Volume 05, Number 01 May 1975

Tradition and Change: Worship in the United Reformed Church

James M Todd

The giver of this Centenary Lecture for 1974 was Chairman of the English Congregational Church worship committee and is now a member of the URC Doctrine and Worship Committee. The service books in use in the two Churches prior to union are described, and the decisions of the Assembly of the new Church as to what is required immediately. This included a hymn book supplement New Church Praise, an order for the ordination of elders and a booklet with orders for Word and Sacrament, seen as a directory rather than a text. An interesting feature is the provision of both traditional and contemporary prayers in parallel columns. The lecture gives a close analysis of the new basic order, which derives from the Joint Liturgical Group. Many issues are discussed along the way.

Christian Worship Today: Its Crisis and Renewal

H W Cant

The minister of St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, in the Lee Lecture for 1974, outlines some causes of the crisis as he sees it: the passage from a sacral to a secular universe, the accompanying crisis of faith, and the social changes which absent people from their home at weekends. The author then outlines signs which show the extent of the crisis: the sign of ‘leavetaking’, of prayerlessness in the faithful, of dumbness (failure to articulate the faith), of a ‘geriatric’ society (absence of young people). He disagrees with Charles Davis’s contrast between the ghetto and the desert as a way of tackling the situation (the church reconvening in the desert). Worship must become again a genuine celebration of the life of the Risen Christ. We must have a greater expectancy. We do not try to obtrude worship of our own. We need to acknowledge our life in fellowship together and with Christ, making room for each other. We also must identify with Christ in his service of the world and be ready to meet him in ordinary men and women.


G D Kilpatrick

'Remembrance' is not the only possible meaning of the Greek word. Dix claims 're-presentation' and Jeremias 'succour'; these are dismissed. In 1 Cor 11:26 Paul seems to reinterpret it as 'proclaim' and this may be backed up by usages of the corresponding verb in the Septuagint. Another issue is whether Jesus gave the command to repeat or not. Anthropology knows story as threeforld: orgin, pattern of them, command to repeat. This is seen also in the Passover and in the liturgy for the day of atonement in the Temple. Attention has not been paid to this in the present case, yet the pattern is there in the institution narrative. Other issues are explored: whether anamnesis refers to just death and resurrection or whole life from incarnation, the meaning of blessing and thanksgiving in relation to the eucharistic prayer, and when consecration takes place.

The Revised Orders of Holy Communion: Comparison and Comments

John W Fraser

This is a comparison between revisions in the Churches of England and Scotland. The Book of Common Prayer 1662, Alternative Series 3 1971, 1973, The Book of Common Order 1940 and The Divine Service 1973 are considered. The JLG's 'possible basic pattern' is referred to. These are set out in an appendix. One conclusion is that the 1973 order has become clumsier and heavier by the adjustments made.

Crichton Kirk

John B Logan

A history of the family which gave its name to the parish leads into the establishment of this collegiate church and the foundation and development of the building. This is desccribed. The subsequent history of the church is recounted and some account of the current place and use of the church. Photographs were provided.

Letters to the Editor

Various Contributors

Charles Stobie finds fault with the new Church Hymnary: in its treatment of the metrical psalms, the unsingable nature of the modern hymn tunes, and the dropping of sung amens. He commends the inclusion of prose psalms, and defends the Victorian element of the book, taking issue with an editorial in a preceding issue of the Review. Colin Miller takes issue with a review in the previous issue of The Divine Service which wished to delete an opening metrical psalm; the writer argues against this judgement for historical reasons.

The Church Service Society - Notes

No Author Specified

Report of the annual Conference at St Vigean's which took The Divine Service as its topic. The company also sang items from the new Church Hymnary under the direction of Stewart Todd. The 1975 Conference was announced, to be based on the Marriage Service. There was a report also of the Centenary Lecture given by the Revd James M Todd of the United Reformed Church (printed in this issue of the Review).

List of Plates

Illustrations in this volume

Plate 1 Crichton Church Exterior - from South
Plate 2 Crichton Church Interior - Before 1898
Plate 3 Crichton Church Interior - June 1974
Plate 4 Crichton Church - Sacrament House