top of page

CONVERGENCE MUSIC PROJECT's

CONVERGING 2023

18-21 October 2023
Nashville, TN

A gathering for musicians, pastors, worship leaders and anyone interested in justice-building, inclusive and progressive music and worship.

THE CONFERENCE

3 DAYS OF POWERFUL TALKS, INSPIRING MUSIC,

PROVOCATIVE WORKSHOPS & COMMUNITY-BUILDING

Featuring keynotes from Brian McLaren, Diana Butler Bass and more.

EXPLORE...

What vital and transforming worship might mean from a progressive or "convergence" perspective, what role music can play in worship, spiritual formation, and social transformation.

LEARN...

About new musical resources and  discover how your local congregation can begin  to create new music, art and liturgy in your own local contexts.

 

SHARE...

Ideas and best practices, soulful worship, and the blessings of being in community, networking, and encouraging each other.

EXPERIENCE...

Keynote addresses, opportunities for songwriters and composers to share their own material, and opportunities to create new music and liturgy together.

The Conference

SPEAKERS & MUSICIANS

Brian McLaren
Brian McLaren

Author & Speaker

Known throughout the world as one of the founders of the "Emerging Church movement," Brian's numerous books have played a crucial role in helping countless Christians (especially those who were raised in conservative Protestant Evangelical traditions) to move through stages of spiritual growth and exploration as they evolve into a more progressive understanding of their faith. Brian is also a gifted songwriter and musician, and several of his songs are on the CMP website. Brian has been at the core of CMP since it began.

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design
Ken Medema.jpg
Ken Medema

Songwriter & Musician

Internationally renowned as a composer and recording artist, Ken has been a shining light in the progressive Christian world. At the event Ken will share his incredible ability to "play back" keynote addresses with spontaneous compositions. Ken and his road partner and manager Beverly Vander Molen are key leaders on the CMP core team. Ken's songs have been sung throughout the world for decades, and he has been a relentless musical voice for justice and all of the themes that are at the heart of the Convergence Music Project.

  • Spotify
  • Facebook
  • Untitled design
flamy-grant-mc-230731-c7272b.webp
Flamy Grant

Drag Queen, Comedian, Musician

The comedy queen with the blistering voice, Flamy Grant is a gospel & roots musician from the Bible Belt who will move you, soothe you, help you heal some trauma and always leave you laughing. Flamy’s 2022 debut record Bible Belt Baby is the world’s first full-length contemporary Christian album by a drag performer and the album recently reached No. 1 on the iTunes Christian album charts after a fundamentalist singer/preacher called her out on Twitter.

  • Spotify
  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Untitled design
diana.jpeg
Diana Butler Bass

Author & Speaker

A world renowned Christian educator, author, historian, and speaker, few people have helped the progressive Christian movement finds its core identity and flow more effectively than Diana. She has written over a dozen books and published countless articles and been a prominent commentator on progressive Christian media. She will no doubt have much to say about the content of music in the context of worship, and the kind of music and worship needed most at this point in history.

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design
themany-056_edited.jpg
The Many

Band & Songwriters

The Many is a creative collective making music and new kinds of inclusive, justice-building gatherings that offer space for faith and doubt, lament and gratitude. Featuring musicians: Darren Calhoun, Christa Sangster, Kristina Sinks, Jonathan Ulanday, Hannah Rand, and Gary Rand. With lyrics written by Lenora Rand, whose gift for beautiful theology, language, and human authenticity is an amazing blessing to the Church at this point in history. Their music is consistently among the "best sellers" on the CMP website.

  • Spotify
  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design
miller_mr_CourtesyOfAlimahBoyd.jpg
Mark A. Miller

Composer, Teacher, Artist

  • Youtube
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design

Mark A. Miller passionately believes that music can change the world. His dream is that the music he composes, performs, teaches and leads will inspire and empower people to create beloved community. An Assistant Professor of Church Music at Drew Theological School and Lecturer in the Practice of Sacred Music at Yale University, Mark's compositions are sung throughout the UMC and other denominations and his choral anthems are best sellers for Abingdon Press and Choristers Guild. His most recent album, "Imagine the People of God," is available now on Apple Music.

nps-by-Sally-Farr-1024x819.jpeg
Noel Paul Stookey

Musician & Songwriter

One of the newest artists to join CMP, the “Paul” of the legendary Peter, Paul and Mary, Noel is an independent musician who passionately believes in bringing the spiritual into the practice of daily life. Funny and irreverently reverent he has been altering both the musical and ethical landscape of this country and the world for decades. In 2001, along with his daughter Liz Stookey Sunde, he launched Music To Life, a nonprofit utilizing groundbreaking ways to bring music to life for social change through technology, entertainment, artist collaboration and education. 

  • Spotify
  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Untitled design
andra_hg_promo_1.jpeg
Andra Moran

Songwriter & Musician

A well known Christian singer/songwriter, author, and worship leader, Andra is also the musical director of a contemporary worship service at Woodmont Christian Church's "Bridge Worship Service" in Nashville (host congregation of this event). Andra's music is consistently one of the best sellers on the CMP website. She is also co-author (along with Suzanne Castle), of Brim: Creative Overflow in Worship Design. Andra is also a CMP Core Team Member and one of the co-designers of the CMP Fall 2023 Conference.

  • Spotify
  • Instagram
  • Untitled design

Singer/songwriter, author, and full-time pastor of McFarland United Church of Christ in WI, Bryan has been an itinerant musical minister, retreat leader, and keynote speaker at many regional and National UCC youth events and conferences for over 30 years. His book, The 6 Marks of Progressive Christian Worship Music gave shape to the vision that eventually became The Convergence Music Project, and Bryan is the Lead Designer and space holder for CMP. His music is also featured on the CMP site, and Bryan is the first line of tech support for the website and the primary contact person for this Fall Conference.

