• From Israel to Epworth: An assessment of the Psalms in the life of Methodist worship

      Christianson, Eric; Houghton, Gillian M. (University of Liverpool (Chester College of Higher Education), 2003-07)
      This dissertation looks at contemporary use of the Psalms in Methodist public worship, showing how Methodism is abandoning the tradition of using the Psalms and losing touch with both Christian tradition and the wishes of its founding father, John Wesley. The literature review considers the history of the Psalms in worship and then looks at their contemporary importance for worship. This includes an assessment of the universality both of the emotions expressed in the Psalms and of the language used. The importance of the Psalms to early Methodism is also considered. By means of two questionnaires issued to preachers and worshippers in the Lytham St Annes' Circuit of the Methodist Church, the dissertation goes on to show the limited use made of the Psalms in Methodist worship and the detrimental effect of this limited use. Finally the dissertation outlines somes means by which the Psalms might be reincorporated into Methodist worship and offers reasons, drawn from the literature review, about why this is so important for the spiritual well-being of individual worshippers.