‘Liturgy’, from a greek word leitourgia, is the name given ever since the days of the apostles of Jesus to the act of taking part in the solemn corporate worship of God by the priestly society of christians, who are the ‘Body of Christ, the church’.
From ‘The Shape of the Liturgy’ by Dom Gregory Dix (1901-1952)
At Canterbury, our worship pattern (liturgy) finds it roots in the Book of Common prayer which we share with millions of Christians who call themselves Anglicans in more than 160 countries. Our liturgy primarily includes Holy Communion (eucharist) which was instituted by Jesus and has become the heart and core of christian worship and christian living.
In the Holy Eucharist, God nourishes us in Word and Sacrament and strengthens us to be the Body of Christ in the world. The Holy Eucharist is structured into two principle parts. In the first part of the service, known as the Liturgy of the Word, we read and reflect on readings from the Bible and offer prayers for the world. In the second part of the service, known as the Liturgy of the Table, we give thanks to God, and share in the life of God as we share in the bread and wine of communion.
Our service of Holy Eucharist follows a basic pattern that all Episcopal, Lutheran, and Roman Catholic churches share in common. If you are familiar with the Catholic mass, or a Lutheran Communion service, our liturgy will seem familiar to you.
Learn more about the Shape of Liturgy