Recovery of Rituals
● Protestantism is revising its rituals, according to Cyril C. Richardson, Professor of Church History at New York’s Union Theological Seminary, who said on January 28 (1952) that many denominations are returning to the use of processionals, vestments, litanies and ancient traditions. He told how in the sixteenth century Protestant reformers had laid emphasis on instruction alone, but that the trend has now reversed, and that with the change there is a growing practice of erecting Gothic structures to set religious worship apart from other activities. He said, “Space can express holiness as readily as the Bible.” This is just what the reformers opposed. Is not religion sufficiently “apart” from the people already? It is not space to express holiness that is needed, but a real knowledge of the truth! That is just as scarce today as in the sixteenth century, and its need cannot be replaced by rituals and ceremonies. The pagan witch doctors can overawe their people with these, but they give no knowledge of God. Christ’s instruction was different: ‘Go preach.’—Matt. 10:7.