“Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints….Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands…In a loud voice they were saying: Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise.”The Book of Revelation
The shape of Liturgy at St. Anna’s Episcopal Church is often refered to as “High Church.” By this we understand the center of our worship to be Eucharist, we venerate the Saints, and we keep Holy Days of Special Devotion. However, we are always mindful that worship should remain accessible, dignified, and authentic. While the worship at St. Anna’s remains well within the 1978 Book of Common Prayer, we use a Missal or Worship Guide to help visitors worship with us instead of trying to figure out what is going on.
We employ a variety of musical forms and texts drawn from traditional Gospel hymns, Traditional Anglican Hymns, and Contemporary sources. Our musical form reflects the variety and diversity of our church and neighborhood. Under the direction of Dr. James Walsh, we have the pleasure of creating new music to support the worship texts.
One of the unique aspects of Liturgy at St. Anna’s is our inclination to conduct several street processions, known in New Orleans as “Second Lines.” This is most often done during the Feast of St. Anna in late July and on Palm Sunday. We believe that such a demonstration of faith brings Christ into the world in a special way as we walk through the city streets.
Service at the altar is considered an honor and priveldege and we invite all who are interested to be trained in the customary and use of liturgy at St. Anna’s. Most worship services include incense, Sanctus bells, and the elevation of the elements for veneration. However, most that join us do not feel left out during worship but included because our worship is very participatory. We hope to instill a sense of the vision of the beauty of heaven as we gather in community and draw close to the most Holy of Holies the Blessed Sacrament.