An Advent Choral Service with the O Antiphons in your own living room

December 17, 2013

For $10 you can download a wonderful Advent recording and enjoy a traditional Advent Choral Service in your own home:

An Advent Procession based on The Great "O" Antiphons

at iTunes

at Amazon (CD and MP3 versions)

This album, An Advent Procession based on the Great O Antiphons, by the Choirs of Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle, contains recordings of all the O Antiphons, Scripture readings, Collects and a number of traditional Advent hymns as well.

Listening to this is truly beautiful and a wonderful way to be still and meditate on Jesus in this final week before Christmas.  There are 34 total tracks (for about an hour of worship.)  The service is arranged in chronological order for each of the seven O Antiphons, so you could listen to an Antiphon, a Scripture, a Collect and a hymn each day for the next seven days of Advent.


Other recordings containing the O Antiphons include:

Advent Carols from Saint Johns (iTunes)

And Comes the Day: Carols and Antiphons for Advent (Queens College Cambridge)  (iTunes)

100 Songs for Advent! – An Advent Worship playlist (Contemporary – Blended worship)

December 4, 2013

Over the past few years, I’ve worked to expand my digital Christmas music collection and develop various Christmas playlists – 12 in total…  choral music, instrumental, quiet, rocking, CCM originals, Christmas “oldies,” Christmas worship, etc…  But I’ve only had one fairly anemic Advent playlist dominated by a number of different versions of O Come O Come Emmanuel, and a few similar traditional carols.  This year I’m treating myself to a bunch of new Advent songs, and also digging deep into my worship collection and working to develop several different Advent playlists.  There are a number of great new songs and artists I’ve discovered, and it’s been exciting to see the number of Christian artists and worship leaders who are embracing Advent and producing Advent-themed albums.   Later this week I’ll post an entry with 3 – 5 of my favorite Advent albums (traditional and contemporary.)

In the meantime, here is a list of 100 songs (nearly 8 hours of music!) which I’ve included in a Contemporary-Blended style Advent Worship playlist.  The themes include:

  • Light,
  • Hope,
  • Waiting,
  • the Promise of the Messiah’s birth,
  • Expectation of the Second Coming,
  • the Annunciation,
  • Waking from slumber,
  • Christ the Refiner
  • Preparing our Hearts,
  • Inviting Christ to Come
  • Jesus, Emmanuel, God with Us

I’ll be uploading many of  these songs over the coming days and streaming them here at L&B  – especially the 5 or 6 very hard-to-find songs for which I’ve not been able to provide a link for purchasing the songs as individual MP3s.  But in the meantime, I’ve created an Excel spreadsheet file with all 100 songs:  the name of the track, the artist, the album, the year, some comments, and a link where to find the file.  

There are not too many traditional hymns on here. I figure most of L&B’s readers already have access to favorite choral renditions of Advent classics like O Come O Come Emmanuel, Lo How a Rose E’er Blooming, Lo He Comes With Clouds Descending, and Of the Father’s Love Begotten.  But as I’m discovering, there is a much wider range of Advent music available than just those ancient carols.  So, grab your speakers or earphones and enjoy some of the songs listed below!


Here’s the spreadsheet listing all the songs:

ADVENT 2013 – Lent and Beyond – 100 SongPLAYLIST


[Update: You can now listen to 12 of these songs in the Advent Worship Music 2013 Part 1 post.  I'll be posting some of the songs from this playlist for your listening pleasure each week in Advent.]

I hope it inspires many of you to create some great Advent playlists of your own and to enjoy a season of sitting at our Lord’s feet and worshiping Him for the mystery, wonder and miracle of His coming to us!

Also, please share YOUR favorite Advent songs in the comments!  I’d love to discover even more great Advent music.  Thanks

A blessed Advent to all our readers.

- Karen B.

Note:  All Purchase Links are to the iTunes US store, unless otherwise noted.

Advent is coming… A GREAT resource to recommend!

November 12, 2013

This post is sticky. Look below for new entries.

As any regular reader of Lent & Beyond will know, over the years we’ve done a lot of blog entries linking to favorite Advent & Lent devotional resources, and are always particularly excited to find good resources to help families celebrate the Liturgical year in the home.

