Sunday worship allows us–minister, lay worship leaders, and the gathered community–to engage one another in a special way. On Sunday we reveal our views, hopes, and visions to one another..
Vision is expressed through collaboration — the heart of powerful worship. It is essential that minister, worship teams, and musicians converse regularly about worship, and plan meaningfully together. Worship is the work of the community. Without broad investment and collaboration, congregations atrophy and become passive consumers of worship performances, rather than active seekers participating in a shared celebration of life.
Where worship is concerned, the minister has a unique role. Nonetheless, it is by looking to the congregation’s identity and sense of purpose that I am ultimately responsible. It is my role, among other things, to be as inspired a leader and preacher as I can be. Inspiration, encouragement, intellectual engagement, and challenge all appear in my preaching, as I believe they should. I am charged to engage the world, our community, and my own spiritual development with such vigor that I can shape worship celebrations that are relevant, captivating, transformative, and even fun.
Making Meaning, Forming Faith
Whether our religious life is rooted in God, the Goddess, Jesus of Nazareth, the Spirit of Life, the All Who Is, human possibility and community, Buddha nature, justice and ethics, or the natural world, worship must speak to us in ways we can hear. While every service will not speak to everyone, worship should nonetheless delight our senses, inspire our passion, incite our curiosity, and nurture our love. It should help us deepen our engagement with ourselves, our sense of meaning and purpose, and our faith.
I believe that Sunday worship creates a “sacred container for the celebration of life.” Engaging, thoughtful, intentional worship helps build a more just, multigenerational, anti-oppressive community. The congregation and the minister share joys and sorrows, concerns and delights, questions and assertions, seeking and yearning. All these mingle in worship celebration.
Worship is a sacred place and time. It is our moment to express who we are, to welcome others, and to deepen our lives’ meaning and reverence.