A little litany for the masses

Feeling like the world is basically ok? Well, you shouldn’t be, least of all days today, Ash Wednesday, least of all worlds this one. To put yourself in a more proper Lenten frame of mind or, better, a proper frame of mind for any day of the year, read the Anglican Great Litany. You can find it here, in the original version of the 1549 Book of Common Prayer (“The Letany and Suffrages” begins on p. 30). If you don’t want to wade through 16th century typeface, you can also find it here, but the typesetting of the original, especially of the final prayer, is very beautiful.

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The current Episcopal version, with the supplications for king and crown pared down to a one-line prayer for the President, and with “fornicacion” replaced by “all inordinate and sinful affections” is here. You can also hear it sung:

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