Letters from 13 to
19 July 2009
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. . .
reference to the dearth of Anglican thrillers (July 5), I refer you to murder
mysteries by British writer Kate Charles. Not only do her books have
an ecclesiastical background, with titles taken from the psalms — 'A
Drink of Deadly Wine', 'The Snares of Death', 'Appointed to Die', 'A
Dead Man Out of Mind', and 'Evil Angels Among Them' — but the crimes
(ranging from blackmail, to obscene phone calls, to fraud and theft,
to murder) all take place in or around Anglican churches, and clergy
and parish officials at all levels of hierarchy and churchmanship are
Ms Charles' books
also deal with church politics, the current issue of inclusion of GLBT
people and resistance to women in the priesthood. The five books in
the series are well-written, well-researched and reveal the Church of
England in all its diversity and turmoil. They're also great fun to
It is unfortunate
that Ms Charles seems to have abandoned the series and one can only
hope that she will pick up where she left off five years ago and have
the Canon's artist daughter Lucy and her lover, solicitor/church architecture-and-ecclesiastical-silver
buff David, back on the trail, sniffing out crimes and misdemeanours
in high and holy places.
Editor: We're thoroughly
in favour of any series of novels that have a solicitor cum church
And it does sound as if these books are a possible answer to the question
St. John's Cathedral
Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA
13 July 2009
. . . on every
your Editorial letter of last week. [Well, I mostly like them, every week.] You must
find the novels — a quartet thus far — by C.J Sansom, an
English writer. Our hero is one
Matthew Shardlake, not a detective, but a lawyer, the books are set
in 1541-1543, and they are crucial to an understanding of the Anglican
Church, as well as being wonderful, pacey thriller novels.
The first is
Dissolution, the second, rather more secular, but no matter, religion
is on every corner in the London of the day, is Dark Fire; the third
is Sovereign, and the last, without doubt to my mind, the very finest,
not least because it has so contemporary a feel, compare the Fundamentalist
push we suffer from today, is Revelation.
I stayed up till
midnight last night to finish Revelation, and all day I've been
rather at a loss. I am missing Master Shardlake, I fear, and the other
characters who also 'star'. Cranmer for instance . . . and he hasn't
even written the BCP yet!
Peace and love
to you, dear hard-working friends at Anglicans Online.
Parish of Avon, Diocese of Gippsland
Stratford, Victoria, AUSTRALIA
13 July 2009
From murder to
letters Ancient & Modern
My favorite hymn,
one that brings tears to my eyes each time I sing or hear it, or read
the words, is "My Song is Love Unknown," by Samuel Crossman (1664),
using the John Ireland tune. At 67, I am setting down all my requests
for my funeral, whenever this may occur (no apparent maladies at this
point, thank God!), and I want all six verses of this hymn sung, either
by a choir or soloist or by the congregation.
Since there will
be Spanish-speaking people present, I will also insist on having "Pescador
de Hombres" ("Fisher
of Men), a very popular hymn written by the Spanish Roman Catholic priest
Cesáreo Gabaráin (1936–2001),
which I have translated (as have many others).
Barbara P. Gómez
Episcopal Church of the Epiphany
Santo Domingo, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
19 July 2009
Editor: We suspect
your letter is in response to a long-ago
front-page letter, which you
may have happened upon in our morgue as a result of an Interent
search. But we're happy to publish it, as we always enjoy encouraging
discussion about hymns.
We launched our 'Letters to AO' section on 11
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