The 78th General Convention of the Episcopal Church and the Liturgy: New Wine in Old Wineskins?
The 78th General Convention of the Episcopal Church
generated a significant number of resolutions related to the church’s liturgy, most
of which passed both Houses, including resolutions authorizing preparation of
the revision of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer
and The Hymnal 1982. A review of the
resolutions related to liturgy and music, however, raises fundamental questions
about the kind of liturgical reform the church may undertake and how it may
integrate growing appreciation for linguistic and cultural diversity in the
church, including the insights of feminist, postcolonial, and LGBTQ theological
reflection and those produced by theologians of color. This essay argues that
serious engagement with these questions suggests a completely reimagined
liturgical “center of gravity” that integrates the insights of liturgical
scholarship and practice since the authorization of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer and The Hymnal 1982, while providing the
flexibility to respond to the church’s current diverse contexts.