Everybody at the Table – A Multi-Cultural Worship Workshop
March 16, 2017
Our world is a wonderful mix of cultures, languages, abilities, and orientations. Travel up and down any city street and you will see all sorts of people and shops, hear voices in different languages, and smell an array of fragrant foods from a world’s worth of restaurants. Our differing backgrounds and abilities and perspectives, melded together, make us stronger.
For generations, churches have been the one place that has been homogenous. It has been said that eleven o’clock on Sunday morning is the most segregated hour of the week. But even that is changing in more and more congregations. People of different races, languages, and abilities are getting together for worship as they do for all of life.
On Thursday, March 16, the Reformed Church Center at New Brunswick Theological Seminary will celebrate this blending in “Everybody at the Table,” a workshop looking at how we are joining together, and how we can cross even more cultural barriers.
|The Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis, Senior Minister at Middle Collegiate Church, a 900-member multiracial, welcoming, and inclusive congregation in New York City, and the first African American and first woman to serve as a senior minister in the Collegiate Church, will present the 2017-18 Poppen-Young Fellowship lecture: “For the Healing of the Nations: Love, multicultural worship, and Creating a New American Story.” There is no question that something is broken in America: our hearts, our dreams, our sense of civility. Worship “stories” God’s plan for a healthy and whole world. Worship puts love, period, on the line as a balm in Gilead. This practical talk will show and tell how multicultural worship can change the story from broken to whole.|
|The Rev. Jill Fenske, child of God, pastor of the Franklin Reformed Church in Nutley, New Jersey, poet, wife and mother, life-long learner, volunteer chaplain at Camp Sunrise, promoter of dialogue and committed follower of Jesus, will share her experiences of including differently-abled people in worship.|
|The Rev. Vicente Martinez, pastor of the Reformed Church of North Brunswick—the Sanctuary in North Brunswick, New Jersey, chaplain for the Port Authority Police of New York and New Jersey and the New Brunswick Police Department, and lecturer on urban ministry and non-profit initiatives in the US and the Caribbean, will share the story of helping a primarily mono-cultural suburban, Caucasian congregation become bi-lingual and multi-cultural.|
|The Rev. James Hart Brumm, director of the Reformed Church Center, moderator of the Commission on History of the Reformed Church in America, and a teacher on worship and congregational song known across North America, will lead us in worship and a discussion of the theology behind using songs from all cultures.|
The workshop will begin at 10:00 am on Thursday, March 16—registration, coffee, and tea will be available beginning at 9:30 am—and everyone should be on their way home by about 2:00 pm. Registration is free for everyone, and lunch is free for NBTS students, faculty, and staff. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, 13 March.