Full Legislative History
Resolution Number: 1979-A121
Title: Declare Guidelines for Worship From the 1928 Prayer Book
Legislative Action Taken: Concurred As Substituted and Amended
Final Text:

Resolved, That this 66th General Convention declares that the Book of Common Prayer of 1979, having been adopted in accordance with Article X of the Constitution of this Church, has thus become the official liturgy of this Church; and

This Convention declares further, That the Book of Common Prayer of 1928 is a rich part of the liturgical heritage of this Church, and that liturgical texts from the 1928 Prayer Book may be used in worship, under the authority of the Bishop as chief pastor and liturgical officer, and subject to the directions of the Convention, as set forth in the appended guidelines; and

This Convention declares further, That this action in no way sanctions the existence of two authorized Books of Common Prayer or diminishes the authority of the official liturgy of this Church as established by this Convention.


The Book of Common Prayer of 1979 provides the liturgical norm for our congregations. The General Convention adopts the following guidelines:

  1. That there be continuing study of the 1979 Prayer Book;
  2. That the congregation develop a worship committee to work with and advise the Rector or Vicar;
  3. That individual worshipers be encouraged to participate actively in the liturgy;
  4. That the congregation make itself familiar with music composed for the new Book.

    In congregations where liturgical texts from the 1928 Book are in use after the 1979 General Convention:
  5. The calendar and lectionaries of the 1979 Book shall be used;
  6. Copies of the 1979 Book be available for congregational study and worship;
  7. Provision shall be made for the regular and frequent use of the 1979 Book.
Citation: General Convention, Journal of the General Convention of...The Episcopal Church, Denver, 1979 (New York: General Convention, 1980), p. C-11.