At Atonement, we practice liturgical worship, where much of the service is structured and remains consistent in order from week to week, while other pieces change on a weekly, seasonal and yearly basis. There is both continuity and variety.
Through our worship, we cherish the close personal relationship we have with God. Jesus is our friend and our brother, as well as our savior and redeemer. When we worship him we want to show him both our love and respect.
Much of what we do in our worship originated in the first few centuries of the Christian church. Since many founders of the Christian Church were Jewish, much was in turn based on Jewish worship practices from the Old Testament synagogue.
The most important reason we use structured service is to keep the focus on God and on what he has graciously done for us. Here’s a look at the basic structure of our services:
- An opening hymn expresses our collective joy for the undeserved gift of God’s forgiveness
- The confession of sins, offered in unison by the congregation, acknowledges our need for forgiveness
- The absolution announced by the pastor assures us of the forgiveness Christ has won for all believers
- A song of thanksgiving, reflecting the theme of the day’s service, allows us to participate in the service and to express thoughts of praise
- A prayer is offered by the pastor on behalf of the congregation
- A reading from the Old Testament, chosen based on the day’s theme
- A portion of a Psalm (one of the hymns of the Old Testament church) is sung
- A reading from the New Testament, followed by a reading from one of the four Gospels
- A hymn that reflects the thoughts of the Gospel reading
- The pastor preaches a sermon based on one of the day’s Bible readings
- The Apostles’ or the Nicene Creed is recited as a confession of our common faith in the Triune God
- An offering to support the work of the ministry is gathered
- Prayers of thanksgiving and intercession are offered, followed by a hymn reflecting the sermon theme
- On the first and third Sundays of each month, the service continues with a celebration of the Lord’s Supper or Holy Communion. Here the Lord gives us his true body and blood in, with, and under the bread and the wine (1 Corinthians 10:16) for the forgiveness of our sins.
- The service concludes with a final prayer, a blessing, and a closing hymn encouraging us to serve the Lord in his world, letting his love show in every aspect of our lives.
Sometimes understanding the history and background of something helps make it more meaningful. We hope that’s the case for you as you learn more about liturgical worship. If you have any questions, we’d honor the opportunity to offer answers about the worship service, our beliefs or other aspects of our congregational life and family. Contact us, here.
Atonement Lutheran Church
Meets Every Sunday
Worship: 8:00 + 10:30 AM
Bible Class + Sunday School: 9:15 AM
All are welcome!
4412 Legacy Drive
Plano, TX 75024
M-F: 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Sundays: 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM