We enter the Season After Pentecost, the season Godly Play calls “the long green growing time of the church.” It’s an ideal season to try some new liturgical expressions, and to experience more of the breadth of resources offered by our Episcopal Church.

Optimized-springFor the entire summer:

  • In the absence of the choir, the grand piano will be on the nave floor to support congregational singing.
  • The back portion of the nave will be roped off, to encourage worshippers to sit nearer to the altar and to each other.
  • We will be led by guest organists in June and July, and the occasional guest priest, as Jacob will take long-overdue vacation leave, and Lydia will be gone a few Sundays.
  • Bulletins will be reused for 4-5 Sundays, each month following a different liturgical template.

Our liturgy for the month of June will be from Enriching Our Worship 1, authorized by General Convention in 1997 and widely used throughout the Episcopal Church. Former Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold wrote this in the Preface:

Enriching Our Worship … is part of an ongoing process of listening to what the Spirit is saying to the Church through the diverse experience of those who gather to worship and to celebrate the sacramental rites which fashion and identify us as the People of God.

Enriching Our Worship is not intended to supplant the Book of Common Prayer, but rather to provide additional resources to assist worshiping communities wishing to expand the language, images and metaphors used in worship. In some cases the canticles and prayers represent the recovery of ancient biblical and patristic images, such as the identification of Christ with Wisdom, and in other cases images which speak of God in other than the familiar masculine terms which have been so much a part of our liturgical prayer. Expanding our vocabulary of prayer and the ways in which we name the Holy One bear witness to the fact that the mystery of God transcends all categories of knowing, including those of masculine and feminine.

You can find volumes in the Enriching Our Worship series at the Cathedral Book Shop, through Amazon, or online at http://www.bmrc-online.org/resources/ResourceView/2/3809.

June will also find us praying the 20th century, ecumenical translation of the Lord’s Prayer (see the related article on the opposite page).

In July we will return to the 16th century Lord’s Prayer, and also to the Book of Common Prayer, with a minimalist bulletin that will require us to find our way around the prayer book itself. (see June’s The Messenger for more information.)

Liturgy for August is still being planned.