For over 35 years, the Calvin Symposium on Worship has annually gathered together worshipers from many Christian traditions across Canada, the US, and beyond, bringing together people from a variety of roles in worship and leadership, including pastors, worship planners and leaders, musicians, scholars, students, worship bands and teams, organists, visual artists, preachers, chaplains, missionaries, liturgists, council and session leaders, and more. Cosponsored by the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship and the Center for Excellence in Preaching at Calvin University and Calvin Theological Seminary, the Symposium aims to encourage leaders in churches and worshiping communities of all sizes and settings. In 2020, Services of the Word focused on the book of 1 Peter and the theme of “Living in Hope and Grace.”

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A Festival of Global Congregational Song Based on the Lord's Prayer

This hymn festival focused on multilingual and global worship, including the Lord's Prayer in Spanish, Nkosi, Nkosi from South Africa, Kyrie Eleison from Ghana, Halelua! Pelo Tso Rona from South Africa, Khudaya, rahem kar from Pakistan, a greeting of peace in an Asian Manner, and prayers from Ghana, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Peru, and Mexico.

A Service of Evening Prayer in the Manner of the Community of Taizé

Michael Hawn, Southern Methodist University

Be reconciled all you who enter here–parents and children; husbands and wives; believers and those who cannot believe; Christians and their fellow Christians.

Handout - Plenary: Theological Perspectives on Recent Hymns

Cornelius Plantinga Jr., Calvin College

This plenary session examined recent hymns in 12 different categories: Knowledge of an Incomprehensible God, Creation, Wisdom, Sin and Grace, The Suffering God, Jesus Christ, The Holy Trinity, Praise and Worship, Dignifying the Common Life, Social Justice, The Church, and Global Awareness.

Handout - Renewing Our Baptism

David Bast, Reformed Church in America
Betty Jo Bast, Fifth Reformed Church
Mary Behm, Fifth Reformed Church
Mike Danielson, Fifth Reformed Church
Steve Eldersveld, Fifth Reformed Church
Leslie Overway, Fifth Reformed Church
Philip Rose, Fifth Reformed Church
Steve Robbins, Fifth Reformed Church
Amy Van Gunst, Reformed Church in America
Mark Vogel, Fifth Reformed Church
Matt Vogel, Fifth Reformed Church
Randy Wolthuis, Fifth Reformed Church
Lisa Eldersveld, Fifth Reformed Church
Carole Fields, Fifth Reformed Church
Paula Vanderzee, Fifth Reformed Church
Susan Wilson, Fifth Reformed Church

Several practices in Christian worship remind us of our baptism. The entire season of Lent is not first of all an extended meditation on the suffering and death of Jesus, but rather a preparation for or remembrance of our baptism. The declaration of pardon following the prayer of confession is, in many churches, read by the pastor from the baptismal font, a reminder of the grace that is sealed to us in our baptism. Several denominations have developed "remembering your baptism" services. In some of these services, worshipers are invited to physically touch the water of the baptismal font as reminder of their baptism.

This morning we invite you, to experience that renewal as you remember the promises claimed in your baptism.

Handouts - Singing and Praying Globally: A Service of Global Song from the South--Latin America and Africa, and a Service of Evening Prayer in the Manner of the Community of Taizé

Two compiled handouts outlining their respective worship services, including all hymns.

Helping People Sing Their Hearts Out: A Musical Sampler

John Witvliet, South Bend Christian Reformed Church
Jorge Lockward, West End Presbyterian Church
Michael Hawn, Perkins School of Theology
Alfred Fedak, Westminster Presbyterian Church
Stephen Rush, University of Michigan

"To lead the people in song is at once simple and complex. It is a marvelously varied affair. It may mean leading a small congregation in an unaccompanied unison line, or it may mean leading a large assembly with choirs, bands, and orchestras in polyrhythmic and polytonal complexity. Men or women can do it, and those with the most creative capacities will never cease to be challenged by it. It encompasses the simplest amateur expression and the most perfect possible professional performance. It is for the part-time amateur and the full-time J.S. Bach. And it is one of the most rewarding things you will ever do."

--Paul Westermeyer, The Church Musician, rev. ed. (Augsburg Fortress, 1997)

Newspaper Ad - The Twelfth Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts

A newspaper advertisement for the 12th Calvin Symposium on Worship.

Poster - The Twelfth Symposium on Worship and the Arts

On campus flyers advertising the Twelfth Symposium on Worship and the Arts, and the Art In Worship Exhibit, which attempts to enlarge the vision of the worshiping community of Christ, to stimulate arts created to enhance the worship experience, and to provide resources for future enrichment of our congregational spaces.

Program - The Twelfth Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts

The Calvin Symposium on worship and the Arts aims to bring together worship leaders and planners, pastors and youth leaders, artists and musicians from many church traditions to engage in worship, fellowship, learning, and discussion around preaching, drama, organ and choral music, worship, visual art, and congregational song.

The conference program is both ecumenical and Reformed, both principled and practical, both appreciative of a heritage and open to contemporary expression.

Save the Date Card - Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts

A mailer for the 12th Symposium on Worship including contact information for the Symposium and featured presenters.

Schedule - The Twelfth Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts

A short schedule for the 12th Symposium on Worship, including a list of events and leaders.