Alternative Collects: Prayers to a Disruptive & Compassionate God


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Book Details

Rating: ★★★★

Format: Paperback (118 pages)

Publisher: Sacristy Press

Date of Publication:

ISBN: 978-1-910519-80-6

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These radical prayers break the mould of the “collect” prayers that are so familiar to millions of Christians worldwide. They are the result of the author’s struggle with the blandness and predictability of so many of the church’s traditional prayers.

Useful for both personal and liturgical devotion, these prayers will both challenge and nourish.

Many churches use a traditional collect in their Sunday service. Some of the familiar collects stand out in our minds as we remember their helpful phrases and expressions. But many seem to pass us by as they appear safe or predictable.

Graham Turner provides us with an exciting and challenging set of alternative collects. They adopt the direct and gritty style and language often found amongst the Psalms and prophets of the Old Testament, and are honest about the discomfort we often experience as we seek to live lives following Jesus Christ whilst also acknowledging the audacious grace of God towards us.

These alternative collects are also different because they relate directly to all the readings for the Sundays and Principal Feasts of the Common Worship Lectionary. This means they better “collect” together the various elements of the service, while mindful its place within the church’s year.

Graham Turner has written a new set of collects that follow in the wake of Cranmer. Turner fully understands and appreciates the force of the genre; his offer is a set of prayers that are fiercely timely, bold in their claims, and venturesome in their voicing. I cannot think of better access points to worship than those offered by Turner.
Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary

The collects in this book are short … and yet you are transported into the prayer, you feel totally part of it, you want to believe the words in their entirety. They are readily usable as personal or corporate prayers on their own. In fact they are ready-made short homilies! This is one of the best books I have reviewed, and one which I will treasure for the depth of its content, clarity and relevance, and use regularly.
Alan Rashleigh, Preach

Graham Turner’s fresh and vivid alternatives are the ideal complement to Cranmer. Like the Psalms, they encourage us to bring all of ourselves, and all of our world’s needs, into the presence of God in language that is accessible, direct and personal. They should enrich our prayer lives as well as our worship.
Gordon Mursell, former Bishop of Stafford

Turner has written these prayers to introduce elements of risk, hope, challenge and creativity linked to the readings over the three-year lectionary cycle. Some are stunning prayers in the style of contemporary liturgical writing. They are less pithy than the psalm prayers, but with a similar bent towards social justice.
Dana Delap, Praxis News of Worship

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