Saturday, April 05, 2014

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Sunday, December 08, 2013

This morning's prayer of confession at Jubilee Church

O LORD, Rebuke us not–Psalm 38

O LORD, rebuke us not in your anger
nor chasten us in your holy wrath.
Your arrows pierced us; your hand has crushed us.
          There is no soundness within our flesh.
          Your indignation presses us downward.
          Our guilt is heavy, too much to bear.
          Our wounds grow filthy, they stink and fester
          due to our sins and our foolishness.
          We are bent over, bowed down and guilty.
          Gone is our vigour. We have no health.
          All day we’re mourning, feeble and shattered.
          We groan because our heart is upset.

All of our longing, Lord, is before you.
And all our sighing, you hear, O Lord.
Our heart is throbbing; our strength is failing.
Our eyes are darkened, we cannot see.
We do confess our sins and corruption.
We plead upon your mercy, O God.

O LORD, rebuke us not in your anger
nor chasten us in your holy wrath.
Do not forsake us, O LORD, our Saviour.
Make haste to help us, our gracious God.
Be not far from us, Christ, our Redeemer!
Forgive our sins by your precious blood.
Have mercy, Lord! Have mercy, Lord.    AMEN

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Children as song leaders

John Witvliet, writing about worship in Calvin's Geneva, writes:

But in the Reformation era, the entire congregation sang— men, women, and children together— an innovation in an era in which women’s voices could otherwise be heard in worship only in a convent. The children, for their part, were the leaders of the song. In the 1537 Articles, Calvin instructed: 
This manner of proceeding seemed especially good to us, that children, who beforehand have practiced some modest church song, sing in a loud distinct voice, the people listening with all attention and following heartily what is sung with the mouth, till all become accustomed to sing communally.

This practice must have continued, for in 1561, the city council mandated that new psalm tunes not be used until they were taught to the congregation by the school children. Although Calvin argued against a distinction between congregation and choir, he did allow children to serve as the precentors of the people.

Witvliet, John D. (2003-07-01). Worship Seeking Understanding: Windows into Christian Practice (Kindle Locations 3130-3140). Baker Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.