Jessica Snell’s blog, Homemaking through the Church Year is a site we’ve linked and enthusiastically recommended many times.  Jessica has been the editor for a brand new book compiling resources to help families celebrate Advent.  The book is Let Us Keep the Feast: Christmas and Advent.  It’s available for purchase as a print copy, or as a digital download.

Here’s what Jessica writes about the book:

I’m so excited about this book; it’s the book I wish I had ten years ago, as Adam and I were starting our lives together as adults, setting up the rhythms of our household. Our hope was (and is) to always hold in our hearts and minds the truth that our family’s life is a part of the life of the church, that our worship of God on Sunday should naturally flow into our work-a-day lives, showing itself in our love for each other, for our children, for our neighbors.

That’s why I love the church year: it constantly reminds me of God’s love. Its feasts and fasts keep the gospel story constantly before my eyes. In my cooking and housekeeping, in my reading and my correspondence, in so many small customs and traditions, the church year is always pointing my eyes back towards Jesus.

The authors in this book have done such a splendid job of laying out those customs and traditions – and the reasons behind them – to the reader.

Go check it out! (Also available at Amazon)

Ascension Day – prayers & resources

May 15, 2012

We’re getting quite a few visitors looking for Ascension Day Prayers and resources, especially folks following links from Christine Sine’s blog Godspace. Yesterday, Christine posted a great roundup of links and prayers in her entry  Ascension Day is Coming – Do You Know What it Means.  (I especially like her poem about how Christ’s Ascension ensures His advocacy and intercession for us at the Father’s right hand.)

No time to look for new resources today, but here are a few links to some great resources we’ve posted in previous years (in no particular order, sorry…!):

Church Year.Net has an excellent collection of Collects for Ascension.

Anglican Mainstream: Two Meditations on the Ascension (Meditations from Leo the Great and St. Augustine)

Splendor in the Ordinary: Ascension Hymn

Splendor in the Ordinary: Ascensiontide (ideas for a family celebration)

Fr. Tim Fountain chimes in with some thoughts about Christ’s Ascension here.

Fr. Rob Lord has reflections on a quote from Dallas Willard and Christ’s ministry of intercession for believers — “Christ is Pulling for You” (from the web archive)

Dr. Peter Toon has two posts:
Ascensiontide —a precious season of 10 days before Pentecost
Feast of the Ascension—why a much neglected Festival?

Oswald ChambersHis Ascension and Our Access


Also:  DO NOT FORGET the Rev. Dr. Kendall Harmon’s TitusOneNine!

Kendall is known for his news & cultural commentary posts, but TitusOneNine is also an amazing treasure trove of prayers, quotes and theological reflection.  Kendall has an Ascension Day category!   In browsing that category (and doing a word search), I found no less than 21 great prayers, quotes, sermons and other resources about the Ascension!

I’ll post some of the specific links tomorrow…

Praying the Pascha Nostrum through the 50 Days of Easter

April 23, 2012

A great post at the Rector’s Corner blog this morning on praying the Pascha Nostrum throughout the 50 Days of Easter.

Christ our PassoverPascha nostrum

1 Corinthians 5:7‑8; Romans 6:9‑11; 1 Corinthians 15:20‑22
Christ our Passover has been sacrificed for us; *
therefore let us keep the feast,
Not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, *
but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. Alleluia.

Christ being raised from the dead will never die again; *
death no longer has dominion over him.
The death that he died, he died to sin, once for all; *
but the life he lives, he lives to God.
So also consider yourselves dead to sin, *
and alive to God in Jesus Christ our Lord. Alleluia.

Christ has been raised from the dead, *
the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.
For since by a man came death, *
by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.
For as in Adam all die, *
so also in Christ shall all be made alive. Alleluia.

The rector who writes the blog, Brandon Filbert, writes:

The point to be remembered is that the Pascha nostrum underscores the power of Christ’s rising as a complete break with the old life…something that each Christian must not only celebrate at Eastertide, but learn to live in the daily life of discipleship.

 Praying these words will, at times, cast the light of the Resurrection on those corners of our life we are still trying to live the old way, with “the leaven of malice and evil.” For that knowledge we need to give thanks: it is the active work of the Spirit in our life as Christians this Eastertide and always.
A great exhortation and reminder.  Amen!

A compilation of Easter Prayers

April 10, 2012

last updated: April 19, 2014

NOTE – This post dates from 2012.  For 2014 and beyond, I’ve created a new Updated Easter Prayer Compilation to expand on this entry.  I will probably still periodically update this entry, but please bookmark the updated version as it will have the most current information.


