Website Up and Running

My website As the Sun in its Orb is up and running after its recent ruthless haircut (be assured, I still have my hair!). The links are restored, updated or deleted because the subject matter is no longer in existence.

The site consists of four main pages: the title, an introduction, a page on the Use of Sarum and a page on the liturgy in general. There are html files accessed from the Sarum and general liturgical pages. Each of those files have a link back to their referring page. Only the four main pages link to each other.

If there are still problems with links not working, missing photos or other inconsistencies, please post a comment and let me know. I would also welcome suggestions and links to update the site and improve it as a reference resource.

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3 Responses to Website Up and Running

  1. Timothy Graham says:

    Very glad to see this up and live again Fr Anthony: I see also that Wm Renwick’s work is ever adding to his Breviary work. One thing I have wondered is whether it would be possible to put together a website with English translations of all the Lessons from the patristic homilies, legends of the saints etc. for use at Sarum Matins… they will all be available on The Sarum Rite at some point, but are all on pdf & therefore not so accessible for daily use (unless one can print off 1000s of pages). I have no idea if a free wordpress website would manage this kind of thing though, as it would build up to a massive amount of data.

    • This is why I have both a static website and this blog. I can’t use the free blog for very much in the way of a large volume of data. My site has quite a lot of space on it. I pay for it but at a basic level without too many gimmicks. The best thing is to be patient with William Renwick and his work at producing this fine edition. Of course it could be printed but the cost of printing and binding would be astronomical. We can do our own printing recto-verso and bind sections in ring binders, but it is not as “nice” as a book. It’s a pity we couldn’t get Donald Trump or Bill Gates interested in financing an edition – but still the books would be unaffordable.

  2. Mark says:

    Greetings, Fr. Anthony,

    I just discovered your pages dedicated to the Sarum Use, which, as a former Anglican who has been in the Orthodox Church in America for the last 34 years, and a graduate of St. Vladimir’s Seminary (NY), where I studied liturgics and wrote a couple of papers on western liturgical forms, I found quite interesting and it led me to contact you personally. I hope you will indulge me for a few minutes here as I try to lay down some basics on where I am coming from as a way to see if there is any basis for more extended, serious discussion between us or other contributors to your blog.

    First, I was received into the Orthodox Church in 1983 at the age of 21. I I have been in Byzantine Rite parishes from that time and now teach a class for Readers (tonsured or preparing to be tonsured) on the ins and outs of the daily offices as relevant to Readers. At this point I would say that my primary liturgical “language” is Byzantine, rather than Roman. Nonetheless, I am familiar with the order of the Tridentine Mass and the basics of both BCP and Sarum Matins and Vespers and I have taught myself enough Latin to read liturgical texts fairly well. I am fairly adept with languages as a whole, able to read Biblical and liturgical Greek and get more than just the gist, and also Church Slavonic. Among my modern languages are Spanish and German, my minor and major, respectively in college.

    Specifically, I appreciated your concern for separating liturgics from ideology. As I wrote on paper, which considered the Novus Ordo based on reading evidence from the Ordo Romanus Primus, I couldn’t help but realize that while I and many others who came to Orthodoxy from Anglicanism associate the Novus Ordo and its Anglican counterparts with modernism, theological relativism, and liturgical chaos, there is a sound history for many of changes as they existed on paper in the 1940s and 1950s. Indeed, when I watch a papal Mass on YouTube I see what is definitely to me, a serious, grounded celebration of the Eucharist that I think would not shock or scandalize a Byzantine Greek. It does seem to me that both in the Anglican Communion and the Roman Catholic Church, the intended reforms were hijacked by people with a very alien (to ancient liturgical practice and traditional Christian belief) perspective.

