Happy Saturday! As you pray through Morning Prayer today, consider changing up the first canticle if you don’t normally do so. The Te Deum is of course a beautiful hymn of the Early Church, but sometimes it’s edifying to dip into some of the other Canticles the Prayer Book has to offer.
Canticle #10 in the ACNA book, Benedicite, omnia opera Domini, is noted to be “especially suitable for use on Saturday. Since today is not a special commemoration, why not shift this marvelous canticle in the place of the Te Deum this morning?
The Benedicite is a simplified text drawn from the Song of the Three Young Men, attributed to Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael in the fiery furnace in the middle of Daniel 3. The full text is one of the “Additions to Daniel” in the Greek Old Testament, and is therefore useful “for example of life and instruction of manners” as the Articles of Religion say. Therefore, as a worship text, it is as close to the Psalms as possible without actually being numbered among them. With the Church’s addition of the Triune name of God at the end of the Canticle, it is a wonderful expression of praise, drawing all of creation into the eternal song, much like Psalm 148. Enjoy it!