It’s been a busy week over on the Better Together Facebook page for lead worshippers and those who think about worship in the Covenant. Many things were discussed; I used the word ‘sundry’ above, but now realize that can mean ‘trivial’ or ‘unimportant’. I’ll leave it up to you, dear reader, to make up your own mind how trivial these are. A brief survey of the topics includes:
Heritage Hymns (“how did you get to be a worship pastor when you don’t know………..?” fill in the title of your favorite Swedish hymn or song)
“when will the HymnBook/Book of Worship be available/searchable online?”
“I’m looking into buying some hand percussion for our acoustic sets in the contemporary worship gathering – cajon, bongos, djembe, and shakers – and I was wondering what brands and pieces your church uses and how much you like them…”
“what is your church’s maternity leave policy?” (this community is constantly growing…)
a discussion on the effect of church internal architecture on preferred, easiest or most successful styles of music (from David Byrne’s TED talk on architecture & music http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/david_byrne_how_architecture_helped_music_evolve.html)
a discussion thread (inspired by an Anglican Bishop) about the duration of worship services (http://goo.gl/Jkqoq)
some people’s use of “Planning center” online software and the new upgrades
we have… educated our congregations to think of every service as a consumer experience.
and finally, comments inspired by an excellent blog post from Glenn Kaiser, entitled “Volume, Silence… Worship” in which he talks about musical styles, overall volume of sound and issues of atmosphere. Glenn’s call is to be more tolerant of one another and our preferences, allowing God to work (as He does) through any and all circumstances. http://gkaiser.posterous.com/volume-silence-worship
Of course, we in the Evangelical and related traditions have, over recent decades, educated our congregations to think of every service as a consumer experience. It probably shouldn’t surprise us that people think each church event should be designed with them and their favorite elements in mind, and that people complain when the music, volume or atmosphere isn’t to their expressed taste. What do you think?