It has been a long while since we opened a discussion post on LiturgyLink, but these are unusual times… How are you responding to COVID-19 in worship? We know about live-streaming and even have heard some great ideas for using Zoom interactively for worship. Share your other resources and ideas in the comments or email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Okay, so many of us are covered in snow. But still–Easter is coming! Like, really soon.
And before that, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.
Do you have plans? Worship services every day, or just one or two days? Do you do an Easter Vigil?
What kind of liturgy will you use this week? Footwashing? Communion? Stripping the Sanctuary? Sunrise?
Are you planning to stick to your congregation’s traditions and do what you did last year, or write something new?
We’re here, ready to brainstorm, commiserate, plot, and create with you!
One Lenten Sunday down…how did your beginning of Lent go last Wednesday and yesterday? Did you do anything designed to help people enter the season in a particular way? What are your hopes for the rest of the season, both worship-wise and in your own spiritual life?
This Sunday we contemplate God’s promises–and wonder what our sign of God’s faithfulness to the promise might be. Abraham could look at the night sky and remember, prompting his own faithfulness. Paul asks us to observe other faithful people so that we might learn and imitate their faithfulness. Jesus looks back at his own people’s history and at scripture to bolster his courage in the face of his coming task. And in the psalm we pray for the strength and courage to wait for the fulfillment of God’s promise.
Or perhaps you see another theme in these readings–please share!!
Where are you, liturgically speaking? What are your hopes for this week’s communal worship experience? What do you need? Do you have an image, a metaphor, a word, an idea, or even a complete prayer? Stop by in the comments to join the conversation!
Well friends, here we are: Lent.
Do you have big plans for Lent this year? A season-long theme or series? A visual aid you are working with? A particular song you plan to sing all season long? A metaphor guiding your reflections on the lectionary?
I know several of us are taking the spiritual-practices approach this year…what practices will you be introducing/teaching/focusing on? How will you do that in worship? What does that mean for your liturgical practice?
For those of us working from the RCL, this week offers us a challenge to remember our story–to be plugged in to God’s narrative in such a way that it becomes a part of us, ready to shore us up in times of temptation, to be our shelter in times of trouble, to learn how to pray and to listen.
Of corse, none of those stories advocate for simple literalistic memorization and parroting–each interprets and reinterprets God’s story for its context. How will you be reinterpreting this story of Lent, told so many times, for your context?
In many ways, this is what we do with liturgy–we hold the story up to the light and see what light might shine in a word or phrase or image, and we play with that until we have something that allows the people of God to access the word from another angle. How will you be working with liturgy this week?
Ah, Souper Bowl Sunday! Are you doing anything special for this day? Do you participate in the Souper Bowl of Caring? Do you have a liturgy for that? Do you incorporate it into the communion? Or just let it be?
With just two Sundays left before Lent, it probably shouldn’t be surprising that we have Jesus getting into trouble. And, as is typical in Luke, he’s getting into trouble for challenging the status quo of exclusivity and “chosenness.” He uses the moment of adoration to give a challenging word, and the people appear to have been listening–and they definitely had a reaction. What is the good news for your context in this story?
We also have this week the call of the prophet Jeremiah, who apparently considered himself too young for the task. Or perhaps he’d simply internalized the message that young people should be seen and not heard. Either way, God went for “I have put my words in your mouth” as the solution to the problem–a much quicker way than with the whole Moses-and-Aaron situation, but equally uncomfortable and challenging for one who wasn’t sure about the whole thing! Especially since the task given to Jeremiah is one that will have the people in uproar…pluck up and tear down, build and plant. Again, challenging the status quo is never popular, and Jeremiah certainly did that.
The psalm seems perfectly matched to these two texts–it’s only by keeping their eyes on the one who called them were Jeremiah or Jesus able to pass through the midst of the people who reached out to stop their message. It’s hard work to be a prophet, and it’s nearly impossible work if our hope is misplaced.
And then we have the infamous love chapter. While many cringe when it’s included in weddings, perhaps here is a chance to redeem it for everyday grace. (Sort of like how I love when Psalm 23 comes up so I can rescue it from funerals.) Aside from the usual tricks of replacing the word love with God, or with your own name, or whatever–how can you imagine this might be used in our liturgy? I can imagine reading it responsively as we often do the psalms, or making it the basis of a prayer of confession (because come on–how often do we love like this?). Perhaps there’s an affirmation of faith in there? Or even the ground of a full service worth of liturgy?
What are you thinking about for this week?
(I’m away from the internet this week, so please get to work in the comments so I can have something to work with when I get home! LOL.)