Ch. 1, pg. 8: the verbal beauty of the…Prayer Book

The Prayer Book that Lewis means is the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, the standard liturgical manual for Anglican services, similar to the Roman Catholic Missal. Developed to provide a standard for worship after the English church’s break from the Roman Catholic Church under Henry VIII, the service as laid out by the Book of Common Prayer contains similarities to the Roman Catholic mass. The words of the Book of Common Prayer were chosen carefully, at a time when political revolution could hinge upon being excessively Catholic or excessively Protestant. Classic phrases from the Common Prayer Book are familiar even to non-Christians the world over, such as:

  • “Speak now or forever hold your peace”
  • “Till death us do part”
  • “Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust”

[source: Wikipedia: Book of Common Prayer]

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Published in: on June 7, 2009 at 10:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

Ch. 1, Pg. 7: by nineteenth century and Church of Ireland standards, rather “high”

High church. Simplistically speaking, “high church” is an Anglican term that refers to those who adhere to practices coming from the Roman Catholic Mass. Here, Lewis says that the opposite of “high church” Puritanism, which tends to eschew anything associated with Catholicism. The difference between “high church” and Puritanism is a complicated subject that is arguably responsible for hundreds of years of bloody history in the U.K. See Wikipedia: High church.

Published in: on June 7, 2009 at 9:54 pm  Leave a Comment