Traditional Lord's Prayer restored

THE traditional form of the Lord's Prayer - 'Our Father, who art in Heaven' - is to be restored in the diocese of Norwich, writes Andrew Brown.

The Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Rev Peter Nott, told his diocesan synod: 'Officially, I have no authority to command that one version or another be used. But I am convinced that we should use the traditional form of the Lord's Prayer whenever possible. It is the only version used ecumenically and I believe it is high time we Anglicans admitted we were wrong and reverted to the traditional form.'

He argues that a landmark in the Church of England disappeared when the wording was changed. 'People who come to church only occasionally cannot say the new version by heart, and so are made to feel strangers.'

The version to be dropped, runs: 'Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil.'

It has been denounced by John Gummer, who called it 'Tesco- speak', and by the Archbishop of York, who once singled out 'Hallowed be your name' for special derision. 'Hallowed' he said, was a word used nowhere in modern speech.

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