The beginning of the school year is one of those seasons when folks are motivated to be more faithful to the spiritual practice of Morning or Evening Prayer. This two-volume set, Year 1 and Year 2, has all the scripture for each daily reading, all collected, in order, each day of the year. Everything's arranged for you! It truly makes doing the offices easy. For me, especially for the Old Testament readings, I really look forward to hearing how the Revised story develops day after day when I'm faithful to doing the Office readings... There have been seasons in my life when I've wanted Readings to use my Study Bible, to flip around and find all the readings myself. But I am now finding that having a Daily Office Reader makes saying the office less fussy - and that much more efficient and inviting. Each morning - all the tabs are set, except finding
the day's psalm. Saying the Daily Office gives us a time-tested practice of knowing how you're going to start your quiet time each morning. We have these wonderful prayers and scriptures already laid out for us. "Open our lips, Lord, and our mouths shall proclaim your praise.'
Published in 2001, Thomas Lynch, poet, funeral director, and author of the highly praised The Undertaking, examines the relations between "literary and mortuary arts." All of us, I'm convinced, have questions, musings perhaps, about the circumstances that surround us and those we love when we pass away. In some sense, all of us has at one time or another entered into that space after someone we know has died and experienced a theology of remaining even if we didn't know how to put that time into words; Lynch helps here, I think. As Christians, we claim the sure and certain hope of Resurrection. Yet still, I find myself wondering how one can find a way to express what they feel as they remain and about those whom they have loved and see no more. If that is you, like me, then you will find Tom Lynch a welcome friend. Thomas Lynch's essays, poems and stories have appeared in The Atlantic, Granta, The New York Times, the New Yorker, the Paris Review, and elsewhere. He lives in Milford, Michigan where he has been the funeral director since 1974, and in Moveen, Co. Clare, Ireland where he keeps an ancestral cottage.