I often am called upon to consult with churches needing revitalization–specifically in the area of worship renewal. Their numbers have greatly declined or they have not experienced any growth in years. Often, their focus has turned inward. Thom Rainer, stated in a recent blog post that “Nine of ten churches are either declining or growing so slowly they are not keeping up with the growth of the community. Many churches are just a few years away from dying and closing. Revitalization is an urgent need.” Read more
Over the last weeks, we have been on a journey of worship transition for East City Church (see story). Providing a healthy road to transition requires much intentionality, hard work, and prayer. In the last chapter of this story, we see that the existing worship pastor/minister of music needs some retooling to prepare him for the task at hand.
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to determine how the video components of the service will be handled. Incorporating video in the services should be far more than just projecting lyrics and maybe a sermon outline on screen. There needs to be intentionality in what goes on screen from the time people enter until they leave. Here are some points to consider: Read more
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to take a close look at calendaring all the needed rehearsals and meetings to support the new service.
With all of the added pieces involved in transitioning ECC corporate worship outlined in the earlier steps, there are likely more times of meeting and rehearsal needed in the weekly calendar. They should take time to consider all of those needs now. Here are some possibilities: Read more
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to help their congregation understand why the church is going through a change in its time of corporate worship. Conflict results most times in an absence of understanding why the church is experiencing change. It is imperative that members are aware of the biblical, missional, sociological, and other reasons that change is occurring. It is also important that the church be continually exposed to the fact that worship change is coming and why throughout the weeks leading up to the target date of the new service. I have several suggestions that will help guide ECC in this endeavor:
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to help their choir to catch a vision for becoming a worship-leading choir. ECC already has a great choir, but in the style of worship that is currently in place, the choir is often a centerpiece, singing many selections and often leading to a spectator role of the congregation. Read more
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to identify people to serve on the vocal team in worship. ECC already has vocalists that sing in their contemporary service, but in the effort to transition the traditional service to a unified style of worship, it would be best to add additional vocalists that the traditional service would recognize as “their own.” This is a continuation of the effort to prevent an “us” and “them” mentality in worship. Read more
As East City Church transitions its worship service to a unified style of worship (see story), they will need to equip their musician resources to handle contemporary styles of music in addition to the traditional styles that they do so well. Fortunately, ECC already has a worship band that leads worship in the contemporary early service. This will make the journey potentially much smoother than would be the case if all had to be developed from scratch. Read more
Churches throughout the world are struggling with what style of worship is appropriate for their setting. Many churches find themselves dying, stuck to old forms of worship that once were very meaningful, yet now don’t seem to engage the people in meaningful worship nor speak a language that the unchurched can understand. In the 50’s and 60’s, worship was pretty similar among Southern Baptist churches and most sang from a common source—the Baptist Hymnal. Today, things have changed drastically and church leaders are struggling to determine what their church’s corporate worship should look like. There are many factors to consider in this quest. Read more
Last week, East City Church continued its journey to worship renewal by producing a song list of known songs for the congregation and identifying new songs that will be introduced to the congregation. To fast track the worship transition, East City Church will do a variety of things to help the congregation make these new songs part of their worship vocabulary in an accelerated manner. Read more
East City Church continues its path to worship renewal. In the last two weeks, we have looked at needed technology improvements and the development of a worship leadership team. Today, we will explore a critical component of the transition–the development of a song list. Read more