The Book of Common Prayer runs like a golden thread through the history of the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican Communion. The Oxford Guide to the Book of Common Prayer is the first comprehensive guide to the history and usage of the original Book of Common Prayer and its numerous descendants throughout the world. It shows how a seminal text for Christian worship and devotion has inspired a varied family of religious resources that have had an influence far beyond their use in the churches of a single tradition.
The Guide is unique. In it, experts from every part of the globe and every branch of Anglicanism, as well as from the Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Methodist, and Unitarian traditions, provide an unparalleled examination of The Book of Common Prayer and its lineage. Much more than simply a history, this volume describes how Anglican churches at all points of the compass have developed their own Prayer Books and adapted the time-honoured Anglican liturgies to their diverse local cultures. In the dozens of editions now in use throughout the world, the same texts-Daily Prayers, the Eucharist, Marriage and Funerals, and many others-resemble each other, and yet differ from each other in interesting ways. A brief look at "electronic Prayer Books" offers a glimpse at how this story of development and adaptation may continue in the Information Age.
From 1549 to the twenty-first century, The Oxford Guide to the Book of Common Prayer offers a fascinating journey through the history and development of a classic of world literature.