Windows on Reformed people at prayer

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Diane Karay Tripp

Abstract

The prayer life of Reformed people is "decent and in order" since it is based on the Bible and tradition. Yet, on close examination, it reveals great depth and variety. Spiritual history can be glimpsed through journals, prayer books, sermons, and other documents. From the Reformation to the present, the Reformed have worshiped in four distinct groupings: public assembly in churches or other places, with families, with spouses, and as individuals in union with Christ and the church. From the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries, many churches assembled for early morning and late afternoon/early evening services. Among the devout, families worshiped together two or three times a day, often at mealtimes; spouses shared devotions on rising and/or before retiring for the day; and individuals prayed morning and evening, if not often more often. A married person with children in a town with weekday church services might have worshiped eight stated times a day. This is not counting Lord's Day observances or informal prayer. Because these communities have been discussed in detail elsewhere, this study focuses on private prayer life.

Article Details

Keywords
Prayer -- Christianity; Devotion; Spiritual life -- Christianity; Experience (Religion)
Section
Articles