A friend recently called asking me for a few of the most-used resources on my list of my favorite worship design helpers. So it occurred to me that you might appreciate hearing about a few, too, because there are some tools that I love so much, and use so often, that I always recommend them.
So, here is one of my favorite things (With apologies to Oprah, I suppose). (However, unlike Oprah, I’ll not be able to give away any of these favorite things, but rather will simply point you in the right direction).
The Worship Sourcebook
I noticed last week that my dear colleague Jim Altizer happened to give his “thumbs up” to this great resource as well, so there are two recommendations for you.
Now in its second edition (I still have the first), the book is simply chock full of wonderful calls to worship, prayers of confession, spoken prayers, and litanies. I’m certain that if you already have the first edition, you’re going to want to snap up this latest version right away, for it contains more than 2,500 prayers, litanies, and spoken texts for every element of the worship service throughout the seasons of the church year.
Changes in this edition include a new, additional section to “Prayers of the People;” updates to resources drawn from the NIV, the Reformed confessions, and other contemporary texts; a new appendix featuring “Worshiping the Triune God” adopted by the World Communion of Reformed Churches; and hundreds of new and replacement prayers and other readings for worship. Teaching notes offer guidance for planning each element of the service.
Here is the best thing (at least in my view) about this wonderful worship design tool: There is a companion CD that contains the entire text of the book so that you may easily cut and paste (or edit) for use in bulletins, media slides, printed programs, etc. What a great tool this has been for me over the years.
Like the online resource The Text This Week, that I reviewed here, the material in The Worship Sourcebook is laid out primarily according to the Christian Year, but even if you do not necessarily follow that custom in your place of worship, the book is very accessible by theme and, also, by worship component.
So, for example, if you’re looking for a set of prayers for offering, there’s a handy section devoted just to those. Need a complete model liturgy for the Lord’s Supper, or maybe some new materials to enhance the closing of worship? You’ll find those as well.
One other resource that you might find useful. The book also features several worship evaluation forms that may help in your planning and implantation if you should ever be called upon to provide that to your congregation.
The book and its accompanying CD is published by Faith Alive and is a product of the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship.
Let’s keep the conversation going. As always, I look forward to hearing, and learning, from you, and… The Lord be with you!
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