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Diocesan Handbook

Supplement 5: Approved and Commended Forms of Service

alternative to The Book of Common Prayer (1662);  see Canons B2 and B4

Forms of Service approved by General Synod for use from 3 December 2000 until further resolution of the Synod:

  1. The Order for the Celebration of Holy Communion also called The Eucharist and The Lord's Supper together with Eucharistic Prayers
  2. Holy Baptism
  3. The Eucharist with Baptism and Confirmation together with Affirmation of Baptismal Faith and Reception into the Communion of the Church of England
  4. A series of tables authorizing the separate administration of Baptism, Confirmation, Reaffirmation of Baptismal Faith and Reception into the Communion of the Church of England in varying contexts).
  5. A Service of the Word
  6. Affirmations of Faith
  7. Prayers for Various Occasions
  8. Canticles at Morning and Evening Prayer
  9. Schedule of permitted variations to the Book of Common Prayer Orders for Morning and Evening Prayer where these occur in Common Worship
  10. Services of Wholeness and Healing
  11. The Marriage Service with authorized prayers and other resources
  12. The Funeral Service will authorized prayers and other resources
  13. Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child
  14. The Nicene Creed
  15. The Lord's Prayer
  16. Rules to Order the Service and Other Miscellaneous Liturgical Material.

All these forms of service are published (in conjunction with Commended Services (see below) in Common Worship, Service and Prayers for the Church of England published in several volumes and separate booklets.

Approved by General Synod for use until 31 December 2005

  1. Series 1 Solemnization of Matrimony
  2. Series 2 Burial Service
  3. The Ordinal from Alternative Service Book 1980 (as amended by Miscellaneous Liturgical Material (see Rules to Order the Service in preceding section)).

Forms of Service commended by the House of Bishops of the General Synod

  1. Services of Prayer and Dedication after Civil Marriage
  2. Lent Holy Week Easter, Services and Prayers
  3. Funeral Service for a child dying near the time of birth
  4. Ministry at the time of death
  5. Night Prayer
  6. Night Prayer in Traditional Language
  7. The Promise of His Glory, Services and Prayers from All Saints' to Candlemas
  8. The Order for a Funeral of a Child together with resources for the funeral of a child
  9. Services Before the Funeral (at home before the funeral for those unable to be present at the funeral, on the morning of the funeral, at church before the funeral, a Funeral Vigil) and After the Funeral (at home after the funeral or memorial service)
  10. Prayers and Other Resources for use At the Time of Death, Before the Funeral, at the Funeral Service and After the Funeral
  11. Thanksgiving for Marriage
  12. Pastoral Introduction to Holy Baptism
  13. Pastoral Introduction and Notes to Morning and Evening Prayer on Sundays
  14. Pastoral Introduction to Night Prayer
  15. Additional Canticles

Form of Service approved by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York without time-limit for use in their respective Provinces:

  1. A Service for Remembrance Sunday (included in the Commended Services 'The Promise of His Glory' see above)

Bishop’s authority to extend use of certain Forms of Service

Canon B2 gives the Bishop limited power to permit individual parishes and congregations to continue, for a strictly limited period, the use of forms of service which cease to be approved generally.  The following services cease to be approved generally on 31 December 2000 but may be extended by exercise of the Bishop's power under Canon B2.

  1. The contents of the Alternative Service Book 1980 (with the exception of the Ordinal (see above) though some of these contents remain within the permitted parameters of the authorized Service of the Word.
  2. Ministry to the Sick.
  3. Series 2 Baptism and Confirmation

Versions of the Bible and of the Psalms

The following may be used in Book of Common Prayer services (with permission of the chaplaincy church council) instead of the Authorized Version of the Bible and the Psalter in the Book of Common Prayer:

Revised Version: Jerusalem Bible

Revised Standard Version: Good News Bible

New English Bible: (Today's English Version)

The Revised: Psalter, and the Liturgical Psalter (The Psalms: a new translation for worship)

Any version of the Bible or Psalter not prohibited by lawful authority may be used with Alternative Services and Commended Services. There are currently no such prohibitions.

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