The Kalendar


Two Kalendars

The UNIVERSAL or  GENERAL KALENDAR

and

the SIMPLE  KALENDAR

(A link to the Daily Ordo for the Simple Kalendar can be found here)

In the Anglican Breviary there are two different Kalendars. The given Kalendar is the most inclusive of feasts and is known as the Universal or General Kalendar. The same Kalendar is to be found in the Anglican Missal. The latter explains why it is that some feasts are given in italics and why it is that the Kalendar (as found in the Anglican Missal) has two columns:

The two-column KALENDAR of this Missal has in its first column the most inclusive and most widely used Kalendar in the world. In this has been inserted in brackets a few Feasts which are of general interest to Anglicans. Feasts which are considered of less interest are printed in Italics and their Propers are given, not in THE PROPER OF THE SAINTS, but in THE SUPPLEMENT. Thus the former, which consists only of those Feasts which the editors felt they could recommend for wide-spread usage, furnish a conservative but devout Kalendar observance, and the latter can be used where, and when, and to the extent that, it is found useful or necessary. For that matter, in very few localities is the so-called Universal Kalendar followed exactly. Rather it is used as the basis of local Kalendars, Feasts being transferred or even suppressed, according to prescribed rules, in order to provide for local liturgical needs. In other words, the Universal Kalendar is used as a norm on which to base local Kalendars (The People’s Anglican Missal, p. ii – iii).

The Anglican Breviary affirms this principle in the Note placed at the beginning of the Proper of the Saints:

The chief problem of any Breviary is the Kalendar. Inasmuch as the Prayer-Book is based on a greatly simplified Kalendar, Anglican tradition may be said to favour those conservative Uses of the Breviary (such as the Monastic) which do not follow the so-called Universal Kalendar in its entirety. This latter is most inclusive, and therefore the most complicated Kalendar of any liturgical usage today. For which reason a committee of priests has drawn up a simplified Kalendar for Anglican use, to follow which in this Breviary, one should keep only those Feasts which are marked with a star ( * ), and should begin at beginning of the Proper of the Saints with the Mark SK and disregard everything marked UK (Anglican Breviary, p. E1).

The Anglican Breviary, though ecumenically sensitive to the See of Rome, is very much predicated for Anglican use so that where necessary (as was said in the Preface to the Anglican Breviary) the Anglican Breviary conforms the Latin (Secular) Breviary to fit the parameters of the Book of Common Prayer! The feasts of the Universal (Roman) Kalendar can be followed as desired or as it seems useful. The primary purpose of the Anglican Breviary is to provide Catholic Anglicans with a Prayer-Book which has incorporated the reformed principles of the Book of Common Prayer but has recovered its Catholic riches. In other words: the Book of Common Prayer is the prism through which the Roman Breviary has been refracted to form the Anglican Breviary. This includes the 39 Articles, the Edwardine Ordinal, and the prefaces of the Book of Common Prayer. It is not coincidental that the basis for the Anglican Breviary is the reformed Breviary of Pius the Xth. The latter has approved the Roman Breviary as reformed in accordance with the same foundational principles that were used for the Book of Common Prayer (as the Preface to the Anglican Breviary points out). It could be argued that the Roman Breviary of Pius the Xth has moved closer to the reformed principles of Anglicanism, a trend which has continued up until this day in the Roman Church. And as in Anglican history so in the history of the Roman Church the ‘reform’ has not always been beneficial and a ‘reform of the Reform’ is increasingly deemed necessary. To conclude: the Anglican Breviary is decidedly Anglo Catholic but it is not Roman Catholic.

Fr. Gregory +

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About Father Gregory

I am an Anglican Catholic Priest, currently residing in Orvelte, the Netherlands.
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