The Preaching Service – The Glory of The Methodists

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Joint Liturgical Studies 17

A study of the piety, ethos and development of the Methodist Preaching Service

The Preaching Service of the Methodists is that service which takes place when they do not hold the Lord’s Supper. It is for reasons of pragmatism rather than theology that the Preaching Service has come to be the main diet of public worship for most Methodist congregations. There are simply not enough ministers (presbyters) for Methodism to be able to follow the Church of England down the Parish Communion road, and in any case I think to do so would be a mistake. There are some Methodists who would all too readily want to see the Lord’s Supper established as the main worship event. Some would too readily rum their backs on the Preaching Service tradition in favour of a heightened eucharistic piety. They fail to recognize that to do so would be to cut themselves off from what has made them distinctively Methodist.

Adrian Burdon