Here is a compilation of all the Easter Prayers we’ve posted the last few years.  Here’s the link to our Easter Prayer category.

(oldest entries on top, newest entries last)

Daily Prayers and Reflections for Each Day of the Easter Octave

The readings and the collect for Easter Monday

An Easter Prayer for the Persecuted Church

Collects for Tuesday & Wednesday of Easter Week

An Easter Blessing prayer

A Prayer of Adoration for Easter: Te Deum Laudamus

Easter Prayers: Blind us to All But Christ

An Easter Prayer: dying daily to sin that we may live in the joy of Christ’s resurrection

A Wonderful Daily Prayer for the Easter Season

An Easter Prayer by Brother Roger of Taize: If You Were Not Risen

An Easter Prayer: born anew to a living hope

Collect for the Second Week of Easter

Collects & Prayers for the Third Sunday of Easter

Victor Hoagland: The Thomas in All of Us

St. Gregory the Great’s Easter Prayer

An Easter Prayer by Helen Steiner Rice: May this Easter Grandeur Awaken Faded Flowers of Faith

An Easter Praise Litany from New Zealand

Easter Prayer: Vivify, Justify, Save

St. Hippolytus’ Easter Prayer

A prayer for the Second Sunday of Easter

An Easter proclamation of blessing

An Easter Prayer: May Your Resurrection Power Break Forth

Praying the Pascha Nostrum through the 50 Days of Easter

Easter Prayers: Raise us from the death of sin

“Let Him Easter in Us”

Easter Prayers: Make our hearts to burn within us

Jesus, free me from the quicksand of vain regrets…

A prayer of Exultation for the Ascension

How Shall I Sing That Majesty?

An Easter Thanksgiving Prayer

St Paul’s (REC) Baton Rouge: Lenten Resource Booklet

March 16, 2012

Continuing our series highlighting some newly-discovered  excellent and explicitly *ANGLICAN* Lenten devotional resources


Wow!!  I’m surprised I’ve not come across this before.  This small booklet produced by St. Paul’s Anglican Baton Rouge, an REC parish, looks to be MUST READING for Anglicans serious about Lent

The table of contents for the full booklet is here.

Here is a list of the articles.

In addition to a sermon and some resources from the rector of the parish, this contains some truly CLASSICAL gems of Anglican devotion and prayer:

- Excerpt from a sermon by the Rt. Rev. Wm. Ingraham Kip D.D.Bishop of California. New York: Pott, Young and Company 1874.

- Lenten reflections and wisdom from the Rt. Rev. A.C.A. Hall, Bishop of Vermont, 1891

- Prayers from the 1928 BCP

- A prayer for Lent by Bishop Jeremy Taylor

- A Prayer that God Would Grant Us the Graces and Virtues of the Christian Life, by Richard Hele (Hele’s Select Offices of Private Devotion, 1856)

- Excerpts from the Good Friday Addresses on the Seven Last Words of Our Lord, by the Rev. George Hendric Houghton, 1880

What a WONDERFUL & beautiful collection of Lenten resources with some true jewels from our heritage as Anglicans!


For more of our recently-posted ANGLICAN Lenten devotional resources, check out our Anglican Heritage category

Lenten Devotional Resources from St. Peter’s Anglican Church, Tallahassee

March 16, 2012

In my online digging this week to identify excellent *ANGLICAN* Lenten and devotional resources, I discovered that St. Peter’s Anglican Church in Tallahassee, FL has an excellent Lenten Devotional guide – online and as a PDF.

Here are the links:

St Peter’s Anglican Church in Tallahassee:

online daily Lenten devotional (for the current day).  Also available by email

Calendar of all devotionals for the entire Lenten Season

The 2012 Lenten Devotionals as a PDF

Each day’s devotional has a short reflection on a Scripture passage, and a “Living Out Lent” challenge.


