14th Street Christian Reformed Church

Holland, Michigan
2010

To engage the congregation in a study of the Psalms and Vertical Habits as a framework for worship throughout the liturgical year and to create visual arts and language that will remind the congregation that worship is a dialogue with God that can be carried into their daily lives.

Reflections

What We Did

To engage the congregation in a study of the Psalms and Vertical Habits as a framework for worship throughout the liturgical year and to create visual arts and language that will remind the congregation that worship is a dialogue with God that can be carried into their daily lives.

Theological Reflections

  • The grant has given our committee a license to reflect on worship much more than we have before.  There is also more enthusiasm and lively dialogue about worship and the Psalms in our congregation.
  • We have appreciated reflecting on how worship comes together and how it takes many, many people.  The community is a vital part of worship – we worship more fully when we worship, plan, reflect and offer our gifts together.
  • We have realized that by simply walking along with someone can be an act of worship.  Helping someone else prepare for a part in worship is also worship.  Learning about worship enriches and deepens our understanding of who God is. 
  • The Psalms gave us a common language to express our hearts’ emotions.  The Psalms are not tied to a particular generation so they unity us to one another as well as to the ancient church.  The Psalms are cross-cultural. 

What We Learned

  • Using the Psalms more purposefully in worship has been a great gift our congregation.
  • By using a multisensory approach in working with a Psalm, we remember it better. 
  • Food brings people together. “Second ring” people (those who are only moderately involved in the congregation) are getting involved.
  • Learning together builds community.
  • People enjoy seeing what they create and enjoy seeing it again in a different place or setting.
  • Kids are getting it more than we thought they would.  We’ve seen growth particularly in the 3rd and 4th grade worship center, .
  • Banners have taken a long time to get going – they’re huge projects.  We’re not sure why this has been so hard for us. 
  • Our broad focus helped us involve many people.  
  • Providing a language of visuals deepened our understanding of Psalms.
  • Our church is willing to try things that might not work