So last night I posted on a couple of things, including an article in which worship was described is not the most important thing we do as church or Christians. Here is why I feel that is not true. Aside from the theological reason, Christ is present in worship, I think that regular communal time together is vital to our mission or outreach, because it is in worship that we learn how to be the community. Together through the liturgy, we learn how it is that the church serves the community and creates community in the shape of Christ. We confess our sins in our times of prayer and then pass the peace. This teaches us the basic shape of peace-making, which the world is in need of, both locally and internationally. Confession and prayer teach us how to be honest with one another, so that we are a truthful witness in a world where honesty and authenticity are lacking. We offer tithes and share communion, both of which teach us how to share our lives, our belongings and our wealth. We hear the word of God which shows us where to direct our missional actions, to the poor, the ignored and the 'other'. Baptism shows us how to make a community out of diverse ethnic groups, gender identities and socio-economic backgrounds. Without this foundation of worship, the church is doing nothing but copying other social service agencies which probably do a better job than we do assisting others. Not to mention the fact that the church is equipped to do something that agencies cannot do. We can befriend those we aid. We do not need to keep a professional distance. We, as the body of christ, join with them in suffering and in challenge. Their lives are joined to ours in a way that secular agencies cannot reproduce.
Is the church created only to serve? Service is important and vital. But our service is part of a larger mission, which is to show the world what the Kingdom of God looks like. Perhaps we can only do this in part. Definately we cannot create the Kingdom on our own. But we are not called to create the kingdom, which I think the idea that the church is called to serve and not worship leads too, the fallacious idea that we can create the kingdom (fix the worlds problems) through our actions. we can't do that. We show the world a better way and wait faithfully for Christ to return and recreate the world.
A church that serves without worship exists to serve the world alone. A church that serves and worships exists to serve and follow christ.