Jesus Creed

Jesus Creed

Another blog

For a long while Kris and I have been saying the prayers from Phyllis Tickle’s The Divine Hours. It is hard for us on most mornings, but we do them nearly every evening. We took photocopies to Italy with us and read them from our room as we looked over the Umbrian hills.

This fall I am scheduled to write a small book called Praying with the Church, which plans to be an explanation of how The Book of Common Prayer and The Divine Hours work. It will also urge more of us to “pray with the Church,” which means learn the value — which began in ancient Israel with the Shema and was practiced by Jesus and the early Church, which also added the Lord’s Prayer to the mix — of reciting prayers. I know the problems, but they stem from human hearts and not from the words of Scripture — which is what is nearly always what is recited. The reason we have the Psalms is because Israel needed to collect its prayers and keep them gathered together for use.


And, Thomas Cranmer’s prayers in the The Book of Common Prayer are unrivalled, and if I may add here, a good thing for us low church types to read just to see how prayer can sound when it is done with eloquence.

All this to say that, with Phyllis Tickle’s permission, and with the hope that others will hear about it, I have a new blog,, which is a small commentary on the Morning Reading from The Divine Hours.

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posted June 8, 2005 at 8:24 am

Great stuff!Do let us know when your book is published!

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posted June 8, 2005 at 8:32 am

The BCP is about 500 years old. If we consider the matins etc. from the more Roman tradition it is even older. It is nice to see folks discovering the beauty of Cramner’s intention of community prayer. Even today, as we pray the prayers in the BCP we are praying with those around the world, past and present, and future. Good stuff.

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Scot McKnight

posted June 8, 2005 at 9:55 am

Rick,BCP’s age is something that astounds doesn’t it? Those prayers are inescapably grand, and I love saying every morning — Preserve us with your mighty power that we may not fall into sin nor be overcome by adversity.

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Steve McCoy

posted June 8, 2005 at 10:16 am

Scot, this sounds exciting. I’ve thought about in my own context (SBC) the need for more stuff like this to inform us. Glad to see you actually making it happen.

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posted June 9, 2005 at 5:35 am

Both my wife and I love your new blog, Scot (as well as this one).As to the age of BCP prayers, many of them draw on prayers that are far older, going back into the life of God’s people in ancient Israel. Sort of like Jesus taking ancient creeds and prayers and incorporating them for his purposes, which I seem to have read about somewhere.

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Levi Hadley

posted June 9, 2005 at 9:28 am

Scot,I am have been praying the compline service especially from the BCP for a couple of years. I find it comforting to say the prayers people have said for centuries just before I go to bed. I actually ordered my copy of the Divine Hours the other day, so I’m excited to read your blog about praying the hours.

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