Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave his body to be whipped and his face to be spit upon: Give us grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
— from the Book of Common Prayer
you can also participate in Holy Week by joining Christians all over the world each day in morning prayer and evening prayer.
The backbone of my morning and evening meditations and prayer has become the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. It has taken me a while to figure out how to use it (with a lot of help from a friend), and I’m still clumsily trying to make my way along, but it is an amazing book. It gives just the right amount of both freedom and structure to give me both guidance and excitement. I’m really enjoying it. Secondly, I am a relatively new member of a church that belongs to the Reformed Church in America. Both of these things has led me to encounter ancient church documents, creeds, and traditions I was never exposed to as a Bible Belt Southern Baptist.
One of those newfound traditions that is really becoming a major part of my life is the Church Calendar. According to the calendar, we are currently in the season of Epiphany, where the church celebrates the travel of the Wise Men to see Jesus, therefore declaring him King and Lord among all the nations, and today is the Church Holy Day on which we celebrate Jesus’ presentation by His parents in the temple (forty days after Christmas) (Luke 2:22-40). As I went through the Daily Lectionary this morning, I found that focusing on this event and meditating on it bore some very real personal fruit that I wished to share.