All good celebrations include the giving of gifts. As we pondered what to give our readers to help celebrate Reformed Worship’s twenty-fifth anniversary, we concluded that nothing says “thanks” quite like a new look and website upgrade.
The Print Version
While at first glance it may seem that the changes to the print journal are primarily cosmetic, the more time you spend with this issue, the more changes you might notice. One thing has not changed, and that’s our commitment to providing the same quality articles and resources you’ve come to expect—new look, same depth.
To help orient you to the new design, let’s take a quick tour, beginning with the front cover. Those of you who save your RWissues and place them on your bookshelf will still be able to easily identify the seasons by color. The top left-hand corner will either be green for the theme issue, blue for Advent/Christmas/Epiphany, purple for Lent/Easter, or red for Pentecost/Ascension. The front cover also highlights some of the features of each issue to help you quickly find the article you are looking for.
The inside front cover is your go-to page for contact information. It’s also the “who’s who” of our staff and other ongoing contributing voices, either in the magazine itself or in our larger formational conversations.
The table of contents now includes three main categories: Features, Resources, and Articles. In the Features section you’ll always find the piece previously known as “Series for the Season.” Though it no longer goes by that name, the series will remain and will be featured in each issue along with two or three other pieces. These pages will be highlighted by additional graphics.
In the Resources section you will find “NoteWorthy,” formerly titled “Songs for the Season.” All the other pieces will be listed by order of appearance under either “Resources” or “Articles.”
What you will notfind in the print copy of RWis News and Notes. You can now find this online, where we can more easily update information and post news in a timely manner. Most reviews will also appear only online, with the exception of resources with a significant impact to our readership that require an extensive review.
We’re very excited about the use of four-color printing and additional illustrations to help create multiple entry points into the printed material. The use of color inside the magazine also allows us to move the popular “Come and See” column from the back cover to the inside pages of the magazine where it can receive the space it deserves.
On our website, the most noticeable change is the updated look that matches the magazine’s redesign. But the biggest change to the website is something you can’t see: the fact that it is running on a new operating system. By upgrading our system we are also able to offer some exciting new functions, including the posting of video and the opportunity to interact with others.
We are an increasingly visual culture. So when submitting a service for inclusion in Reformed Worship, consider including a video of a significant part of that worship service. Not only can we write about an aspect of worship, we can model it! You’ll see some examples of this function with the articles of Ron Rienstra (p. 44) and Julia Start (p. 42).
We are also hoping that you’ll take advantage of the opportunity to interact with others on our website. We invite you to comment on articles, whether you agree or disagree, and to share your experiences with other RWreaders. Did you try one of our resources in your church? How did it go? Did you adapt it in some way? Did you learn something that would be helpful to someone else? If so, leave a comment or post your adapted liturgy or visual. Think of the possibilities for creating a great collection of tried and true resources!
I am particularly grateful for our current staff. I don’t usually have an opportunity to thank them publicly, so please indulge me. Diane Dykgraaf took over the permissions process this past year and assists me with many administrative details. Sandy Swartzentruber copyedits each of these articles and is the one who provides the hymnal and song numbers for the music referred to in each issue. Hers is no small task, but it’s one that makes everyone’s work lighter. Dean Heetderks has served as RW’s artistic director since the very first issue, setting the design direction. He also contributes the creative visual ideas you’ve come to look forward to in “Come and See.” Frank Gutbrod designs each page with imagination and a gracious spirit. Judy Hardy, our managing editor, edits articles, responds to emails, requests photos, manages the schedule, and supports the process every step of the way.