By Charles D. Cashdollar
A non secular domestic explores congregational existence inside of British and American Reformed church buildings among 1830 and 1915. At a time whilst students became attracted to the daily event of neighborhood congregations, this ebook reaches again into the 19th century, a significantly formative interval in Anglo-American non secular lifestyles, to envision the historic roots of congregational life.Taking the viewpoint of the laity, Cashdollar levels largely from worship and tune to fund-raising and management, from pastoral care to social paintings, from prayer conferences to strawberry fairs, from the sanctuary to the kitchen. Firmly rooted in broader currents of gender, type, notions of middle-class respectability, expanding expectancies for private privateness, and styles of professionalization, he reveals that there has been a steady shift in emphasis in the course of those years from piety to fellowship.Based on documents, guides, and memorabilia from approximately one hundred fifty congregations representing 8 denominations, a non secular domestic supplies us a complete, composite portrait of spiritual lifestyles in Victorian Britain and the USA.
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Extra resources for A Spiritual Home: Life in British and American Reformed Congregations, 1830-1915
The coming of a new pastor could, therefore, provide opportunity for change, and undoubtedly many selections were made with that in mind, as when impatient Presbyterians at St. 50 Despite the ministers’ considerable power to shape congregational life, their professional roles were less discretely deﬁned in practice than in theory. By the World War I era, several decades of aggressive professionalization had narrowed lay responsibility, but during much of the nineteenth century, many nominally pastoral roles were routinely assumed by strong laity.
Their oratory readily pulled individual listeners into its grasp. One of the ushers at Plymouth Church studied the young men around him, and while Beecher preached, they sat poised and receptive, “all sense of surroundings . . ”3 Viewed from inside the congregation, however, the perspective is less onedimensional. Preaching was important, but it was linked to the congregation’s ongoing life and work, and set in a context of worship. Clergy who did not have the status of celebrities successfully nurtured congregations, even if they did not draw curiosity seekers and tourists.
In length, forty minutes became the new norm. Language became more accessible and informal. ”18 In America, Finney referred to his discourses as “talking sermons,” a term that conveyed their more conversational style. ”19 Pastors were also encouraged, and in some cases required, to abandon their manuscripts as well as their formal eighteenth-century rhetoric. Congregationalists had never looked favorably on sermons that were read rather than preached, although R. D. Dale and others certainly continued to prepare manuscripts.