digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















For other uses, see Liturgy (disambiguation).
Wedding ceremony at Kiuruvesi Church in Kiuruvesi, Finland

Liturgy (Greek: λειτουργία) is the customary public worship done by a specific religious group, according to its particular beliefs, customs and traditions.

The word, sometimes rendered by its English translation "service", may refer to an elaborate formal ritual such as the Eastern Orthodox Divine Liturgy (Greek: Θεία Λειτουργία), Catholic Mass, the Eucharist or Mass (Anglican Communion) or a daily activity such as the Muslim salat[1] and Jewish services. As a religious phenomenon, liturgy is a communal response to the sacred through activity reflecting praise, thanksgiving, supplication, or repentance. Ritualization may be associated with life events such as birth, coming of age, marriage and death. It thus forms the basis for establishing a relationship with a divine agency, as well as with other participants in the liturgy. Methods of dress, preparation of food, application of cosmetics or other hygienic practices are all considered liturgical activities.


The word liturgy, derived from the technical term in ancient Greek, leitourgia, signifies the often expensive offers of service to the people, and thus to the polis and the state.[2] Through the leitourgia, the rich carried a financial burden and were correspondingly rewarded with honours. The leitourgia became both mandatory and honorific, supporting the patron's standing among the elite. The holder of a Hellenic leitourgia was not taxed a specific sum, but was entrusted with a particular ritual, which could be performed with greater or lesser magnificence. The chief sphere remained that of civic religion, embodied in the festivals: M.I. Finley notes "in Demosthenes' day there were at least 97 liturgical appointments in Athens for the festivals, rising to 118 in a (quadrennial) Panathenaic year."[3] Eventually, under the Roman Empire, such obligations, known as munera, devolved into a competitive and ruinously expensive burden that was avoided when possible.


Main article: Buddhist liturgy

The term Buddhist liturgy refers to a formalised service performed by the four-fold sangha and by nearly every denomination and sect in the Buddhist world. It is often done once or more times a day and can vary amongst the Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana sects. The liturgy mainly consists of reciting a sutra or passages from a sutra, a mantra (especially in Vajrayana), and several gathas. Depending on what practice the practitioner wishes to undertake, it can be done at a temple or at home. The liturgy is almost always performed in front of an object or objects of veneration and accompanied by offerings of light, incense, and food.


Jewish liturgy are the prayer recitations that form part of the observance of Rabbinic Judaism. These prayers, often with instructions and commentary, are found in the siddur, the traditional Jewish prayer book. In general, Jewish men are obligated to pray three times a day within specific time ranges (zmanim),[4] while, according to the Talmud, women are only required to pray once daily, as they are generally exempted from obligations that are time dependent.

Traditionally,[4] three prayer services are recited daily:

  1. Shacharit or Shaharit (שַחֲרִת), from the Hebrew shachar or shahar (שַחָר) "morning light,"
  2. Mincha or Minha (מִנְחָה), the afternoon prayers named for the flour offering that accompanied sacrifices at the Temple in Jerusalem,
  3. Arvit (עַרְבִית) or Maariv (מַעֲרִיב), from "nightfall."

Additional prayers:


Main article: Christian liturgy

Frequently in Christianity a distinction is made between "liturgical" and "non-liturgical" churches based on how elaborate or antiquated the worship; in this usage, churches whose services are unscripted or improvised are called "non-liturgical". Others object to this usage, arguing that this terminology obscures the universality of public worship as a religious phenomenon.[5] Thus, even the open or waiting worship of Quakers is liturgical, since the waiting itself until the Holy Spirit moves individuals to speak is a prescribed form of Quaker worship, sometimes referred to as "the liturgy of silence."[6] Typically in Christianity, however, the term "the liturgy" normally refers to a standardised order of events observed during a religious service, be it a sacramental service or a service of public prayer. In the Catholic tradition, liturgy is the participation of the people in the work of God, which is primarily the saving work of Jesus Christ. In the liturgy, Christ continues the work of redemption.[7]

