“Way Maker” was the top worship song in 2020 as churches sought comfort in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, based on Faithlife’s report of more than 2.2 million uses of its Proclaim software.
The song, which was written by Nigerian worship leader Osinachi Kalu Okoro Egbu, popularly known as Sinach, surged to the top beginning in March, just as the pandemic impacted church worship in the United States. Way Maker’s top Sunday was March 22, Faithlife said, with nearly 7% of all worship presentations including the song.
Concurrently, sermons focusing on fear, prayer, faith, suffering, comfort, grief and stress trended early in the pandemic, according to Faithlife’s Yearend Song and Sermon Report, which also tracked more than 60,000 sermons pastors posted to Faithlife Sermons.
“The 2020 Faithlife data highlights the relevancy of church leaders in meeting the needs of their congregants and community during a difficult year,” Faithlife CEO Bob Pritchett said in releasing the report Jan. 11. “The words of the top worship songs and most used topics of the sermons were speaking to the issues of the day in order to offer comfort among the chaos.”
According to Faithlife, churches accessed more than 7,000 songs more than 2.2 million times in more than 568,000 services.
Top 20 worship songs
1) Way Maker by Sinach. Written in 2015, Way Maker became popular on Proclaim in 2018. The song grew more popular in 2019 when the band Leeland released a version and in 2020 when Michael W. Smith released a recording with Vanessa Campagna and Madelyn Berry, Faithlife said.
Named the 2020 Song of the Year at the 51st Annual GMA Dove Awards, Sinach’s YouTube video of Way Maker has surpassed 166 million views.
2) “Build My Life” Pat Barrett
3) “10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)” Matt Redman
4) “Great Are You Lord,” All Sons & Daughters
5) “This Is Amazing Grace,” Phil Wickham
6) “What a Beautiful Name,” Hillsong Worship
7) “How Great Is Our God,” Chris Tomlin
8) “Who You Say I Am,” Hillsong Worship
9) “In Christ Alone,” Stuart Townend, Keith Getty, Kristian Stanfill, and Passion
10) “Living Hope,” Phil Wickham
Faithlife listed the remaining top songs, in decreasing order, as “How Great Thou Art,” “Lord I Need You,” “Raise a Hallelujah,” “Goodness of God,” “Good Good Father,” “Cornerstone,” “Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone),” “Blessed Be Your Name,” “Praise God, From Whom All Blessings Flow,” and “O Come to the Altar.”
Faithlife, the maker of Logos Bible Software, was founded in 1992. Earlier this year, the company acquired the Wordsearch Bible from LifeWay Christian Resources.
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Diana Chandler is Baptist Press’ senior writer.)