Lots of Episcopalians, lay and ordained, seem to think they know what confirmation is, but our canons and liturgical forms are, at best, ambiguous, and there’s nothing approaching broad agreement about how to interpret them.
I think that we have given the idea of lowering expectations about Christian identity and catechesis at the point of entry a thorough exploration over the past fifty years or so. The 1979 Prayer Book calls us to a different standard, to live more fully into the church’s vocation as a baptizing community.
We have a catechetical crisis in the Episcopal Church. It must surely color any conversation about prayer book revision.
We spend inordinate time trying to make our liturgy “work”: too much time on prayer book revision and supplementation, too much time on trying to make the weekly service relevant and meaningful.
The main inspiration for the 1979 prayer book was more ancient than modern.
The 1979 Book of Common Prayer embodies the liturgical and sacramental thinking of the mid-1970s. To say that things have changed — in the world and in the church — might well be the understatement of the year.
The unity of common prayer is only a projection that denies that we are, in fact, a divided church.