Communities across the church are searching for new ways to worship that makes use of the tradition, but somehow addresses new needs and concerns, perhaps especially with generational differences in mind. This is one example of a community in New Orleans that came together to explore the struggle of the early church to express a new faith by inventing a new form of worship. They started a worship society, not a new church by any means, and named it after St. Polycarp.

On a Monday evening, as most workers were on the way home, I joined a group enthusiastically gathering outside of Rosy’s Jazz Hall. The entrance hall led us to a table laden with wine and cheese in a bright room in which stand two large trees. People were laughing and talking as adults lifted glasses and children snacked. Noise from the kitchen spoke of food preparation. I was aware that the people were there to celebrate; eating typical New Orleans fare, drinking wine, singing, and perhaps doing a bit of “dancing” – all familiar activities to the venerable and lovely jazz hall on Tchoupitoulas and Valence. But these people were there to do this as part of Christian worship. I wondered at that. But, as we entered into worship, it all began to seem perfectly fitting.

Read More…


 

We are offering a series of chancel dramas designed for the worship of all ages. They were produced at Grace Episcopal Church by its rector, 1973 – 1985, Joe Morris Doss


GO DOWN JOSEPH

 

CAST OF CHARACTERS and PLAYERS:

23 actors (could simply have the audience use imaginations for Potiphar, Potiphar’s Wife, Potiphar’s Chef, and the Pharaoh)        

2 females (if Potiphar’s wife is used)

5 non-gender specific

16 men (though certain of the roles with designated male names could be played by women) Read More…


by Donald Schell

If I’ve framed this question as I mean to, it will probably sound nonsensical to two quite different groups –

            – One group includes post-Christian atheists, agnostics, apathetics, and “spiritual but not-religious” people, many of them my friends.  To them, the question will sound nonsensical coming from me, a priest of forty years, now an itinerant teacher and workshop leader, but still going to church every Sunday and happily covering as a supply priest in a variety of church settings as I’m invited.  They might tell me that they don’t have a clue what church is for, but don’t expect me to be asking the question, though maybe not.  Maybe knowing I don’t mean to provide an abstract doctrinal answer would make the question interesting to them.  Maybe it would get them wondering how church compared with other purposeful organizations and gatherings.  I hope so. Read More…


by John W. B. Hill

What can be learned about the ministry of ‘making disciples’ from the way Jesus did it? Surprisingly, in all the work that has been done to date in restoring the ministry of catechumenal formation in the church, remarkably little account has been taken of Jesus’ way of making disciples.¹

What follows is an attempt to apply some of the insights of René Girard in reading the Gospels² to unlock the question: How did Jesus make disciples, and – more to the point – what is the purpose of discipleship?

The four Gospels are not eye-witness accounts of the matter, nor may they be harmonized to form an aggregate account. Nevertheless, each of them informs the reading of the others; and even in their use of mythological forms of storytelling and culturally adapted detail, they serve as our primary witnesses to the nature of the gospel revealed in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. What follows, then, is an attempt to explore the witness of the Gospels to Jesus’ work with his disciples, using Girardian insights. Read More…