Public worship

Training manual on the Lutheran divine service : a response to Pentecostalism in the ELCT, South East of Lake Victoria Diocese Agape parish

Author
Daniel Henry Mono
Abstract
The project was conducted in Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania, South East of Lake Victoria Diocese, Agape Kahama Parish (ELCT-SELVD). Pentecostalism has been seriously penetrating among the Lutheran members to the extent that some of them do not value the Lutheran Divine Service. They claim that the Lutheran Divine Service is not spiritual because it is guided by the book or written materials and therefore, not spiritual.

The study made a survey of the use of the ELCT hymn book for worship called Tumwabudu Mungu Wetu (TMW) which has biblical contents. The project results proved that many Lutheran members in ELCT did not fully understand and believe what is contained in the book.

The study developed a training manual for the Divine Service for pastors use so that they are well equipped to teach their members so that they remain faithful Lutherans.

Witness of grace, a liturgy of hope dialogue in weekly worship as sacred encounter

Author
Jessica Patchett
Abstract
This project proposes that the practice of dialogue in response to scripture and sermon in weekly worship offers a vital liturgical and evangelical experience, offering participants a sense of connection with the church community and hope for their lives and the world. It includes narrative accounts of the practice, describes how it works, proposes theories for why it functions as a source of hope, and outlines dimensions of the practice that are more mundane, unpredictable, or unintended. The research shows that the practice offers a critical contribution to the contemporary reformation of the church.

Knights of the Table The Binding Nature of Worship at Salisbury School

Author
Joseph K Hall
Abstract
As adolescent boys develop their sense of self through relationship with others and, through that, with the Divine, the ritual of required bi-weekly chapel services at an all-boys boarding school offers all students a relational experience of God intrinsically connected to a loving, supportive community. Using both qualitative and quantitative research methods, this study shows how the experience of a Christian corporate worship can nurture a sense of community that transcends social, religious, and cultural backgrounds as a way to inform their emerging faith and sense of self in relationship with the Other.

The word in our mouths: Scripture memory and recitation as proclaimation in congregational worship and practice

Author
Stacy S Duke
Abstract
This project considers a re-imagined communal engagement with the oral/aural dimension of scripture. The thesis of this project is that scripture memory and recitation within public worship can provide pastors of mainline congregations a way to facilitate fresh encounters with scripture as a living word. Using ethnographic listening practices, the study investigates the effect of scripture recitation as a form of proclamation in one mainline protestant congregation over the course of two years. The project concludes that this simple, ancient practice offers dynamic possibilities for congregations to engage with scripture in a personal and powerful way.

Creating a Health-Minded Culture in a Congregation through Holistic Health Initiatives

Author
Byron GE Peart
Abstract
The purpose of this project is to transform the mind-set of people in a Christian context with respect to healthy food choices, consistency in diet, exercise, and appreciation for the environment. This project involves a series of sermons, workshops, and presentations with the goal of creating a health-minded culture in a congregation by using holistic health initiatives. The positive changes in mind-set and lifestyle (for example, weight loss, changes in diet, and fasting) were identified through the use of simple survey instruments, testimonies, and observation of food menus served at church functions.

Corporate worship as improving baptism practices toward the new identity of God's people

Author
Luke W Brodine
Abstract
Literature suggests that there is a fundamental connection between baptism and ongoing spiritual formation, and that pastors must recognize how practices impart understanding and shape identity. The purpose of this study was to explore how pastors' conduct of corporate worship services helps congregants connect the practice of baptism to the pursuit of spiritual formation. The study employed qualitative research methods and used a semi-structured protocol to interview six demographically diverse pastors. The study concluded that narrative is a key instrument uniting baptismal practice with identity formation, and that baptismal formation is fostered in the context of community and corporate worship.

Intentional Sabbath-keeping in the parish; shutting down to open up

Author
Gregory C Zurakowski
Abstract
Lost in what has become an understanding of Sabbath as an individual spiritual practice is the essential element of community. The project involved inviting the members of two congregations to commit to a community celebration of the Sabbath for several weeks. An initial survey assessed the community's current understanding of Sabbath and how it is observed. Participants were encouraged to set aside engagement in commerce and work (broadly defined), and invited to join with fellow participants in worship and restorative activities. The project demonstrated that the Lord's Day and many of its spiritual, emotional, and physical benefits can be reclaimed.

Researching intergenerational worship and developing a curriculum to equip worship leaders for intergenerational worship

Author
Ronald E Reid
Abstract
The purpose of this project was to research and develop a curriculum that equips worship leaders to conduct a single, intergenerational worship experience. The project director researched models in order to understand intergenerational principles of worship. A bibliography approved by an expert in the field and interviews with selected churches engaged in intergenerational worship served as the standard for this research. The result of this research was a succinct definition of intergenerational worship and the development of a curriculum to equip worship leaders with guiding principles to plan and lead a single, intergenerational worship experience.

Contemplative worship in the style of Taizé: the impact of song, Scripture and silence

Author
William B Kirby
Abstract
Scripture calls Christians to be still before God and to quiet their souls so as to hear and experience God in their lives. The Brothers of Taizé have a model of contemplative service which gives space for this by using simple songs, scripture and silence. The author studied congregations who were already using the Taizé model to see the long-term effects on each congregation. The author then assisted three congregations in the Washington, D.C. area to create monthly worship services using this model for the 2012-2013 academic year. Through the use of surveys and interviews the participants were able to express the impact of this model of worship on their spiritual journey.

But did we worship? How worship is experienced in contemporary worship by the people of First United Methodist Church, High Point

Author
Christopher A Fitzgerald
Abstract
In an effort to help people who no longer acknowledge the necessity or benefit of worship, and engage those outside the church, many congregations have introduced variations to traditional worship. The object of worship is not human satisfaction, but God who created, redeemed, and sustains Creation. There are, however, certain 'effects' of worship: communion with God; fellowship with others; transformation of character; and motivation to serve. To determine if participants do worship six instruments were utilized: an initial survey, in-depth interviews of ten worshipers, weekly feedback from five worshipers, follow-up interviews, a journal of reflection, and a follow-up survey.
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