A couple of quick notes, the most important of which is the second:
Here is the Ad Clerum the former bishop of Fort Worth sent to the clergy. He apparently does not think the clergy of the Southern Cone know how to prepare for Advent, because the priests of the Episcopal Church certainly do. And they also know who their Presiding Bishop is, and it ain't "Gregory."
Date: Thu, 20 Nov 2008
Subject: AD CLERUM
From: Bishop Iker
ADVENT WILL SOON BE UPON US and with it the beginning if a new Christian year. I am sure that you know that we go to Year B in the Eucharistic Lectionary and to Year One for the Daily Office. In addition to those changes, I would like to suggest that you give some thought to an Advent Customary in your worship services. There is a rich selection of Advent hymns in The Hymnal 1982, which I commend to you. Though there is a definite penitential theme in Advent, nonetheless, this is not a "little Lent." The Gloria in Excelsis should not be used during Advent, and either the Trisagion or the Kyrie should be used in its place. You may wish to begin the service each Sunday with the Penitential Order and perhaps use the Decalogue on the first Sunday of Advent. The opening acclamation is not changed, but remains "Blessed be God..."
I would suggest for those of you using Rite II, that you go to Eucharistic Prayer B for the Advent and Epiphany Seasons, due to its emphasis on the incarnation. In place of the usual fraction sentence, the Agnus Dei would be appropriate. You may wish to change the form of your usual Prayers of the People, switching to either Form I or V during Advent. Instead of the usual blessing at the end of the service, I would suggest that you use one of the seasonal blessings for Advent found on pages 22 and 23 of The Book of Occasional Services.
If you do a Festival of Lessons and Carols during this season, make certain that the selections are for Advent, not Christmas. We need to resist the inclination to start celebrating Christmas prior to the night-time service on Christmas Eve, December 24.
The Advent Wreath should be lit for all Eucharists during Advent, including weekday celebrations. I want to draw your attention to the guideline on page 30 of The Book of Occasional Services, which reads as follows: "The Advent Wreath is a visual symbol marking the progress of the season of Advent. When it is used in the church, no special prayers or ceremonial elaboration beyond what is described on page 143 of the Prayer Book is desirable. At morning services the appropriate number of candles is lighted before the service begins."
I hope these comments are helpful to you. With a little additional planning, your Advent services may be an enrichment to the spiritual life of your congregation.
When you pray for our Primate or Presiding Bishop in the intercession, I assume you are using the name "Gregory."
Note: The Book of Occasional Services and the Book of Common Prayer are authorized for use by the Episcopal Church by the General Convention, whose authority the former bishop of Fort Worth no longer recognizes. Interesting that he continues to use books so tainted by association with a church he deems heretical.
Here's the most important note:
Integrity Fort Worth's Advent Party this year is gathering up items needed by children who are HIV positive. Integrity is working with Catholic Charities who help them. Here's the notice from Integrity Fort Worth:
"We have received the wish list from Catholic Charities of Fort Worth. We have 8 boys: 1-9mos., 1-19mos, 1-2yrs, 2-11yrs, 1-13yrs, 1-16yrs, 1-17yrs, 1-18yrs. We have 9 girls: 1-1yr, 1-8yrs, 1-9yrs, 1-13yrs,1-14yrs. , 1-17yrs, 2-18yrs.
"Please select which child you would like by identifying what age you would like to buy for. Then contact Susann Eller by e-mail or phone and she will work to coordinate with you the information from the list what items are available. This will keep from more than one person buying for the same person unknowingly.
"Susann's e-mail is jeller3639@sbcgloba l.net. Day phone is 817-929-8817 and evening phone is 817-426-5346.
"Sorry for getting this out so late but we didn't get the information from Charities until Wednesday afternoon.
You do not have to attend the party to bring the gift. You can coordinate with Susann or myself to pick up or drop off gifts. You can e-mail me at tsquiers@inbox. com or you can call me at 817-784-5132.
The 2008 Advent Party will held on Saturday, December 6, from 1-3 p.m. at Blue Mesa Grill at University Park Village, 1600 S. University Dr.
So everybody, see if you can't help these kids. It's a lot more important than a former bishop pathetically trying to act as if nothing has changed.