The Liturgical Inculturation of Time: Calendrical Progression in the Anglican Church of Canada
AuthorSimonton, Mark Edward
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The Anglican Church of Canada is currently examining and revising its liturgical texts and its Liturgical Task Force will be undertaking a review and revision of the church calendar. In order to facilitate this work it is necessary to first examine the subject in depth: historically, theologically, anthropologically, and liturgically. Chapter one reviews the principle of inculturation. After examining terminology and the church‘s history of inculturation, the work of the Second Vatican Council on inculturation is explored. The core principles of Liturgical inculturation are specifically analysed: general, theological, liturgical and cultural. From these principles emerge a process and methodology. For the purpose of calendrical revision, several relevant methodologies are examined: creative assimilation, dynamic equivalence, and organic progression. Chapter two provides an historical overview of inculturation in the Anglican Communion. The relevant historic principles are investigated in the light of theological inculturation. The work of the 1958, 1968, 1978, and 1988 Lambeth Conferences is then scrutinised for signs of an emerging modern approach to inculturation. For the same purpose, the work of the International Anglican Liturgical Consultation is considered. The York Statement, the Kanamai Statement, and the essays produced by the Prague Consultation on Anglican Identity are highlighted. Chapter three reviews the history of the church‘s use of liturgical time and calendrical progression, both temporal and sanctoral. After looking at the theology of time within the church and its history, special attention is given to modern concerns about its observance. Calendrical reform is examined in three different families of churches: Roman, Anglican, and Lutheran. Whereas the first part of the chapter deals with general temporal reform the latter part focuses exclusively on sanctoral reform. Chapter four looks at the principles and rules used by the Roman, Anglican and Lutheran churches in calendrical reform. The Roman Catholic Guidelines for the General Calendar are reviewed as is the Table of Liturgical Days. The importance of the distinction between the general calendar and proper calendars is examined. In the Anglican Communion, the resolutions of the Anglican Consultative Council, the Primate‘s Meeting and the International Anglican Liturgical Consultation are analysed. The chapter ends with a discussion on the specific principles and processes adopted by the Anglican Church of Canada for calendrical progression. Chapter five concentrates on the calendar of the Anglican Church of Canada. The methodology of organic progression is revisited as are core principles in relation to it: typical editions, ecumenism, noble simplicity, multiculturalism, and proper calendars. Proposals for the progressed temporal calendar are considered in depth: Epiphany Season, Corpus Christi, Ascension Sunday, Holy Days with Precedence, All Souls‘, the New Zealand structure, and pedagogical simplicity. The chapter then looks at proposals for progressing the sanctoral calendar. After examining the retiring of names, a process for observing historic commemorations is proposed. The relationship between the Book of Common Prayer and the Book of Alternative Services is delved into in regards to canon law and the General Synod.