It was the season of Lent, the time when all God's people prepare to celebrate the mystery of Easter. Once again a branch stood in our sanctuary, stark and white against the rich oak woodwork. It was supported by a pot filled with heavy stones and covered by a black cloth.
Articles in this issue:
Who Determines Worship Practices?
"Says who?!" So say kids when they have disagreements. And so say church folk to each other when they disagree about worship practices or changes. Who determines what happens during worship? What should be said or done? In what order? How much variation is allowed from week to week or within a denomination?
Revised ed. James F. White. Nashville: Abingdon, 1990. 317 pages.
There are revisions, and there are revisions. Some publishers will add a new preface, update the bibliography, and trot out a book as a NEW, REVISED, IMPROVED, ENRICHED EDITION. White's book, even though appearing only ten years after the first edition, is a genuine revision. Although much of the earlier edition is left intact, both additions (such as a section on worship and justice) and numerous minor changes make this an honest "Revised Edition."
Charles L. Rice, Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1991.144 pages.
This is not a general textbook on homiletics. Charles Rice sharply defines the focus and early forges the link between Word and sacrament. His basic thesis is that preaching cannot stand apart from the sacraments, and the aim of the sermon is to bring the worshiper to "make Eucharist."
Everett Tilson and Phyllis Cole. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1990. 220 pages.
Today's parents no longer assume that they know what family worship should be. Even those brought up with some sort of family prayer and Bible reading are often looking for a more meaningful way to worship at home with their families.
This service focuses on the gospel narrative of Thomas' journey from doubt to faith; it is intended for an evening service on the Sunday after Easter. The service incorporates a dramatic reading prepared by Bert Polman, associate professor of music at Redeemer College. It was first held at the Ministers and Spouses Conference held at Redeemer College on March 28,1989.
Our Worship Begins
Hymn: "Christ the Lord Is Risen Today" (1)
[PH 113, PsH 388, RL 325, TH 277]
How I Love You, Lord...(Psalm 18)
Psalm 18 may at first seem a strange choice for a congregational song, especially during Lent. Praise, militant language, despair, destruction, salvation, and apparent boasting present a confusing mix. Congregations will appreciate an explanation of the psalm or, better still, reading it responsively before attempting to sing it.