I’ve been thinking lately about how some of our choices of words may confuse people of other faiths. I’m not talking about theological-ridden terminology (although we can be very imprecise about that too), but more about our terminology associated with worship.

Some of the terms I think are foreign for how “dated” they are as well (e.g. Holy “Ghost” instead of “Spirit”). What does a modern American teenager think when we say they can have the “Holy Ghost” with them? That’s a topic for another time, I guess, but it relates to my overall concern–how much we confuse people or put them off even by our strange terminology? Could we be a little more conscientious about how we say things without doing damage to our doctrine? I think so. Here are some examples that come to mind with some alternative terms we could use:

Sacrament Meeting–> Sacrament Service
Bear testimony–> Testify/Witness
Give a talk (this, by far, is the weirdest thing we routinely say)–> Speak in Church/Preach
Give a prayer–> Offer a prayer (or simply “pray.” e.g.,  ‘After the hymn, Brother Smith will pray’).

Are there any others you can think of?


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