A description of the forms of worship services offered in our churches.
In our congregations, we have two primary forms of worship. Though the exact form of each of them has changed over the years, they both go back to the earliest days of the Christian Church.
A service that starts with praise to God, continues with hearing Scripture, and concludes with praying for our own needs and the needs of the world. The Scripture readings are interwoven with sung "canticles," which are hymns of praise from the Bible set to music. In the Anglican tradition, Morning Prayer (and a similar service in the Evening) is the backbone of daily worship. On Sundays, it is enhanced with a sermon and additional hymns.
A service of Word and Sacrament. In the first part, we hear Scripture and a sermon (which is a response to the Scripture), pray to God, and remember our common bonds with our neighbours as we share the Peace of God with one another. In the second part, we remember Jesus' sacrifice for us and his continued presence with us, as we receive his grace and strength in the bread and wine of Holy Communion. Another name for the service is "Eucharist," which comes from a Greek word meaning "thanksgiving."
On Sundays, each of our four churches offers one or the other of these services. Check the individual church pages for a more precise schedule.
Readings for This Week & Next
The readings for 9th December, the Second Sunday of Advent, are as follows (to read them, except the Benedictus, go HERE):
Baruch 5:1-9 (The Book of Baruch is the Apocrypha)
Instead of a Psalm, we will say the Benedictus (the Song of Zechariah) from page 107 of the Book of Common Prayer.
The readings for 16th December, the Third Sunday of Advent, will be as follows (to read them, go HERE):
Parentheses mean that the verses are optional, but we usually read the optional verses anyway.
Hymns for This Week
The hymns for Sunday, 9th December, except in Kilpeacon, will be:
#136 – “On Jordan’s bank”
#137 – “Promised Lord and Christ is he” (instead of the Gloria in Croom)
#119 – “Come, thou long-expected Jesus” (tune: Cross of Jesus)
#134 – “Make way, make way”
#118 in Thanks & Praise – “People, look east”
These are the hymns for the churches with Holy Communion. A church having Morning Prayer will most likely sing only three of these, but may add sung canticles (songs of praise or penitence).