Entries by Daniel J. Sparks

Small church ministry

The current worldwide coronavirus crisis should cause grave concern for everyone. It gives us pause to reflect on our mortality and how gingerly our lives teeter on the precipice between life and death at every moment. The church should especially consider its place in the world and how it ministers to those in need–in need […]

How to use the 1662 Book of Common Prayer in the United States

hy would we be interested in conforming our worship to a book that is over 300 years old? That is the question I [Aaron] heard when I first began using the 1662 Book of Common Prayer in my congregation. We live in a fast-paced, quickly developing, technology-driven society in modern America that focuses on the latest, the newest, and the most attention grabbing. Some of our churches desire to look like the society around them in the vain hope that they will attract worldly people into their pews and fellowship.

Why would we want to use this old book? Firstly, it is in continuity with the ancient church. The rhythm of Morning and Evening prayer and the litany, properly-administered Holy Communion and Baptism, the true words of the wedding service, and the comforting words of the office of the burial of the dead link us to a tradition greater than we are, bigger than the group of people gathered within our four walls, and ties us to the historical church universal.