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A LONDON CHURCH CHALKS UP ALMOST 300 YEARS OF USE OF THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER image

A LONDON CHURCH CHALKS UP ALMOST 300 YEARS OF USE OF THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER

9th January 2020

The London church in which Benjamin Disraeli, George Eliot, President Teddy
Roosevelt, Herbert Asquith, Guglielmo Marconi and Amy Johnson were married –
and whose best-known parishioner of all times was the composer George Frideric
Handel – is among latest to become a corporate member of the Prayer Book Society.
St George’s Hanover Square in W1 has used the 1662 Book of Common Prayer for
services ever since it was built in 1724.

‘We have a reputation for dignified and traditional formal worship based on the BCP,
magnificent music provided by our fine professional choir, and well-prepared
preaching,’ reports the rector Fr Roderick Leece.

‘We decided to join the society, which encourages rediscovery and use of the
majesty and spiritual depth of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer at the heart of the
Church of England’s worship, because all our liturgies use traditional Prayer Book
language exclusively. The BCP is normative and familiar, and we wish to be
associated with a wider network of those who appreciate and value its rich spiritual
treasures.’

The church, which attracts a Sunday congregation of around 60, ranging from babies
to those in their eighties, also has an active ministry to rough sleepers and homeless
people.

In addition, during each academic term the church offers Morning Calm for 15
minutes where the best international pianists from the Royal College of Music begin
the day with a varied selection of music, followed by silence, the Lord’s Prayer and
the BCP Collect for Grace or for Peace.

Says Fr Leece: ‘We welcome all who treasure and savour the resonance of the
language of the King James Bible and BCP and appreciate the beauty of holiness in
well-ordered liturgy and fine music.

‘In addition to our local activities in London we support the Prayer Book Society in
America through Canon Alistair Macdonald Radcliff who assists at St George’s
Hanover Square.

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