Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 51 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Monday, August 31, 2015

What's old is new again, for now - Rector's Rambling for August 30, 2015

I once was told that if you stand still upon the truth, the world in its whirling dervish of circular-striving-after-something-new will eventually find you again.  Our job is to hook them as they look in and convert them before they spin away again.
This is proving true as the Millennials, those born after 1982, are discovering traditional liturgy.  Kelsey May of Converge Magazine wrote, “Technically, all churches have liturgy.  But The Book of Common Prayer is different.  In this liturgy — based on the oldest traditions of the church — are rich words, painstakingly composed from the truth of Scripture, to express the faith.  They demand meditation and absorption.  They become fuller for being repeated week after week, not depleted.  And delightfully: they remain the same….  The service is rich with the Word of God…  The brief sermon is quickly overshadowed by the recitation of the Apostles’ or Nicene Creed, the same words Christians have used to affirm their faith for millennia.  Liturgy endures not because it is pithy, but because it centres on the Eucharist.
In another article one young convert muses, “If you ask me why kids are going high church, I’d say it’s because the single greatest threat to our generation and to young people nowadays is the deprivation of meaning in our lives,”  “In the liturgical space, everything becomes meaningful.  We’re so thirsty for meaning that goes deeper, that can speak to our entire lives, hearts, and wallets, that we’re really thirsty to be attached to the earth and to each other and to God.  The liturgy is a historical way in which that happens.”
St. John’s, by standing firm on the faith once delivered to the saints AND worshipping as the church has done for centuries, has begun to “hook” many of those whirling by.  Let us be firm in our faith, be ready and willing to give a reason for the faith that is in us, and be welcoming and a help to those who are attending and trying to figure out our worship as they fulfill their Godly yearning.
~ http://convergemagazine.com/finding-faith-through-liturgy-14983
~ http://www.realclearreligion.org/2014/01/16/why_millennials_long_for_liturgy_258514.html