A Must-Read for Pentecostals
While I was in Penygroes I spotted a book in the library for which I had been looking for some time, so took the opportunity to have a read. David Allen (a former lecturer at Mattersey Hall, the AoG Bible college in the UK) has done Pentecostals (and Pentecostal ministers in particular) a great favour by writing Neglected Feast: Rescuing the Breaking of Bread (Nottingham: Expression, 2007).
Allen is concerned by a perceived trend that the Breaking of Bread is taking less and less of a role in Pentecostal worship. He gives an example of a church in which coffee tables were set up around the hall with bread and wine and the leader told people that, if they felt like it, to go and share some bread and wine with a few people. From personal experience, I have been present at a Pentecostal (though not Apostolic) service where the leader, as people were singing, said 'lets have something to eat and drink together as we sing'!
Allen contrasts this lax attitude to the Breaking of Bread with early (British) Pentecostal worship, where the Breaking of Bread was the central and high point of the service. After all, we even called the Sunday morning meeting 'the Breaking of Bread', and notes how singing is increasingly taking the place of Word and Sacrament. Allen examines the Biblical teaching, Church history, theology and early-pentecostalism, as well as giving practical suggestions for 'rescuing the Breaking of Bread' and restoring it to its rightful place at the centre of our worship.
He calls us back to Word and Sacrament: ministry centred on God's means of grace.
This is a great book on Pentecostal worship and I highly recommend it to all (it's easy to read, and rather short too), but especially to pastors and elders (and perhaps worship leaders).
The only problem is that I don't know where to get a copy of the book. My internet searches have met with no success; but if I find the answer I'll let you know.