March 24, 2019
Friends in Christ,
President Albert Aymer of Hood Theological Seminary in Salisbury, North Carolina explains that including historic creeds in worship can add theological depth and integrity to worship services. Creeds give biblical authority to worship because the creeds are based on the Bible. Reciting biblical words aloud together, whether in prayers, creeds, or liturgies, often helps worshipers move from doubt to belief.
Consider how people during Bible times identified themselves as part of God’s family.
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one” (Deuteronomy 6:4).
“Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God’ ” (Matthew 16:16).
“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:6).
“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
“Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness….and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:6-11).
Each Wednesday evening during Lent we will recite together a creed or statement of faith. This week we will recite the United Church of Canada’s statement of faith. The United Church of Canada was inaugurated on June 10, 1925 in Toronto when the Methodist Church of Canada, the Congregational Union of Canada, and 70 percent of The Presbyterian Church in Canada entered into a union.
The United Church of Canada’s Statement of Faith from 1968 reads:
The United Church of Canada’s Statement of Faith, 1968
We are not alone, we live in God’s world.
We believe in God: who has created and is creating, who has come in Jesus, the Word made flesh, to reconcile and make new, who works in us and others by the Spirit.
We trust in God.
We are called to be the Church: to celebrate God’s presence, to live with respect in Creation, to love and serve others, to seek justice and resist evil, to proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen, our judge and our hope.
In life, in death, in life beyond death, God is with us. We are not alone.
Thanks be to God.
What is the purpose and mission of the church according to this statement of faith?
Blessings on the journey,