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Source: (consider it) Thread: Fighting the Liturgical War
leo
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quote:
Originally posted by PD:
'being like Watts and Co's backroom.'

PD

Lovely phrase - conjures up images of orgies in vestments

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
quote:
Originally posted by PD:
'being like Watts and Co's backroom.'

PD

Lovely phrase - conjures up images of orgies in vestments
There's websites for that sort of thing, at least until Call-Me-Dave gets his bill through.

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PD
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quote:
Originally posted by Metapelagius:
The NV versions of Pss 34 and 42 (Through all the changing scenes of life and As pants the heart) are, I would suggest, still pretty well known - albeit only for a few verses. I can only ever recall coming across an OV psalm in a service once. Kethe's version of Ps 100 (Old Hundredth, though the tune was originally set to Ps 134) isn't in fact the OV version - that has a ballad metre version by Hopkins. Kethe's version appeared in the Anglo-Genevan Psalter of 1561, but not Day's Psalter of 1562 (the first "standard" edition of the OV). It appeared in a supplement to the 1564 printing, and, of course, in the 1564 Scottish Psalter which substituted in a number of cases versions by Kethe (9 in all, including pretty good ones of Pss 91 and 104), Craig, Whittingham and Pullain &c for those of Sternhold or Hopkins. Millar Patrick's Four Centuries of Scottish Psalmody is, as ever, useful on this point.

It isn't particularly accurate to decribe the 1650 Scottish Psalter as the 'Rous' version. The compilers started with Rous and other sourc [Overused] es, but substituted so many bits and pieces from other versions or that not that much Rous was left. Ian Bradley in his collection of favourite hymns gives the sources as far as can be determined for Ps 23 - it really was translation by committee. Rous had no variety of metre - everything was in ballad metre.

[Overused]
That gave me my quota on new facts to file away for today! I had quite forgotten that 'Through all the changing scenes of life' was a metrical of Ps.34. I also need to brush up on my metrical Psalter history!

PD

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womanspeak
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Despite Liturgical wars, I don't really care what form of Anglican service I attend when all is said and done (although my sneezing and asthma when its high up the candle stick does limit this expression of worship to a once only visit).

What I care about is the welcome for those new to the faith, for seekers such as young families who have not been raised themselves in the church.

Working with young children and their families I often worry that the boring middle of the road provision including the ubiquitous 80 year old organists will not resonate culturally with them regardless of the preparation and evangelism and discipleship offered through Messy Church, Playgroup, Mainly Music etc.

I feel almost embarrassed in inviting them to such old-fashioned, dull and too often incomprehensible offerings. But I'm only a lay person, what do I know!

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by womanspeak:
Despite Liturgical wars, I don't really care what form of Anglican service I attend when all is said and done (although my sneezing and asthma when its high up the candle stick does limit this expression of worship to a once only visit).

What I care about is the welcome for those new to the faith, for seekers such as young families who have not been raised themselves in the church.

Working with young children and their families I often worry that the boring middle of the road provision including the ubiquitous 80 year old organists will not resonate culturally with them regardless of the preparation and evangelism and discipleship offered through Messy Church, Playgroup, Mainly Music etc.

I feel almost embarrassed in inviting them to such old-fashioned, dull and too often incomprehensible offerings. But I'm only a lay person, what do I know!

You're absolutely damned right, but don't expect a sympathetic hearing from the denizens of this particular part of the SoF.

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Angloid
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I read womanspeak as implying that the style or details of worship are unimportant compared to the genuineness of the participants. Not 'lets not bother about how we worship as long as we welcome people'.

Each style of liturgy - Dearmerite or Tridentine High Mass, post-Vat2/Common Worship, formal Protestant bible-and-hymn sandwich, modern praise service, Quaker meeting, etc etc - has its own integrity and as long as the people involved in it believe in it and respect that integrity, the 'welcome' will take care of itself. All too often people appear embarrassed by the worship they are offering and it comes across as false.

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South Coast Kevin
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quote:
Originally posted by womanspeak:
Working with young children and their families I often worry that the boring middle of the road provision including the ubiquitous 80 year old organists will not resonate culturally with them regardless of the preparation and evangelism and discipleship offered through Messy Church, Playgroup, Mainly Music etc.

