A year has come and gone on this blog, and I must say that I am incredibly thankful for all of you readers. You’ve given me encouragement with your thank-you’s, corrected the grammar and spelling errors that slip my notice, raise new questions, gently push back when I made an assertion too far, and reassure me that the cause of good liturgy is not merely an esoteric interest in my mind, but a relevant subject to even the most basic levels of Christian life. And, to top it all off, we’ve seen no trolls here, and I’ve only been unnecessarily sassed out once on Facebook so far. They say a writer needs to have thick skin, especially on the internet, and y’all have broke me in slowly and gently to this world.
With an average of six posts a week, quite a backlog of articles has built up in only a year. On the blog’s birthday back in October I began assembling an index page to collect old entries of note for ease of reference. What I thought I’d do now is put together a “backlog” post once every week or so, for a little while, to help my newer readers get a sense of what has been written in the past, just in case there’s something of interest to be discovered. Today we’re starting with perhaps the most work-heavy line of articles (from my perspective)… the book reviews.
Almost every Saturday in 2019 I’ve put up a review of a book that has to do with liturgy – be it a Prayer Book, a hymnal, a supplemental resource, or other sort of text book. The full list, organized by category, is here: https://saint-aelfric-customary.org/book-reviews/
We’ve looked at six prayer books, and at the end of the year I’ll finally review the 2019 BCP.
We’ve looked at eight liturgical books that are meant to supplement one of the prayer books (most notably the Common Worship series from the Church of England) and I’ve got two more planned to complete.
Four Anglican hymnals have been reviewed, and I’ve got another musical resource on my list to add.
Two devotional manuals and four liturgical guides (sort of customaries in their own right) have been reviewed.
In the interest of ecumenical context, I’ve reviewed four liturgical books from outside the Anglican tradition: one Puritan, two Roman, and one Lutheran.
Six “textbooks” about liturgy in general have been covered, and a seventh is on the way this Saturday, I believe. Most of these are Anglican or Episcopalian, but a couple are not.
The last book reviews I’ve got planned will take us into the beginning of 2020, but after that I do not have any solid plans for writing any more reviews. I will have exhausted the majority of my liturgy-and-worship-related bookshelf by that point, for one, and (more importantly) it takes a little while actually to read these books. I am not averse to doing more reviews; it’ll just take little while to get the job done. I may pick out another book or two in my library to review next year, but it’s not high on my list of priorities. 2019 saw a good round of work in that area and I’m happy to set that focus aside for a little while.
That being said, if there is a book that you want me to review, or want my opinion on, or for this blog to analyze, I would be very happy to take recommendations – especially if you send me a copy! 😉 So do drop in a comment or send me a message via social media if there’s something you’d like to see covered here.