Inflamed by the prayer

That was Thomas Cranmer’s hope for the Book of Common Prayer:  that it would inflame those who use it with a sense of God’s love.  And that, I would contend, can only happen when we treat it as the treasure it is, using it in both public and private devotion, allowing the repeated reading and hearing of scripture to affect the rhythm and depth of our lives.  Adding to the knowledge of this treasure can only assist in our understanding, and to that end I’m very pleased to recommend a new eight-course series by ChurchNext,  the online education source that I’ve mentioned before.

ChurchNext provides short courses in a number of topics; they estimate that a user will be able to complete one segment in about 45 minutes and most courses have four or five segments.  The format is always the same.  Each class in a course begins with a short print introduction to frame what is to come, followed by a very short video presentation from the speaker.  There is a brief self-administered quiz (were you paying attention?) and discussion questions.  It is possible to skip those last two items, but the discussion segment could be rewarding, especially if a group were taking the course together.  Then there is a “takeaway” pdf that  recapitulates the course main points, and a bibliography for further study. 

This particular series on aspects of The Book of Common Prayer includes lectures by faculty from the Bexley Seabury Theological Federation:  Tom Ferguson, dean; Roger Ferlo, president (and author of Opening the Bible in the New Churches Teaching Series); Ellen Wondra, academic dean and others.  Some or all of these courses might be perfect for summer learning,  individually at your own pace or as a congregational group (forum, mid-week study).  To check this out for  yourself go to https://focus.pathwright.com/school/catalog/#.  The diocese has prepaid membership in the classes for another month or so, so if you are interested please contact me.  You need to do it that way because I am listed as the administrator of the school.  I look forward to hearing from you, and if you decide to give this a try I would be more than interested in your reaction.  At least one priest I know has used it with a congregation and speaks highly       of it. How about you?

Sue Tait, Librarian                                                                                                                                         Resource Center                                                                                                                                 email:  resource@ecww.org                                                                                                   phone:206-325-4200, ext. 2043 or 1-888-488-4978, ext. 2043