Dr Bridget Nichols

Dr Bridget Nichols


Lecturer in Anglicanism and Liturgy


Bridget Nichols grew up in South Africa and studied English Literature and Classics in Cape Town. She taught in the English Department of the University of the Witwatersrand before pursuing doctoral research at the University of Durham. Here, her interest in liturgy took shape through study of Reformation and modern liturgies of the Church of England, focused on their interpretation in performance. Her doctoral dissertation was published as Liturgical Hermeneutics: Interpreting Liturgical Rites in Performance (Peter Lang, 1996) and her interest in language and liturgy has continued to lead in a number of directions. Her publications include articles and chapters on theology, liturgy and literature; collects; proper prefaces; and scripture in liturgy.

Bridget was Lay Chaplain and Research Assistant to three Bishops of Ely from 1998–2017. She is a Visiting Scholar at Sarum College, where she contributes to the MA in Christian Liturgy. From 2012 to 2017 she was a member of the Academic Board of the Archbishop’s Examination in Theology, which oversees research degrees awarded by the Archbishop of Canterbury. She has been a member of the Church of England’s Liturgical Commission since 2011. A former Chair of the Society for Liturgical Study (2010–2014), she continues to be reviews editor of their journal Anaphora. She is currently Vice–President of Societas Liturgica.


(ed.) The Collect in the Churches of the Reformation (London: SCM, 2010)

Literature in Christian Perspective: becoming faithful readers (London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 2000)

Liturgical Hermeneutics: Interpreting Liturgical Rites in Performance (Frankfurt,
Bern, New York, Paris, Vienna: Peter Lang, 1996) [published doctoral dissertation]

Book Chapters

‘Afterword’ in James Steven (ed.) Wrestling with a Godly Order: Encounters with the 1662 Book of Common Prayer (Salisbury: Sarum College Press, 2015) 109–115

‘Prayer’ in Juliette Day and Ben Gordon–Taylor (eds) The Study of Liturgy and Worship (London: SPCK, 2013) 43–52

‘A Tune Beyond Us Yet Ourselves: Ordinary Worship and Ordinary Theology’ in Jeff Astley & Leslie J. Francis (eds) Exploring Ordinary Theology: Everyday Christian Believing and the Church (Farnham, Surrey & Burlington VT: Ashgate, 2013) 159–167

(With Ann Loades) ‘The Liturgical Body and the Gift of Presence’, in Robert MacSwain and Taylor Worley (eds) Theology, Aesthetics, and Culture: Responses to the Work of David Brown (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012) 252–264

‘The Collect in English: Vernacular Beginnings’ in Bridget Nichols (ed.) The Collect in the Churches of the Reformation (London: SCM, 2010) 11–34

‘An Anglican Experiment in Appreciating the Liturgy: The Easter Day Collect (First Holy Communion) in The First Prayer Book of Edward VI’ in James G. Leachman OSB & Daniel P. McCarthy OSB (eds) Appreciating the Collect: An Irenic Methodology (Farnborough, Hampshire: St Michael’s Abbey Press, 2008) 141–160

‘Exchanges of Nature: Worship, Liturgy and Formation’ in Stephen Burns & Natalie Watson (eds) Exchanges of Grace: Essays in Honour of Ann Loades (London: SCM Press, 2008) 250–260

‘Liturgy as Literature’ in Andrew Hass, David Jasper and Elizabeth Jay (eds) The Oxford Handbook of English Literature and Theology (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007) 669–687

(With Carolyn Headley) ‘Wholeness and Healing’ & ‘Reconciliation and Restoration’ in Paul Bradshaw (ed.) A Companion to Common Worship vol. 2 (London: SPCK, 2006) 142–179

‘Intolerable Burdens: The Anxiety of Influence & the Prayer Book Tradition’ in David M. Loades (ed.) Word and Worship: Essays Presented to Margot Johnson (Oxford: Davenant Press, 2005) 85–95

‘Humanity Fully Represented Before God: A Liturgical Approach’ in Harriet Harris and Jane Shaw (eds) The Call for Women Bishops (London: SPCK, 2004) 139–152

‘Collects and Post Communion Prayers’ in Paul Bradshaw (ed.) A Companion to Common Worship vol. 1 (London: SPCK, 2000) 179–224

