Anglicans Online banner More about the gryphon
Independent On the web since 1994 More than 250,000 readers More than 30,000 links Updated every Sunday
Will you help support
Anglicans Online?

The Paypal logotype

Noted This Week
Sites new to AO

News Centre
News archive

News flash: a summary of the top headlines
Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us by email
Be notified each week

Start here
Anglicans believe...
The Prayer Book
The Bible

Read letters to AO
Write to us

Resources A to Z

World Anglicanism
Anglican Communion
In full communion
Not in the Communion

Dioceses and Parishes
Hong Kong
New Zealand

South Africa
Sri Lanka

Vacancies Centre
List a vacancy
Check openings worldwide

Add a site or link to AO
Add a site to AO
Link to AO

About Anglicans Online
Back issues
About our logo
Our search engine


Hallo again to all.

The church year is in Deep Ordinary Time. Whether you start counting the Sundays of this season at Pentecost or at Trinity, it almost doesn't matter any more because so many weeks have gone by. We're many weeks in, and it's many more weeks until the next season starts. That's Deep Ordinary Time.

The longest bridge in the world is the 38-km Lake Ponchartrain Causeway in Louisiana, USA. Driving across it, there is a long section from which you cannot see the land at either end. In front of you the bridge fades into the mist, and behind you it does the same. You must have both memory and faith. Memory of having been on land when you entered the bridge, and faith that there will eventually be land at the other end. If you are afflicted with apeirophobia or even apeirogephyrophobia, please avoid this bridge. But if instead you are are burdened with some form of apeirometapentecostophobia, do keep reading.

Ordinary Time is rather like that bridge: here in the middle, it's hard to remember Easter Week and it's hard to imagine the coming of Advent.

So we want to talk about Lent. Why? Almost no one writes books of 'Meditations for Ordinary Time, but collections of 'Meditations for Lent' are common. Nowhere is it writ that we cannot, during Deep Ordinary Time, ponder questions written to be read during Lent.

For Lent 2014, the Bishop of Rhode Island, Nicholas Knisely, wrote and distributed a booklet of Lent Meditations. As we noted, many people do this, but Bishop Knisely's booklet is extraordinary. Its full title is Lent Is Not Rocket Science: An Exploration of God, Creation, and the Cosmos and you can buy it for a song. It's published by the US organization Forward Movement, but is distributed worldwide by Amazon. Bishop Knisely was trained in physics before turning to the priesthood, and taught physics at Lehigh University while he was a parish priest. He actually knows enough about rocket science that you can consider his assertion 'Lent is not rocket science' to be authoritative.

We shudder when our Sunday worship uses the US Eucharistic Prayer C, in which the celebrant recites 'At your command all things came to be: the vast expanse of interstellar space, galaxies, suns, the planets in their courses, and this fragile earth, our island home.' And this very morning, worshipping in a church far from home, we couldn't believe our ears when the closing hymn was Earth and all Stars, which includes the phrase 'Classrooms and labs, loud boiling test tubes, sing to the Lord a new song!'. Bishop Knisely's book is not like that. It is a thoughtful, logical guide to thinking about religious matters while including real science, though not so much of it that your head spins.

You can read a few of its daily meditations in a PDF file here, follow the link above to buy a copy of it, or search for its title at the bookseller of your choice.

US President Obama recently received worldwide criticism for wearing a tan suit after the end of summer. We shudder to think of the scorn that would have been heaped on him if he had been caught reading Lenten meditations in the middle of Ordinary Time.* But reporters don't follow you around, so you should risk it. Buy this book and read it. Read it slowly, if you like. Read one meditation each day, as if it were Lent, if you like. Or do what we did, and read the whole thing in one day, and then again a few days later.

We think that this book is a really important contribution to the science-vs-religion argument. You might know people who believe in science and disdain religion. You will have more things to say to them after you have read this book. You even have our permission to read it in Advent if you wish.

See you next week. It will still be Deep Ordinary Time.

Our signature
All of us at Anglicans Online

7 September 2014

*We still remember the scene in the 1994 movie Serial Mom, in which the character played by Kathleen Turner murders one of the jurors in her murder trial because the juror (played by Patricia Hearst) wears white shoes after (US) Labor Day.

A thin blue line
This web site is independent. It is not official in any way. Our editorial staff is private and unaffiliated. Please contact about information on this page. ©2014 Society of Archbishop Justus
. Please address all spam to