In Spring Garden, we believe that communal worship is when God’s people gather together as a particular community for ENGAGEMENT in ROOTED and COMMUNALworship, giving glory to God and witnessing to His Kingdom.
We believe that communal worship should be participatory and holistically engaging, and so we seek to creatively cultivate ways to invite the community to participate in holistic worship. Much of this is imagined and created the Creative Team and other artists in the community
Engaging through participation, not simply through passive observation
Engaging the fullness of our humanity (mind, body, soul, spirit, emotions) and senses (seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, smelling)
We believe that communal worship should be rooted in Christ, Scripture and the history and traditions of the Church, and so the movements and elements of our gathered worship draw on and stem from these
Ultimately, all of our worship, both personally and communally, has God at its centre as He has revealed Himself through Christ by the Spirit.
Scripture and its interpretation in the community is one of God’s primary means by which He has revealed, and continues to reveal, Himself by the Spirit.
In history and Christian tradition
God has continued revealing Himself by the Spirit in the centuries since the Scriptures were formed and so we seek to ground ourselves in and continue the story of God’s work and revelation through the Church, its traditions and spirituality.
We believe it is important that communal worship is lifting the voice of our particular community, and so we value our gathered worship being led by and coming out of the people of the community. On an average communion Sunday there are 27 Spring Gardeners involved in facilitating our worship, and usually no more than 2 of those are “professional” Pastors!
Our particular people
Communal worship is the lifting of the voices of the diverse particular people who make up the community, authentically bringing who we are into the gathered congregation.
Our particular history
Our voice in worship is in the context of our shared history as Spring Garden Church, as Canadian Baptists, as part of the Church Catholic (worldwide and welcoming) around the world and throughout history.
Our particular time and space
Our gathered worship is in the shared context of our location at Spring Garden and Kenneth Avenues in 2015 in a post-Christendom and post-modern culture.
Why Intergenerational Worship?
Intergenerational worship is a way in which we come together as the family of God to worship. It is not just about having children and youth in worship. Intergenerational worship is about the whole family of God worshipping together. It is not a family worship, it is not a youth worship. It is a worship that includes all ages and stages of life.
Intergenerational worship is a way in which we proclaim together that Jesus is Lord. It is a way of emphasizing the importance of community. This is why, on a quarterly basis, we gather as the community of God. It might not be a time when you yourself will get a lot out of worship but that’s okay. This time together is not about you. It is about our relational God who call us to be in relationship with Him and others. It is about who we say we are. It is a way of participating in the body of Christ. It is a way of saying that we need each other. Children and youth are not the only ones that need to experience intergenerational worship; adults, singles, and seniors need it just as much.
We value it. We think it’s important. And because it is important, even though it can be hard or draining, it is worth it. Intergenerational worship can be a great opportunity to practice discipleship. It is a way of dying to our propensity to be self-centred and can be a way to worship selflessly. So we invite you to come and participate with us and with the triune God who invites us to be one with him.
God’s continuing self-revelation is not age-specific. Your children may experience a relationship with God long before they can articulate it,” says Steve Burger, director of children and family ministries in the Evangelical Covenant Church’s Christian formation department.
“The phrase ‘all generations’ appears 91 times in the Bible. God does not form our character all at once or all by himself. Nor does he expect us to unilaterally form our own character. God acts on us through others. Interaction among generations is necessary for forming faith and character. Each age learns from another,” Vanderwell says.
Huyser-Honig, By: Joan. "Calvin Huyser-Honig, By: Joan. "Calvin College." All Ages Needed for Intergenerational Worship. June 11, 2007. Accessed April 17, 2018. https://worship.calvin.edu/resources/resource-library/all-ages-needed-for-intergenerational-worship/.
Huyser-Honig, By: Joan. "Calvin College." All Ages Needed for Intergenerational Worship. June 11, 2007. Accessed April 17, 2018. https://worship.calvin.edu/resources/resource-library/all-ages-needed-for-intergenerational-worship/.