By Peter Wall - Dean and Rector, Christ's Church Cathedral
Published: June 2008
Related Topics: Liturgy, People
As I write this, we are in Ascensiontide, that brief period in the church year when buoyancy and lightness are characteristics of our life as Church. As we approach the summer, a certain lightness also can become a part of our Sunday worship life as well. Sometimes shortened services, sometimes worship taking place in different spaces (often because our churches are so hot!), possibly a reduction in the number of services on a Sunday, often a reduction in 'forces' --choirs having the summer 'off ', perhaps a break in Church School schedules and other such changes.
It is a time, I hope, in which we might experiment with some different physical space, or altered liturgical choreography, or musical accompaniment, or all of the above. It can also be a time the buoyancy of our faith can take hold--we can laugh a little, even at ourselves! Perhaps 'coffee hour' (or whatever we might call the usual time of fellowship which normally follows our principal worship services) might be a 'lemonade hour'; maybe in can take place in a garden or other outdoor space--all of these things happen in our parishes and communities.
So, some suggestions from a sometimes old curmudgeon who needs, at least as much as the next guy, some of that 'lightness of being' and wonderful buoyancy:
Mostly, try a little lightness! Church can be pretty serious much of the time--it should be profound, after all. But it also should be enjoyable and, I think, fun. Be creative, live on the edge, walk a little on the wild side. You might be glad you did.
Have a great summer! See you in the fall.