Thinking allowed

trial Canadian Collects

The Anglic­an Church of Canada is tri­al­ling some new collects

The [Cana­dian] Gen­er­al Syn­od of 2010 man­dated Faith, Wor­ship, and Min­istry to estab­lish a Liturgy Task Force to work on the revi­sion of our con­tem­por­ary lan­guage litur­gic­al texts. This Task Force has, in turn, been author­ized by the Coun­cil of Gen­er­al Syn­od to release the first phase of its new texts for tri­al use and feed­back as they become avail­able. These draft mater­i­als — begin­ning with Col­lects for Sundays — are encour­aged for use where per­mit­ted by the dio­ces­an bish­ops. We ask that those who use them also par­ti­cip­ate in the pro­cess to feed back your eval­u­ation of the resources to the Liturgy Task Force for its con­sid­er­a­tion in the final edit­or­i­al phase.

The text of the Col­lects for use this year (Year A) ‘from Pente­cost to the Reign of Christ’ can be down­loaded as a pdf via the above link. Unlike the Col­lects in Com­mon Wor­ship which are determ­ined by the named Sundays after Trin­ity, these pray­ers are aligned to the Sunday read­ing cycle.

(Thanks to Phil­lip Tovey for draw­ing my atten­tion to this. Read­ers are wel­come to send sug­ges­tions of suit­able links either by email or as a com­ment on an exist­ing article.)


  • James says:

    This is inter­est­ing for a num­ber of reas­ons. First, because Canada obvi­ously con­siders the Col­lect as a pre­lude to the Min­istry of the Word (where­as Com­mon Wor­ship regards it as the con­clu­sion of the Pre­par­a­tion). Second, because the lan­guage, on the whole, is res­on­ant of the scrip­tur­al pro­vi­sion and (as use of the Alan Grif­fiths trans­la­tions of the Ambro­sian col­lects betrays) Canada has gone for the more exten­ded shape, where­as the CW Addi­tion­al Col­lects are more lin­guist­ic­ally economic.

    Read­ing them reminded me of Dav­id Brown’s point (which all drafters of litur­gic­al texts should have graven on their minds) that ‘The Bible must in some sense be allowed to speak for itself. Oth­er­wise, it is anoth­er Gos­pel that is being pro­claimed.’ Scrip­tur­al res­on­ance is one thing; but when adject­ives are applied to God (scan­dal­ous, Lord of the teas­ing riddle, des­ti­tute King) which are more the out­come of an indi­vidu­al her­men­eut­ic than an expres­sion of the cor­por­ate faith of the Church, we find ourselves in rather un-Anglic­an ter­rit­ory. The assump­tion that the per­son­al and nov­el some­how provides a bet­ter pro­clam­a­tion of the gos­pel than the groun­ded tradi­tion poses ques­tions for the prin­ciple of Lex Orandi Lex Cre­dendi. Doubt­less, oth­ers will dis­agree; but it is a ques­tion that should be at the heart of a pro­ject like this. 

  • Rod Gillis says:

    @ James. Inter­est­ing set of obser­va­tions. One won­ders if some of the tri­al col­lects, because of their (per­haps nov­el) cre­at­ive word­ing, will find a place along side tra­di­tion­al col­lects like that for “Stir up Sunday”, or Advent 1 and IV, or Ash Wed­nes­day, or Pur­ity, all in the old BCP, col­lects that res­on­ate as much for their word­ing as their theo­logy. On the oth­er hand, many of these may with­in a dec­ade or so sound hope­lessly out­dated and rather“schlocky”? One may try too hard.

    One won­ders as well, liv­ing as we do in a decon­struc­tion­ist age,if scrip­ture ever speaks for itself in any con­text past or present?

    Read­ing the exper­i­ment­al col­lects ( I may feel dif­fer­ently after pray­ing them over time) I am reminded of the pray­ers of Janet Mor­ley, All Desires Known. Her col­lects are very much a her­men­eut­ic; but ones which gave a fresh speak­ing voice to scrip­ture. I think the vari­ous sources for the col­lects, taken as they are from mater­i­als already in use by Anglic­ans or the wider church in North Amer­ica, are worth noting. 

    PS: Great Site!!!

  • jonathan macgillivray says:

    “Open­ing Pray­ers”, the ICEL col­lects pub­lished in 1999 always struck me as the best recent attempt to relate the lec­tion­ary to the col­lect­ive pray­er of the euchar­ist­ic assembly week by week. It’s a pity the CW lec­tion­ary some­times departs from RCL, so they’re not usable all year. I reck­on they’re a missed opportunity.

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