Selah

“Selah” is a word that occurs in various psalms, deployed after certain verses. No-one knows what it means. However, informed guesses usually light first on the probability that it indicates some kind of pause in the recitation. Perhaps there was silence, perhaps some kind of musical interlude. Or it might mean something else altogether.

This blog is on a brief pause, since my liturgical experiences, and my blogging time, are currently occupied by visiting churches such as this one, with a group of mixed-bathers – Roman Catholic and Anglicans. You can see news of the pilgrimage on the Diocese of Worcester Facebook page.

St Peter’s, Rome

Selah.

Introducing the glossary

I said yesterday, my next three posts would be examples of the public reading of scripture. However, I realise now I need to implement a glossary for terms that I will be using. You can access this glossary (across four pages) from the drop-down menu above, and I will leave a permanent reminder of its existence in the sidebar.

Every time I use a technical term – whether liturgical, theological or the occasional specialist word – for the first time, I will try to create a glossary entry for it.

If you think I’ve used a technical term, and you can’t find it in the glossary, either post a comment on the blog post I’ve used the term in, or on the main glossary index page. The main index page will accept comments, the actual sub pages with the glossary on will not.

Welcome

cartoon from www.weblogcartoons.com

Cartoon by Dave Walker.
Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at We Blog Cartoons.

Welcome to a new blog, although despite Dave’s excellent cartoon, not one I expect to make me famous! This is where I want to pull together a range of my thinking and writing around liturgy and worship, and offer it as an engagement with and resource for others. Most of the below text will be repeated on my About page. My thoughts on other topics can be found on a sporadically maintained blog at dougchaplin.wordpress.com.

The title of this blog is Latin shorthand for “liturgical things”. Liturgy means different things to different people, but most fundamentally it normally refers to an underlying pattern of worship, typically in the Christian tradition.

In that sense, liturgy doesn’t have to be written down, though it often has been. Every group of people that meets together for some form of worship develops recognisable patterns that means group members work with a sense of appropriate group behaviour, and develop familiarity with their way of doing things.

More normally though, most people use the word liturgy for a more-or-less set pattern of Christian worship, often with highly developed written texts, and certainly with a consistent and developed structure. Narrowing the use again, “the liturgy” is often used of sacramental worship, especially the Eucharist (Mass, Holy Communion).

On this blog, I hope to offer a range of reflections and resources for people who want, as I want, to make our liturgies engaging, thoughtful, and as good as we can make them – although I recognise that different people will define good in ways other than I do.