he may devour; it is our adversary the Devil. Amid the night of this world, so full of perils and temptations, who would not fear? who would not tremble to the depths of his being, lest he should be adjudged to deserve being hurled into the devouring jaws of so cruel an enemy?  Therefore we must fast and pray. And when should we rather do so, when more earnestly, than at the approach of the solemnity of our Lord’s Passion, by which annual celebration the thought of that same night is, so to speak, again engraven upon our memory, lest it should be effaced by forgetfulness, lest that roaring…

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Lenten Family Prayer (+ Doing Nothing New)

The Homely Hours has done a great service to the church by creating a booklet based on the Family Prayer section of the 1928 BCP/2003 REC BCP. The fast is soon upon us as Lent draws near. Take up your cross by almsgiving, fasting, and devotion to regular prayer.

The Homely Hours

“Given the many layers of meaning in Lent, we won’t grasp all of them in a single year. But imagine if we were to observe Lent every year for the rest of our life — imagine how much we would grow and mature.”

This quote is from my priest, Fr. Wayne McNamara. What a thought to keep us from being overwhelmed by options. Lord willing, we have many Lents ahead of us. What does He want us to focus on this year in 2019? The Lenten “triad” of Fasting, Prayer, and Acts of Compassion concentrates our efforts into what really matters as we prepare for Easter. And we can pray for guidance:

“O God, by whom the meek are guided in judgement, and light riseth up in darkness for the godly; Grant us, in all our doubts and uncertainties, the grace to ask what thou wouldest have us to do…

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Teaching Scripture to Our Children

This is a must read for every Christian raising their children, or struggling to raise, their children in the faith.

The Homely Hours

One of the reasons my husband and I came to Anglicanism is because of the reverence in the worship. The glad solemnity of our Anglican liturgy harmonized with our understanding of the Scriptures — humility and the “fear of the Lord”  as part of our response to the love and mercy of Christ.

As we became parents, it was important to us to communicate that reverence and glad solemnity to our children. We felt it did a disservice to both Christianity and our children to dumb the faith down, but it can be confusing to have that conviction. So many of the books and products available for children are kitsch-y, cartoon-y, irreverent. I don’t really want my children associating Bible stories with talking vegetables…

So, we have been very reticent. Going along with our church, we have invited our children into the fullness of our Christian practice. They attend…

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The Corporate Element in Private Prayer

A Christian is never alone.


There really is no such thing as private prayer, if by “private” we mean “cut off from” the corporate body of God’s people in the local church. And yet, our natural inclination as moderns seems to assume that very thing, namely, that my private prayers are just between me and God, perhaps reflecting what Charles Taylor refers to as the ‘punctual self’, whose radical independence makes for a self that is merely a ‘point’ in blank space, an abstraction from community, place, and the other.

The daily offices (morning/evening prayer) of the Prayer Book, even when used as private prayer, are not strictly separable from the corporate gathering of the local parish church. Since the prayers are spiritual offerings to God, even in private these offerings are not merely for the individual or for the individual’s family, friends, and neighbors, but for those with whom one communes at the…

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Dr. Brad Littlejohn On the Presence of Christ in Holy Communion

Masterful article from The Davenant Institute’s Dr. Brad Littlejohn that every Protestant should read:

Dr. Littlejohn makes an excellent point that the presence of Christ was not disputed by the Magisterial Reformers. Instead, the debate regards whether the bread and wine remain after its consecration for distribution to the laity.

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Be miserable in the new year

With the return of the Miserable Offenders Podcast, presented by the fine people of The North American Anglican.

Episode 6 dropped today on iTunes and other podcast services or may be streamed at the TNAA website. Additionally, be sure to like the new Facebook page for the podcast and subscribe and rate us on iTunes.