'Big Book' is walking calendar of liturgical year

Have you ever wondered about “The Big Book” from which the celebrant at the altar reads on Sunday mornings? Before the Reformation and the publishing of the Book of Common Prayer, the reading from “The Big Book” was a mystery, especially when read in Latin to a mostly illiterate body of worshippers. As modern society, we have a difficult time realizing how revolutionary hearing the Mass read in English was, much less what an impact  printing the Book of Common Pr... Read More
Posted by Dr. David Ouzts at Monday, October 31, 2016

Give almes of thy goods

This Sunday’s (Oct. 30) anthem is the most tasteful stewardship anthem I know. I have said this for years, and I believe it to be true. Rather than “please turn in your pledge card,” this anthem text requests us to “give almes of thy goods.” How proper and gracious is this? The text is from the Book of Tobit, a book in the Catholic and Orthodox editions of the Holy Bible. Tobit is one of the apocryphal (non-canonic, extra) books of the Protestant Bible... Read More
Posted by Dr. David Ouzts at Monday, October 24, 2016

There is a time for the good fight

Fighting the good fight of faith has always been tricky amongst Christians. Some of us are happy to fight the good fight, sing “Onward Christian soldiers,” and move on down the road. And some of us have difficulty with any references of fighting the good fight, conducting holy wars and all other militaristic images in scripture and worship. I suppose I fall into both camps, willing to fight the good fight of faith but also squirming a little when militaristic things wander ... Read More
Posted by Dr. David Ouzts at Monday, October 17, 2016

Judge eternal, purge this land of bitter things

In a certain city, there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for his people. An unjust judge? In today’s political climate, I dare not say nor type a word about an unjust civic leader, even if said judge is mentioned by Jesus in Sunday’s (Oct. 16) Gospel lesson from Luke 18. Of course, Jesus clearly makes his case (pun intended) in a lesson we all should remember. While the earthly judge wants to grant the widow her wishes just to get rid of her,  God will do... Read More
Posted by Dr. David Ouzts at Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Hymns for healing often originally written for hospitals

This Sunday’s (Oct. 9) Gospel lesson is loaded (brimming and chockful), and yet it is one of the briefest we have had in months. Not to worry: Lent, with its Revised Common Lectionary whole-chapter Gospel lessons, is coming. We all remember this story: Ten lepers approached Jesus, asking for mercy. Jesus commanded them to show themselves to the priests, when they were immediately healed. One of them, a Samaritan and a foreigner, returned to thank Jesus; the other nine did not.&nbs... Read More
Posted by Dr. David Ouzts at Tuesday, October 4, 2016