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Thursday, April 01, 2010

Liturgy vs Lei-tourgeia



In Todd Hunter's new book "Giving Church Another Chance; finding new meaning in spiritual practices" he explores the "familiar" components of worship in fresh ways with fresh eyes. In chapter 6 titled "Following Liturgy" he explores the meaning of the word "liturgy" as the "people's work" versus the structure of the Sunday morning event. He writes the the proper understanding of liturgy makes "Christian worship and service inseparable."
I read this chapter on Maundy Thursday morning, getting ready for the service tonight, Good Friday and Easter. This is a high-performance weekend for most of us pastors. We need to "get it right" and make a good impression on first-time visitors who are checking out the church after some long absences.
Tonight we will be having a service of foot-washing, a meal together around tables followed by communion where we will serve each other.
But today is also the day where Jon Lemmond and some members of MCC are joining a local ministry called WillBridge washing the feet of the homeless, not symbolically, but therapeutically with a podiatrist on hand. After a long footwash, they are fitted with new shoes, given a meal and offered social services in the courtyard of the hall. The line stretched almost a block long. This was the marriage of worship + service = liturgy.

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