Public and Private Worship
- May be structured or spontaneous. Many contain hymns/songs, bible readings and sermon.
- Roman Catholic/Anglican/Orthodox- structured and liturgial. Always contain Holy Communion/Mass.
- Methodists- structred but non-liturgial e.g. hymn sandwich.
- Pentecostal/House Churches- have spontaneous and charasmatic worship e.g. lifting hands and dancing.
- Some hold services within their houses e.g. if Christianity is prohibited or is simpler.
- Many worship independenly at home e.g. from Grace to singing worship songs
Inside a Church
- Altar- Most important part, holds Communion items. Is in the East end.
- East window- Often stained glass, behind Altar to draw attention to it.
- Pulpit- Raised box where sermon is given from or talks to congregation.
- Sanctuary- Raised part where important parts of sermon occurs.
- Lectern- Stand for Bible, made from brass in shape of an eagle.
- Font- Holds water for baptsim.
- Nave- Where congregation sits
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Symbolism in Christian Worship
- Cathedrals historically built at centre to represent God's kingship. Focus is always the Altar.
- Orthodox churches in the shape of a cross with large dome. Representing Christ's presence, eternity and nearness of Heaven. They are highly decorated.
- Free Chrurches- in simple halls where pulipt is centre of attention.
Icons, Statues, Stained-Glass Windows
- Icons- paintings of saints greeted with a kiss on entrance. Used to represent presence of saints.
- Stained-glass windows etc. depict biblical stories.
- Cross- represents Jesus' crucifixion and risen Christ
- Crucufix- reminder of Jesus' suffering
- Fish- Jesus called on his follwers to be "Fishers of men". Greek word for fish (ICTHYS) forms an accrostic for "Jesus Christ, God's Son, Saviour" in Greek.
- Hymns are important. Derived from scriptures.
- Choirs are important in leading singing.
- Musical insturments used e.g. pipe organs, brass bands and guitars. It can be solemn and signified or loud and lively, denomination dependent.
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Prayer and Meditation
- Prayer is when believers mentally or vocally communicate with God in many forms.
- "Answered prayers" can be prood that God exists.
- "Unanswered prayers"
- God answers all prayers in his own time and way and has bigger plans.
- Jesus prayed on the night of his arrest "My father, if it is possible, may this up be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will." "cup" may represent suffering.
- Roman Catholics/Orthodox pray to saints for intercession as they can join in making it more effective.
- Protestants say that Jesus is the only mediator so don't need Saints' help. They shouldn't be prayed to as they don't in the Bible.
- Quiet time- Time spent alone with God. Reading Bible or praying.
- Mediation- When believer clears mind of distracting thoughts and concentrates on God e.g. repeating prayer
- Contemplation- Not merely deep thinking but intimate wordless prayer where God's presence if sensed strongly.
- Rosary- String of beads attached in groups. Beads moved through fingers and prayers are read e.g. Lord's Prayer, Hail Mary and the Gloria.
- Icons- Used to help focus on God. Candle may be lit or they may kiss it.
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Food and Fasting
- Used for expression especially during festivals.
- God is the creator so all food comes from Him.
- Fasting used for atonement or to focus on spiritual matters.
- Roman Catholics shouldn't eat meat on Ash Wednesdays and Good Fridays. They shouldn't eat an hour before Holy Communuion.
- Lent celebrated 40 days and nights of Jesus' fasting in wilderness after baptism. Few Christians fast however give up luxuries.
- Festival foods are more cultural than religious. Day before Lent is Shrove Tuesday where rich foods are eaten, in UK "pancake day". Easter Eggs represent new life. 'Christmas Dinner'- roast turkey with stuffing and Christmas Pudding.
- Mass is celebrated with bread and wine= body and blood of Christ.
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