Welcome to The Ministry Lab's curated list of resources to inspire and ground explorations in Rethinking Worship.
Scroll down to find:
Worship planners may also find inspiration and ideas in our Emerging Theologies and Faith Formation: Exploring God lib guides.
CONVERGENCE offers numerous leadership and community development webinars on-demand or in a cohort:
The Plural Guild offers these online workshops; click each image for further information:
This series includes 3 original liturgies, title graphics, planning guide with hymn suggestions, promotional blurbs, and sermon starters.
Pairs well with God on the Move: Faith and Democracy, which includes 3 original liturgies, title graphics, planning guide with hymn suggestions, promotional blurbs, and sermon starters.
MennoMedia's Ex. Dir. Amy Gingerich, reflects on discussions with pastors about the post-COVID church:
...None of us brought rose-colored glasses about future church life. We know that COVID has and will continue to bring enormous change to the church and society. You can’t just not worship in person for 12 months or more and then try to push your congregation back to the way things were. That is worshipping a false god.
People have changed. The church has changed.
...I heard... humbleness around the unknown...[and] generative ideas for building new kinds of congregational life. My encouragement for this week for church leaders is to reach out to other church leaders. Share ideas, collaborate on ministries (even worship), invite God to dream with you about the future.
"Blessing the Fields”: A Liturgy for Community Farms and Gardens
With tips for Creating Your Own “Blessing the Fields” Liturgy
Your ministry might not take place at a farm, but wherever you are is a part of God’s creation too. How might you bless it, even as it has blessed you?
By Nurya Love Parish (she/her/hers); Feb 08, 2023
Expansive Language Liturgy: Sighs Too Deep for Words
Pastor Tamika Jancewicz, Pastor Emilie Casey, and Anne Krentz Organ shaped this liturgy entitled Sighs Too Deep for Words (Romans 8:26). This resource gives special attention to women’s experiences in scripture and in everyday life, and it invites embodied prayer. This is a liturgy rooted in scriptural accounts of the breaths, sighs, groans, and shouts of God, humanity, and all creation. The writers have aimed to craft language and music that is not only theologically rigorous and aesthetically beautiful, but also clear, adaptable, and singable. May we pray and sing without knowing exactly what to say, for it is when “we do not know how to pray as we ought” that the “Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words.”
The Table’s Mission Statement:
The Table promotes spiritual well being for LGBTQIA+ and minority people groups in the exploration of self, faith, community and the deeper issues of being and belonging.
See our Singing While Gray Great Idea - based on Rev. Dr. Anna Hall's article, How Can We Keep Singing When the Church Choir Goes Gray? and Bryan Hehn's article, Questions for the Director: A Problem in My Aging Church - both on aging and differently abled musicians.
Rev, Carolyn Winfrey Gillette has been re-writing hymn lyrics for over two decades. Find her seasonally relevant, theologically progressive, contextually significant writing here. Hymns can be searched by topic, scripture index, RCL or general Google Search.
Find her hymnbook, God's World Is Changing, here.
Luke Medina/NPR/March 4, 2022
What songs meant the most to your loved ones and friends lost to COVID-19?
NPR curated a list.
Living Rough, Living Sheltered
A service of solidarity with rough sleepers with an emphasis on compassion, listening and acting for justice. 10 pages.
This video is from the 2021 Online ELCA's Children, Youth, and Family Ministry Network's Extravaganza. It is the Story of Confession from Vance Blackfox from the Opening Worship. A powerful confession for us all, based on the story of Joseph in the Pit.
A Sanctified Art provides liturgical elements informed by and incorporating progressive theology, expansive imagery, and beautiful and diverse forms of art to encourage engagement in worship.
The Plural Guild creates unique liturgies and music specific to the times and contexts in which we live. They also offer amazing workshops for leaders and whole congregations, when you're ready to revamp your whole worship experience.
Create excellent music and liturgical resources for worship online or in-person, including Pandemic Resources and Lament Together, among others.
Our Great God Gun: This gun-obsessed society is a disgrace
Rev. Dr. Susan Thistlethwaite, President Emeritus of Chicago Theological Seminary adapted Isaac 58 to use as a confession/forgiveness/change liturgical element, to be used, 'until the guns fall silent'.
Matthew Fox offers a lovely collection of Poems to the Mother.
From sharing circles to house churches, young people are transforming worship
A new lectionary that centers women
“If the gospel isn’t good news to the women in the passage, is it still good news?”
Grace Ji-Sun Kim interviews Wil Gafney
February 15, 2022
The Mystical Body of Zoom by Diana Butler Bass
Online church is a gift to be embraced.
From his week on Devotion, Fr. Richard Rohr's The Importance of Practice outlines compelling reasons to consider reimagining worship; Prayer of the Heart highlights the beauty of contemplative practices in personal and communal ritual.
In Memory of Malidoma Somé, 1956-2021 from Matthew Fox includes numerous quotes to start conversations on rethinking and renewing worship.
Why Campus Ministries Aren’t Streaming Worship
By University of Nebraska - Lincoln; Lutheran Center Campus Pastor Rev. Adam White (ELCA)
Rev. Dr. Cameron Trimble, reflecting on how our words/language create our realities, encourages us to Say What You Mean.
The Accessible Altar is a monthly podcast exploring the intersections of faith and disability.
The website includes this list of additional resources.
The Gospel for Changemakers by Rev. Tyler Sit
In Searching for Why, Rev. Natalia Terfa asserts that, "the spirit is calling us forward, into something new", and encourages us to 'have the imagination to clear our minds of the what and the how and search for our "why"?'
James Burklo encourages Love Language for Progressive Church Worship.