Liturgy vs. The Spirit of the Age
I am writing from Ellenwood, Florida where I am at DaySpring Conference center for a meeting of Associated Parishes for Liturgy and Mission. Liturgy means "the work of the people." At the practical level, liturgy consists in the words and actions of our worship services. These words and actions are the work of all the people who gather to worship and not just of those who lead worship.
APLM has been at the forefront of liturgy within the Episcopal Church for 5 decades. This week Gil Bailie is speaking to the group. He is the author of the book Violence Unveiled which has been influential for me. Here are a few thoughts Gil offered us today:
The great enemy of the liturgy is the spirit of the age. The purpose of liturgy is to save us from the spirit of the age.And at another point, he said
The spirit of the age is not interested in the Good News, but in breaking news. For the spirit of the age, the center of history is now. For the Gospel, the center of history is the cross
When Jesus said "Follow me," he said "Take up your cross and follow me." So much violence in the world is unsuffered suffering. Rather than dealing with suffering, we toss it out on others in our anger.That's a sample of the things we are talking about today. It's good to consider how our worship should reflect the lives of the people who worship while also being aware that our worship also stands over and against the culture in which we live.
At the end of the age, Jesus will ask, "What have you suffered for my sake?" or "What has your faith in me cost you?"
The Rev. Frank Logue, Pastor + King of Peace Episcopal Church