Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Gimlet Gaze of Brother Causticus

Brother Causticus, at titusoneten, takes "a steely-eyed look at the ongoing follies in the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion." Here's a segment of his latest post, The Service of the Word:

...Senior warden Augustus Seabury “Buzz” Lancaster was particularly caught up with zeal for Bible study. “You know,” he confided to BC, “It’s amazing how much of it comes from the Prayer Book.” An evangelical friend steered him away from New Revised Standard Version -- which promulgates the apparent heresy that the text might have been addressing those of both genders when it employs the masculine normative -- toward a New International Version without those problematic deuterocanonical books.

When his next round as lector came up, Buzz read from this rendering, rather than the NRSV on the service bulletin’s lectionary insert, thereby befuddling many parishioners with the variance between what was coming from the lectern with that which was on the paper before them. A further portion were doubly astonished that the passage Buzz was declaiming apparently came from a sizeable book, rather than the aforementioned single sheet. Observing it was somewhat like the Gospel volume the deacon carried in procession, they heartily sang out “Praise to you, Lord Christ” when Buzz finished the epistle.

Despite several mild reproaches from our rector, Buzz persisted in this practice until All Saints Sunday, when he frantically fumbled through Ecclesiastes for several awkward moments looking for a forty-fourth chapter before an alert acolyte sidled up and handed him the lectionary insert containing the appointed reading from the forty-fourth chapter of Ecclesiasticus...
Go read the whole thing. It's guaranteed to result in a smile, or even a chuckle or two.


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