Sunday, September 23, 2007


I just started reading Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer, and I found that he has said what I think about liturgical discussion and disputes perfectly. So, with no further ado...
[Liturgy.] There is no subject in the world (always excepting sport) on which I have less to say then liturgiology...The perfect church service would be one we were almost unaware of; our attention would have been on God.
But every novelty prevents this. It fixes our attention on the service itself; and thinking about worship is a different thing from worshipping...A still worse thing may happen. Novelty may fix our attention not even on the service but on the celebrant. You know what I mean. Try as one may to exclude it, the question, "What on earth is he up to now?" will intrude. It lays one's devotion waste. There is really some excuse for the man who said, "I wish they'd remember that the charge to Peter was Feed my sheep; not Try experiments on my rats, or even, Teach my performing dogs new tricks.

Rats! I laughed for like a year when I read that.

He (We) finishes up by saying...
I can make do with almost any kind of service whatever, if only it will stay put. But if each form is snatched away just when I am beginning to feel at home it it, then I can never make any progress in the art of worship. You give me no chance to acquire the trained habit.

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