Posted by: AJtheIrishLass | December 30, 2007

Episcopal Church (USA), Roman Catholic & Lutheran Service Comparison

 Quite some time ago, a friend asked me what the differences were between a Roman Catholic and Episcopal service. After explaining, she mentioned that she thought that would be an interesting FAQ answer to add. After recently acquiring a Lutheran Book of Worship, I decided to include the LBW Eucharist service in the comparison, too. In the Episcopal Church, the service may include traditional language (Rite 1) or modern (Rite 2, used more commonly).

Introductory Rites
Episcopal       Optional Penitential Order-Hymn; Greeting; optional Decalogue; words of assurance from Scripture; general Confession & absolution; continues with Gloria/Kyries/Trisagion. When no penitential order is used-hymn; greeting; Gloria, Kyries, or Trisagion (in Rite I, the Kyrie is always used before the Gloria or Trisagion). Alternate hymns may be used. Collect of the Day.                       

Catholic          The blessing & sprinkling of holy water may take place instead of the Penitential Order. Otherwise-Song or Antiphon; Greeting; Confession & absolution; Kyrie and Gloria (Gloria used outside of Advent & Lent). Opening Prayer.

Lutheran Brief order for Confession & Forgiveness may be used-Invocation; Confession; Declaration of Forgiveness. Otherwise-Hymn; Greeting; Kyrie; Gloria in Excelsis, This is the Feast, or other appropriate hymn; Prayer of the Day.

Liturgy of the Word

Episcopal Old Testament & Epistle readings, each may be followed by a Psalm, hymn or anthem; the Gospel; the Sermon; Nicene Creed; Prayers of the People; Confession of Sin (if not said earlier); the Peace (this may instead take place at the administration of communion).

Catholic First Reading; Responsorial Psalm; Second Reading; Alleluia/Gospel Acclaimation; Gospel; Homily; Nicene Creed; Prayer of the Faithful

Lutheran First Lesson; Psalm; Verse; Gospel; Sermon;  Hymn; Nicene or Apostles’ Creed; Prayers; the Peace (this may alternately be said after the Lord’s Prayer).

Liturgy of the Eucharist

Episcopal  Offertory; Great Thanksgiving; Sanctus & Benedictus (Benedictus is optional in Rite I); Eucharistic Prayer; The Lord’s Prayer; The Breaking of the Bread; optional Fraction Anthem(s); Rite I-Prayer of Humble Access; optional Invitation; distribution of communion; Post-Communion Prayer; Blessing; optional recessional hymn; Dismissal

Catholic Preparation of the Altar & Gifts; Prayer Over the Gifts; Great Thanksgiving; Sanctus & Benedictus; Eucharistic Prayer; Lord’s Prayer; the Peace; Breaking of the Bread & Agnus Dei (Lamb of God); Invitation; Communion Song; Prayer After Communion; Blessing & Dismissal

Lutheran Offertory; Great Thanksgiving; Sanctus & Benedictus; Eucharistic Prayer; Lord’s Prayer; Communion; Post-Communion Hymn; Post-Communion Prayer;  Blessing & Dismissal


  1. This type of fast helps accelerate the strength of the Spirit within the individual.
    Luke 18:9-14 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else, Jesus told
    this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. Cigarettes aren’t the best way to practice taking pictures of smoke.

  2. Hi,
    Did you intend to post your comment under another blog post? Fasting’s always an interesting subject for discussion, but this post is about the similarities between Episcopal, Catholic and Lutheran services. I just wanted to be clear on where you were coming from 🙂


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