Home > Culture > At Heaven’s Gate: Reflections on leading worship

At Heaven’s Gate: Reflections on leading worship

Canterbury Press,
RRP $26.95

Reviewed by Barbara Bailey.

THIS volume is a timely reminder of the privilege, responsibility and transformation possible through the journey of worship for pastors, while leading the congregant in the knowledge that their expectancy and participation are what forms an authentic worshipping community.

The Very Reverend Richard Giles, former Dean of Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, USA, has written many books on worship, believing good leadership and a cohesive worshipping community reach a place where there is a blurring of the boundaries between heaven and earth.

He states those who gather are, “A holy people who have been charged with the energy of God and irradiated with God’s light”.

He is extremely practical and touches issues such as calendars beginning with Monday being a hindrance to our thoughts, pastors needing to be sensitive change agents, the engagement of the arts in worship and the need for worship to be able to delight children of all ages.

He exhorts his readers to be like the sunfl ower, always facing the sun, being prepared for transformation.

The timelessness of the Gospel message, the role of music, the use of silence, and hospitality are all included in his reflection.

He makes the claim that first time visitors will be influenced mainly by the welcome they receive and the quality of the music.

At Heaven’s Gate is easy to read, thought-provoking and informative.

Highly recommended.