St James in the City have developed a set of musical resources called 'Building Bricks'. They are designed to engage both adults and children. We spoke to Deborah Davies, Worship Pastor about the resources.
“Building Bricks is a culmination of resources that we've built up over the course of a year at St James in the City.
Our church community is blessed with an equal number of children & students, and every Sunday at 4pm all ages gather to worship. As worship pastor I found that I was increasingly searching for more material that would engage both adults and children, and songs that would tie in with our church's journey and regular sermon series'.
After writing one song and thinking it might just work, I was thrilled when the music group backed me up and the church really jumped on board! The song spoke of our call & purpose as church and - as songs tend to do - united us around that purpose in a new and powerful way!
We hope that these resources (the CD, action videos, lyric & chord sheets) enable us to share the songs with other churches. We're giving away the CD to as many churches as possible! And personally, I hope it inspires other worship teams to have a go at writing all age worship material!
Every Sunday we have an extended time of all age worship. Our students particularly have an aptitude for performing the actions, and it's great when children jump to the front to show them how it's really done. Luke & Nelly love to hop up on Sundays - and they wonderfully narrate the songs on our CD!
We're grateful for our music group who play the songs on Sundays - and on the album - and for our keen actions volunteers. For churches looking to grow in all age ministry, we've put some action videos onto YouTube and created lyric videos that accompany the CD track. So even if you're just one leader with a handful of children - we hope this gives you the chance to sing and dance along!
The common response I hear from parents is their love for the song lyrics. The melodies are catchy, but most people express their appreciation for the use of scripture and depth of meaning. I think this is helped by the songs being based upon parables, like 'The Lost Sheep' and 'The Parable of the Sower'.
I've heard encouraging stories from other churches giving them a whirl on Sundays, but some of the best testimonies seem to stem from car journeys. Some parents run over and say 'Thank you! It's the one thing that puts our child to sleep!'. Others get close to throwing it out of the car window after a week of nursery trips with Building Bricks being requested on repeat! One parent shared that they were moved to tears by the Lord one day as they drove their child to school listening to the album. And I hear that questions from the back seat mean that there's more opportunity to talk about Jesus on the journey home. For me, this is the best feedback!”