Friday, February 11, 2011

Anglican Patrimony; and Psalm 86(87) — II

Anglican Patrimony – what is it?  Pope Benedict defines it thus:
...ita ut intra Catholicam Ecclesiam vitales serventur spiritales, liturgicae pastoralesque Communionis Anglicanae traditiones, ad instar magni pretii doni, ad sodalium fidem alendam ac participandam. 
..the liturgical, spiritual and pastoral traditions of the Anglican Communion [brought] within the Catholic Church, as a precious gift nourishing the faith of the members of the Ordinariate and as a treasure to be shared.
— Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum cœtibus, III. (& cf. VI. §5, which explicitly refers to all this as Anglicano patrimonio, "Anglican patrimony"; the same expression occurs in the Complementary Norms, Article 10 §2.)

Of course, these liturgical, spiritual and pastoral traditions must ipso facto be orthodox – hence, liturgies to be used must "have been approved by the Holy See" (A.C., III), and all this patrimony must be subject to the clear statement that "The Catechism of the Catholic Church is the authoritative expression of the Catholic faith professed by members of the Ordinariate" (A.C., I §5).  A "purification" is called for: no Erastianism, no Calvinism, no Zwinglianism; no liberalism nor modernism!  But "yes" to all that is godly, catholic and conformable to the doctrines of the universal Church.

What relevance has the Patrimony of Anglicanism to the Psalms and to prayer?  Firstly, the Anglican daily Offices, wherein traditionally the whole Psalter is sung through, in rich Anglican chant, once every month; secondly, the prayers and devotions and preachings of Anglican divines founded upon the Psalms.


In the more particular of the present case, following upon my brief notes relative to Psalm 86, or 87 as the Hebrews and Anglicans number it, I've turned up a prayer by Jeremy Taylor, from his The Psalter of David: with Titles and Collects, according to the Matter of Each Psalm (Works, Volume XV, p.156):

A Contemplation of the Excellencies of Sion, or the celestial Jerusalem.
O Lord God, who dwellest in Sion, and delightest to have thy habitation in the hearts of men: thou hast built the church as a city upon a hill, and laid the foundation of it upon the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ being the chief corner-stone: make us to be a spiritual building fit for thy habitation, and a residence for thy Holy Spirit, grounding us in faith, building us up in hope, and perfecting us in charity; that we, being joined in the communion of saints, in the union of the holy catholic church militant on earth, may all partake of the blessings of thy church trinmphant in the city of thee our God, in the celestial Jerusalem, where thou livest and reignest ever one God, world without end. Amen.
While unfortunately Taylor was rather bigoted against the Holy Church of Rome, this and many of his devotions (but for their oft wearisome sesquipedalian length) are in themselves pious and uncontroversial; and ought be welcomed home.

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