Contemporary Worship Institute – Day 1

Heather and I are in Kansas and settled in for our week and enjoyed a good first day of the Contemporary Worship Institute at COR yesterday.

I had the opportunity to have lunch yesterday with Virgil Brady before the conference started. Virgil was the Senior Pastor of my home church while I was growing up and has recently written a new book titled “Believe the Believable.” I will be leading a class on this book over the next month and it was great to get together with Virgil and to “talk shop.”

Last evening was a resource session held by Belden St. Music and it was a fascinating time for me, having never been a part of anything like it in the past. Members of the staff from Belden St. worked us through three different resources that they offer:

Worship Today is a publication and online resource that provides worship leaders with choral music, praise music, and children’s music resources.

Drama Ministry is a publication that shares scripts and how-to’s regarding practical ways to incorporate dramas and skits into worship on a regular basis.

River Spring Music is a publication that seeks out and publishes new contemporary/praise music for congregations to use.

I was particularly fascinated by the presentation on Drama Ministry. In his introductory time Scott Crain shared a striking quotation from Harrison Ford. Several years ago Ford was asked why he thought he had been so successful in Hollywood. He said something like, “We as humans have a need to sit together, side by side, and to experience the full range of human emotions together. People used to get this from the church, now they get it from the movies.”

Crain argued that drama (especially through skits) was an important way of worshipping because of the ways in which the power of story and the drama speak to people. It got me to thinking a great deal about drama in worship in general – the ways in which ritual, liturgy, candles, incense, etc. can help people encounter the power of God’s story in ways that encourage them to join themselves to that story.


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One response to “Contemporary Worship Institute – Day 1

  1. Andrew Conard

    Jeff – Great thought capturer on the experience of drama. It was great to see you yesterday. Hope to have some more time to talk later.

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