Yeah, it's funny how a lot of church-based activities are tailored to be culturally relevant to people with little or no church background, but then there's often a massive cultural jump to the actual church services; with people in funny robes, ancient languages, unexplained rituals and so on. As if those things are more important than welcoming people into the family of God...

I know people here have explained the importance of the funny robes, ancient languages etc. etc. but I still don't understand why they are a necessary part of how we should gather to praise God and encourage one another.

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Arethosemyfeet
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I would suggest that the "otherness" of Christian worship is itself necessary - worship at its best is a foretaste of heaven, and if the world in general were like that there would be no need of services at all. Otherness occurs because Christ is not like the world.
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Albertus
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Well, I don't understand why wearing chinos, putting your hands in the air, singing every chorus three times and punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence are necessary to worshipping God. But I accept that they work for some people.
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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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Personally I don't really "get" either of them. Both stereotyped styles seem utterly culturally divorced from anything normal people do or can relate to.

The people in the churches of course are not "normal people". If they were, they'd be playing football/out on the club ride/reading the paper/in bed/visiting relatives along with the other 95% of the population.

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South Coast Kevin
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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
wearing chinos

Typical clothing for many developed-world people in semi-formal situations.
quote:
putting your hands in the air
Just a typical expression of celebration and joy.
quote:
singing every chorus three times
Helps newcomers learn the songs quicker, that's all.
quote:
punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence
Inelegant language, I grant you, but if that's the language of the people...

None of these things are 'necessary to worshipping God', IMO. They are merely about worshipping God and gathering together to encourage one another in the life of Christian discipleship without putting up cultural barriers for those who are new to, or on the fringe of, the church community.

[ 05. August 2013, 10:54: Message edited by: South Coast Kevin ]

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Thurible
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:

quote:
putting your hands in the air
Just a typical expression of celebration and joy.


Really?

Thurible

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South Coast Kevin
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Sure, at concerts and sporting events for a start.

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:


I know people here have explained the importance of the funny robes, ancient languages etc. etc. but I still don't understand why they are a necessary part of how we should gather to praise God and encourage one another.

That's more or less the point I was making. If your church, Kevin, started to think that they 'ought' to wear robes and chant in Latin, but couldn't do that without being embarrassed about it, then there would be something wrong. They are clearly not a necessary part for your community. However, it would be equally wrong and embarrassing for the Dean of St Paul's (for example) to suddenly appear at the altar one Sunday in chinos and polo shirt, having sent the choir packing and shredded all the copies of Common Worship eucharist.

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:

quote:
punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence
Inelegant language, I grant you, but if that's the language of the people...


A big 'if'. I've never heard anybody talk like that outside of (a particular kind of) church. If it's the 'language of the people' it's the language of a very narrow sub-set of middle-class anglophones strongly influenced by American evangelical jargon.

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Thurible
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:
Sure, at concerts and sporting events for a start.

Concerts I can't really speak to but, at football matches, one might jump up and down, one might punch the air, one might hug one's neighbour. But one's hardly going to stand there with a hand raised whilst singing "Wanky, wanky, wanky Oxford", for example.

Thurible

[ 05. August 2013, 11:14: Message edited by: Thurible ]

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:

quote:
punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence
Inelegant language, I grant you, but if that's the language of the people...


A big 'if'. I've never heard anybody talk like that outside of (a particular kind of) church. If it's the 'language of the people' it's the language of a very narrow sub-set of middle-class anglophones strongly influenced by American evangelical jargon.
I just really want to say, Angloid, that I really agree, Angloid, with that, and I just really want to say that that's really just not how I talk normally, Angloid.

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by Karl: Liberal Backslider:
quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:

quote:
punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence
Inelegant language, I grant you, but if that's the language of the people...


