Leadership in Liturgy
The Liturgy comes alive when the gestures and movements of those leading communicate a meaning, set a tone and offer guidance to the assembled community.
Words are expressive of truth and ideas, but facial expressions and gestures, when authentic and real and not exaggerated, reveal the inner attitudes of worship: praise and blessing, joy and peace, self-offering and humility.
There is always a facial expression, even if it is only bland and passive.
What happens when the facial expressions show boredom, or anger or fear or confusion or bitterness or depression or carelessness, or other negative dispositions. Have you even noticed? If one is awake and alert, how could one but notice! But even if one does not consciously notice, subconsciously, the disposition of the leader communicates an attitude and tone to the assembled community.
Of course the influence works both ways: if faces in the congregation appear bored, or vacant, or distracted, or negative – that is no help to those trying to lead good Liturgy.
If you are suffering from any of the above negative conditions (and we all do at one time or another) then you can enter into the request for God’s mercy at the beginning of the Liturgy in a more intense way, perhaps also asking the congregation for their prayerful support as you and other leadership team members minister to the community in this Liturgy.
When you are in a leadership role try to do it well, with sincere faith and authentic positive disposition and a sensitivity for the appropriate mood for the various parts of the Liturgy.