The Porter's Gate is a sacred ecumenical arts collective reimagining and recreating worship that welcomes, reflects and impacts both the community and the church.
The Porter's Gate was founded in 2017 by Isaac and Megan Wardell, with a mission to be a "porter" for the Christian Church - one who looks for guests to welcome. Isaac also works as Director of Worship Arts at Trinity Church in Charlottesville, Virginia. It started as a group of 50-plus songwriters, musicians, scholars, pastors and music industry professionals from a variety of worship traditions and cultural backgrounds gathered for meaningful conversation about worship and vocation. The result was the release of Work Songs.
In January of this 2019, the collective gathered again over three days for a series of discussions about the challenges of worshipping across lines of difference. This group consisted of Christians from all theological backgrounds, denominations, worship traditions, as well as cultural and racial difference. As they discussed challenges, they composed new worship songs and hymns with the hope of providing the church with more songs that specifically celebrate God's call to love our neighbors as ourselves.
"We were so pleased to have so many songwriters who spoke different languages and came from such different worship traditions all sitting around tables and learning from one another and writing new worship music together," shares Isaac Wardell. "We hope that the result is something that will be really useful to churches looking to welcome in neighbors of all backgrounds."
Artists of The Porter's Gate such as Audrey Assad, Casey J, Diana Gameros, Josh Garrels, Latifah Alattas, Lauren Goans, Leslie Jordan, Paul Zach, Urban Doxology and Zach Bolen gathered to record the new album, Neighbor Songs. The upcoming project features stripped down song arrangements that range in style from Gospel, to Contemporary Christian, to Neo-classical to Mexican Ranchero. In the current times of political and civic strife and polarization, it is the hope of The Porter's Gate that these new songs will help churches continue to grow in worship practices that unite worshipers around the good news of the gospel - that God is truly redeeming all things.