Singer/songwriter, author, and full-time pastor of McFarland United Church of Christ in WI, Bryan has been an itinerant musical minister, retreat leader, and keynote speaker at many regional and National UCC youth events and conferences for over 30 years. His book, The 6 Marks of Progressive Christian Worship Music gave shape to the vision that eventually became The Convergence Music Project, and Bryan is the Lead Designer and space holder for CMP. His music is also featured on the CMP site, and Bryan is the first line of tech support for the website and the primary contact person for this Fall Conference.

Moss_Otis_by-Terence-Crayton_Featured_photo.jpeg
Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III

Pastor and Speaker

  • Twitter
  • Untitled design

Senior Pastor of Trinity UCC in Chicago, IL, Dr. Moss is a preacher, activist, and author who practices and preaches a black theology that unapologetically calls attention to the problems of mass incarceration, environmental justice, and economic inequality. His latest book project, "Dancing in the Darkness" has been lauded as a "life-affirming guide to practical, political and spiritual challenges of our day." Dr. Moss is also founder and CEO of Unashamed Media Group, who's short film, "Otis' Dream" - which highlights Otis Moss Sr.'s 1946 attempt to vote in Troup County, is the winner of 8 film festival awards.

richard_ob_loose.jpeg
Richard Bruxvoort Cooligan

Songwriter & Musician

One of the most prolific liturgical composers in the Progressive Christian music world, Richard's songs almost always focus on themes found in the Psalms. In fact, Richard has composed a worship song based on almost every Psalm in the Bible. In addition to his itinerant work leading worship and retreats throughout the country Richard is also the musical leader for a contemporary worship service called The Olive Branch at an ELCA Lutheran church in Rochester, MN. Richard's music is also among the top sellers at the CMP site, and Richard is a CMP Core Team Member.

  • Spotify
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design
bryansinging.jpg
Bryan Johnson

Trinity UCC Music Director & Composer

Director of Worship Music and the Choir at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, IL, the largest UCC Church in the country, Bryan Johnson is a fantastic pianist and he will share music and reflections about "how they do it at Trinity." The music of this congregation has been a key aspect of this incredible church's growth and vitality for a long time. Bryan will also lead a workshop at the conference.

chris.jpeg
Christopher Grundy

Songwriter & Musician

Both a professor of Worship and Preaching at Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis, MO, AND one of the best selling artists on the CMP website. Christopher (or Dr. Grundy as he's known at Eden) has an amazing gift for writing songs that are immediately accessible and singable while at the same time being layered with meaning and theological substance. He and his music will be featured prominently at the event. Christopher is a CMP Core Team Member.

  • Spotify
  • Facebook
  • Untitled design
bryan_sirchio_16_5.jpg
Bryan Sirchio

Songwriter, Author, Pastor

Singer/songwriter, author, and full-time pastor of McFarland United Church of Christ in WI, Bryan has been an itinerant musical minister, retreat leader, and keynote speaker at many regional and National UCC youth events and conferences for over 30 years. His book, The 6 Marks of Progressive Christian Worship Music gave shape to the vision that eventually became The Convergence Music Project, and Bryan is the Lead Designer and space holder for CMP. His music is also featured on the CMP site, and Bryan is the first line of tech support for the website and the primary contact person for this Fall Conference.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Untitled design
monty.jpeg
Monty Jackson

Singer/Songwriter, Arranger, Record Producer, Pastor

Rev. Monty Jackson is a graduate of Eden Seminary, and is currently the Pastor of Christ Church UCC in Maplewood, MO. An internationally acclaimed artist, Monty has performed in venues around the world. 

Today, Monty has over a million views on YouTube from fans who love his musical gift.

Stan-Mitchell.jpg
Stan Mitchell

Preacher & Teacher

One of the most powerful preachers and teachers in the progressive and "post evangelical" Church movement, Stan is the founding pastor of Gracepointe Church in Nashville, TN. Among other things, Stan is a passionate advocate for the LGBTQIA community, and a thought-leader in the evolution of Progressive Christian Theology. His ability to articulate and share his journey from an extremely conservative evangelical expression of the Christian faith into his more inclusive and expansive understanding of what it means to follow Jesus is both mesmerizing and inspiring.

  • Instagram
  • Untitled design

Who's this for?

Church musicians, clergy, worship leaders, songwriters, artists of all kinds, and others involved in leading and designing worship experiences for communities of faith that embrace a more “just and generous” understanding of the Gospel.

About

Gary Rand

The Many

As musicians, this is an incredible opportunity to hear from pastors and worship leaders about what they really need and how we can help.

Brian McLaren

Author

I believe in this conference because I believe God, our mission, and our community is worthy of better lyrics and better music. These 3 days can help us get there.

Dirk Damonte

Worship Leader

When I attended this a few years ago, I was introduced to so much amazing progressive music which we've been using in my church ever since. So glad it's back!

Sponsors

pulpit fiction.png
CMP Sponsor Logos_edited.png
CMP Sponsor Logos_edited.png
UCC white.png
Upper Room Logo (white).png
CMP Sponsor Logos_edited.png
CMP Sponsor Logos_edited.png
CMP Sponsor Logos_edited.png

Join us.

Subscribe to get news on this event - we'll keep you up to date on new speakers & musicians, lodging and others special opportunities

Thanks for submitting!

Get registered now.
See you soon!
RSVP
bottom of page