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Church of Ireland Notes from ‘The Irish Times’

Preparing for Advent

The Season of Advent begins on Sunday, 29 November, and so starts a new liturgical year and a fresh cycle of daily Scripture readings.  In preparation for this Church of Ireland Publishing has announced that Sunday and Weekday Readings 2021 is now available.

This annual booklet is compiled by the Revd Ken Rue, a member of the General Synod’s Liturgical Advisory Committee. The booklet is designed to help worship planners and lesson readers know the appointed readings for Sundays and weekdays. It is also beneficial for those who wish to follow a personal course of Scripture readings which is tied in with the Church calendar. It may be obtained from the Church of Ireland’s online bookstore (https://store.ireland.anglican.org) or from Richard Ryan at the Book Well, Belfast (email: info@thebookwell.co.uk; mobile: 07581 143 596).  The price is £3.50/€4.00 per booklet.

Another resource, from Church of Ireland Publishing, for the forthcoming liturgical year, is The Gospels in Iambic Verse (Revised Common Lectionary Year B) by Canon John  Bartlett. This novel approach to Bible study takes the Gospel readings for the major feasts and each Sunday of the Christian year and renders them in rhymed iambic verse with the author’s own quirky line drawings. This books complement Canon Bartlett’s earlier publications, Meet the Apostles. An Introduction in Iambic Verse to the Apostles of the New Testament and The Gospels in Iambic Verse (Revised Common Lectionary Year A. All three titles are available from the Church of Ireland’s on–line store (https://store.ireland.anglican.org).

For further information on Church of Ireland Publishing, visit www.cip.ireland.anglican.org

A somewhat different publication comes from the pen of the Bishop of Cork, Dr Paul Colton, who has made available to schools, parishes and youth groups a book he wrote in recent months for children, young people and parishes to explore the 150th anniversary later this month (30th November) of the consecration of one of Cork’s, indeed of one of Ireland’s, most iconic buildings: St Fin Barre’s cathedral. The book may be downloaded from the diocesan website at: http://cork.anglican.org/our-story/sfb150. Hard copies of the book, Saint Fin Barre’s Cathedral; resources for Children, Young People, Schools and Parishes will be distributed free of charge next week, having generously sponsored by the Diocesan Education Committee. 

Another local publication brings a modern twist to one of the great works of famous hymn writer, Henry Francis Lyte, a pupil at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen, in the early 1800s, who is best remembered as the author of Abide With Me. Dr William Holmes, a member of St Macartin’s cathedral parish, Enniskillen, used modern technology to interpret the text from poor quality photocopies of Lyte’s book, The Spirit of the Psalms, which has been out of print for over 150 years. He  used optical character recognition to generate electronic text, carefully edited it to ensure faithfulness to the original, and added notes, comments, and spelling corrections to enhance the impact of the work. The book was first published in electronic form on various Amazon websites around the world, and more recently has been listed on the same websites, including Amazon.co.uk, as a paperback.

Places are still available for the Commission on Ministry’s Advent retreat – ‘Dawn of Hope’ – which will take place online by Zoom on Saturday 28 November (9.30am1.00pm). The speaker will be the  Revd Ruth Patterson who is a Presbyterian minister, and Director of Restoration Ministries, a non–denominational, Christian organisation committed to peace and reconciliation. This event is free of charge. For booking or further information, please contact Catherine Smith at catherine.smith@rcbdub.org

Church of Ireland Notes

Published in the Saturday edition of The Irish Times