The term "liturgy" literally in Greek means "work of the people," but a better translation is "public service" or "public work," as made clear from the origin of the term as described above. The early Christians adopted the word to describe its principal act of worship, the Sunday service (Holy Eucharist, Holy Communion, Mass or Divine Liturgy). This service, liturgy, or ministry (from the Latin 'ministerium') is a duty for Christians as a priestly people by their baptism into Christ and participation in his high priestly ministry. It is also God's ministry or service to the worshippers. It a reciprocal service. As such, many Christian churches designate one person who participates in the worship service as the liturgist. The liturgist may read announcements, scriptures, and calls to worship, while the minister preaches the sermon, offers prayers, and blesses sacraments. The liturgist may be either an ordained minister or a layman. The entire congregation participates in and offers the liturgy to God.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, p. 582–3
  2. ^ N. Lewis, "Leitourgia and related terms," Greek, Roman and Byzantine Studies 3 (1960:175–84) and 6 (1965:226–30).
  3. ^ Finley, The Ancient Economy 2nd ed., 1985:151.
  4. ^ a b Since the invention and rise of the Reform movement in Judaism during the early nineteenth century, there have developed irregular practices in the reform movement which are no longer based on Jewish tradition but, simply put, on majority decisions made inside the movement. "While many called out for reforms in the late eighteenth century and early nineteenth century, attempted changes in synagogue worship and education were short lived until the Hamburg temple was founded in 1818 (..)" (cf. Meyer, 'Response to Modernity: A History of the Reform Movement in Judaism', 1978, p.61) "There is little evidence of interaction between the US and European movements until the German immigration in the 1840s." (cf. Meyer, Response to Modernity, pp.235-236).
  5. ^ Underhill, E., Worship (London: Bradford and Dickens, 1938), pp. 3–19.
  6. ^ Dandelion, P., The Liturgies of Quakerism, Liturgy, Worship and Society Series (Aldershot, England and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2005).
  7. ^ Catechism of the Catholic Church 1069(London: Chapman, 1994).

Further reading[edit]

  • Baldovin, John F., SJ (2008) Reforming the Liturgy: a Response to the Critics. The Liturgical Press
  • Bowker, John, ed. (1997) Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-213965-7.
  • Bugnini, Annibale, (1990) The Reform of the Liturgy 1948–1975. The Liturgical Press
  • Dix, Dom Gregory (1945) The Shape of the Liturgy
  • Donghi, Antonio, (2009) Words and Gestures in the Liturgy. The Liturgical Press
  • Johnson, Lawrence J., (2009) Worship in the Early Church: an Anthology of Historical Sources. The Liturgical Press
  • Jones, Cheslyn, Geoffrey Wainwright, and Edward Yarnold, eds. (1978) The Study of Liturgy. London: SPCK.
  • Marini, Piero, (2007) A Challenging Reform: Realizing the Vision of the Liturgical Renewal. The Liturgical Press
  • Scotland, N. A. D. (1989). Eucharistic Consecration in the First Four Centuries and Its Implications for Liturgical Reform, in series, Latimer Studies, 31. Latimer House. ISBN 0-946307-30-X
  • "What Do Quakers Believe?". Quaker Information Center, Philadelphia, PA, 2004.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liturgy — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
226857 videos foundNext > 

Liturgy - Quetzalcoatl (Official Audio)

"Quetzalcoatl" is from the upcoming Liturgy album "The Ark Work" out March 23/24, 2015 on Thrill Jockey Records. CD/2LP pre-order : http://www.thrilljockey.com/thrill/Liturgy/The-Ark-Work...

Liturgy - Reign Array (Official Audio)

"Reign Array" is off Liturgy's album "The Ark Work," out in March on Thrill Jockey. 2xLP/CD: http://thrilljockey.com/thrill/Liturgy/The-Ark-Work iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-ark-...

