An explanatory note may be in order about the readings used this Sunday. On page 258 of the Canadian BCP, at the end of the appointed readings for the Trinity Season, there is the following rubric:
If there be an additional Sunday preceding the Sunday before Advent, the Service of the Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany shall be used; if there be two additional Sundays, the Services of the Fifth and Sixth.
Thus at Holy Communion this morning at Christ Church, the Propers for Epiphany VI (p. 131, ff.) were used. In the Sunday and Weekday Office Lectionary (BCP, pp. xvi-xlv) provision is made for the Office readings for the Twenty-fifth and the Twenty-sixth Sundays after Trinity at Morning and Evenings Prayer, following a Year One and Year Two pattern (depending on whether Advent Sunday in any given ecclesiastical year is an even or odd numbered year). So there is an ambiguity. This year, 2013, we have twenty-five Sundays after Trinity. Following the rubric of page 258, the Collect, Epistle and Gospel for Epiphany VI are directed to be used. But what if the second service in a Parish happens to be Morning Prayer? A different Collect associated with different readings? Or the same Collect with the Office Readings appointed for the twenty-sixth Sunday? I chose to keep the connection between the Office and the Eucharist – same Collect of the Day and the readings belonging to both the Eucharist and the Service of Morning Prayer.
An argument could certainly be made for using the readings appointed for Morning Prayer for Trinity XXV along with the Collect for Epiphany VI. The intent of the Office and Weekly pattern is, I think, fairly clear, but here is an instance of an ambiguity and one which I happily confess to have exploited in the interest of the intriguing reading from The Prayer of Manasses. Such are the vagaries of time and the limits of all our systems. At issue really are the principles which govern the readings at the Holy Eucharist and its connection to the reading of the Scriptures at the Sunday Offices. All this relates to a much deeper concern: the principles that belong to the Theology of Revelation without which the Scriptures cease to be the Scriptures and merely relics of the past.
Fr. David Curry