Merry Christmas! A liturgical logic puzzle as a gift from me to you

Liturgical family logic puzzle

Kimberly Hope Belcher, University of Notre Dame

December 25, 2015

I made this puzzle on a whim to stump my son (so far, it’s working). Use the clues to solve this logic puzzle. No cheating by using information you just happen to know! (There is a downloadable version you can open with a word processor and edit at the bottom.)

There are five churches right in a row from East to West on a little street in Maintown, USA. One is a Greek Orthodox Church, one is Catholic, one is Anglican, one is Baptist, and one is Methodist. Their names are First, St Michael’s, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Maintown Bethel, and St George. Right now, they all happen to be celebrating some liturgy. The liturgies are known as Morning Prayer, the Divine Liturgy, the Love Feast, the Mass, and a believer’s Baptism. They are all singing at once, and from the street one can hear all the songs: “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling,” “Pange Lingua,” “Theotokario,” “All People That on Earth Do Dwell,” and “How Great Thou Art.” By pure coincidence, there are about as many worshippers in each assembly as there are millions of members of each denomination worldwide (at least according to Wikipedia): two have 80, one has 100, one has 300, and one has 1200. Using the clues, match the churches from East to West with their denominations, their names, their liturgies, their songs, and their number in attendance.

  1. The church that is singing “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling” has the same number of people as the one that is in the exact middle of the row of churches.

  2. The largest church is a Catholic church, and today they are celebrating Mass.

  3. The church farthest east is also an Eastern church: the Greek Orthodox.

  4. The believer’s baptism is as far as possible from the Divine Liturgy.

  5. Both the Anglican church and the Greek church like to name churches after St George and St Michael. To reach St Michael’s church, you have to walk westwards from St George.

  6. The Methodist church knows “How Great Thou Art,” but they are not singing it at today’s Love Feast.

  7. Our Lady of Guadalupe is next door to the believer’s Baptism.

  8. The Theotokario is in Greek, and the assembly singing it is a quarter of the size of the one singing Pange Lingua.

  9. The assembly singing “How Great Thou Art” can hear the mass taking place just east of them.

  10. St Michael’s is just west of First, which is the first United Methodist church built in Maintown.














If you need help, there are hints and a model full grid here:

Happy Christmas!


4 responses to “Merry Christmas! A liturgical logic puzzle as a gift from me to you”

  1. Leslie Selage Avatar
    Leslie Selage

    Thanks….I love logic puzzles.

  2. Shannon O'Donnell Avatar
    Shannon O’Donnell

    Oh what great fun–and a great thing to do in the in-between of Christmas day activities!

  3. Jonathan Day Avatar
    Jonathan Day

    Nice one Kimberley! I assume you don’t want “spoiler” answers posted here … a happy Christmas to all.

  4. Tim Gabrielli Avatar
    Tim Gabrielli

    A spectacular–and fun!–grading avoidance device. Thanks, Kimberly. Merry Christmas!

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