After Worship: “Inside Out” Multigen Service

It’s Sunday around 4 p.m., and I’m still feeling tender and spiritually nourished after worship this morning. Planning our multigenerational services–which aspire to engage us in ways that sermon-focused services can’t–is usually a pretty big challenge. As much as I love worship that is creative and effectively utilizes ritual, it is not a natural skill set of mine to plan such worship.

So although I don’t have to write a sermon for multigenerational Sundays, I often spend more time planning these than I do writing sermons other weeks.

And when you plan a service that relies on everyone participating, there is always the enormous unknown: will anyone participate? If people are invited to write down their private thoughts and feelings, will they do it? What will the notes say? How short will the service be if nobody participates?

Of course, it never happens that nobody participates. I am always touched and amazed by the openness of Chalites (that’s what I call our Chalice congregants) in stepping outside our comfort zones and trying new things. The sharing this morning was so moving. We were invited to share the positive and negative self-talk messages we send ourselves, and hearing people’s deepest fears and sorrows read aloud brought many of us to tears.

My heart overflows.

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