There is a growing body of empirical evidence confirming something that people of faith have known for a long time: our spiritual health has a profound effect upon our physical health. Worship, ritual, prayer, and singing can be physically as well as socially healing.
On Thursday, March 15, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the New Brunswick campus (35 Seminary Place, New Brunswick, New Jersey), the Reformed Church Center will host a conference examining this connection and how local congregations can use it as a force for greater good, featuring four leaders who are both scholars and practitioners.
Paul Janssen is the Alvin J. Poppen and John R. Young Fellow in Reformed Worship for the 2017-2018 academic year and pastor of United Reformed Church in Somerville, New Jersey, and holds degrees from Central College in Palla, Iowa (1981) and New Brunswick Theological Seminary (1985). During his seminary years he met and married Annette Giles, a daughter of First Reformed Church in Astoria, Queens. They have two grown children, Samuel and Emma. An occasional writer of hymns and composer of tunes, he has always had a keen interest in the liturgical life and renewal of the church, and finds deep value in both the historic reformed tradition and more contemporary influences like Taizé and Iona. Paul’s keynote address, “Reformed Worship: Not Enough ‘From the Neck Up,’” will examine information on recent studies of how worship effects the human brain—an interest that was sparked for him by an elder in one of the congregations he served—and what that might mean for our worship leadership and planning.