Monday, July 28, 2008

33rd Mississippi Conference on Church Music & Liturgy

Calling all church musicians, choristers, and clergy who want to have a great time singing and learning about liturgy!

It's time for the 33rd annual Mississippi Conference on Church Music & Liturgy. It starts tomorrow afternoon (July 29) and runs through Sunday, August 3. The conference meets at the Duncan M. Gray Center.

I've participated as a conferee for the past three years, and this year will be privileged to serve as chaplain for the conference. We draw church musicians and choristers from all over Province IV and beyond (as far away as New York, Nevada, and California). And we always have an excellent faculty.

You can learn more about the conference and this year's schedule by going to the website.

Here's a teaser of what we'll be about this time:

Transforming Your World as Peformer, Teacher, Pastor, and Prophet

Liturgy is integrative of many, if not all, of the aspects of being “church.” It has been said that liturgy is the Anglican tradition’s primary theology – that is, people know what we believe and how we are informed and compelled to act in the world by listening to what we pray and experiencing how we worship. Liturgy is the place where we dare to bring together all that is of ultimate significance to us in the way of scripture, music, proclamation, spirituality, ethics, and pastoral concerns. It can summon and sustain the most basic and profound longings of people to be drawn into the heart of God. Liturgy provides the space in which the dynamic drama of our lives in relation to God and each other can unfold. It has the power to express and shape our realities and the power to create and transform individuals and communities. Through it the transcendent is made immanent, and we are called to new lives of service by our participation. The question becomes, as church musicians, what are our roles in this particular drama, to what godly service are we being called?

The 2008 Mississippi Conference theme, “Transforming Your World as Performer, Teacher, Pastor, and Prophet,” will explore this question. Through singing, praying, reflecting, sharing, and celebrating together, we will look at our vocation as church musicians who perform, teach, pastor, and offer a prophetic voice to the particular worlds of our influence, and to the larger world, all in great need of our ministry. Together with the faculty and staff we will address the nuts and bolts of these roles and bring plenty of ideas and resources to the experience. Please join us to examine how we might claim our ministry to offer liturgy powerful enough to transform our world.

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