Feasting & Fasting

The Church Calendar is textured by periods of fasting followed by periods of feasting. For most 21st century Christians both seem pretty weird. Though my guess would be that you think you know your way around feasting—we are a culture of conspicuous consumption, after all—but fasting is anathema to the world we live in. Why… Continue reading Feasting & Fasting

Our Church Calendars

Israel had a cycle of a weekly Sabbath, seven feasts a year, a sabbatical year every seventh year, and a Jubliee year every seventh sabbatical year. Their days were patterned for them, and it was wisdom to follow them. They function how the Church calendar was designed by our Christian forbears to function for us—now… Continue reading Our Church Calendars

Time and the Table

We think of time in a very distinctive way, which many of our forebears did not. We think it’s linear, we think it’s homogenous—progressing in ordered sections we call days or years or hours—and we think it’s largely ‘empty,’ a container that is indifferent to what we fill it with. I’ve been reading Charles Taylor’s… Continue reading Time and the Table

Feasting at Christmastime

This is a time full of feasting. Everywhere you go it seems you’re offered a plate of mince pies or piece of stollen, perhaps with a glass of mulled wine. You can’t escape it—biscuits and coffee at church become wine and cake week after week. Or at least that’s normal in the UK, I’m told… Continue reading Feasting at Christmastime

Learning the Calendar’s Wisdom

The church calendar is anathema to our tradition. We wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole. Except for Christmas obviously. And Easter. And Mothering Sunday (though it’s no longer about Mother Church). But otherwise, yuck. Advent is about chocolate and Lent is the rankest popery. Ok, I’ve got that out of my system. That’s my… Continue reading Learning the Calendar’s Wisdom