At the Joint meeting of the First Order Chapters,
Pentecost 2005, it was decided that as from Advent Sunday, 27th November, 2005,
for a period of three years, the European Province would use the Daily Office
SSF for it's common prayer, together with the Psalmody and Lectionary of
Common Worship Daily Prayer. A separate version for the Ordo for CCP is no longer available. An
that which goes with the Daily Office SSF, is available, should work
reasonably well for most occasions.
Foreword by George Carey, the Archbishop of Canterbury
The fundamental purpose of Celebrating Common Prayer - The Daily Office SSF is this: to help the Church
as a whole to pray together daily in a reflective and structured way.
This was always Cranmer's intention in The Book of Common Prayer. Although his version of Morning and Evening
Prayer has long provided a non-eucharistic form of public worship on Sundays and has done much to characterise
Anglican public worship, it has only rather patchily achieved his other purpose of being the regular worship attended
by the whole congregation and offered day by day in parish churches throughout the land.
For many regular Sunday worshippers, personal prayer during the week is unstructured and haphazard. This places
even more burdens on the Sunday act of worship, which has to do the task of nourishing and sustaining reflective
prayer during the week as well as celebrating and proclaiming the risen life of Christ in word and sacrament. A
pattern of daily prayer which complements eucharistic worship, such as this book, offers a major resource to the
Church. I hope many Christians will use it to engage in a common pattern of daily prayer which will unite us all
in prayer and praise and allow us to feed on a common diet of psalmody and canticle.
Since the publication of The Alternative Service Book 1980, our knowledge of the origin and purpose of daily
common prayer in the early Church has grown enormously. As a result, many people long for a return to a simple
and more celebratory form of common prayer for our time.
In this book, a large number of contributors have helped the Society of Saint Francis to offer to the Church a
pattern of daily prayer which meets many of the needs expressed by Christians from a wide variety of traditions.
There is a simple structure for Morning and Evening Prayer, when desired. The services can be led by lay people
as effectively as the clergy. There is an emphasis on celebrating together rather than 'saying the Office' as a
private and exclusively clerical obligation.
As well as the texts, suggestions are made as to how the services might be celebrated in a wide range of circumstances.
The use of music of different styles and of a visual focus - the Bible, a lighted candle, a large cross, for example
- will enrich the worship for many.
Although the services are conceived for corporate use, they can also be adapted
easily so that people may use them when alone. We need to recognise and cater
for the many Christians who are not part of a family which shares their faith.
We need to recognise too that there are many occasions when people may have need
of a structured form of prayer when they are on their own, whether it is in
hospital or on a commuter train, those peculiar forms of isolation when there
are many people around. It is in these situations, as well as in other corporate
gatherings, that this book will help us to know that we are sharing fully in the
Church's prayer. It is this - the recovery of a joyful partnership in common
prayer - which is at the heart of this welcome proposal.
CSF European Province First Order Sisters: Registered
Charity Number 286615
SSF European Province First Order Brothers: Registered Charity Number 236464
SSF Central Fund (for supporting SSF worldwide): Registered Charity Number 280238