Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Contemporary worship

The latest newsletter of the Cleveland Chapter of the American Guild of Organists started a dialogue on "traditional worship in the 21st century." The article shared some interesting facts, and raised questions and shared ideas on how to use the organ in contemporary worship. I saw the driving force behind the dialogue as the author's question: "If the organ died tomorrow, would the council appoint a replacement committe or a committee to discuss direction and IF the organ should be replaced?"

Among the ideas shared there to help guarantee the relevance of organ music were two that I thought especially relevant for our church. One, maintain variety. The ELW has helped us by providing new hymns, psalms, and liturgies, but we've also been willing to use a variety of instruments and styles in all of our music. Two, provide information. This blog really grew out of my desire to do just that. I hope that my readers learn more about music, but I also want to encourage you to engage with me (and Cassie and Pastor and the WAM committee) in a dialogue about worship and music. We do our best to provide an interesting and dynamic worship experience, and I hope that organ music always remains a vital part of it, even as it continues to grow and evolve.

1 comment:

  1. Historically, the question of whether to have the organ is interesting. The Puritans disliked them for being too Catholic - or maybe they just didn't have any really good organists? It is a difficult instrument to learn and play well. For me, it is such a powerful addition to the service when someone committed to excellence puts the Word to music. In Moorhead, I am lucky enough to hear Peter Nygaard play with the same enthusiasm I have often seen from you, Tom. Thanks.