A new song collection
for the Mennonite Church
Frequently Asked Questions
What's the background on needing a new hymnal?
Some say that Mennonites do not have a liturgy or a set form of worship, but it is in singing together week after week where Mennonites express their Christian faith. If you look at copies of Hymnal: A Worship Book in church pews, you see that they have been well-loved and well-used since the book came out in 1992.
In spring 2008, Mennonite Church Canada, Mennonite Church USA, and MennoMedia’s predecessor—Mennonite Publishing Network—started exploring the need for a new hymnal by surveying worship and music leaders in Mennonite congregations. That work continued in summer 2011, when “The Heart of Mennonite Worship” was released as a jointly produced study guide inviting Mennonite congregations think more deeply about worship and music. Out of that study, congregations were asked to submit the songs sung each week through an online survey. In late 2014, the Joint Executive Committee of Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA gave the green light to a new song collection project with the understanding that while MennoMedia would be the publisher, it should do so in close partnership with the denominations. Staff anticipates that the new song collection will be released in 2020. This new volume will replace Hymnal: A Worship Book (1992), which replaced The Mennonite Hymnal (1969).
Who will this song collection serve?
This new song collection is being designed to serve Mennonite congregations across North America—and others who share our passion for music in worship. It will take into account the breadth of the Mennonite Church, the diverse ways Mennonites sing and worship, and new digital technologies.
Will my favorite song still be in the same place in the new hymnal?
No promises are being made about what will—or won’t—be in the new song collection. The publishers are leaving that up to the song collection committee. You can, however, recommend that the committee consider including your favorite songs.
How do I recommend that a song be included?
Many have asked where and how they can suggest existing content to the committee.
If you’re looking for a venue to share your heart songs with the committee, we invite you to offer them here.
If you are a pastor, a frequent leader of worship or singing, or are otherwise an aficionado, you may give more nuanced responses here. The committee will collect and consider these responses. Thank you for contributing your voice to this challenging and important work!
What kind of electronic options are you considering?
Many congregations project music or text, therefore we are currently planning on two separate electronic editions: one with the notated music and one with just the words.
Will there be a recorded version?
Some recordings may be part of the project, as budget allows and the committee decides.
I have more questions. Who can answer them?
Contact Bradley Kauffman at BradleyK@MennoMedia.org.