Saint Athanasius Church
Scripture | Spirit | Sacrament
Our liturgy may be uncomfortable to our brothers and sister coming from an evangelical or pentecostal background. But our order of service contains an ordered and biblically directed time of prophecy which will most likely be uncomfortable for our brothers and sisters of Lutheran, Anglican, Roman Catholic, or Presbyterian backgrounds. We have written about this distinctive in our What We Believe section, but we wanted to add a few things here.
First, the practice of the supernatural gifts during our order of service is completely voluntary. We encourage those moved by the Spirit to practice them in an orderly manner, but we do not compel anyone.
Second, we believe that all persons water baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit do receive and are indwelled by the Holy Spirit. We do not believe that it is necessary for salvation to exercise the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit, but we do believe that the Christian is neglecting the fullness of power and life freely available to him by resisting them.
Third, the following is an example of our prophetic portion of the service. We have decided to place it here in order to better inform the visitor of what to expect on Sunday morning.
Prayer and prophecy sample from our liturgy:
Minister: Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil. (1 Thessalonians 5:19) Brothers, desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak with tongues. (1 Corinthians 14:39)
People: Let all things be done decently and in order. (1 Corinthians 14:39)
*Orderly prophesying and tongues speaking and prayer may occur. To pray or speak in tongues is permissible one at a time and no more than three. Each person speaking in tongues must provide the interpretation afterward if not provided by someone else, as these gifts are given for the edification of the body when we assemble together. Women who are moved by the Spirit to prophesy may do so, but only with their head covered with a symbol of authority for the sake of the angels (Head coverings are provided in the back if needed). But if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, nor do the churches of God. (1 Corinthians 11:2-16)
Minister: Earnestly desire the greater gifts. (1 Corinthians 12:31)
People: And yet I show you a more excellent way. (1 Corinthians 12:31)
Minister: Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
People: And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)