Theology Update for the Week of June 12

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Dear friends in Christ,

Sunday’s theology class — Genesis: Who Are We? — will pick up with the end of the Flood and also look at the Tower of Babel story. Noah does some odd things after the flood: he offers sacrifice (unrequested by God), he plants a vineyard, he gets drunk. One of his sons “looks upon his nakedness” and is cursed; why? The Babel story brings up again the Bible’s distrust of the East; there is something wrong with the East; to go there is to try to return to the Garden, rather than working out how to live in the world as it actually is. (No comment about Texans who desire to move to New York.)

Visitors are welcome every week. We meet on the 5th floor at 10 o’clock, and there are coffee and tea in the room.


Once again, this Sunday I will be setting out some of my books as I continue to thin my bookshelves. How I wish I had begun this earlier! You can find the books before or after the class, including during the coffee hour after the 11 o’clock Eucharist. The books are free and gladly given.

On the Web: Daily Prayer in the Anglican Tradition

I have sometimes mentioned websites that help with saying the Daily Office (i.e., Morning and Evening Prayer). Here’s one that has some options that make it quite good.

Once you’re on that page, look on the left column and click on “Pray the Daily Office.”

To customize, click on “Daily Prayer Preferences.” On the page that opens up, here are the preferences that I choose:

  • Rite I
  • Psalter 1979 (but if you choose 1928 Coverdale you’ll get the Psalms as we sing them at Saint Thomas)
  • King James Version for the Bible translation for the scripture readings (apart from the Psalms)
  • Psalter Cycle following the Daily Office lectionary (this takes you through all the Psalms every 7 weeks; but you can choose the Monthly Cycle, which is what we use at Saint Thomas apart from Sunday Evensong, and then you will do all the Psalms every month)
  • Canticle Selection: simplified seasonal cycle is more traditional, and guarantees, for instance, that you always have the Benedictus at Morning Prayer
  • 2 morning/2 evening readings (this will make sure you always have an Old Testament reading at Evening Prayer, which is the Anglican tradition going back to Cranmer)

Then you can save those preferences and they’ll be there anytime you go to this page.


Father Austin