Ascension, Washington Crossing, is experimenting with worship-in-the-round this summer. What new things are you trying this season? Let us know in the comments.
One nice advantage of movable chairs instead of pews, Ascension has discovered, is the flexibility and creativity they provide. For the summer months, Ascension has redesigned its sanctuary layout to put worshippers in a circle around a central altar.
Pastor Matt Staniz from St. Luke, Devon, shared an idea in the ELCA Clergy Facebook group: St. Luke’s features lay preachers at midweek worship during Lent and in the summer. Preachers are given a theme and select a text to preach on, and the pastors offer support and encouragement. “It’s been remarkable listening to people preach and witnessing how it equips them to proclaim, lead and discern how they are called to be the church,” he says.
“There is something very cool about singing Beautiful Savior, Amazing Grace, and A Mighty Fortress in a pub,” Pastor Keith Anderson of Upper Dublin Lutheran Church writes in his blog about the experience of UDLC’s first “Beer and Hymns” evening. “Sure, its partly the novelty of it, but it also worshipful, spiritual, intimate, fun, great outreach, and an affirmation of God’s presence in our daily lives – in all the places we gather, including pubs.” Read more
What is the “new thing” that you have seen?
St. David’s held its annual spiritual retreat weekend at the Luther Inn in Wildwood, New Jersey. The Bible study theme was “Reviewing the Sacraments.” Aside from singing and praying, evening campfires, walks on the boardwalk and beach, much (over) eating and much laughter, there were informal, intense reviews and discussions of Baptism and Holy Communion. Margie and her husband traveled over 7 hours from the Pittsburgh area to participate. Margie was baptized at the retreat. Read more