Friday, April 08, 2011

A change of seasons

Everyone thinks and lives in terms of seasons… but you’d be hard pressed to realise that churches do. Perhaps.

Traditional seasons
There are reasons why churches have backed away from seasons as the focus of their prayers. One is that our modern city life is much less affected by the traditional seasons than in rural days. Whether it rains or not is more a matter of inconvenience than crops growing. To focus on seasons makes us appear out of touch. Another is that, rightly or wrongly, seasons have become associated with formal, Catholic inclinations.

And so we have moved away from seasons and in our evangelical churches our focus is shaped by the current sermon series.

The church’s seasonal calendar does have things to commend it though. Whether they understand the meaning or not Christmas and Easter are still times in which our whole community is involved. Of course we celebrate Christmas and Easter, but the seasonal calendar can help to put these celebrations in context. For example in the month leading up to Easter we are reminded through sentences of Scripture and prayer to repent and be disciplined, then to serve only God, we are reminded of the transfiguration and to turn to God, then the promise of new life, achieved through the resurrection of Jesus.

New seasons
But the problem remains that as a society we don’t operate in these seasons....

To read more, click here.

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