Last week I spent some time in interestingly erudite company thinking about Liturgy. I tend to feel, on these occasions, like the class idiot - the one who asks the questions no-one else does - but in fact this time I felt I had prepared rather more than usual by reading up on the background and rationale behind our 1982 liturgy, and I realise now that as a result of the two days of meetings I'm still thinking about what we do .
I can't begin to plunge into the detail, but things that stuck include:
The perils of over-specificity even in poetic images in liturgy.
The fact that clergy tend to have a different view on the above from laity simply because they repeat it with greater frequency.
The 1970 consecration prayer is much improved by removing some of the parenthesis and repetition of ideas and the archaic pronouns and verb forms.
I found myself objecting less vigorously than has become my wont when we used the 1970 liturgy on Sunday.
I enjoy the company of academics, while recognising how studiousness has never been my forte.
I don't want to sit any more exams, even to become officially a Lay Reader.
"And also with you" is as weak a response as it always seemed to be.
It's usually clergy who insist that a Service of The Word is an acceptable substitute for a Sunday communion service - usually when the Reserved Sacrament is involved - bearing in mind that this is a service they need never attend if they don't want to.
Once you start worrying about gender bias in liturgy you realise how useful the word "God" is. But "man" is still a no-no, whatever men say about mankind...
I'd better stop. But it's always fascinating to step out of my own worship zone and realise what other Episcopalians take - or do not take - for granted. Andrew's recent post touches on that, interestingly. It's hard work being part of a huge, sparsely-populated - let alone priested - diocese. But every time I step out of it I'm reinforced in one central idea.
I wouldn't be anywhere else.