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ESV: Book of Common Prayer Daily Office Lectionary

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Steve F.

Sorry, Rob, but as a member of a highly liturgical tradition, I can't help but reading this: Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with tambourine and dancing ...(Ps. 150:3-4a)

It's not the only mention, but it's the one that always comes first to mind.

I, too, have seen so-called "liturgical dance" that was 100% performance - and I've seen truly Spirit-led liturgical dance that made me want to weep with joy. And I always go into it with the "OK, so this is going to suck, too" attitude.

But then, I have been in deeply, precisely, accurately liturgical worship services that have been "well-performed," mechanical and dead, too.

It's not the medium - it's mostly the messengers.


check out BodyPrayer by Doug Pagitt.



Lorna -

There are many reasons I do not find liturgical dance uplifting, but will just offer a couple of quick ones.

1. It is overly performance based. Sure, there are "performances" of a choir/schola and the presider/assistants, but they are functional performances. Dance, IMHO, is neither supportive of the communal experience nor is it functional. At best, it is extraneous. A worshipping community is being asked to stop what they are doing and watch a dance.

2. It is an innovation with no precedent in Christian worship. Dancers and supporters point to the Psalms as support, but this is a stretch and intellectually dishonest. We do not worship the way they did in the Temple, nor do we seek to replicate this. In Western Christianity this has only recently been incorporated into worship as part of the so-called renewal process that has led to all sorts of liturgically horrid things.

Again, this is all just my opinion, but as a pastor in a liturgical tradition, I see no reason to include it in worship.



would be interested to know why it wasn't uplifting.


Not sure I know what "liturgical" dancing is but I have seen some dancing in expression to worship that was very beautiful. I have also seen some that was not so great. I like the idea of expressing things in different ways. Sometimes it is just what is needed to get us out of our head and into our heart - though I believe the intellect can be divinely inspired too!


I gotta say, there is nothing that makes my skin crawl like "liturgical" dancing. I have never once seen it and thought it was uplifiting. There have been a few times when I have witnessed it and thought it bordered on sacrilege.

Signing, on the other hand, is a different beast that I encourage when there are community members that are hearing impared.

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