Ruth C. Duck
Professor of Worship
- B.A., Rhodes College
- M.Div., Chicago Theological Seminary
- M.A., University of Notre Dame
- Th.D., Boston University School of Theology
Teaching and learning about Christian liturgy is endlessly fascinating. Students are passionate about the praise and worship of God and eagerly discuss questions from the meaning of baptism to the place of announcements in worship. Prayer, preaching, and the breaking of bread are common threads of Christian worship, while contrasting textures of worship styles from varied cultures and traditions show how the gospel is incarnate in particular contexts. For all these reasons, studying worship is exciting; above all, teaching and learning about worship inspire awe and humility, because as planners and leaders of congregational praise, we share in the Spirit's labor to draw humanity into just and loving relationship with God and all creation. For six years, I have preparing a textbook on worship, which Westminster John Knox Press will publish in 2013. I have sought to integrate theology, practice, and history in a way that informs and supports the ministry of worship in congregations of diverse backgrounds, and to convey something of the passion and excitement our classroom conversations generate. Previously I published Praising God: The Trinity in Christian Worship (co-authored with Patricia Wilson-Kastner, 1999) and Finding Words for Worship (1995), both through Westminster John Knox Press. I have also published books of worship resources; most recently Maren Tirabassi and I edited a major revision of Touch Holiness: Resources for Worship (Pilgrim Press, 2012). I have written 160 hymns and psalm paraphrases, which have appeared in many hymnals and supplements in the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, Scotland, and England.