Brian Russell writes from real experience with Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist and Catholic churches with real challenges and, thankfully, real success stories.
How can we design worship that touches all of our people when stylistic and musical preferences vary so much from one person to another? Worship can at times struggle to find its identity and vitality as congregations wrestle with declining membership, concerns about finances, and changing cultural attitudes about the role of churches in neighborhoods and communities.
Russell offers to congregations whose worship is thriving and to congregations who seek worship renewal wisdom for designing meaningful contemporary services that enliven worshipers' encounters with God. Well-researched and accessible to a range of worshipers and worship leaders, this book invites readers to lean in and listen with generous and curious ears to the lively soundscapes of Christian worship today. He writes in a conversational way about what he has learned from his diverse experiences as worship designer and leader.
Leading readers through topics ranging from historical and theological topographies of worship to the nuts and bolts of bulletins and budgets, microphones and sound systems, Russell achieves his dual goals of helping worship leaders to explore contemporary worship on "macro and micro levels" and providing congregations with a "catalyst" to start substantive and much-needed conversations about worship.
Russell has found a way to organize in handbook form what worship leaders too often carry in their hearts, minds, and bodies as tacit knowledge. He offers his tacit knowledge as practical and theological wisdom.