Several authors have studied church congregational life in order to identify positive characteristics. For example , Thomas Long (Beyond Worship Wars , Building Vital and Faithful Worship. Alban Institute 2002) discerned nine signs of churches that are building vital and faithful worship:
· Make room somewhere in worship for the experience of mystery.
· Make planned and concerted efforts to show hospitality to the stranger.
· Have recovered and made visible the sense of drama in Christian worship.
· Emphasize congregational music that is both excellent and eclectic in style and genre
· Creatively adapt the space and environment of worship.
· Have strong connection between worship and local mission and this connection is expressed in every aspect of the worship service
· Have a relatively stable order of service and a significant repertoire of worship elements and response that the congregation knows by heart.
· Move to a joyous festival experience toward the end of their worship service
· All have strong charismatic pastors as worship leaders.
Some of these issues may help provide categories for assessing worship outcomes, and I shall try and describe them in future postings. Hopefully you may be able to add to my list.