It seems to me that the CRC has mixed feelings when it comes to liturgical forms. For some they are seen as embodiments of all that is wrong with traditionalism, for others they are seen as a way of maintaining good theology and right practice. For some, forms are dull boring artifacts, for others treasured vessels.
In the past half year or so I have had a chance to visit a church on a couple of occasions and twice witnessed the baptism of infants. The baptism portions of the service were quite moving as the pastor recounted the story of Noah and the Red Sea and how God was making promises to the child to be her/his God. The covenant was clearly explained as was the purpose of baptism as the pastor physically moved from the pulpit, to the Lord's Table to the font, interjecting at times the name of the child to be baptized, the parents names, and even siblings. Not once did this pastor look at a piece of paper yet if you knew the baptismal forms you know this pastor if not reciting the form from memory knew the salient points enough to follow the outline of it. It was theologically pithy without being stuffy, the best of tradition while still maintaining the drama of God's covenant story. The form was very much alive.
This past Sunday at my own church elders and deacons were installed. Though we did not open the hymnal and follow along it was clear that the pastor had a typed script though again he personalized it and knew it well enough so it did not seem like the reading of a dusty document.
All of this made me wonder... what is the state of the form in the CRC? Whether the form for installation, the Lord's Supper, Baptism or any of the others are we still turning to the back of the hymnal to use them? If not reading them directly how are they being used? How often are the official forms consulted or are churches more apt to do their own thing? Are they read or do pastors speak extemporaneously at these occasions? How many pastors recite them from memory? How does your church make the drama come off the page?