LutheranChik tells of a powerful discussion that arose from her congregation’s monthly lay ministry meeting about the meaning of worship and its various symbols and gestures (from what I can tell, at her church "lay ministry" = lay assisting ministers).
Besides being floored that her congregation actually has a monthly meeting of worship assistants – what a great model of dedication, training and continuing education! – I very much appreciate her conversation regarding the what and how of worship:
How do we initially ritually create sacred space that lets people know
that they’re not at a social, not in a lecture, not at a game show, not
at some assembly of individuals all cocooned inside their own private
faith dramas, but the gathered people of God, ready to be fed by Word
and Sacrament and then sent back out into the world? . . .
. . . I fear that, in our institutional desire to be
friendly and welcoming and immediately accessible to anyone who walks
through the door, we lose a sense of holy mystery.
Go check out her brief but wonderful post, Reverence and Ritual. She asks some really good questions, and in the process makes some nice points for reverence, ritual and mystery as essential elements of Christian worship.
PS: If you like her call for the importance of reverence, ritual and mystery, you may also appreciate my post suggesting that young folk are not opposed to tradition (as is commonly thought!)