I Dream of a Church (#11)

12 03 2011

In my “I Dream of a Church” series I express a collection of thoughts, ideas, and questions from the last several years about what a church might look like (given an ideal situation). I don’t claim for any of these to be original, ground-breaking, or otherwise amazing. You can find other entries in this series by clicking here.

#11. I dream of a church where…

Liturgy and hymns are important, but not the only thing.

To begin with, let me just say that I love liturgy and hymns. First, when we utilize liturgies, printed prayers, rituals, etc. during worship (and even at other times), they remind us that we are one body. We are one body with those standing/seated next to us. We are one body with those scattered throughout the entire earth. We are one body with those that have come before us – and those that will come after us. Second, we find that liturgies, hymns, etc. give us words to say when we don’t have the energy/strength to find our own words. There are times in life when we’re just too broken, beaten down, desperate, lost, or lonely to speak our own words. It’s in these times when words prepared by others are especially appreciated.

I love liturgy. I love hymns…

…but if that’s all we do, I think we’re missing out.

To utilize only liturgy and hymns feels like we’re firmly rooting ourselves in the past (a good thing), but that we’re not looking/moving forward (a bad thing). Shouldn’t we be creating our own fresh songs, prayers, and creeds? (True, there actually are new liturgies, songs, etc. being created). Also, liturgies and hymns often start to feel stale after a little while… whether they’re hundreds of years old or just two days… don’t they? (This may just be me).

Again, I love liturgy. …and I love hymns. I just also love new, fresh things.

 

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