Why is it called a "service"?

Why do Protestants call the event they replaced the Mass with a “service”? What is the origin of this word? What group or individual was the first to use it? Is it because the preacher is providing a service by preaching?

I know these questions are kind of goofy:o , but using the term “service” to describe what’s going on just seems odd to me so I was wondering if anyone knew its origin.:hmmm:

I tend to think of the word service as having to do with the order or form, like a list of what you do for it, this part first, this part second, etc. At a worship service you do some things, at a burial service there are other things you do.

I’d love to hear the answer to your question (I’m Catholic).

[quote=Genesis315]Why do Protestants call the event they replaced the Mass with a “service”? What is the origin of this word? What group or individual was the first to use it? Is it because the preacher is providing a service by preaching?

I know these questions are kind of goofy:o , but using the term “service” to describe what’s going on just seems odd to me so I was wondering if anyone knew its origin.:hmmm:
[/quote]

“Service” is a literal English translation of the Greek “leitourgia,” and a rough parallel to the Latin “officium.” It means “liturgy.” No more and no less, really. There is no strange Protestant theological connotation to it that I can see. Quite to the contrary, it implies that worship is in some way a service offered to God, which Protestant theology in its “purer” forms would generally reject. I think the only reason that it became the normal term for Protestant worship was that (due to the late medieval/early modern reluctance to receive communion frequently, and the Protestant refusal to celebrate the Eucharist without a communing congregation) the normal Sunay liturgy of Protestants was not Eucharistic. Hence, they needed a more general term.

Edwin

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