A big 'if'. I've never heard anybody talk like that outside of (a particular kind of) church. If it's the 'language of the people' it's the language of a very narrow sub-set of middle-class anglophones strongly influenced by American evangelical jargon.
I just really want to say, Angloid, that I really agree, Angloid, with that, and I just really want to say that that's really just not how I talk normally, Angloid.
[Smile] [Overused] [Killing me] [Axe murder]

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ken
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quote:
Originally posted by Thurible:
quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:
Sure, at concerts and sporting events for a start.

Concerts I can't really speak to but, at football matches, one might jump up and down, one might punch the air, one might hug one's neighbour. But one's hardly going to stand there with a hand raised whilst singing "Wanky, wanky, wanky Oxford", for example.

Uhhhhh..... yes, sometimes they do. Really. OK, the words are likely to be ruder but...

Not so much the one arm held vertically thing beloved of charismatic evangelicals and left-wing olympic medallists but more often both arms held out at about 45 degrees, with the fingers in appropriate signalling positions

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Thurible
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Oh, I agree entirely, ken, about the double handed thing. (Certainly when we played Millwall at Wembley a couple of years back...)

It was, rather, the idea of the gentle, arm up, let's sway type thing.

Thurible

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:

quote:
putting your hands in the air
Just a typical expression of celebration and joy.
I'd be tempted to tell them where the toilets are - assume their hand is up because they 'want to be excused.'

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Albertus
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quote:
Originally posted by South Coast Kevin:
quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
wearing chinos

Typical clothing for many developed-world people in semi-formal situations.
quote:
putting your hands in the air
Just a typical expression of celebration and joy.
quote:
singing every chorus three times
Helps newcomers learn the songs quicker, that's all.
quote:
punctuating your prayers with 'Lord, we just want to...' at least twice every sentence
Inelegant language, I grant you, but if that's the language of the people...

None of these things are 'necessary to worshipping God', IMO. They are merely about worshipping God and gathering together to encourage one another in the life of Christian discipleship without putting up cultural barriers for those who are new to, or on the fringe of, the church community.

Blimey, SCK, I thought I was taking the piss out of you, but even though I've checked my irony meter a couple of times, you do really seem to be serious!
As I say, if they work for you and yours, fine. I'll accept that and you can have the decency to accept that liturgy and vestments work for some of the rest of us- including some newcomers. If there's one thing worse IMO than snooty tat queens or BCP fundies it's the 'ooh look at us, we're ever so much more in touch and accessible than you are' crowd who don't recognise that what they regard as normal and accessible may well be just as much a product of a particular subculture, and equally alien to many others, as the stuff they are so smugly comparing themselves with.

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PD
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Oddly, most modern worship comes across to me as being "fwightfully middle-class" and the property of those folks who would not say shit if they stepped in it. It always strikes me as surreal when they pray intensely about social justice for left-footed lesbians in Guyana or peace in the middle East, and do not pray, never mind try and do something, about the life destroying problems on their own back doorstep. It always puts me in mind of the old Victorian respectability vices of transference and avoidance.

Church should be different. After all, you are worshipping Almighty God, not a Tesco's shopping cart. How it is different is very much a YMMV but it was sign, symbol, and mystery being taken serious that moved me from being a curious working class baptized agnostic to being a committed Christian. Just as important was the fact that they did their fallen best to live their Christian faith from day-to-day, so there was a connection between worship and life. That is pretty powerful stuff.

Most folks have a pretty well-developed bullshit detector, so if what the church does is radically out of alignment with what the church says* then no amount of "dumbing-down to reach out" (other evangelism options available, but rarely tried, IMHO) then your efforts to bring people in are stuffed before you start. Oh, and the other thing is that your attempts to bring folks in are not going to be successful if they are "yours" and not "His." Evangelism has to be done in such a manner that it points away from self towards God.

One of the reasons I like the vestments and ritual of the catholic movement is that they submerge the individual into a corporate God-orientated activty - the Mass. Of course, that is my response to God, and I am aware of the fact that other folks do not respond well to that sort of ritualized behaviour, or prefer different rituals.

Anyway - here endeth the rant!

PD

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Olaf
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quote:
Originally posted by womanspeak:
Despite Liturgical wars, I don't really care what form of Anglican service I attend when all is said and done (although my sneezing and asthma when its high up the candle stick does limit this expression of worship to a once only visit)...

