John McClure offers great advice on composing congregational prayers.

Otherwise Thinking

Crafting Liturgical Prayers: Part I, Finding the Right Language

I have the opportunity to visit many churches and participate in worship across many traditions. In non-prayerbook churches, prayers in worship are either crafted extemporaneously during worship, or crafted ahead of time before worship. This places tremendous responsibility on the worship leader who has to understand at least four things:

1) the kind of language that is appropriate for public prayer as opposed to private, devotional prayer

2) the forms of prayer that are possible for offering public prayer (collect, bidding prayers, litanies, etc.)

3) the genre of prayer that is being offered at a particular moment in public worship (adoration, confession, petition, thanksgiving, intercession, etc.).

4) the theological elements that go into each genre of prayer.

Over the course of the next few posts, I will address these questions.

Finding the Right Language

The goal with liturgical English is to…

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