Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Vespers at Redeemer's Free Conference

I hope that you are planning on coming up to Fort Wayne for the Symposia - which looks to be especially good this year with the main guest being Richard Bauckham - and that you can come early for Redeemer's Free Conference on Monday (see the post below). Once again we will be using the Brotherhood Prayer Book for Vespers with instruction in Gregorian chant coming from its editor, Dr. Benjamin Mayes. He has kindly sent along this pdf copy of the order of Vespers so that you can look it over before arriving at Redeemer.

Now, if someone could just explain to me why we do all this in beautiful Ft. Wayne in JANUARY instead of September. . .



  1. Sure, I can explain. Though I don't remember why they first scheduled the Symposia in January, I do have a sense for why it has become an annual pilgrimage for many in January, and why, actually, it now seems right that it should be in January. It's a mystique of a kind, and a challenge. Will I make it, come snow, sleet, or cold? Can we brave the elements? Perhaps it's partly for the same reason that the polar bears club goes swimming in Lake Michigan on January 1st. And so, in the end, it brands memories into the brain. I remember a Symposia week some 20 years ago, when the temperature was 35 below, there was a semi idling all night outside the hotel, and for whatever reason, the driver accidentally turned it off in the morning, and though he tried immediately, he couldn't get it to start. This is tradition, I tell you, and it shouldn't change.

  2. By the way, does anyone have a nomination for the Sabre of Boldness?

  3. Rev. Richard Gizynski, Ebenezer Lutheran Church, Chicago.

  4. Why do we do it this way? "Because we've always done it this way." How very "Lutheran" of you Fr Eckardt. While a student I thought it was insane to have Symposia in January - its freezing, it screws up the winter quarter schedule, the gym was closed for a week! (Before it was moved to Sihler.) Now, having a couple years in the parish, I think I understand why its in January: its nicely positioned between the feverishness of Advent/Christmas/Epiphany and the turbulence of Lent/Easter. Its a respite; undistracted by the allures of nature its a wonderful chance to make use of all the benefits of the mutual conversation and consolation of the brethren.

  5. Yeah, that too. However, as an aside, "the mutual conversation and consolation of the brethren" is actually a reference to private confession. I should probably publish that paper. . . .


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