Chalice Hymnal (1995)–Worship Resources   6 comments

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Above:  Logo of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

Last Summer, I reviewed Chalice Worship (1997) (https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2012/06/29/chalice-worship-1997/).  Now I turn my attention to the non-musical content at the back of Chalice Hymnal (1995).

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) does belong to the free church tradition, but it is still liturgical.  In fact, it has a venerable history of emphasizing Holy Communion.  As Father Peter Ingeman, now-retired Rector of Christ Episcopal Church, Valdosta, Georgia, said at a Lay Ministries Conference in the Diocese of Georgia in Spring 2001, a liturgical church is one with a predictable pattern of worship.  Some liturgies are simpler or more complex than others, but they are, by definition, predictable.

The non-musical liturgical resources in Chalice Hymnal (1995) do not appear in Chalice Worship (1997), so I review them here for the first time.  The Worship Resources section of the hymnal contains the following:

  1. An Order for the Lord’s Supper with Those Confined;
  2. Basic Resources for Sunday Worship; and
  3. Daily Worship (A Three-Year Cycle of Daily Devotion).

I will deal with them in that order.

An Order for the Lord’s Supper with Those Confined draws the visited person(s) into the congregational gathering linguistically with the repeated use of the words “we” and “us.”  In the first paragraph–five sentences–alone, “we” appears three times, “us” twice, and “ourselves” once.  This is excellent, for those confined at home, in a hospital or nursing home, or elsewhere might feel isolated, understandably.  Yet they are part of the whole, the community of faith.

Basic Resources for Sunday Worship, six pages long, is an outline for worship.  It contains prayers, litanies, a communion ritual, and pastoral sentences.  The language is modern and graceful, focusing on the Christian community.  Plural pronouns abound; one notices “us,” “we,” and “our,” quite often.  And “you,” when it appears, is plural.  This is appropriate, for Jesus-and-meism is a heresy.

Daily Worship:  A Three-Year Cycle of Daily Devotion is the handiwork of the Reverend Colbert S. Cartwright (http://neatnik2009.wordpress.com/2012/06/29/feast-of-colbert-s-cartwright-august-5/), truly a great man. (I even canonized him last June!)  The three-page-long Introduction emphasizes the importance of praising God with a daily hymn, praying one psalm per week, and reading and meditating upon a passage of Scripture each day.  The Introduction is a nicely-written primer on prayer from which one may benefit, even if one does not use use the ensuing eighteen-page lectionary.  I have not used that lectionary yet, although I have kept the option open.  I do recognize a well-thought-out plan when I see one.

I am a practicing Episcopalian, therefore a person of The Book of Common Prayer (1979).  But I do not restrict myself to that volume for purposes of prayer and worship; the Prayer Book is simply my primary resource in those fields.  I like to sample the liturgical resources of other denominations and to utilize the best of them.  The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) offers much that appeals to my honed liturgical tastes.  One irony might be that I use them more than do many active members of that body.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JANUARY 3, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE TENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS

THE FEAST OF EDWARD CASWALL, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF EDWARD PERRONET, BRITISH METHODIST PREACHER

THE FEAST OF SAINT GENEVIEVE, PROPHET

THE FEAST OF GLADYS AYLWARD, ANGLICAN MISSIONARY TO CHINA

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