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Liturgy with a Difference

Beyond Inclusion in the Christian Assembly

Liturgy with a Difference

Beyond Inclusion in the Christian Assembly

Available for pre-order. Publication date: 30/05/2019.

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Paperback / softback



Publisher: SCM Press
ISBN: 9780334057406
Published: 30/05/2019

Christian churches in recent decades have taken some steps in their practices of liturgy and worship toward acknowledging the graced dignity of human variety. But who is still excluded? What pernicious norms still govern below the surface, and how might they be revealed? How do texts, gestures, and space abet and enforce such norms? How might Christian assemblies gather multiple expressions of human difference to propose through Christian liturgy patterns of graced interaction in the world around them?

Liturgy with a Difference gathers a broad range of international theologians and scholars to interrogate current practices of liturgy and worship in order to unmask ways in which dehumanizing majoritarianisms and presumed norms of gender, culture, ethnicity, and body, among others, remain at work in congregations.

Together, the chapters in this collection call for a liturgical practice that recognizes and rehearses the vivid richness of God’s image found in the human community andglimpsed, if only for a moment, in liturgical celebration. They point to a way beyond mere inclusion toward a generous embrace of the many differences that make up the Christian community.

With contributions from Rachel Mann, Teresa Berger, Susannah Cornwall, Miguel A. DeLa Torre, Edward Foley, W. Scott Haldeman, Michael Jagessar, Bruce T. Morrill, Kristine Suna-Koro and Frank Senn. 

Foreword by Anne Loades.


List of Contributors 

Foreword by Ann Loades 

Introduction by Bryan Cones and Stephen Burns 

Part 1: The Case for Difference 

1. ‘How Beautiful the Feet’: Discerning the Assembly’s Path on Holy Thursday - Bryan Cones

2. Acts of Uniformity - Stephen Burns

Part 2: Leadership and Ministry Through Liturgy 

3. ‘The Performance of Queerness’: Trans Priesthood as Gesture towards a Queered Liturgical Assembly - Rachel Mann

4. All Things to All? Requeering Stuart’s Eucharistic Erasure of Priestly Sex - Susannah Cornwall

5. The Queer Body in the Wedding - W. Scott Haldeman

6. I Had to Do It for My Son: The Story of a Same-Sex Wedding - Frank C. Senn 

Part 3: Liturgy in Migration: People, Culture and Language 

7. Liturgy, Language and Diaspora: Some Reflections on Inclusion as Integration by a Migratory Liturgical Magpie - Kristine Suna-Koro

8. Liturgy’s Missional Character: Trusting Truth in Real Bodies of Culture and Tradition  - Bruce T. Morrill, SJ

9. ‘beyond words, gestures and spaces: evoking and imagining liturgical contradictions’  - Michael Jagessar

Part 4: Liturgy and Mission in the World 

10. ‘All Are Welcome?’: A Sermon  - Teresa Berger

11. Preaching in an Age of Disaffiliation: Respecting Dissent While Keeping the Faith - Edward Foley, OFM Cap.

12. Worship Through Sanctuary - Miguel A. De La Torre


Appendix 1 Same-Gender Union - W. Scott Haldeman

Appendix 2 The Marriage Service of Benjamin Bauer and Nicholas Senn: The Order of Service for Witnessing a Lifelong Covenant 

Index of Names and Subjects 



Stephen Burns, Bryan Cones

Stephen Burns is a presbyter in the Church of England and teaches liturgical and practical theology at the University of Divinity, Melbourne, Australia, as well as an international research consultant at the Queen's Foundation, Birmingham. Bryan Cones is a presbyter in the Episcopal Church, a former book editor at Liturgy Training Publications, and was managing editor and columnist at U.S. Catholic magazine. He has served as adjunct faculty at the Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and is a doctoral candidate in liturgy and practical theology at the University of Divinity.

"This collection of stimulating and disturbing chapters should provoke vitally important exchanges and conversations between every person responsible for taking a lead in liturgy and those who think they know what `ecclesiology' is all about." -- Ann Loades