Wednesday, April 7, 2010

some questions for the church

week by week hundreds of millions of people take part in christian worship in congregations. How should they pray? Why? How often? With whom? Where? Who leads it and how are they to train and prepare? Which parts of scripture should be read or chanted? Should a set liturgy be used or not? What is an acceptable range of improvisation on it? What is the role and significance of the eucharist? What part should singing and music play? What about intercession, petition and confession? If there is a sermon or homily, who should give it, what should it be on, and how long should it be? How take into account the local culture, language, concerns? How provide for children, young people, those with disabilities, singles married, well educated, those with little education, old people? What funding is needed and how is it to be gathered? What relation does this worship have to other spheres of life? What are the conditions for full participation? What theology informs it and is it appropriate? Do some people exercise authority and power in damaging ways? What is the appropriate location for discussing and deciding on such matters? What structures are needed to enable worship to be sustained over years and generations? How might rising generations best be taught to worship?

D Ford 'christian wisdom' pp 208

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