Thinking allowed

Alcuin of York, Abbot of Tours, 804

Today the Church of Eng­land com­mem­or­ates the dea­con Alcuin who rose to high office in the court of Char­le­magne, and who is par­tic­u­larly remembered in the Church for his litur­gic­al work. The Alcuin Club was foun­ded in 1897, to pro­mote and pub­lish litur­gic­al scholarship.

Alcuin was des­cen­ded from a noble Northum­bri­an fam­ily. Although the date and place of his birth are not known, he was prob­ably born in the year 735 in or near York. He entered the cathed­ral school there as a child, con­tin­ued as a Schol­ar and became Mas­ter. In 781, he went to Aachen as adviser to Char­le­magne on reli­gious and edu­ca­tion­al mat­ters and as Mas­ter of the Palace School, where he estab­lished an import­ant lib­rary. Although not a monk and in deacon’s orders, in 796 he became Abbot of Tours, where he died in the year 804. Alcuin wrote poetry, revised the lec­tion­ary, com­piled a sac­ra­ment­ary and was involved in oth­er sig­ni­fic­ant litur­gic­al work.

God of Wis­dom, Etern­al Light,
who shone in the heart of your ser­vant Alcuin,
reveal­ing to him your power and pity:
scat­ter the dark­ness of our ignorance
that, with all our heart and mind and strength,
we may seek your face
and be brought with all your saints
to your holy presence;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *