THE BRIDE OF CHRIST has been published four times per year by Lutheran Liturgical Renewal, Inc., a non-profit society of evangelical catholics who have united to recall the Evangelical Lutheran Church to the position of the Reformers as stated in the Augsburg Confession, Article XXI, "There is nothing [in our confession] that varies from the Scriptures, from the Church Catholic, or from the Church of Rome as known from its writers." Lutheran Liturgical Renewal, Inc., is dedicated to the production and distribution of materials that exhibit a catholic form of doctrine, liturgy, and ministry. from the masthead of the last published issue:
Volume XXIX, No. 4, AFTER PENTECOST, A.D. 2007

Friday of Reminiscere + St. Peter's Chair at Antioch + 22 February 2008

WELCOME to the blog for THE BRIDE OF CHRIST: The Journal of Lutheran Liturgical Renewal (BOC). This is a resurrection of the BOC Journal website which is dedicated to the publication of "The Bride of Christ" and Lutheran Liturgical Renewal. With the resurrection of this site it is our hope that THE BRIDE OF CHRIST will once again see publication, either as a published quarterly journal, or in a digital version, or both. To this end we are re-constructing the website and are offering a companion blog for the purpose of discussing issues related to the journal and Lutheran Liturgical Renewal. Miscellaneous articles, essays, etc. from past issues will be made available on the blog from time to time. We invite you to join us in the discussion and share your ideas and suggestions.

1. Providing a digital version of the journal.
2. Use of the journal as a print forum in connection to the annual St. Michael Liturgical Conference.
3. Call for papers - articles, papers, book reviews.
4. Additional suggestions.

Thank you for visiting the blog. We hope to hear from you.

In Christ,
Rev. Timothy D. May

Friday, July 10, 2009

Liturgical Piety

Within Christianity, when a different church body or denomination is raised in discussion, often similarities and differences are brought up or highlighted in terms of particular practices of piety and acts of devotion. This is also the case among those within one's own church body or denomination who differ on these matters.

When liturgical piety is attacked or undermined within church bodies that are historically liturgical it may be due to the questioning of acts of piety or a questioning of the essence of the liturgy itself. Whole movements within and outside of Christianity have arisen over the centuries in opposition to the liturgy. Charges of "ritualization" or "hyper-ritualization" are raised. The liturgy may be characterized in different ways and minimized as mere aesthetics (which implies that action is disconnected from the faith; worship is but public "show").

Is it rationalism? Is the liturgy now defined by the social sciences? The Scripture and the Church's tradition dare root the practice of liturgy in the Church's prayer. In the Christian tradition the liturgical direction is toward Christ in the Eucharist on the altar where the Lord's death is proclaimed. Even the preached Word leads to the altar.

When the liturgy and liturgical piety are attacked or undermined this may be due to a desire for new and exciting trends and fads, a desire to follow after movements or groups who do not follow the practices of the historic liturgy or a misunderstanding or rejection of the focus and spirit of the liturgy - that is the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.

Liturgical piety is best practiced in the light of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church and her Tradition. The handing over of the deposit of faith takes place in the Church and is prayed in the liturgy. The Church believes, teaches and confesses what she prays and what she passes on to the faithful.

Rejection of the liturgy and acts of liturgical piety, even if we ourselves are not comfortable with such, is a conscious or unconscious rejection of the continuity of the faith. We do best to uphold the distinct nature of the liturgy and return to an appreciation of the essence of liturgical piety as is summarized in the lex orandi, lex credendi.

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