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Content about Christian Reformed Church -- Liturgy

December 1, 2007

This is the second of a two-part series on the church year. Part 1 presented a general context for the use of the church year and a brief introduction to the Christmas cycle. This installment will discuss the Easter cycle—the most ancient of the church’s celebrations—as well as the twentieth-century developments that have pointed us back toward this useful tool for telling the good news.

August 31, 1997

Lament is a sign of both honest faith and resolute hope. When we worship together, we bring with us our experience in the world, from our most profound joys to our most painful sorrows. Like the Old Testament psalms, thoughtful liturgy allows us to express the whole range of our experience in ways that are fitting to the message of the gospel.

May 31, 1997

John D. Witvliet has been appointed assistant professor of worship and music at Calvin College and adjunct professor of worship at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Two future articles will explore the way in which lament can function in the ebb and flow of weekly worship, apart from times of crisis.

March 1, 1994

Just what is Reformed worship, anyway?

It is possible today to go to a church in the Reformed tradition and find worship influences from all sorts of directions— low and high church, charismatic and evangelical, liturgical and . . . well, of course, Reformed. Such variety raises the question in many minds of whether there is anything distinctive about Reformed worship.

December 1, 1993

"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."

December 1, 1993

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.

December 1, 1991
Sursum Corda: Lift Up Your Hearts!
March 1, 1991

On the day of Pentecost and during the following weeks of Kingdomtide, what better theme to dwell on than that of the person and work of the Holy Spirit? And what better guide than Paul's epistle to the Ephesians? Because the subject of the Spirit runs like a ribbon through this book, a series of services and sermons will emerge quite naturally as we take up this epistle, passage by passage.

March 1, 1991

The moment is charged with excitement and anticipation—the beginning of the most important hour of the week. The council has had their time of prayer for this worship service. The prelude is well underway. The worshipers are in their seats, and the pastor is seated on the platform. Everything is planned and prepared and ready for worship.