For many years, we followed a simple and familiar worship format. But we are trying some new/old things to highlight the layers of meaning in our traditions and deepen our encounters with God. Starting this week, here are some of the biggest changes you'll see and why we’re tying them:
Weekly Communion: Communion (or Eucharist or the Lord’s Supper) has been a central component of Christian worship since the beginning. Its many layers of meaning connect us to God and each other in ways that few traditions can. We hope that weekly communion will deepen our personal and shared experience of salvation.
Scripture Readings: We’ve always believed that God communicates to everyone through scripture. However, by overemphasizing the preacher, our Sunday format diminished the power of scripture to speak for itself and the people’s ability to engage it independently. To rebalance this, we’ve added readings and shortened the sermon a bit.
Following the Revised Common Lectionary: The Revised Common Lectionary is a three-year cycle of scriptures that’s aligned with the church calendar. Churches from many traditions build their worship services around these readings. We’re beginning to do this too, for unity with the global Church and to widen our exposure to the Bible’s diversity.
Community Prayer: A church’s people pray for each other. It’s just what they do. Worship gatherings are a perfect time to do that together, but it’s been missing from our services lately. We’re bringing it back.