Hello all. Been a while, sorry about that.
So someone asked me if I’d do some training for their servers, readers and intercessors. I will do but not before Easter. However it got me thinking a little, so here, for those who are interested in these sorts of things, here are ten handy hints to help good worship in church. I’d be interested in any additions folk might like to contribute.
- Slow is not holy. The slower you walk, it doesn’t mean it’s more holy. Staying completely still can be very holy indeed, but not when you’re bringing up the offertory.
- Quiet is not holy. Quiet is not being heard. Silence can be holy, but not when you’re expecting the epistle. A microphone is there to amplify your voice. But it can’t do that if you whisper.
- Intentional silence can be very meaningful. Gaps in the liturgy are not meaningful. The sound of you getting out of your pew walking to the lectern, finding your place in the reading, and coughing, these are not silences, they are gaps in the liturgy. They are not meaningful.
- The Bible is full of passion, compassion, anger, drama, horror, beauty, love. It’s probably not good to be over-dramatic, but might be better to err on drama than on the side of those who read out the football results.
- Coming to church is a time when you can put aside all the business of the world and spend time in God’s company. Try not to bring the business of the world in with you. There may be lots of things to do and lots of people to speak with. Get there in good time if you have lots to do, and speak with people afterwards.
- In particular, don’t try and speak with the Rector before the service if you want him/her (a) to remember a word you have said (b) to give a coherent reply.
- There are many things which are important in church. There are very few things which are urgent on a Sunday morning. The urgent often masquerades as being important. If you think something is urgent, it’s probably not very important.
- It doesn’t really matter if things go wrong. It does really matter if you look panicked and rush around because things are going wrong.
- Communion is a really special time. Sometimes when administering communion there is a desire to make it even more really special by adding special words of your own, or doing it in a way which is really meaningful. Don’t. Really don’t. Don’t make it more about you than about God. Come to think of it, that applies to everything else too. If you do things differently from everyone else, it might be worth asking someone who will give you an honest answer as to whether it sticks out or not.
- If you can’t pray at the same time as performing a function in church, then don’t perform the function. Prayers are always more important.