The St. Peter’s Website also has two articles about Lent:

Lent: A Time of Renovation
Fr. Michael Petty

Lent: Why Do We Do the Strange Things We Do?
Fr.  Eric Dudley

Finally, there is:  A Guidebook for walking the Stations of the Cross

Daily office website

May 12, 2011

A priest and a female cantor — . The Cradle of Prayer is a place to connect to the ancient order of life in Anglican prayer through the complete morning and evening prayer service including confession, reading of The Lord’s Prayer, the Psalms, and prayers from the 1928 Book of Common Prayer (BCP). Select scriptures from the King James Bible are read for the corresponding day, complemented by professionally recorded prayers and song – all ready to download and enjoy in the privacy of home, car, or on the iPod. It’s free!

St Philoxenus of Mabbug

April 22, 2010

One of our readers adapted the Communion Prayer of St Philoxenus of Mabbug as an intercession for the 4th Global South Encounter in Singapore, for the Anglican Communion and all of the Church, for each of us.

When you have extended your hands and taken the body, bow, and put your hands before your face, and worship the living Body whom you hold. Then speak with him in a low voice, and with your gaze resting upon him say to him:

When we gather, we are privileged to carry You, the Living GOD, Who is incarnate in the bread, and we embrace You in our palms, LORD of the worlds whom no world has contained.

You have circumscribed Yourself in a fiery coal within our fleshly palms–You LORD, Who with Your palm measured out the dust of the earth. You are holy, GOD incarnate in my hands in a fiery coal which is a body. See, we hold You, although there is nothing that contains You; our bodily hands embrace You, LORD of natures whom a fleshly womb embraced. Within a womb You became a circumscribed body, and now within each hand, You appear to us as a small morsel.
You alone have made us worthy to approach You and receive You. You enable our hands to embrace You confidently–You make us worthy, LORD, to eat You in a holy manner and to taste the food of Your body as a taste of your life.

Instead of the stomach, the body’s member, may the womb of our intellect and the hand of our mind receive You. May You be conceived in us as You were in the womb of the Virgin. There You appeared as an infant, and Your hidden self was revealed to the world as corporeal fruit; may You also appear in each of us here and be revealed by us in fruits that are spiritual works and just labors pleasing to Your will.

And by your food may our desires be killed; and by the drinking of Your cup may our passions be quenched. And instead of just feeding the members of our human body, may our thoughts receive strength from the nourishment of Your Body. Like the manifest members of our body, may our hidden thoughts be engaged in exercise and in running and in works according to Your living commands and Your spiritual laws.

From the food of Your Body and the drinking of Your Blood may we grow in integrity and unity and wax strong inwardly, and excel outwardly, and run diligently, and attain to the full stature of an interior human being, individually and corporately. May we each and in our global and local covenant communities, become more like The Perfect Man, mature in intelligence, residing in all our spiritual members, our head being crowned with the crown of Thy perfection, obedient to the Word and Command of Your Father in all of our behavior. May we, Your Church, become a royal diadem in Your hands, as You promised us, O hidden GOD whose manifestness we embrace in the perfection of Your Body.



March 3, 2010

Rev. Rob Eaton has posted a thoughtful reflection on being called by God and the subsequent impact on the body of Christ. The questions he poses are universal ones.

Lent Resources – An Online Lenten Calendar: “40 Ideas for 40 Days”

February 22, 2010

This falls into the “how could I have possibly missed this resource?!” category… Do check this out!

Thanks to a blog that I just discovered this morning and linked below, Catechist’s Journey, by Joe Paprocki, I’ve discovered an online Lenten Calendar:

40 Ideas for 40 Days

(Note: Click on the activity title on each day to visit the activity detail.)

Here’s how Joe Paprocki describes the calendar:

These activities come from a variety of sources: from my own experience as a catechist, from various Web sites that I credit accordingly, and from catechists like you who shared their creative ideas with me. The activities are grounded in the symbols, Scripture readings, devotions, and traditions of the Lenten season. Be sure to check this calendar each day to find another Lenten activity that you can adapt for your own setting.

More on Lent for families / Lent in the home

February 22, 2010

Somehow I missed Amy’s post at Splendor In the Ordinary last week about how she and her family decorate their home for Lent.

Amy also has a post on Children’s books for Lent, and a lovely reflection and testimony about attending Ash Wednesday services with small children: Worshipping with Little Children.

