Hillsdale Orthodox Pres­by­terian Church is hosting morning prayer this year. COLLEGIAN | Carmel Kookogey

Hillsdale’s Orthodox Pres­by­terian Church is now offering a service for church members and stu­dents to gather together for Psalms and prayer before beginning the day.

At 8 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings, Hillsdale’s Orthodox Pres­by­terian Church meets for 15 to 20 minutes to listen to an Old Tes­tament reading, read Psalms in response, and pray together. The service, headed by Orthodox Pres­by­terian Church Deacon Eric Hutchinson, is only in its third week, but has already gar­nered the attention of several who now plan on attending.

“This is a way to start the day, for those who are Chris­tians, for those who are part of our church or even not, to make sure that we’re putting our faith in God first,” Orthodox Pres­by­terian Deacon Adam Car­rington said.

Car­rington, who has not yet attended, said the service is to be similar to the worship he does with his family at home.

Senior and OPC attendee Mar­garet Odell explained that litur­gi­cally, the morning prayer is some­thing stu­dents of other denom­i­na­tions may be familiar with.

“It’s pretty similar to how you would expect an Anglican morning prayer service to go, very similar liturgy, and we use a lot of prayers from the Book of Common Prayer,” Odell said.

Hutchinson added that they draw from the Book of Common Worship as well.

“I sort of com­bined and mod­ified them just to have some­thing that would be a little bit shorter, so that the time doesn’t become pro­hib­itive for people who might be inter­ested in coming,” he said.

Odell pointed out that the service is also open to stu­dents outside of the church who may be inter­ested.

“I think people assume it’s from the OPC, therefore it’s only for that strain of Pres­by­terian denom­i­nation, but that’s not true. It’s very ecu­menical,” she said. “I think it’s a really good thing that prayer ser­vices like this are starting to pop up, because it’s encour­aging Chris­tians as well as Hillsdale stu­dents to view the Protestant tra­dition as it is: rooted and grounded in tra­dition.”

Hutchinson, who leads the prayer and has been at the church since Sep­tember 2007 said that the goal of the service is prayer, “the thing itself.”

“I think that it can be dif­ficult for stu­dents when they get really busy to have any regular pattern of devotion during the week, and if you’re on your own, in my expe­rience, often it’s not going to happen,” Hutchinson said. “But if you have a group to do it with, if there are others that are doing this thing together, then it becomes a lot more plau­sible, and can be a source of encour­agement.”

Car­rington called the morning prayer “a needed ballast.”

“The day can get very con­fusing and have a lot of chal­lenges, and I think beginning with prayer is a good way for us to under­stand that this world isn’t our home, and under­stand that while we want to be good stewards in this world, ulti­mately God is in control.”

  • Jen­nifer Melfi

    Is this news­worthy, or worthy of this much space in the news­paper? A little business lesson, make businesses/special interests pay for stuff like this, it’s called adver­tising.

    • Boommach

      Try to calm yourself… It’ll be alright.

      • Jen­nifer Melfi

        Calmer than you are.

        Appar­ently my very fair question trig­gered your hair-thin sen­si­bil­ities.