Liturgy - Generation

No Copyright Intended.


Liturgy live at RED 7 in Austin Texas. Presented by ACOLYTE (acolyte-bsa.blogspot.com).

Liturgy - Returner (Official Music Video)

Official Music Video for "Returner" by Liturgy from the album Aesthethica, out now on Thrill Jockey Records thrilljockey.com/​catalog/​?id=105276 Directed by Zev Deans © Panorama Programming...

Sergei Rachmaninoff - Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom Op. 31

This video I put in a request and hope to heal all people in the world suffering from malignant disease. Сергей Рахманинов - Литургия Иоанна Златоуста...

Liturgy - The Ark Work ALBUM REVIEW

Listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebxIwwhV5MA Experimental rock and metal act Liturgy makes a magnum opus of the sounds and ideas forged on their last album. More loud rock reviews:...

Liturgy- Aesthethica ALBUM REVIEW

Listen: http://theneedledrop.com/?p=4743 Do intentions matter: A reaction to transcendental black metal? http://theneedledrop.com/?p=4847 On Liturgy's latest album, the interplay and...

Liturgy-True Will

from the album Aesthethica,copyright belongs to the band,label,etc. not me.

The Liturgy of St. Gregory Coptic Church-Part 1-Fr. Yousef Asaad

The Liturgy of St. Gregory the Theologian of the Coptic Rite. Father Yousef Asaad is the celebrating presbyter. Part 1.

226857 videos foundNext > 

71895 news items

Washington Post (blog)
Tue, 31 Mar 2015 07:15:00 -0700

A ranked selection of notable new recordings we heard in March. 1. Liturgy, “The Ark Work”. As 21st-century listeners, we're constantly on the hunt for new music that's capable of defying our expectations, scrambling our senses and wringing unknown ...

First Things (blog)

First Things (blog)
Tue, 31 Mar 2015 00:41:15 -0700

Music has profound effects on our moods and minds. If we believe the ancient wisdom, this is because the harmonies, movements, and melodies of music move and mold the soul. Music can ravish or terrify us, and a constant died of music terror will leave ...


Fri, 27 Mar 2015 10:48:45 -0700

The one word you can't escape when reading about Liturgy is "polarizing." On one side there are the experimentalists willing to embrace a metal album, 2011's Aesthethica, that could leave a patient listener feeling exuberant rather than empty. But then ...

New York Times

New York Times
Mon, 23 Mar 2015 14:11:15 -0700

About six years ago, Liturgy, a young band from Brooklyn, figured out a good counterintuitive response to black metal, a restricted, cultish kind of music that isn't traditionally open to responses of any kind. It did so first through music alone ...


Sun, 15 Mar 2015 20:00:00 -0700

The Brooklyn band Liturgy turned heads with 2011's genre-defying Aesthethica, which dared extreme-metal listeners to rethink what defined metal and welcomed curious neophytes drawn to bold, adventurous new music. Rooted in the fast tremolo picking ...


Fri, 27 Mar 2015 00:07:35 -0700

After making a small splash with Liturgy's debut Renihilation (2009), Hunt-Hendrix, along with many other scholars in the young but fertile field of black metal theory, looked to discover ways to move beyond the formulaic conception of black metal, i.e ...

Empty Lighthouse Magazine

Empty Lighthouse Magazine
Mon, 30 Mar 2015 10:48:45 -0700

Liturgy is an experimental black metal band from Brooklyn. Their debut record, 2009's Renihilation, was, to me, a decent record; equal parts black metal and noise rock, the album justified its experimentalism and toying with the genre forms of black ...

Consequence of Sound

Consequence of Sound
Tue, 17 Mar 2015 21:01:42 -0700

A progressive epic, the song contains time signatures that shift on a dime, not wholly unwelcome bagpipes, and cultish chanting, all Liturgy-specific tropes that never seem to wear. With all its heavenly might, The Ark Work stands as another Liturgy ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight