- Today. Where are we in terms of worship? * Different styles in single churches. "Traditional" = what a church had worked out before adding new styles. Changes were adiaphora (Greek, 'middle things'). But what about new formats? Culture informs these new services; therefore, they are "contemporary"/"relevant." But culture doesn't sing the Psalms. * This practice of adding new formats correlates with lower membership. How could this be (a little tongue-in-cheek)? Do people actually want to work out their disagreements (sorting out adiaphora --> "traditional") rather than have one thing for each person?
- Psalms. Sing texts in their exact words and whole meaning. * "New song" = song of salvation. Different tunes, same story. * Sing about "the God who ____" - faith's response. That's why we sing them. * Liturgical correctness? Psalms only "work" if those singing them are God's people - not a tremendously good evangelism tool.
- Singing. How? You'll find a way. Remember, though, that words are NOT adiaphora. * Simple is good. If "increasing composition causes decreasing Psalmody," why the many choirs of the Temple in the days of the kings of Israel? * Use skill and practice, musicians! Choices include antiphon-chanting, choir, accompaniment, anthem, refrain-verses, responsive, soloist, Anglican chant, etc. Remember parallelism in Hebrew poetry - a responsive singing style brings this out. Be guided by the text and context. * Music should magnify the Word itself.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Singing the Psalms
Instead of a pastor-led study of the Psalms this morning, our Cantor practiced on us his plenary address for the LCMS convention on worship, coming up soon.