As Phyllis Tickle wrote, “It is always the music that carries the message of spiritual and social transformation most powerfully.”
Yet it seems like a lot of praise and worship lyrics don’t quite work for theologically progressive congregations, which leads us to ask:
- What is progressive Christian worship music?
- Why do we need it?
- Where can we find it?
Come sing, listen, and learn about progressive theology, inclusive language, and the messages of the songs we sing in the context of worship.
This workshop is perfect for clergy, church musicians, aspiring progressive Christian songwriters, those who help design worship services, and anyone who is passionate about the role of community song in spiritual formation.
Check In for pre-festival events will be available on Wednesday from 1 pm to 5 pm, and Thursday from 7am to 9 am.
The Convergence Music Project (CMP) is a new online source of music for worship that has been theologically curated so that all the songs on the site reflect a sensitivity to inclusive language and progressive theology.
Presenters & Performers
Ana Hernandez is a song leader, recording artist, author and workshop facilitator. She teaches chanting as a spiritual practice and songs for street actions, while delighting in the ability of sound to revitalize prayer, open our hearts, and build engaged and playful communities. Ana loves collaboration and the endless possibilities that arise when we listen deeply, invite, and encourage the contributions of absolutely everyone. She knows there’s a leader in every chair. Every. One.
Bryan Johnson is the Executive Director of Sacred Music and Movement at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Illinois. Under Bryan’s direction, all genres of African American sacred music – from the drums and complex harmonies of West Africa; to the Afro-Caribbean rhythms of the West Indies; to the jazz and blues influences of the southern United States; to traditional, contemporary, and neo-soul forms of American gospel – are performed by Trinity’s choirs and liturgical groups. He is the executive producer of “Stay Connected,” Trinity’s latest music project, which debuted earlier this year at number five on Billboard’s gospel charts.
A native of Chicago, Bryan received his Master of Music Education from VanderCook College of Music. His family roots from Jamaica, Barbados, and Louisiana helped form the foundation of his musical prowess. He is heavily influenced by gospel greats such as Charles Clency and Thomas Whitfield. Additional musical influencers include Dave Grusin, David Foster, and other jazz, rhythm and blues, and soul artists.LISTEN
280 Waking The Goose
Mark serves as Assistant Professor of Church Music at Drew Theological School and is a lecturer in the Practice of Sacred Music at Yale University. He is also the Minister of Music of Christ Church in Summit, New Jersey.
Since 1999, Mark has led music for United Methodists and others around the country, including directing music for the 2008 General Conference. His choral anthems are best sellers for Abingdon Press and Choristers Guild, and his hymns are published in “Worship & Song”, “Sing! Prayer and Praise”, “Zion Still Sings”, “Amazing Abundance”, “The Faith We Sing”, and others.
Mark received his Bachelor of Arts in Music from Yale University and his Master of Music in Organ Performance from Juilliard. Mark is a lifelong United Methodist. He is the grandson, son, brother, uncle, and cousin to United Methodist clergy. As a lay delegate to the 2000 and 2004 and 2012 General Conferences, Mark was a witness to Christ’s mission of breaking down the dividing walls of hostility and fear in the United Methodist Church.
Curator, Music Revolution
Bryan Sirchio is an ordained minister who joined forces with well known author Brian McLaren and Rev. Cameron Trimble of the Center for Progressive Renewal in Atlanta to form a new worship music company called The Convergence Music Project (CMP). In 2012, Bryan published a book called The 6 Marks of Progressive Christian Worship Music ,which articulates the theological parameters for a new genre of worship music with progressive lyrics and theology. As of May, 2016, Bryan has released 14 CDs, 4 study guides, and 4 songbooks in all. Bryan Sirchio has also traveled extensively since 1987 offering concerts, leading worship services and retreats, and offering keynote addresses at various regional and national conferences. Bryan has also worked extensively with grass roots organizations in Haiti since 1991. He’s a founding member and leader of an organization called Haiti Allies www.haitiallies.org, that supports education, meal programs, and job creation in Haiti.
The Many is an indie folk/Gospel, liturgically-grounded, new kind of worship band — an intentionally diverse collective creating music for people who want to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly, and follow the Jesus who so loves the world. This independent band’s first release, “Advent & Christmas 2015”, spent six weeks in the top five, new and notable Christian/Gospel downloads on Noisetrade, and was chosen as one of the six best Christmas albums of the year by the nationally syndicated radio program, “Under the Radar.”
The Many are from Chicago, Illinois, and include singers Darren Calhoun, Leslie Michelle, Hannah Rand, and Gary Rand. Most of their songs are written by Hannah Rand, Gary Rand, and Lenora Rand.LISTEN