    I also noticed the criticism in the dialogue regarding ROCOR’s Western Rite. I am not one to pretend like everything is perfect and rosy in the Orthodox Church. I know one daughter of an Anglican priest from Canada who was received into the Orthodox Church, married a man who then became a priest, and when that marriage didn’t work and he was allowed to continue to serve, returned to the Anglican Communion. While I cannot ever see myself returning to Anglicanism, I fully sympathize with her. I can only imagine that she came to regard Orthodox talk about definitive standards as just that – talk. My own experience tells me that while I do believe that the Orthodox Church is the full, authentic continuation of the apostolic church, it is no more perfect today than it was when SS Peter & Paul argued over circumcision. There is plenty of sin to go around within the Orthodox Church and it extends to the highest places; likewise there is genuine holiness to be found outside the canonical boundaries of the Orthodox Church, of which Mother Theresa of Calcutta is a prime example.

    My own study of Western Rite in Orthodox parishes, which included reading the rather critical view taken by the commission called for by St. Tikhon of Moscow during his time in North America, suggested to me that there are among Orthodox two wrong approaches to the mere idea of Western Rite: 1) to vilify it as being not being the Byzantine Rite; 2) to accept every little practice as authentic because it existed before the Great Schism or at least before the Reformation. The latter flawed approach fails to consider the historical context of each practice or, more generally to evaluate the merits of a rite as a whole, based on Orthodox theological vision in general, and Orthodox liturgical/sacramental theology in particular. Orthodox might do well to ask whether the line in the Exultet “felix culpa” might be an early trace of a problem in Latin theology regarding original sin based on the Augustinian understanding of Romans 5:12. I’m not saying that it is, or that even if it is, that it must be excised for Orthodox use of the Exultet. I am only suggesting that such considerations are important.

    Where I see this as being of possible interest to you where it also applies to how Anglicans and Roman Catholics might also consider the significance of a practice in their own liturgy, whether in modern forms or in something like the Sarum Use. For myself, the goal would be to remain faithful to the Tradition as opposed to blindly accepting just anything that comes along, however old it might (or might not) be. Fidelity requires thought. Tradition involves a personal reception of what is being passed on, and that requires serious consideration and the rejection of knee-jerk reactions, whether in favour of or in opposition to, well, anything.

    While as an Orthodox Christian, I would certainly not say the Creed with the filioque or do some other thing that would violate an clear tenet of the Orthodox Faith, I am quite aware that any appropriation of a Western liturgical use, like Sarum, which is my primary interest here, will be altered here and there to avoid such problems. The operative word, as a student of liturgics, is “altered.” However much the alteration might be corrective in intent, it is still an alteration, and should raise the question from an Orthodox theological POV, as well as from an academic, historical POV, of authenticity. Some point is made about the blessing of bread at the end of the Mass in the Sarum Use, but apparently this was only done on Sundays in actual history, if my so-far limited reading has correctly informed me. I believe that ROCOR has made it a standard feature. Is that authentic? If it’s not, what that fact say about how “Orthodox” (in a technical sense of Eastern Orthodox) the Sarum Use really was? Probably it says nothing at all one way or another, but if that’s the case, why not just stick with the historical practice? ROCOR makes no bones about the use of “Let All Mortal Flesh” as an offertory anthem being something they did and it’s kind of nice since that hymn is popular among Anglicans and has Byzantine roots in the Liturgy of St James and the Liturgy of St Basil on Holy Saturday.

    It is my hope that someone in your position might give me a different perspective on Sarum, one that is not influenced by the need to correct things to make them fit Orthodox theology. I can do that myself. The perspective of a knowledgeable western Christian could provide for interesting discussion with Orthodox regarding matters of authenticity vs theological correctness. I have been interested for some time in attending a Sarum Use Mass in an Orthodox community (where I can fully participate if I wish – I am a subdeacon).

    I hope you will forgive the length of this introductory post. I have opted for giving you the fullest understanding possible to my line of thinking so that you can make an informed choice about whether you are interested in any further discussion. Please feel free to contact me at my email address, which I believe your site provides to you since I had to fill it in, if that is your preference. Meanwhile, thank you for your time and attention to at least reading this introduction.

    In Christian friendship,

    Mark Harrison.

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