Life by the Church Calendar

Unfortunately, I rarely ever note-take when I read. It’s a bad habit. It was especially bad in graduate school. Try reading a 300-page book and then summarizing it in a paper, all in the span of one week, and not taking notes. Maybe that’s why I did poorly in Medieval History. Maybe.

So, I have very little to say as far as a review goes with the book I finished reading most recently – Ancient-Future Faith by Richard Webber. But I can say that I loved it and that the ideas Webber puts forth were fascinating for me to read. I grew up in large, mainstream, non-denominational churches and college ministries. Liturgy and tradition were (and, to a large extent, still are) foreign to me. In college, though, I met people (and read bloggers) who spoke of liturgy with reverence and love and lived with the weight and joy of tradition in their faith. Then I met my husband and his family, who strive to honor and incorporate the rich elements of God-glorifying tradition within a modern, non-denominational framework.

One of the concepts that the book covered was the structure of the Church’s liturgical calendar and the value of structuring evangelism and discipleship within the natural spacing of the liturgical year. For example, give extra focus to bringing in new disciples during Ordinary time, baptize at Easter Vigil, etc. If you’re familiar with or part of High Church traditions, this would be old hat for you – the way it’s always been done – but it was all new to me.

I don’t intend to spend a lot of energy advocating that we utilize more liturgical and calendrical elements in our local church service; the leadership is already taking steps towards that. However, I do plan to begin exploring how to put such elements into effect within our own home and family unit (just the two of us now, but how helpful it would be to build good habits early). I’ve seen books and articles online to help me, but haven’t delved in yet. Partially this is because it seems like such an odd part of the calendar to begin. I look forward to preparing an Advent wreath for our home when the time gets closer, but what can I do now to celebrate Ordinary time? Reaching out and helping with the work of the Church, yes. How do I commemorate this visually or physically within our home?