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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

3rd of December 2020

An Open Letter to Pastors During the 2020 Pandemic

Dear pastors, I get it. The stress of 2020 is not only weighing on you from the normal personal levels, but the often-dysfunctional tendencies of your congregation members are being highlighted in particularly poignant ways right now. It’s a “damned if you do and damned if you don’t” kind of year and you’re getting an […]

30th of November 2020

An Advent Hymn from another Time of Conflict

Guest blogger Paul Farseth is a St. Olaf graduate (1964), hymn writer, and member of The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada living in Falcon Heights, Minnesota.     “O Savior Tear the Sky Apart” by Friedrich Spee, 1623 (“O Heiland, reiß die Himmel auf”) In Advent, the days beginning four Sundays before […]

26th of October 2020

When the Mountaintop Experience Isn’t Enough

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.   It can be a difficult time to be happy in our world. I could run through the list of reasons, but I think most people do not need […]

15th of October 2020

Worship & Anti-Racism: A Beginner’s Resource List

Blogger Brian Hehn is the Director of The Center for Congregational Song.   The Original Post On September 25th, I posted this onto my personal FB wall:   My heart aches for my black sisters and brothers for yet another result that denies their basic humanness based on the color of their skin. This is […]

18th of August 2020

COVID-19 & Singing – An Update Based on Current Research

INTRODUCTION There are currently research teams across the world working on identifying how COVID-19 spreads and how to best protect the population from contracting the virus. Two ongoing studies are particularly focusing on music-making, which is what we will reference in this summary article. Before continuing, a few important considerations: The author of this article […]

15th of June 2020

Even When I Can’t See It You’re Working: The Overlooked Authorship of “Way Maker” by Sinach

Guest blogger Anneli Loepp Thiessen is an active song leader, researcher, classical musician, and music educator. She is set to begin her PhD in Interdisciplinary Music Research at the University of Ottawa in September, 2020, where she received her Masters of Music in Piano Performance.     The Rise of “Way Maker” On February 17, […]

30th of April 2020

Streaming Copyright Questions

Guest blogger David Schaap is the president of Selah Publishing Co., Inc. based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.     Questions about Streaming Copyright There have been many questions on social media about copyright for streaming or posting on YouTube your church services and other church events where music is performed, and hopefully this will give you some answers […]

29th of April 2020

God Moves in a Mysterious Way

Author Ginny Chilton Maxwell is Music Minister at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Hampton, VA   God Moves in a Mysterious Way: Doing Music Ministry During a Pandemic How does one do music ministry from home, when the church is closed and choirs cannot gather? The answer is, you spend the first week or two scrambling […]

6th of April 2020

An Architect’s View: Architecture for Hymn Singing

This post, written by Edward Anders Sövik, was originally published in the peer-reviewed journal The Hymn in 1990. As with many topics concerning the church’s song as well as the field of architecture, the advice and wisdom written remains true many years later.   A beginning in the understanding of church architecture is the recognition […]

25th of March 2020


That’s right…these are carols (new texts set to familiar Christmas Carol tunes) for the Covid-19 pandemic. DOWNLOAD COLLECTION* *UPDATED 4-2-2020 Watch the full collection including sign language interpretations here: Introduction & Guidelines In this time of fear, anxiety, and isolation, the concept of caroling might seem trite, ridiculous, or even inappropriate. We’ll let history decide […]