a wee bit of video

Posted by on May 28, 2011

Some folks have been after me for a long time, saying I should have more of a “video presence” on YouTube and so on. The world of video, at this point, is rather beyond my comfort zone, and has not been a priority for me… But some friends from Fraser Lake Camp contacted me a while ago, wanting to make a short video… so here it is. These folks (John Wideman, of Ode Productions, and Scott Eyre and Eric Musselman) really know what they’re doing and, much to my surprise, made it fun. Who knows, maybe after dipping this toe in the water of video, I’ll decide to “take the plunge” someday and do some more with this medium… This particular segment was “cut” to keep it brief, and directly related to camp and how I (and my music ministry) have been impacted by my camp experience. There is the possibility of putting together a different “cut” of the interview, with more on songwriting, and so on… we’ll see (maybe)… Anyway, you can have a look and see what you...

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choosing the right songs

Posted by on May 18, 2011

This past weekend’s adult Sunday School class in Wadsworth, Ohio was a new experience for me. The congregation is in the midst of a visioning and discernment process, seeking to have open eyes, ears and hearts for “God’s good plans for us” (Jeremiah 29:11). The pastor and I had put together a plan for the class, where there would be an invitation for people to share their experiences and reflections on what God is doing in their midst, and I would respond periodically with some comments and songs, reflecting on whatever was shared. We started with a brand new song – “Detectives of Divinity” (possibly the title track for the new CD that I’m recording): “We are detectives of divinity, we’re looking all around For signs of God’s activity wherever they are found God is up to something, of that you can be sure So start the investigation, the clues are everywhere…” I had no idea what would happen, or how it would go. But I found it to be a deeply moving time, as people shared about realities in their town, in their congregation, in their own physical bodies… searching and sharing and celebrating together the “signs of God’s activity wherever they are found”… and finding ways to sing those experiences and realities, expressing our openness and desire to see, to hear, to follow. Choosing the right song… A couple of weeks earlier, I had a similar-but-totally different experience. I had been asked to help to plan and lead worship at an international, ecumenical conference on mining, hosted by KAIROS. Preparing for this event was a rich experience in itself – working closely together with two colleagues – one Mennonite, one Catholic – crafting worship experiences for this event. The conference happened on Sunday to Tuesday, May 1-3… and the Canadian federal election took place on Monday, smack dab in the middle. Needless to say, given the KAIROS funding situation that has been unfolding over the past couple of years, there was deep concern at the conference about the implications of a Conservative majority government… In our planning for the rhythm and flow of the worship times over the course of the conference, one of the songs we had chosen for Tuesday morning was this one – “Inspired by Love and Anger.” . This choice was made well in advance of the election and the election results, but it seemed to “hit home” at that time and place in ways that we could not have imagined. Choosing the right song… Since September I’ve been participating in a once-per-month class on the book of Job… taught by this exceptionally excellent prof (who happens to be my brother)… and one of the things that has struck me has been the degree to which the conversation (debate/argument/knock-down-full-out-no-holds-barred-verbal-bout) between Job and the three friends has to do with “choosing the right song.”...

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