The debate about modern and traditional language seems to persist, in worship, in our preference of a particular translation of the Bible over others, and indeed in our prayers.
On the one hand modern language can give clarity of expression, freshness of new images, and re-interpretation - going beyond narrow translation. On the other hand, traditional language has the advantages of deep familiarity, and a valuable peculiarity, hinting at otherness.
This exercise is intended to help people explore the advantages of both.
- First, say together the office of Compline (in traditional form - published in traditional form by SPCK).
- Then keep a longish silence, as seems appropriate.
- Say together a modern night-time service (e.g. 'Prayer at Night' - complied by Jin Cotter available from Cairns Publications, 47 Fifth Park Avenue, Sheffield, S5 6NF).
- Conclude with a time for gentle sharing of reactions and responses to the alternative forms.
N.B. It would be possible to use a service other than Compline, perhaps Matins or Evensong.