Thursday, August 18, 2005

new overused church words

I have the privilege of not only working at a youth club throughout the week, but also of getting to work with young adults who are studying youth ministry for a year or two. Part of their studies involve working with us at our youth club. I can honestly say that the club is as much theirs as it is ours and we absolutely love getting to work with them…even when they’re drama queens. : ) This year we welcome two new students.

Anyway, we sort of have a running joke in our office of terms we’re sick of hearing among the new emergent church (woops) I mean among young Christian adults. Personally I get sick of hearing them for the following reasons:

(1) I often don’t think the person using the term actually knows what it means.
(2) I often think the term is simply used to cover up the fact that the person (or church) isn’t actually doing anything.
(3) I often think the term is being used in an attempt to make the person sound smart.
(4) I’m really judgemental

Anyway, the following are just some of the overused and abused terms on our list. Please feel free to add your own:

(1) Community (I know that this disqualifies us as young Christian adults, but this term is seriously overused)
(2) Holistic (kill me!)
(3) Organic (??? Did this replace “grass roots”?)
(4) Take risks (used as an excuse to take uncalculated risks that make no sense at all)
(5) Post Modern (only sick of this when it is used to describe anything other than an era or maybe art. What the heck is a “post-modern worship service???)

Please feel free to add your own “new overused church” words.

By the way, have these last two posts been seriously judgmental? I don’t know what’s up with that? I’m actually having a pretty decent week.

Comments on "new overused church words"


Blogger Mel Reynolds said ... (5:38 AM) : 

And by drama queen you mean girls that are really charismatic about their lives. That live in the moment. That don't let the truth get in the way of a good story. By the way, I really enjoy dwelling in holistic community with you and Jamie. The work we are doing is both post-modern and culturally relevant. I am also learning so much because of the organic nature of it all.


Blogger blogblogblog said ... (12:07 PM) : 

How could you forget the mack daddy, context? Used especially when someone doesn't want to accept someone els's assertion of what to do in church, i.e. I'm sure that works in your context, but you have to appreciate the culture of my contextual community to understand that your suggestion simply will not work where I live.

In the interest of balance, I have to admit, though, that I like "organic." It's more than grass roots I think and I'd love to see the church actually be as organic as some say it could be. I see it as the opposite of puffed-up hypocrisy and bureaucracy. Plus, we could all wear really comfortable, dreadfully ugly sandals.


Blogger Philip_Hostetler said ... (4:51 PM) : 

In the same vein, I cannot stand when during worship service we have contemporary style music and we call it Praise & Worship time.

Yes, it is praise & worship, but so is the reading of the scriptures; so is singing of the hymns; even the sermon is praise & worship.

We do a disservice to our churchly heritage when we ascribe to a particular worship style something important as "praise & worship."

We need to remember that the whole service is praise & worship.


Blogger Tim said ... (5:28 PM) : 

I’ll give you the fact that hymns are also “worship and praise”, but the sermon? I suppose it could be, but it certainly isn’t always “worship” or “praise”. It’s often an encouragement, a rebuke, a charge, etc.


Blogger Philip_Hostetler said ... (8:02 PM) : 

Ture, the sermon isn't always worship or praise, but it should be. It is the fault of the one delivering the message if the sermon is not worship or praise.

Remember, we call Sunday mornings "worship" for a reason. Every part of "worship" should indeed be filled with worship for God - whether that be in leading others in worship (i.e. songleading, Bible reading, preaching) or worshipping ourselves.


Blogger Kathryn said ... (7:49 PM) : 

Yes....can somebody explain to me when it was that "worship" became a synonym for a certain type of in "I'm in charge of worship at X church"..which means that the guy in question leads the music group. Where does this leave the rest of us?
At vicar school I had to write an essay "what is worship" and concluded that it was basically putting God in his proper place in things...which doesn't per se have to involve Matt Redman, does it???


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