Studying Worship on Seminary Campuses: Professional Resources
Resources for worship planning within a seminary campus.
Worship on seminary campuses is characterized by the same variety one finds in the broader church. There is variety in length and frequency of gathering, place of worship, size of worshiping community, planning process, worship leadership, worship style, use of music and other arts, and the ordo or structure of worship itself. In fact, on some campuses, there are multiple services to accommodate the different worship styles of the community and the different pedagogical functions that worship has within the community.
For many, this variety is interesting to observe in its own right. But worship leaders especially can find inspiration for their own ministry by seeing what other Christians are doing and how they’re doing it (and in some cases, why). What, for example, are the common worship practices at seminaries that share theological convictions? How often is the Lord’s Supper celebrated there and how is it done? Who preaches and for how long? Who leads music and to what end? What is the administrative structure, the planning process, and the leadership training behind the services?
These pages provide a glimpse at worship practices and policies in Protestant seminaries across North America. Though there is no substitute for face-to-face contact, one starting place is to see what each school says about its own worship practices. You’ll find here a list of seminary chapel websites, with annotations to point out items of particular interest.
In addition, the conveners of the Seminary Chapel Studygroup commissioned a brief survey, sent to every ATS-accredited seminary in the USA. Here is a summary of that survey’s results, select surveys from individual schools, and a blank survey for schools still wishing to participate in the study.
Finally, you can find here a handful of other analytical tools that have been used by others currently studying worship practices at seminaries.