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Blog – Centered In Song

Blog – Centered In Song

A blog connecting you to deep conversations, valuable resources, and challenging ideas

Centered In Song is a blog that features a core team of writers who care deeply about the congregation’s voice and who seek to have deep and meaningful conversations. Our team of bloggers are always on the lookout for great events, fresh ideas, and artists who are passionate about congregational singing. Because the team is made up of folk from a variety of backgrounds and experiences, this blog offers a variety of viewpoints and opinions on congregational song, celebrating the diversity that the church’s song embodies each and every week.


Blog Team

15th of February 2019

Album Review – The Porter’s Gate Worship Project, “Volume One: Work Songs”

The Context The Porter’s Gate is a collaborative effort between many songwriters and artists, spearheaded by Isaac Wardell. Their stated goal is “… to build an ecumenical community that invites conversation and collaboration in an exploration of faith.” This “sacred arts collective” desires to provide a welcoming and deeply moving soundtrack for the Church’s presence […]

11th of February 2019

What “The Sound of Music” Taught Me About Congregational Song

Blogger David Bjorlin is a worship pastor at Resurrection Covenant Church (Chicago), a lecturer in worship at North Park Theological Seminary (Chicago), and a published hymnwriter.       A Deeply Disturbing Fact On a recent trip to Ecuador to visit my dear friends Chris and Jenny, I discovered a deeply disturbing fact about their […]

6th of February 2019

Album Review – Greg LaFollette, “Songs of Common Prayer”

The Context As the title clearly reflects, this album is a collection of songs whose lyrics are either directly drawn or adapted from the Book of Common Prayer. The artist, Greg LaFollette, is a Nashville singer/songwriter and worship leader who has been involved in over 100 records during his career. He has participated in cowrites […]

5th of February 2019

Reflections on The Porter’s Gate Songwriting Retreat

Blogger Rylan A. Harris is Minister of Worship & Arts at Ray of Hope Christian Church in Atlanta, Georgia while he pursues a Master of Religious Leadership with a concentration in Music and Worship at Candler School of Theology. He is a graduate of Hampton University in Virginia.   …sitting around the table music sounds so sweet, ‘til […]

24th of January 2019

Album Review – Liturgical Folk, “Crumbs”

The Context Liturgical Folk was born in the collaboration of songwriter Ryan Flanigan and poet Nelson Koscheski. “Crumbs” is the third album released in 2 years, with most songs written on this album attributed to Flanigan. Flanigan serves at All Saints Dallas, an Anglican church in the Dallas, Texas area. The Anglican Mission in America […]

7th of January 2019

Giving Advent and Christmas a Post-Op Performance Evaluation

Author – Adam Perez is a doctoral student in liturgical studies at Duke Divinity School.   I hope that you, dear reader, had a wonderful season of music and worship during Advent and Christmas. In my experience, it is the most difficult season of the year for worship planning. It is tiring to navigate all the… […]

4th of January 2019

2019 – Hopes, Dreams, and Introductions

As we worked toward the launch of The Center over a year ago, we developed a set of guiding stances for the work of The Center for Congregational Song. I’d like to highlight a few of those guiding stances that I think speak to what we hope to accomplish in 2019.     HOPES We […]

20th of December 2018

“Sing! An Irish Christmas” Concert Review

Author – Brian Hehn is the Director of The Center for Congregational Song   I had the pleasure of being invited to attend the Getty “Sing! An Irish Christmas” concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. last weekend. As an organization that prides itself on congregational song, the Getty brand always has congregational singing […]

3rd of December 2018

When Secular Is Sacred

Author – Brian Hehn is the Director of The Center for Congregational Song When the “other” sings the Gospel As someone who is a life-long church musician but who cut(s) his teeth on Ben Folds Five, the Goo Goo Dolls, Nirvana, Ray Charles, The Beatles, and other secular pop/rock artists, I quickly became fascinated with […]

13th of November 2018

Lessons and Carols for the Small Congregation

Author – Ginny Chilton Maxwell is Music Minister at Church of the Ascension in Norfolk, Virginia, where she serves as organist, choirmaster, and elementary music teacher.   Lessons and Carols My church has a tradition of doing a service of Advent Lessons and Carols every year. To me, the term “Lessons and Carols” brings to […]