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Dominus Vobiscum: The background of a Liturgical Formula

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Chapter Summary

The new service-book of the Dutch Reformed Church gives several formularies such as Dominus Vobiscum meaning "The Lord be with you", as an optional introduction to prayer the dialogue between minister and congregation. To Roman Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran Christians it is a familiar part of the liturgy, because it belongs to the age-old heritage of Latin Christianity. As such it was taken over by the committee which prepared the revision of the Dutch Reformed Liturgy. The first occurrence of the dialogue is according to the present knowledge of sources found in the Church Order of Hippolytus: it goes before and is connected with the preface to the great eucharistic prayer. It is remarkable that this particular form is restricted to the Western and Egyptian traditions; in the other Eastern liturgies the salutation has a different wording: "Peace be with you", or the formula of 2 Cor. 13:13.

Keywords: Dominus Vobiscum; Dutch Reformed Church; Dutch Reformed Liturgy; Egyptian tradition; Lutheran Christians



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