As a community, we have spent significant time over the last two years talking about worship at Vine Street. The conversation was part of the Journey process from day one.
In the late summer of last year, the Elders hosted a series of Worship Forums, where we looked at how Christian worship evolved over the centuries and how our Sunday morning services at Vine Street are structured.
The Elders asked me to put together a task group that would work on a proposal outlining changes we will make this year.
The group - Kathy Berhow (Chair of Worship Committee), Sarah Ligon (Deacon), Greg Rumburg (Elder), Pat Cole (who has served in every capacity imaginable), Stephen Moseley (Chair Elect of the Board), and myself - had our first meeting on Tuesday, March 16, where we clarified our goals (see below). I will continue to blog about the process, so you can follow our discussions.
These are the notes from our first meeting:
For the time being, we only look at Sunday morning; i.e., we won’t talk about Sunday evening, Wednesday evening, or Christmas.
Sunday morning currently means 8:30 chapel/9:30 christian education/10:45 sanctuary; we will discuss this arrangement and its merits.
From the Journey Story we get two key directives:
- “clear profile” – How do we describe what makes any worship service a Vine Street service (outside of our people)?
- “unique format” – How and why does each differ from the other?
- Refer to the Journey notes when appropriate
- Take concrete action by June 2010
- Make changes motivated by who we say we become according to the Story
- Pay attention to how changes are introduced and implemented, and measure the response
- Look at worship as the core of what we do as a church, and let it define who we are and what we do in education and other areas of our ministry
- Make worship easy and meaningful for those for whom it has become a chore
- Keep three dimensions in view at all times during our conversations
o What is at the heart of worship?
o What are the logistics?
o How does this shape us as a community?
When we come together again, we will have thought about and answered two questions:
What is, for me, at the heart of Vine Street worship?
What is, the way I observe it, at the heart of Vine Street worship for Vine Streeters?