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the intents of the Convo pageantry selections
Topic Started: Aug 24 2008, 10:01 PM (1,546 Views)
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"more is more"

I thought it might be interesting to know a bit of the back story on the pieces we did at the convocation and see if you perceived the messages we tried to build into them. I'd love to hear some comments on the things that stood out to you and why.

Opening Night (Wednesday):
Because the first night of the convocation was the installation or "enthronement" of our new primate, Archbishop Bates, we chose "Lord, Take up Your Holy Throne" as the special pageantry number. The lyrics:

Lord, take up your holy throne
Deep within my heart (also "thoughout all this land" and "throughout all the earth")
Take the place that is yours alone,
deep within my heart.

And of the increase of your government
There shall be no end
You are worthy, Lord to reign.

The procession began with the placing of a crown, to signify the church's recognition that sovereignty belongs to God alone. Dancers interpreted the very personal first verse to show a picture of the church embracing the kingship of the Lord in our hearts. The piece finished with an array of king banners flanked by a group of royal crown pennants. Within the opening procession, the flags of the nations underscored the message that what was happening that night has global impact as the Lord established His government.

Also, on the first night was a flag interpretation of the Agnus Dei portion of the sung liturgy. It was a duet of two brilliant winged "creatures" meant to suggest the worship of the seraphs around the throne. Interestingly, the old testament reading for that evening service was of Ezekiel's vision of the winged seraphs surrounding the throne of God and ever crying "Holy" in His presence.

2nd night (Thursday)
The theme of the worship of the second night was reverence and awe. The pageantry we chose for this night was a worship chorus with the words,

Holy Holy Holy Lord God Almighty
Holy Holy Holy the Lord of Hosts
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
Holy Holy Holy

The banners representing the 7 Spirits of God were processed, interspersed between long billowing silks in the 5 Tabernacle colors. As the 7 banners representing the lamps blazing before the throne assembled before the altar, the silks formed a canopy that ebbed, flowed, and breathed----giving shape the invisible, as the fabric was formed by the moving of the air. While this was happening, the long silk panels painted with fire designs attached to the backdrop were brought out and moved by two of the dancers--another picture of the fire around the throne.

An beautiful group dance was presented to the worship song "Be unto Your Name" The lead duet in the group dance was a picture of the Bridegroom (Jesus) dancing with His Bride (the Church). In the choreography, there were tender embraces, but also a sharing of the suffering of the Cross. It was one of those glorious moments outside of time that sometimes happens in worship....when you enter into the eternal adoration that we will one day forever be a part of.

The final night (Friday)
Two notable pageantry offerings both were placed in the liturgical music of the mass. The first was the Sanctus. As the congregation sang
Holy Holy Holy Lord, God of power and might,
Heaven and earth are full of your glory
Hosanna in the highest!

The long fire silks were pulled out from the backdrop, and more billowed from within the congregation. The tallit (prayer shawl) flag was gently waved over the people from the centera of the room, as another emblem of holiness. It was a visual representation of the fire (the life) around the throne, and the presence of the Lord among us.

The pageantry for the final night was "Behold the Lamb". It was a picture of the triumphant Christ who comes to rule and reign in the earth. It was placed in a very radical position in the service---at the Agnus Dei, and provided a very dynamically different view of the Lamb than we are used to seeing and celebrating at that portion of the liturgy. The piece opened with the Conqueror banner (an image of the many-crowned Jesus riding the white horse). The banner was joined by the dancers who represented the saints in white robes, the army carrying the emblem of the Kings' victory---the empty grave cloth. They celebrated and exulted in the victory over sin and death in their choreography. As the medley advanced to the song "He is the King", an array of 9 banners eventually gathered and lined the front of the platform, as royal crown pennants circled before the central banner, giving honor and homage to "The Exalted One", the Risen Lord. The contingent of nations flags and giant celebrational flags filled the aisles for a massive ending of praise and worship. It was an apocryphal picture of the coming Kingdom, and a fitting end to the convocation as we were all charged to go forth into the world and carry out the vision.

Behold the Lamb, behold the Lamb;
Upon a white horse, He returns.
In majesty, faithful and true;
In triumph now to rule and reign.

His eyes like fire, His head full crowned;
He holds the nations in His hand.
In awesome pow'r, with victory sure;
He rides in judgement and to war.

Behold the Lamb, behold the Lamb;
In shame and sorrow, once He came.
No crown of thorns, no cross of pain;
He stands revealed in glory now.

All Heav'n resounds, He takes His throne;
To rule the Earth, His world reclaim.
We all will hail with one accord;
The King of kings and Lord of lords.

Behold the Lamb;
Upon a white horse He returns.
We all will hail with one accord;
The King of kings and Lord of lords.

[song #2 and entrance of the kingly banners and flags]
He is the King,
Worship now His majesty,
Bow to the greatness of His throne.
Lift up your voice,
To the splendor of His majesty;
Now blessing and honor,
Glory and power,
Be to the Lamb on the throne.
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