By those standards, why bother limiting oneself to Anglicanism at all? If the form of service doesn't reflect any sort of doctrinal positions, one could just as easily drop into a Baptist church, and in that case one would need not fear for incense.

When I drop into a Lutheran church, I do expect that the language used reflects Lutheranism. I am Lutheran, and to be honest, it is probably the best fit for my beliefs. I do frequently encounter home-brewed prayers, and I'm afraid many of them make mistakes such as verging into heresy to preserve a rhyme.

When I encounter changes to the expected order of service, they invariably involve replacing congregational parts with performance parts (sermons, talks, musical acts, drama, etc.) Yes, I take issue with this too, as I like to participate by more than simply listening. Is it my personal preference? Sure. Yet it is also the norm set out and commended for use by the denomination, and thus it's not exactly like I am fighting for something out of the ordinary.

To be frank, some do self-concocted liturgy well. More power to them. Unfortunately, most do not. Then they persist in beating a dead horse.

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South Coast Kevin
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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
Blimey, SCK, I thought I was taking the piss out of you, but even though I've checked my irony meter a couple of times, you do really seem to be serious!

Heh, don't worry; I know your post was somewhat tongue-in-cheek. I was just playing it with a straight bat, as it were.
quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
If there's one thing worse IMO than snooty tat queens or BCP fundies it's the 'ooh look at us, we're ever so much more in touch and accessible than you are' crowd who don't recognise that what they regard as normal and accessible may well be just as much a product of a particular subculture, and equally alien to many others, as the stuff they are so smugly comparing themselves with.

Guilty as charged, at least to some extent. [Hot and Hormonal] I agree with what a few folks have already said, that authenticity is the key. Which will mean different things to different people, but I guess I mean churches using music that sounds a bit like the secular music their people are listening to at the moment, people wearing clothes similar to what they'd wear out to a mixed-company social occasion etc.
quote:
Originally posted by PD:
Church should be different. After all, you are worshipping Almighty God, not a Tesco's shopping cart.

I'm glad the 'difference' worked for you, PD, in terms of nudging you towards faith in Christ, but I'm still struggling to understand the argument. However, I think that's based on our respective theological bases (that is the plural of basis, right?!) in terms of what we think is the point of church services / meetings.

As I've said upthread (I think it was this thread), IMO church meetings are for mutual encouragement and reminding one another of the wonderful, great God we belong to. They aren't for 'worshipping God', because IMO the clear New Testament witness is that worshipping God is a whole-life thing. Everything we do, if done for the glory of God, is an act of worship. From this theology springs the idea that church gatherings shouldn't be different from the rest of our lives; rather, they should reflect and be rooted in our lives. So I do agree with you on the connection between worship and life, I'd just phrase it differently.

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Angloid
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quote:
Originally posted by PD:

Church should be different. After all, you are worshipping Almighty God, not a Tesco's shopping cart. How it is different is very much a YMMV but it was sign, symbol, and mystery being taken serious that moved me from being a curious working class baptized agnostic to being a committed Christian.

Much the same as my experience, except that I was an unbaptised agnostic. My only experience of 'church' before my late teens (apart from sporadic and unwilling attendance at Sunday school) was once or twice attending 11.00 Mattins and being bored out of my mind. Then I attended my first (very MOTR, said 1662 with vestments) eucharist and immediately sensed that something very important was going on. I didn't know what it was, but there was a perceptible sense of presence which made me feel it was worth taking seriously. All the solemn po-faced hymn-singing seemed irrelevant by contrast; as I am pretty sure any sort of charismatic worship would, had I encountered it. It's all very much YMMV, but it's easy to lose out on the mystery if one is striving after 'relevance.'

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South Coast Kevin
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quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
...it's easy to lose out on the mystery if one is striving after 'relevance.'

This would be an interesting idea to explore further, I think. Naturally, I want it to be perfectly feasible to have both mystery and relevance, but is it? Thinking about my own church experience, our Sunday gatherings are (I think!) very relevant but I'm not sure there's much mystery. Perhaps transcendence is a better, broader word, and I'd more readily say we have some of that...

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