Does Your Worship Team Take Song Requests?

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Ever wish you could help choose which songs are sung at church each Sunday?

As someone who especially loves to worship through music, one of my favorite (or least favorite) parts of the service is seeing which songs we are going to sing. Some weeks I love the songs we sing and they speak right to my heart. Other weeks I’m just going through the motions. It can be very hit or miss.

Chances are that unless you’re part of the worship team, you really don’t have much say in the songs that get sung each week at your church. As I considered this, I couldn’t help but remember the Sunday evening service in the small CRC church where I grew up. On Sunday nights, a member of the church (often an elder or deacon) would go up front and take song requests from the gray psalter hymnal. The pseudo-worship-leader would walk around with a mic but most times people would just shout out a page number.

From my perspective as a kid, it was a big deal to pick a song and have the whole church sing it. Too shy to speak up myself, I’d pass along my song requests to be shared by my dad. I loved hearing which songs others chose and this time of worship became my favorite part of the service.

Though many things are different today (i.e. fewer Sunday evening services and hymnals), might there be a fresh new way churches could take song requests? Can you envision a modern way to do this (i.e. social media)? Does your church invite members outside of the worship team to give input on song selection? What are the benefits or drawbacks to more input?

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I would always request The Trees of the Field when my church growing up would have the congregation choose. It was my favorite part of attending night church.

Admin

Glad to hear someone else enjoyed this too! Great song as well :) 

Community Builder

 

  We no longer have an evening service in Montreal because the people who complained about the format never showed up when there was a formal service in the sanctuary when I moved to Sherbrooke, QC, to attend university there. Now we try to keep a balance between hymns and songs so as to keep the highest number of worshippers happy, and it seems to work.  Of course, I'm not in church every Sunday, but I haven't heard other committee members bring up complaints about the choice of hymns or songs at WoCo meetings.  Maybe we would need to conduct a survey.  

Admin

Thanks, Michele! Balance is so important. It would be interesting to see if the survey found that people were generally pretty happy with the songs or if there was room to grow or change. 

Community Builder

I remember this practice, too, Staci, and as a musician I remember the anticipation of whether someone would pick a really hard song to play! But I, too, really enjoyed this. Maybe now churches could have a "Song Request Box" in the back of church, and members could drop in a paper with a song they'd like to sing. The worship leader/planner could try to incorporate these requests as much as possible. It would give people new ownership and involvement in the worship, wouldn't it?

Admin

Thanks for reminding me of the musician's perspective Diane! Yes, I too think there is potential for greater ownership and involvement and love the song request box idea. There could also be a digital option, i.e. on the church FB page.