THL490 Liturgical Theology (8)


This subject explores the history and practice of worship across a variety of Christian traditions including contemporary and blended worship. The subject centres on the effects and interrelationships of rites, symbols, words, music, gesture and space in facilitating worship. Key issues considered include liturgical forms, symbol, language, music, architecture and mission. In the context of human ritual activity, the importance of worship in the formation of Christian identity is analysed

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 1
InternalCanberra Campus
InternalUnited Theological College
Distance*Canberra Campus
*This subject offering contains a residential school. Please view following information for further details.
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: THL490
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Theology

Enrolment restrictions

Incompatible subject(s)Related subject(s)
THL323 THL115 Paired Subject

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to discuss the nature of Christian worship in the context of human ritual activity
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the shared origins of Christian worship
  • be able to demonstrate a critical understanding of particular forms in worship across the wider Christian tradition, including blended and contemporary forms
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the effect of form, language, space, body and music on the experience of worship
  • be able to discuss the relationship between mission, identity, pastoral care and worship


The subject will cover the following topics:
  • The nature, origins and practice of Christian worship
  • Rites and forms in worship: traditional, blended and contemporary
  • Symbol in worship
  • The principles of good worship
  • Space and architecture
  • Worship and time
  • Worship and language
  • Worship and music
  • Worship and the body
  • Ritual books and their relationship to other resources
  • Worship as a pastoral response
  • Worship, identity and mission

Residential School

This subject contains a optional 3 day residential school. The residential school is normally run from Friday to Sunday and will include practical experience of worship.  It allows for distance students to interpret in common the way space, words, roles, body and sound are at work in worship.  Further it allows them to apply theoretical constructs, together with their own experience, to situations of worship and ritual within an ecclesial environment.


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.