Now the MDG liturgy: CEN 1.25.08 p 7. January 24, 2008Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, Development/Economics/Govt Finances, Hymnody/Liturgy, The Episcopal Church.
The Episcopal Church’s charitable arm, Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) has released a liturgy to encourage American Anglicans to focus their Lenten devotions upon the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The liturgy “Stations of the MDGs” is “designed to be used during Lent in lieu of the traditional Stations of the Cross service,” Luke Fodor, the Network Coordinator at the Office of Church Relations at ERD said in an email.
Adapted from a template prepared by Mike Angell of the Office of Young Adult and Higher Education Ministries at the Episcopal Church Center in New York, the liturgy takes the worshipper through eight stations of the MDGs, each signifying one of the goals of the 2000 UN programme to eradicate poverty in the developing world.
The service begins with an explanation of the meaning of the MDGs and the statement that “Today, we will pray and experience the MDGs as Stations as we commit ourselves to living out the Baptismal Covenant by working to achieve the MDGs. We see ourselves and the Church as on a pilgrimage in the world, journeying with each other toward the justice of the Reign of God as manifest in the goals.”
Pilgrims then recite the Baptismal covenant found in the American Book of Common Prayer and then move through each of the eight stations as leaders give reflections how the worshipper might help: eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, achieve universal primary education, promote gender equality and empower women, reduce child mortality, improve maternal health, combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases, ensure environmental sustainability, and create a global partnership for development.
After the worshippers have passed through each of the stations of the MDGs, they are gathered together by the celebrant who then says, “Let us repeat together and commit ourselves to the Millennium Development Goals.” To which the congregations replies, “As Christians we commit ourselves to God’s Mission as we work to” bring about the eight goals.
In 2003 the Episcopal Church endorsed the MDGs and at its General Convention in 2006 voted to make the MDGs a mission priority for the church.