September 18, 2018

Why the Table should be Front and Center

I have developed a simple position about why I think the Table (or Altar) should be central in the architecture of a Christian church sanctuary. Remember where I come from. In my youth, this was how most of the traditional Methodist congregations I attended arranged their worship spaces. Two pulpits flanked a central table. Then […]

Why People Move Between Different Church Traditions – A Hypothesis

  I was wondering a few weeks back, if perhaps people’s worship style preference could be directly correlated to their personality type.  I found this article that seemed to affirm that belief.  I asked our readers to guess what my Myers-Briggs personality type was based on what they knew of my worship style preferences and the […]

Ron Rolheiser on Priestly Prayer

I have an idea some people have a misconception when I tell them I am going on retreat to a place like the Abbey of Gethsemani, where I am this week. I know I’ve had such wrong notions in the past, especially in my free-church evangelical days. This is especially true regarding the daily services […]

Commentary: Worship Decisions We’ll Regret

Paul Wilkinson put it in his weekly link list and called it, “The Worship Article that’s Got Everyone Talking.”  He’s referring to a concise list of “15 Worship Decisions We’ll Regret,” by David Manner. Manner is the Associate Executive Director for the Kansas-Nebraska Convention of Southern Baptists with responsibilities in the areas of Worship, Leadership and Administration. […]

Another Look: Worship as a Meal Gathering

  The following was part of a 2011 post, The Order of Christian Worship. It has been edited and updated. * * * The liturgy, the historic worship order in the Western Church, makes sense to me as a pattern for meeting with God and focusing my attention on Christ and the Gospel. It seems to […]

Learning to Walk in the Liturgy

“For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.” ― Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics * * * On Friday in the comments to Mike Bell’s post, Danielle wrote: I would love to see IM discuss how to make liturgy more accessible to newcomers. I would also love […]

Good Works Week II: The Work of the People

The Work of the People: A Tale of Two Services And it came to pass that two men died, and their families requested that their funeral services be held in their respective churches. One man was Roman Catholic, the other a member of an evangelical church committed to reformed Protestant doctrine. In the Catholic church, […]

Ancient-Future Faith (4): Worship in a Postmodern World

As a young student in Bible college, newly awakened by the Spirit and called to pastoral ministry, I never had a single class on the subject of worship. So when I graduated and went into my first church armed with a guitar and accompanied by a wife who played the piano, we did what we […]

Sacramental Preaching

In sacramental traditions, the concept of preaching, and even the corporate reading of Scripture, is different than in revivalist traditions. It is about God literally acting through the spoken word. I know pastors who don’t think, for example, that the lectionary readings should even be printed in the bulletin. The words presented in worship are […]

Footnotes on Holy Saturday

“It is rare to hear a sermon about Easter Saturday; for much of Christian history the day has found no place in liturgy and worship it could call its own within the triduum, or three-day festival spanning Good Friday and the Day of Resurrection…” – Between Cross and Resurrection: A Theology of Holy Saturday Alan E. […]