Worship and Power: Liturgical Authority in Free Church Traditions

PART OF SERIES Worship & Witness
Book, 2023, 210 pp
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Christian worship emerges from and speaks back into human relationships that are necessarily shaped by power and authority. Free Churches structure and negotiate power in relation to worship in ways that reflect the decentralization, local diversity, and personal agency that characterize many aspects of Free Church theology and practice.

This volume models how dialogue among scholars and practitioners of Free Church worship, as well as dialogue with the wider church, can be mutually enriching as Christians strive together to worship in ways that are faithful and just.

"In Free Church traditions, the ways worship shapes us can appear confusing to some, like theological signatures written in invisible ink, only discernible to those with he means of revealing hidden text and meaning. Worship and Power is a bold, winsome, and insightful collection of essays that changes the ink so a wider, ecumenical community can consider the swirling flow and pathways of the Holy Spirit's power when Christians gather in numbers small and large, in spaces closed and open." --Malinda Elizabeth Berry, associate professor of theology and ethics, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary

"Addressing a huge lacuna of worship/liturgy done in and from Free Churches, this very rich collection of essays documents, questions, challenges, and lays out power dynamics within communities, the place of authority between clergy and members, and the hidden/open relations between communities and state. Always at stake, this book wrestles with power structures that determine who we are, the places we inhabit, the mission we carry, what to be a church is all about, and what it means to be Christians." --Claudio Carvalhaes, professor of worship, Union Theological Seminary of New York City

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