‘Freedom in Order: the language of the Church of Scotland Book of Common Order 1994’ in Bryan Spinks and Iain Torrance (eds) To Glorify God: Essays on Modern Reformed Liturgy (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1999) 241–255

‘F.E. Brightman’ in Christopher Irvine (ed.) They Shaped Our Worship: Essays on Anglican Liturgists (London: Alcuin Club/SPCK, 1998) 35–41


‘Whom do you Seek? Role, Ritual and Representation in Liturgical Action’ Anaphora 10.2 (2016) 27–58

‘Intercommunion: A Church of England Perspective’ One in Christ 50.1 (2016) 7–21

‘Worship: Receiving, Developing and Living Tradition’ Challenging Religious Issues 10 (Spring 2016) 8–13

‘Charles Wesley’s Place Among the Mystics’ Methodist Sacramental Fellowship Bulletin 141 (Epiphany 2014) 2–13

‘Anglicans and the Idea of Liturgical Reform’ Anaphora 7.2 (2013) 31–51

‘Transfiguring Scripture, Transfiguring Liturgy’ Anaphora 6.2 (2012) 19–34

‘Collectes Psalmiques et Liturgie Baptismale des Premiers Siècles’ (tr. Michel Corsi) La Maison–Dieu 271.3 (2012) 65–87

(With Jeff Astley) ‘The Formative Role of the Book of Common Prayer’ (Part I) Prayer Book Society Journal (Trinity 2011) 8–10; (Part II) Prayer Book Society Journal (Michaelmas 2011) 8–11

‘Instruction, Improvisation and Imagination: A Foray into the Psalter Collects of the African, Roman and Spanish Traditions’ Anaphora 4.2 (2010) 29–52

‘Scripture, Time and Narrative in the Proper Prefaces of “Common Worship”’ Studia Liturgica 39.1 (2009) 122–128

‘“Set The Daye of Deathe Before Your Yyes” – Formation for Dying in the English Reformation Church’ Anaphora 3.1 (2009) 35–56

‘Research and Liturgical Revision: the Case of F.E. Brightman’ Anaphora 1.1 (2007) 43–54

‘Liturgy and Imagination’ Anvil 21.4 (2004) 258–268

‘Too Great for Words to Bear: Confession in the Liturgy’ In Illo Tempore (The Bulletin and Liturgical Review of Ushaw Library) 19 (September 2002) 4–13

‘The Picture of Health’ Studies in Christian Ethics 15.1 (2002) 40–53

‘In Form of Prayer is Change: Where Should We Look for Liturgical Stability’ Ushaw Library Bulletin and Liturgical Review 14 (December 2000) 3–13

‘Women and Liturgical Reform: The Case of St Margaret of Scotland’ Ushaw Library Bulletin and Liturgical Review 11 (March 2000) 3–13. Reprinted in Priscilla Papers (Winter 2008) 23–27

‘Intolerable Burdens: The Anxiety of Influence and the Prayer Book Tradition’ Ushaw Library Bulletin and Liturgical Review 9 (August 1999) 3–14. Reprinted in David M. Loades (ed.) Word and Worship (Oxford: Davenant Press, 2005) 85–95

‘Blasts of Vain Doctrine: Cranmer’s New Collect for St Mark’s Day’ Ushaw Library Bulletin and Liturgical Review 6 (May 1998) 4–13

‘The Bible in Liturgy’ Studia Liturgica 27 (1997) 200–216

‘Liturgy and Language: Some Issues in Aesthetics and Ethics’ Ushaw Library Bulletin and Liturgical Review 4 (June 1997) 4–13

Short Studies

The Mystical Verse of Charles Wesley (Exeter: Methodist Sacramental Fellowship, 2015)

Psalter Collects (Ely: Jericho Press, 2011)

Alistair MacGregor & Bridget Nichols Deliver Us From Evil (Durham: Ushaw College Library, 2003)

Alistair MacGregor & Bridget Nichols New and Contrite Hearts (Durham: Ushaw College Library, 2002)

Alistair MacGregor & Bridget Nichols The Eucharistic Epiclesis (Durham: Ushaw College Library, 2001) [‘Introduction’pp. v– xii]