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Volume 27 All Saints 1994
There is a detailed survey of The Book of Public Worship 1965 (first published 1923, revised 1942). Further revision was undertaken in 1982-89. Mention is made of the 1990 Coleraine Declaration on Public Worship and the frequency of celebration of Holy Communion.
A history of Presbyterianism in Ireland from the 17th century Scottish settlers. An account of Episcopal impositions, and the influence of the Westminster Confession, Catechism and Directory of Public Worship, bringing greater freedom and liberty in conduct of worship. There is mention of the introduction of organs and of the representation of Irish Presbyterians in successive editions of the Church Hymnary. The article has an extensive bibliography.
Stewart Todd regrets the total abandonment of traditional prayer language, citing the change from “thou” to “you” and the translation into modern speech of long-accepted forms and structures. There are suggestions for models of contemporary bidding prayers. Despite its scant reference to the work of the Holy Spirit, he finds it overall a worthy work of revision.
Peter Thomson notes the use of inclusive language throughout the book. He questions the use of REB as the only Bible version, also the changes in forms of liturgical texts and the three year lectionary rather than four. He is appreciative of the comprehensive alternative services, ordinances and prayers.
Tom Davidson Kelly laments the omission of the traditional words “Holy things to holy people”, with the paradox of holiness/unworthiness in receiving the blessed sacrament. Sinners are quickened in their desire for sanctification, being made holy through Christ.
George Rendle Leathem MA BD
Ian Robert Newton Miller MA
Ian Alexander Moir MA BD PhD
Ninian Blundell Wright MBE BD