I was reading an article about how Pentecostal churches, the fastest growing part of Church should value sacramental worship. To be honest, I really am not much into this type of stuff. I am more interested in the cutting edge worship that brings divine healing and deliverance to the nation.
I do remember from seminary that the Catholic Church hold to seven different types of sacraments: Christening, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Prayer for the sick, Marriage, and Holy orders. Of them, most Pentecostal groups hold to just two: Lord’s Supper and Baptism.
While some of them are dead works and could even be idolatrous, other could be practiced harmlessly and becoming a connection with historical Christianity. I am not suggesting we start having Penance in our churches, booths and all!
Is there a place for liturgy in the Pentecostal movement?
I personally have very little exposure to true liturgy ministry outside of a few visits to a Lutheran Church as a child because our insurance man invited us for some special things. It was very different to me than our Assembly of God rolling on the floor and doing victory laps.
Now, if wikipedia is right and liturgy is “As a religious phenomenon, liturgy is a communal response to and participation in, the sacred through activity reflecting praise, thanksgiving, supplication or repentance..” then most Pentecostal service have their own, updated version of it. You know the fast song to start, the slow song to end and followed by the special during the offering? it might not be a Catholic mass but it is for sure ritual.
Interestingly, the etymology of liturgy which means the worship experience should be interactive or literally “work of the people.” I am not suggesting we start Zumba for Jesus or anything but our gathering such be more engaging with others in pursuit of the presence of the Holy Spirit.
What to make of the Catholic Sacramental worship in modern churches?
Many churches are trying to get back to some old traditional celebrations of faith. It is quite serious because it has led some people to actually deny the faith. An example of this is Brain Zahnd that has turned into a confused hippie priest in many ways.
It is important for us to remember that the reformation happen for a reason and that Martin Luthur did not risk his life to give the people what became known as the 95 theses. If we go back to being Catholic in a different building; the whole reformation was a waste of time.
My thoughts on it as the Catholics should be more Catholic but the Pentecostals should embrace being more committed to our style of worship and expression of faith. There is common ground between the two camps but I am not planning to pray to dead saints anytime soon in the name of Sacramental worship!