Also on the family front, I’ve been remiss in not linking Jessica’s Homemaking through the church year blog. (Not being a mom, it’s a blog I don’t visit so often…, but it is excellent.) You can find all of her Lent posts here. Her Lenten posts so far this year have primarily focused on fasting as a family, including a ton of meatless recipes for Lent

Finally today, while looking for something else online, I came across an excellent blog Catechist’s Journey with ideas for Sunday School lessons for Lent – but many of these could also be used by families at home.  This looks like a truly WONDERFUL site.  I think I’m going to add it to our sidebar…  Hie thee hence!

Check out the following entries:

First Sunday of Lent – Needs vs. Wants

A CALENDAR of 40 Lenten Activities!

Lots ‘o Lenten Links

Don’t forget you can find all our posts on Lent resources for family and children here.

Lent Quotes: David Mills – Ash Wednesday’s Double Meaning

February 17, 2010

So the imposition of ashes has a double meaning, one despairing, because it describes the reality of what we have made ourselves; the other hopeful, because it describes the new reality God has made for us. For the Christian, hope trumps despair. “In Adam all die” and “In Christ shall all be made alive” are both true, but Christ has conquered death.

But this is not a reason to feel good about yourself on Ash Wednesday. That would be to presume upon God’s good will and take the Lord’s death for granted. Ash Wednesday is a fast day given us to remember what we have done and to try to learn how much of the old Adam remains in us. And of course the more you see what Jesus did for you, the more you will want to face your sins, to track them down to the places they have hidden, drag them into the light, and with God’s help drive them away.

From David Mills’ wonderful essay on Ash Wednesday, published in Touchstone Magazine in March 2004.

The whole article is a must read for those wanting to reflect on the meaning of the Ash Wednesday service and liturgy.

A Lenten Prayer of Confession Based on the Decalogue

February 17, 2010

From the web archive of Todd Granger’s Confessing Reader blog.  This wonderful prayer of confession was originally posted at the old Lent & Beyond site in 2006:

For his 1534 Liturgy for the Church of Strassburg, Martin Bucer wrote a paraphrase of the Decalogue in the form of an extended prayer of confession to serve as the third form of the reformed Confiteor, the corporate confession of sin. The text is from Bard Thompson’s Liturgies of the Western Church, 1961.

I poor sinner confess to thee, O Almighty, eternal, merciful God and Father, that I have sinned in manifold ways against thee and thy commandments.

I confess that I have not believed in thee, my one God and Father, but have put my faith and trust more in creatures than in thee, my God and Creator, because I have feared them more than thee. And for their benefit and pleasure, I have done and left undone many things in disobedience to thee and thy commandments.

I confess that I have taken thy holy Name in vain, that I have often sworn falsely and lightly by the same, that I have not always professed it nor kept it holy as I ought; but even more, I have slandered it often and grossly with all my life, words and deeds.

I confess that I have not kept thy Sabbath holy, that I have not heard thy holy Word with earnestness nor lived according to the same; moreover that I have not yielded myself fully to thy divine hand, nor rejoiced in thy work done in me and in others, but have often grumbled against it stoutly and have been impatient.

I confess that I have not honored my father and mother, that I have been disobedient to all whom I justly own obedience, such as father and mother, my superiors, and all who have tried to guide and teach me faithfully.

I confess that I have taken life: that I have offended my neighbor often and grossly by word and deed, caused him harm, grown angry over him, borne envy and hatred toward him, deprived him of his honor and the like.

I confess that I have been unchaste. I acknowledge all my sins of the flesh and all the excess and extravagance of my whole life in eating, drinking, clothing and other things; my intemperance in seeing, hearing, speaking, etc., and in all my life; yea, even fornication, adultery and such.

I confess that I have stolen. I acknowledge my greed. I admit that in the use of my worldly goods I have set myself against thee and thy holy laws. Greedily and against charity have I grasped them. And scarcely, if at all, have I given of them when the need of my neighbor required it.

I confess that I have born false witness, that I have been untrue and unfaithful toward my neighbor. I have lied to him, I have told lies about him, and I have failed to defend his honor and reputation as my own.

And finally I confess that I have coveted the possessions and spouses of others. I acknowledge in summary that my whole life is nothing else than sin and transgression of thy holy commandments and an inclination toward all evil.

Wherefore I beseech thee, O heavenly Father, that, thou wouldst graciously forgive me these and all my sins. Keep and preserve me henceforth that I may walk only in thy way and live according to thy will; and all of this through Jesus Christ, thy dear Son, our Saviour. Amen.

The full entry is here.


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