"Orders of Worship" (1944)

I owe a debt of thanks to the Rev. Dr. Leonard Smith, principal of the Unitarian College Manchester, for responding to my appeal to buy a copy of the old Orders of Worship “for use in Unitarian and Free Christian congregations” by sending me a copy as a gift.

It is a small volume a 1944 reprint of the 1932 edition with a familiar feel to anyone (left) who has experience using the Services of Religion attached to the front of the 1937 Hymns of the Spirit. (1937)

The bulk of the book is eight forms of service that, with experience, could be used morning or evening for short devotions or full services. In my quick survey, I discovered some nice touches, like appointed introductions to the collects (that may be used in lieu of an extemporaneous pastoral prayer) and a bidding for silent prayer and a small blessing to “dismount” from the silence. This one, for intance, is from the sixth service:

Grant us, Lord, we pray thee, day by day the joy of true living, that we who seek thy service may ever find thy peace. Amen.

There are a couple of litanies, and “acts of devotion” plus a proper service for Easter and Christmas Day, the latter of which I’ll comb of ideas this year.

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