Russell Barr

Reference: Volume 55 2020, p42-46
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To commemorate the life of prominent choir director and member of the Society’s Council, Ian McCrorie, this article based on an interview with Douglas Galbraith is reproduced from Different Voices.

Reference: Volume 55 2020, p47-50
PDF icon Record 55 47-5047 KB

Charles Robertson

This is a review article of a new book by Professor Bryan Spinks of Yale, a former president of the Society, by Charles Robertson

Reference: Volume 55 2020, p51-56
PDF icon Record 55 51-5654.37 KB

Douglas Galbraith

This is a review article of a new book by Lezlie Stewart by Douglas Galbraith

Reference: Volume 55 2020, p57-58
PDF icon Record 55 57-5840.46 KB

Scott McCarthy

This exploration of Langholm’s Hugh MacDiarmid’s damning verdict on the church formed the presidential address given in May 2018 by the parish minister at Langholm, Eskdalemuir, Ewes and Westerkirk. The quotation in the title is from ‘A drunk man looks at the thistle’ where the poet accuses the church of keeping Christ to themselves. The paper begins with an analysis of the parish and its people and explores models of ministry, the dangers placed on unity in a parish of several locations, and goes on to question what 'belonging’ to the church means. He asks: 'To what extent does our decline as local congregations reflect our failure to satisfy people's yearnings, and are these yearnings felt by those who self-describe as Christians but do not attend church?'

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p2-11
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Compiled by Douglas Galbraith

Subtitled Technology in the service of the praise of God, this is a detailed report of the postponed 2017 Study Day (to March 2018), a consultation of 44 participants, held in the recently refurbished Greyfriars Parish Church in Lanark to consider the current digital landscape and the church's response, particularly in relation to worship. The main input was from Dr Graham Maule who brought the theories of six cultural critics to bear on new and old ‘tool-based’ practices in worship, and this was taken up by a symposium and in general discussion.

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p12-34
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Consultation in Lanark March 8 2018

This is the full order of worship used at the opening of the study day on technology in worship. It consisted of a re-imagining of the ancient office of Terce and contains scriptural reference to the use of tools, a new litany and collect, with the incorporation of new versions of psalms by Lezley Stewart.

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p35-41
PDF icon Record 53 35-4153.65 KB

Douglas Galbraith

A contribution to a seminar at the Reformation Studies Institute of the University of St Andrews in 2015, the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in Europe. Based on a new edition of the earliest version of the Gude and Godlie Ballatis (1565), edited by Professor Emeritus Alasdair A. MacDonald of Groningen, the seminar explored the nature and purpose of the Ballatis and, given that the original publication did not print the music, brought text and music together for a handful of the items so that they could be sung by the audience.

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p42-51
PDF icon Record 53 42-51202.83 KB

David Beckett

The Editor interviews the Revd David M Beckett, whose 8 sermons on worship had recently been added to the Church Service Society’s website. These had been preached in 1988 in Greyfriars Kirk of which Beckett was minister.

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p52-54
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Martin Ritchie

A tribute to the late Treasurer of the Society, the Revd Jennifer Macrae of Haddington St Mary’s, who died in March 2018, given at the Annual Meeting of 2018. The author had spent time with her as a probationer minister.

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p55-57
PDF icon Record 53 55-5745.35 KB

Douglas Galbraith

Information was given about these titles:

Liturgy on the Edge: Pastoral and attractional worship, ed. Samuel Wells (Canterbury Press)

Liturgical Worship: A basic introduction,  Mark Earey (Church House Publishing)

The Language of Liturgy: A ritual poetics, David Jasper (SCM Press)

Visual Arts in the Worshipping Churc, Lisa J DeBoer (Eerdmans)

Grasping the Heel of Heaven: Liturgy, leadership and ministry in today's Church, ed. Aiden Platten (Canterbury Press)

A Diary of Private Prayer: John Baillie, updated and revised, Susanna Wright (Scribner)

Words that Listen: A literary companion to the Lectionary, eds J Barney Hawkins and Ian S Markham (Canterbury Press)

Reference: Volume 53 2018, p58-60
PDF icon Record 53 58-6049.19 KB

Stephen Mark Holmes

This was a lecture given to the Church Service Society at its Annual Meeting in May 2017. It takes a fresh look at how worship was understood in Renaissance Scotland, and in the process disturbs some of the assumptions about the nature of the Scottish Protestant Reformation, including its timetable and uneven development in different parts of the country. One aspect is how far change in Catholic worship had progressed and was continuing to progress even beyond the traditional date of the Reformation. An emphasis is the matter of how liturgy was interpreted and taught to the people before and after the Reformation.

Reference: Volume 52 2017, p2-12
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Paul Ellingworth

The author critically examines changes that have been made to these hymns, not in earlier times which  Charles Wesley was so exercised about, but in modern hymn books in use. He then categories the kinds of change that have been made: punctuation, changes in English usage, the matter of inclusive language, changing attitudes (for example, as to what constitutes racism).

Reference: Volume 52 2017, p13-21
PDF icon Record 52 13-2167.94 KB

Gordon D. Jamieson

There is discussion of the different expectations ministers face today, not least the lack of experience of the church and of Christian formulations. One noticeable change is that now a funeral is seen as a celebration of a life (illustrated by the large number of humanist-led funerals) and that ‘tributes’ to the deceased are required, which is difficult to fit properly into a traditional liturgy, and ways of approaching that are discussed.

Reference: Volume 52 2017, p22-24
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Scott M. Rennie

This recent resource for leaders of worship is lectionary-based (using variously the Revised Common Lectionary and the Narrative Lectionary, and potentially others). It is prepared by some Church of Scotland and other clergy, and representatives of the Wild Goose Resource Group. Its purpose is to explore the readings in a variety of ways and suiting all age groups. It has been broadly taken up.

Reference: Volume 52 2017, p25-27
PDF icon Record 52 25-2748.71 KB