Wednesday, March 05, 2014
A plea to my fellow clergy on Ash Wednesday
Dear brothers, I know that the altar Missal, used by so many Continuing Anglicans, has many blessings of the ashes, and for many it seems like the way to start the service (though I simply cannot say, "We who here make atonement..." No we don't! Even the RCs don't translate the Latin that way. Christ made the One and Only Atonement). Well, bless the ashes as many times as you want, though I think once is enough, and doesn't tire out your congregation. That's just my opinion.
But, whatever you do or don't do, for Heaven's sake use A PENITENTIAL OFFICE FOR ASH WEDNESDAY. In the American Book of Common Prayer it begins on page 60. It actually gives the congregation a way to pray that is designed for just this very day. They get to join in and pray, and enter into the spirit of Lent, something that helps meet their true need.
Well there you have my two cents worth; a radical idea indeed, actually using the Book of Common Prayer and letting the people pray along. Try it, you'll like it.