Continuing Home

The ongoing saga of a Continuing Anglican church home, as seen by a member of the laity.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Since the previous post I've been away to a conference (Las Vegas), returned home, and am now packed again for another trip, in the same poor health I've enjoyed since two trips ago. But the good news is that the trip following this was canceled so I'll be home for the holidays -- all of them, from All Hallow's Eve through Epiphany and beyond!

One benefit of that cancellation is that I'll be able to participate in a few events I had written off. One that looks interesting is "The Continuing Relevance of C. S. Lewis for the Church Today," A Church Leaders Forum with The Rev. Dr. Michael Ward, to be held in Seattle on Friday the 14th. Apparently there will be a small group from St. Bartholomew's attending.

But for now I'm off to Vienna, returning the 30th.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Test run

Driving to St. Bartholomew's this morning for the Mens' Breakfast felt a little strange this morning, at least until I figured out that this was only the second time I'd made that drive since Labor Day, what with travel and illness. But for all it might not have been the best for my health, I'm glad I did.

Fr. McGrath started us off with an "Elizabethan" Morning Prayer, starting with the Order for Morning Prayer then switching to the ante-Communion (up through the Creed), followed by a Bidding Prayer -- which I don't think I have ever heard before, for all that it's right there in the Prayer Book.

Then it was off to the Parish Hall, breakfast and fellowship that ran near to a couple of hours. The old topic of evangelizing in our difficult culture came up again -- I was reminded of today's Epistle (for St. Luke the Evangelist: 2 Tim iv.5) and the no-doubt unsought fame of "Alexander the coppersmith" who among other things "hath greatly withstood our words."

Finally, there were a few little tasks to be taken care of. Fr. McGrath suggested we give the generator a trial run, now that we have generator, outlet, and transfer switch all installed. A good idea, since the windy season will soon be upon us and we need to be sure we know how to set it all up and get it running in case we lose power for a significant amount of time again.

At first things went well, but when it came to operating the transfer switch everything fell apart. There were references to operating breakers that weren't labeled, and more. And in the middle of it all we discovered we were lacking a really key element in performing a power-out switchover to generator: we had no flashlight!

A bit of study of the situation and we figured out that:
1) Not all of the printed directions in the transfer switch cover applied to our installation
2) If we labeled the breakers and the transfer "switch" (really a breaker lockout), it was fairly obvious what to do.

We verified the setup works, and what we did and didn't have. (Didn't haves that surprised us: lights in the restrooms, kitchen and sanctuary.)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The making of the King James Bible

A couple of weeks ago during our retreat Fr. McGrath had a little gift for each of the Lay Readers, a copy of Adam Nicolson's God's Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible. I had some time for reading while traveling, and more this weekend, and only just finished it.

Now Nicolson is not without biases, that and his slightly different uses of terminology sometimes led me to misunderstand statements earlier on, but once I understood these it was a fascinating read or so many levels. Far more than simply retelling the sequence of events he visits many of the characters, explores the issues and events of the time, and not only looks at the society of that time but provides something of a look at our own society by comparison (we do not always come out the better).

Doubly fascinating to me, since I work a lot with committees these days (with whom a not-insignificant part of their work product is published as books). The care that went into the structure of the committee, the inter-relations between groups, the selection of those who would participate in the various groups, and the dynamics designed to produce unity (or consensus) on the final product. It is only a shame that little record of the Translators' actual work remains.

But Nicholson makes the case for this Bible having been most carefully constructed, every ambiguity or definitiveness carefully selected, and with a majestic voice that reflected neither the English tongue then, before or now. And the consideration of earlier translations -- the Tyndale, the Coverdale, the Geneva...

Although as the book and others have noted, the manuscripts from which this Bible was drawn are no longer the best available, I had already sensed this about the time I read, "The churches and biblical scholarship have, by and large, abandoned the frame of mind which created this translation." Having seen the damage well-meaning but ill-advised committees can wreak upon prior texts, my inclination is to leave it alone.

Thank you, Fr. McGrath! I never had such appreciation before for the KJV.


It looks like I won't have a report for this Sunday's service, unfortunately. I landed at Sea-Tac airport right on time Friday night, but with a 100+ (F) fever & cough that continues to this morning.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

R. Vaughn Williams Sunday

Well, that's not the official name for this upcoming Sunday, Trinity XXI, but that appears to be the theme for Sunday. From what I have been able to gather from various sources it appears Fr. Daniel is (um, I hope Josephine will forgive the organ analogy) pulling out the stops. As he noted in an e-mail to the parish and this Sunday's service:
Anniversary of the birth of R. Vaughn Williams (12 October 1872 – 26 August 1958) English composer of symphonies, chamber music, operas, choral music and film scores. He was also the editor of the English Hymnal (from whence come many hymns in our Hymnal 1940) and the first Oxford Book of Carols (1928). This year is the 50th Anniversary of his death, and thus there have been many concerts, festivals and recordings made in his honor this year. Our music on Sunday, October 12 will feature hymns and other music of Ralph Vaughn Williams.
From what I've been hearing about the "other music" this will be a service not to be missed. (Lord, may my flight home arrive on schedule, or at least not too late, so that I may attend! Amen.)

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Way too busy?

As I was getting ready for another trip (I'm already packed) that will take me away from St. Bartholomew's yet another Sunday, I was reflecting on how busy life seems to have gotten -- and it's not just me.

We have an e-mail list for St. Bartholomew's servers (or their parents) on which Ranjit sends a reminder of the monthly roster. I haven't checked in a while but I think it starts out the same each month, at least for me it does: it's always read the Epistle on the 1st and 5th Sundays. And once again this month I had to send a note asking for a stand-in because I'll be away.

It seems to be the same for the youngsters. They are constantly juggling schedules for one reason or another. I didn't think too much about it until an e-mail a few days ago from one of the parents announcing that her kids were available on certain Sundays this month as stand-ins if needed.

That's initiative I like! And I think somebody else is seeing what I'm seeing.