December 1993

RW 30
Reformed Worship issue cover

Articles in this issue:

  • Hughes Oliphant Old. Grand Rapids, Ml: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1992. 324 pages. $44.95.

    No one knows more about the sources and traditions of Reformed worship than Hughes Old. An ordained Presbyterian minister, he has published several major studies of liturgy, including Tlie Patristic Roots of Reformed Worship (1975) and Worship That Is Reformed According to Scripture (1984).

  • Notes


    In Memoriam: David Winecoff

    Reformed Worship editorial council member David Winecoff died in a tragic accident while rock climbing in Colorado on August 18. David was 39, and he and his wife Jane have four children, ages 12, 8, 3, and 1. David was pastor of the Providence Reformed Presbyterian Church (PCA) in St. Louis, Missouri, and taught part-time at Knox Theological Seminary in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

  • In spite of their poignancy and availability, the lament psalms are not much used. If you look in the back of the hymnals of most major Protestant denominations, you will find perhaps Psalm 1, then skip to 8 and 19 and perhaps 22. Even when lament psalms are included, they are not sung much. In Roman Catholic and liberal Protestant usage, most of the lament psalms simply do not exist. (Anglicans use the lament psalms, but set them to such wonderful music that you don't notice what is being said!)

  • On a cold December evening, sixteen neighborhood, children responded to an invitation to hear the Christmas story at our house. I didn't even know all of them by name, but I invited them because I wanted to test a new way of telling stories I had learned at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan. I had taken the four-day training session twice. But I was still somewhat skeptical of this children's worship program with its quiet, reverent environment. How could children sit as still as fifty-year-olds to hear God's Word?

  • It's that time of year again. As always, Lent has flowed into Easter, and Ascension is still five weeks away. In our service planning, Easter Sunday so logically forms an integrated unit with Lent services, that we can easily be left wondering what to preach about on the Sunday mornings following Easter. To keep our thematic joints from showing through too much, we may need to apply some spring tonic to fortify the link between Easter and the five Sundays before Ascension Day.

  • "I don't know if we can keep it up I much longer."

    We were having a discussion about worship; she was the chair of another church's worship committee. I'd always admired the energy she poured into each service, but it looked as if she was approaching "worship committee burnout."

    "I wonder if we are reinventing the wheel every week," she said. "We find it harder and harder to make our services fresh and new."

  • Spending their day pinched into street shoes or treading dusty ground with only a flap of leather to protect them, feet fulfill an unflattering, though necessary, function. Feet are not glamorous; they are the workhorses of the human body. In fact, to some of us, they are an embarrassment when not housed in footwear. Ceremony that exposes our bony, chubby, knobby, ugly smelly, or crooked feet is to be avoided. It is a quaintism, we think, that we can do without.

  • Bulletin Note

    Ash Wednesday is an ancient holy day in the Christian church calendar. It marks the beginning of the season of Lent—a time of penitence, discipline, and renewal. In the Ash Wednesday service we are reminded of our mortality, we confess our sins, and we experience forgiveness through Christ's death and resurrection. The "imposition of ashes" is a central part of the service. During this time you are invited to come forward to receive the ashes on your forehead.