Sunday, April 7, 2013

Worship

A Lutheran friend writes
"...[W]e now have our second service every week with a praise band singing what I think are actually fairly dreary songs. I won’t go into all of my complaints, but I now am going to the first service.

.... I find the contemporary services boring, and just Christian-lite. The texts are sometimes called 7/11 — seven words heard eleven times. It also ignores the church eternal by just using contemporary songs and texts, ignoring the vast history of church music and texts that go back millennia. Our benediction used to be the Aaronic Blessing (“The Lord bless you and keep you, …”) but I haven’t heard that for a long time. ...."
There is a fascinating trend in evangelical circles — a rediscovery of liturgy. ....
A leader in this is Aaron Niequist, a worship leader at Willow Creek Church in South Barrington, Ill., one of the best-known evangelical megachurches. While serving as worship pastor of Mars Hill Church in Grand Rapids, Mich., he became restless and bored with the typical four rock songs and a sermon pattern that had come to dominate evangelical/contemporary worship.
Niequist began to explore adding other elements to worship: multiple Scripture readings; reworkings of classic hymns; call and response songs. He said they were making it up as they went but soon discovered that Christians have been doing these “new” things in worship for centuries. So he began a journey to understand and present liturgy for 21st century worshipers.
A result is “A New Liturgy”, four worship settings that draw on his musical skills and instrumentation of the 21st century and are rooted in his continued study of Christian liturgical traditions.... [more]
I haven't listened to the four linked liturgies yet but I admire the intention.