The combined Advent-Christmas-Epiphany season will be celebrated by the Anglican Internet Church this season with one new series and an expanded version of another.
The new series is The Great “O” Antiphons, which will appear in both You Tube and podcast versions, one each day, between December 18th and December 24th. Based upon a modified version of the Christmas Eve celebration in our publication, Occasional Services for Anglican Worship, it celebrates the seven verses of the hymn, O Come, O Come, Emmanuel. The “O” Antiphons service is thought to date from the 12th Century. The original purpose of the “O” Antiphons service was to provide a transition from the lasts days of the penitential season of Advent into the festive celebration of the Nativity of Our Lord on Christmas Day. You can learn more about this and other services in the book and order your own copy of Occasional Services for Anglican Worship in either paperback or Kindle editions at Fr. Shibley’s author page at Amazon.com.
Each episode will feature music, art and graphics, plus Old Testament readings and a short mini-homily for each of the seven theme words: O Sapentia (Wisdom); O Adonai (Lord); O Radix Jessee (Root of Jessee); O Clavis David (Key of David); O Oriens (Dayspring); O Rex Gentium (King of Nations); and, on Christmas Eve, O Emmanuel (God With Us). The purposes of the series are to revive this ancient celebration that was once nearly universally used in the week before Christmas and to promote the concept of Christian Spirituality as an active defense against the assaults of our aggressively anti-religious, anti-Christian secular world. The most recent AIC Bookstore publication, Christian Spirituality: an Anglican Perspective, an exploration of the same theme, is also available at Fr. Ron’s author page.
This year the AIC will offer the third podcast version and second You Tube video version of The Twelve Days of Christmas, posted daily on each of the days from Christmas Day through Epiphany Eve. The series has nothing to do with the song of the same name, which is focused on material things, but focuses instead on events or spiritual and theological virtues, one for each day on the Anglican Church calendar.
In this expanded and updated version for A.D. 2014-2015, Fr. Ron Shibley will discuss the key word(s) or virtues for each day: Love (Christmas Day); Forgiveness (December 26th); Peace (December 27th); Compassion (December 28th); Obedience (December 29th); Joy (December 30th); Family (December 31st); Church (January 1st); Angels (January 2nd); Commandments (January 3rd); Glorifying God (January 4th); and, finally, Grace and Peace (January 5th).