DOWNERS GROVE – The Downers Grove Community Church is gearing up for a music celebration with hopes of bringing anyone and everyone together through worship.
Part of the Building Bridges outreach series, the Downers Grove Worship Fest will take place from 2 to 8 p.m. Aug. 17 at the church, 6600 Fairview Ave. The event will feature eight music groups from varying cultural and worship backgrounds.
Among the groups are a Taiwanese worship group, a Hispanic group, two African American gospel groups, a traditional choral group and a band from the drug and alcohol recovery community, said Lou Bury, associate pastor for outreach and spiritual growth.
“God desires us to be together and worship,” Bury said. “This series is designed to bring people of different cultural backgrounds and different walks of life together.”
Bigger than previous Building Bridges events, Bury said the church felt called to fill the gap of a divisive time when it began the series. The brainchild of Jordan Roose, lead guitarist in the Downers Grove Community Church band, the series has grown to this event.
Roose modestly said the effort is collaborative, thanking everyone for their participation and support. The series, and this event in particular, help the church build connections and remain visible and relevant to the community in a meaningful way, Bury said.
Roose said he is most looking forward to seeing people from different backgrounds come together to see how others worship.
“As a musician, especially, there’s not always a lot of opportunity to see how others worship,” Roose said. “Here, you’ll be able to hear at least four different kinds of worship in one night.”
In addition to music, attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy food and games. Roose said one activity he is particularly excited about is helping children make tambourines so they can worship along with the bands throughout the evening.
Admission is free, as well as food from 4 to 7 p.m., said Bury, who added there will be snow cones and other fun surprises for children. Among the activities will be coloring, bean bag games and volleyball, allowing those of all ages to be entertained, Bury said.
The goal of the event, Bury said, is to send out messages of acceptance and tolerance that, regardless of outside differences, fundamentally, we are all the same. Roose said this message is where the tagline of the event, One Body, One Church, One Worship, came from.
“The church is called to minister to all walks of life and build bridges to be together. We could use messages of unity,” Bury said.