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Transfiguration Sunday
Transfiguration   Ash Wednesday  Lent 1



Sermon Excerpt: Transfigured and Transformed, Luke 9:28-36, Rev. Karen Goltz  

One of the more difficult things I had to learn in seminary was vocabulary.  Not Greek or Hebrew vocabulary (although that was difficult, too), but church vocabulary.  Have you ever noticed that we have a different Ďchurchyí name for things that could probably just as easily be called by a more familiar, non-churchy word?  For example, I am speaking from a pulpit, not a podium.  Actually, Iím not even speaking, or lecturing.  Iím preaching.  The book holder is a lectern.  The table is an altar.

Even the simplest things have fancy names Ė some churches have a flagon as part of their communion-ware, not a pitcher; the bread sits on a paten not a plate; the cup is called a chalice, and the baptismal water bowl is called a font.  Pastors and assisting ministers often wear albsónot robesóto signify the fact that we are engaged in Godís work in Godís house.

When Iím teaching someone new to the faith about the basics of Lutheran worship, Iím torn between using the special vocabulary and using ordinary words for everything.  On one hand I feel that I should teach this special vocabulary because it does make things here in the spiritual world of the Church seem just a little more special and a little more holy.  This special vocabulary has been passed down from one generation to another for ages, and it does help to designate this space as a place away from the world and the ordinariness of our normal day to day work.  This special status is also a reminder that we are in this world but not of this world.  That we are Godís people, not the people of the world....Subscribers: click here for full manuscript