In the Rhythm of Pentecost | Sojourners

In the Rhythm of Pentecost

Bread for the Journey is an ensemble of musicians who have been promoting, teaching, and celebrating the music of Christians from around the world for several years, at small parish events as well as at large denominational church gatherings. Several members of the group have traveled extensively and have met with Christian artists in Africa, Central America, Asia, and Europe. Seeing music as more than mere entertainment, they are committed to music’s role in the formation of a larger Christian vision of a world church of justice and peace.

At times the group is represented by as few as two members. For bigger events, they draw from a talented pool of musicians. For Global Songs 2, all the members of the group came together to record 27 songs from a variety of cultures.

Beyond its cultural diversity, this music is set apart from much of the other new worship music being published today because it finds its full expression only when sung by the entire community. This music only "works" when the musicians enable and nurture the involvement of all. Indeed, many of these simple, infectious songs could easily become boring when simply listened to; they must be sung to be appreciated.

Simple call-and-response musical forms and short, repeating refrains characterize much of the music. In most cases, the original language of the song is retained and an English translation or paraphrase is offered. The songs written by group members Bret Hesla, Ray Makeever, and Larry Dittberner reflect the same simplicity of musical form. Much of this music could be taught from rote.

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Sojourners Magazine March-April 1998
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