Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Saint Augustine Prayer Book

Tip of the biretta to Fr Tay Moss, from whom I received this morning, to my surprise, a copy of the Saint Augustine Prayer Book. Subtitled "A Book of Devotion for members of the Episcopal Church," the prayer book was originally published by the Order of the Holy Cross in 1947 and revised in 1967 to reflect changing liturgical norms. Even in its revised form, however, it's quite traditional, and follows the basic shape of the American Missal in its order of Mass. A table of contents can be found on Wikipedia. Many of these prayers are much "higher" than anything I've encountered at Holy Cross Priory in the twenty-first century. (Nonetheless, the Marian Antiphon is unfailingly sung at Compline and I understand that Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament does occur on occasion at the mother house in West Park, NY).

I've been pouring over the little volume all day, and it's quite a treasure. There's much in here to enrich my practice of the Daily Office and of private prayer. Many thanks to Fr Tay, whose thank-you note has already been dispatched. Now I really must return my parish priest's copy to her, as it's been on loan to me for too long! It's quite frail and makes me rather nervous.

1 comment:

Tay Moss said...

You're welcome--I actually mailed it a couple of weeks ago, so I'm surprised it took this long to arrive!

Yes, it's a useful little book. I often make use of the various litanies when I feel like devoting some time to this or that member of the Trinity! It also has some excellent sections of material for "Visits to the Blessed Sacrament" and "Communion Devotions" and Novenas.

And be sure to check out the "Sacrament of Penance" section--the preparation is quite retro, and worth reading for that reason alone.

Incidentally, I've been told that Fr. David Cobb of Christ Church, New Haven, is preparing another update to the venerable SAPB to reflect current Anglo-Catholic practice.

Anyway, it's a classic little devotion book which ought to fit what I know of your spirituality like a glove!