The Collects of Thomas Cranmer

I stumbled across an interesting book in the public library awhile back: The Collects of Thomas Cranmer edited by C. Frederick Barbee and Paul F. M. Zahl.  I don’t have time to give all the details here, but if you’re interested in the history and/or language of the Anglican tradition, you may want to check this out.  This book is a great companion or parallel to the Book of Common Prayer and its history.

The structure of the book is like this:  First, for each Sunday in the church calendar there is a collect (a short prayer), followed by a one paragraph history as well as a brief one page meditation on the biblical topics found in the prayer.  Here’s the collect from the First Sunday after the Epiphany.  As the meditation on it says, “a more succinct, less pompous prayer could scarcely exist” (p. 17).

“Lord we beseech thee mercifully to receive the prayers of thy people which call upon thee; and grant that they may both perceive and know what things they ought to do, and also have grace and power faithfully to fulfill the same.”



The collects can be found online here (HT Richard).

shane lems

sunnyside wa

2 thoughts on “The Collects of Thomas Cranmer”

  1. Hi Shane, that you needed to explain what a collect is brought a smile to my face, ;-)

    All are available online here.

    One of my favourites is:

    BLESSED Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.


  2. Thanks, Richard.

    I put the link in the original post. Also, I’ve prayed the excellent prayer you listed before the preaching of the word during the divine service.



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