News, Notes and Letters

New Search Engine for RW

Searching just became much easier on the RW website, as it is now powered by Google. Search results are more accurate and comprehensive, making it much easier to navigate the large amount of material available. Check it out!

Contemporary Songs for Worship

Contemporary Songs for Worship is a collection of thirty-seven contemporary songs arranged for congregational singing. It’s a valuable resource for churches that want to expand their selection of contemporary music and for those who want an addition to their main hymnal. It’s also an excellent reference tool for worship planners.

Songs are biblically and theologically sound, easy to learn, and selected with both large and small congregations in mind. Priced at just $5, the book is available only at Faith Alive Christian Resources. Order online at or call 1-800-333-8300.

For more information on this songbook, visit

Additional Web Resources

Please note that we cannot do a full review of all the material on the following websites, and therefore do not provide a full endorsement.


SermonSearch is a database-driven website containing over 20,000 sermons by well-known pastors and speakers. SermonSearch sermons will stimulate new ideas and help pastors customize their teachings to fulfill their congregation’s needs. Includes an additional database of over 8,000 backgrounds and 2,000 video illustrations.


Ever wonder if you are following the copyright law correctly or not? Check out the useful guide available at

The Open Sourcebook:

The Open Sourcebook is a collaborative project that aims at creating useful, plain-language resources for worship. Its goal is to create contextualized and comprehensible prayers, confessions, and readings. You are welcome to use anything from the Open Sourcebook for free, as all of its content is protected by the Creative Commons License.

Church PowerPoint:

Based on the liturgical calendar, CHURCH PowerPoint offers professionally designed, inspirational images weekly, without charge. Images are designed to reflect a wide diversity of congregations.

Justice Song Contest

Musicians and poets belonging to the Christian Reformed Church are encouraged to enter the Justice Song Contest. Submissions are due by October 1, 2009. For more info go to

RW Awards

Reformed Worship received two awards at the 2009 Associated Church Press (ACP) convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. RW won a second place award for Magazine Design, Entire Issue. Each issue is designed by Dean Heetderks and Frank Gutbrod of the Christian Reformed Church’s Proservices Department.

The periodical also won in the Personally Useful Article category for “A Music Director’s Dilemma: Practical Advice for Working with Instrumentalists” by Phillip M. Hash, music education professor at Calvin College.

This year’s ACP convention took place in conjunction with the Evangelical Press Association (EPA), which held its own awards competition. The EPA awarded RW a second place in the Poetry category for John Terpstra’s poem “Needlecraft” (RW 87).

The ACP represents more than 130 different member publications—newspapers, newsletters, magazines, journals, news services, E-zines and websites; the EPA, more than 300 publications.

Letter: Another Great Visual Idea

I was pleased and surprised when you mentioned using butcher paper for banners on the back cover (RW 91).

I have been using butcher paper for years!

My process is to tape strips of butcher paper together to desired width using red “Tuck” tape along seams, top, bottom, and sides (for added strength). Then I paint background color on the waxed side. Next I put the image on a transparency. I tape the prepared banner to the wall, project the image onto it using an overhead and trace the image. After painting the image (usually a few coats), I tack the top of the banner to a narrow strip of wood and hang with thin wire fastened to either end of wooden piece.

My last project was based on the Lenten series “Who Is Jesus? Who Is Christ?” (RW 90). Each week I added a new banner with the answer (“The Son of God,” “The Holy One of God”). It was a great visual reminder of the previous weeks’ lessons as well as a summary of who our Savior is on Easter morning.

I am not an artist by any means, and so it opens the doors for individuals like me with an idea to present it.

God bless your ministry and thanks for all the great ideas!!

Yvonne Bos ( Grace Christian Reformed Church, Cobourg, Ontario

Reformed Worship 93 © September 2009, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Used by permission.