Order of Saint Luke
As a Christian religious order, it is a dispersed community of women and men, lay and clergy, from many different denominations, seeking to live the sacramental life. "Membership in The Order is open to persons of all Christian denominations who seek to live the sacramental life in accordance with our Rule of Life and Service, in community with and acceptance of their brothers and sisters in the Order."
The Order gathers annually in mid-October for several days of worship, fellowship, and administration.
The Order of St Luke was founded in 1946 in the former Methodist Church and, until 2012, held the status of Affiliate Organization with the Section on Worship of the General Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church. The Order was formed under the leadership of the Rev. R. P. Marshall, a former editor of the Christian Advocate. It was dedicated to the cause of liturgical renewal, and led the way in a serious liturgical awakening across the Methodist Church and much of post-war Protestantism. It was inspired partly by the existence of the Methodist Sacramental Fellowship, which serves a similar purpose in relation to the Methodist Church of Great Britain.
A maturing comprehension of liturgical renewal in an ecumenical era has become the guiding vision of members within the Order, just as it has become a dawning concern in the minds of many persons in the Church presently outside the Order. Recent evidence of this emerging vision may be seen in the design of the official worship books of many denominations.
The additional emphasis of directed spiritual formation, adopted in 1980, sets the direction in which the Order believes itself called.
While it will shun doctrinaire positions, the Order is dedicated to the task of breaking down the barriers of historical ignorance, theological sectarianism and liturgical illiteracy in the Church. The Order has no special revelation about the future of the emerging ecumenical consensus, but will do what it can to encourage the people called Christian to look outward and work toward the greater Church which God is surely gathering for Christ' s sake from a broken Christendom.
A major ministry of the Order of Saint Luke is OSL Publications. This ministry specializes in providing printed resources for those who lead worship and scholarly resources for those interested in liturgical matters.
Publications include resources on liturgy, church architecture, prayer, theology, worship, spirituality, sacraments, and music.
OSL publishes three periodicals:
- Doxology - This is the annual journal with contributions from writers in the areas of liturgical and sacramental scholarship. It is a "juried" or "refereed" journal which offers a service to the academic world as well as those who are involved in the active practice of ministry in its many contexts. It is published in late Summer/early Fall.
- Sacramental Life - This journal is published four times a year. It is designed to provide theologically sound reports of developments from across the church-at-large. Rather than have a theoretical or scholarly approach, the articles and liturgical aids have been practically proven and have grown out of the experiences of people "in the trenches."
- The Font - A once every two months in-house paper helping members to keep current on what is happening with their brothers and sisters around the world.
- Current Abbot- Sister Elizabeth Sue Moore (Invested on Oct 19, 2016)
- (most recent) Former abbot - Brother Daniel T. Benedict
- Prior-General - Brother George Crisp
- Chancellor-General - Sister Jeanette Block
- Provincial-General - Sister Heather Josselyn-Cranson
- Chaplain-General: Sr. Alice Kay Lovelace
- Webscribe: Br. French Ball
- Pastoral Care Officer: Br. David Eichelberger
- Companion for Inquirers and New Members: Sr. Carol Gathagan
- Sacramental Life editor: Br. Jonathan Hehn
- Font Editor: Sr. Cynthia Astle
- Daily Office Revision Team leader: Br. Dwight W. Vogel
- Prior for Life-vowed Members: Br. David Houdeschel
- Immediate Past Chancellor-General: Br. Scott Alford
- "The Order of Saint Luke". 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
The following description of The Order comes from our mission statement: A religious order in the United Methodist Church dedicated to sacramental and liturgical scholarship, education, and practice.
- "The Order of Saint Luke: About Us". 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2019.