In March, I ordered the church's music department, which is now run by the children's "creative ministry" (body worship to hip-hop, puppets, and the like) department with little, if any, support for the music department, called to the Oval Office.
How clear is it when the church's music is more suited for females when it is based on feel-good, touchy-feely, emotions-based music that kids can dance like they've seen on MTV? It's not like ballroom dance or anything that involves partner-based stunts. It's not two-time Indy 500 champion Hélio Castroneves and Julianne Hough, or Kristi Yamaguchi and Mark Ballas.
What does it take to fake being a band and fake singing on a stage? The only thing for music kids learn is to fake everything. At least three routines I observed featured large-headed kids (and a few others) faking drums, piano, guitar, and even singing. What is the lesson we are teaching our children when they are simply going with the movements and not learning anything, especially as the loud music simply bangs around. Currently in choir we teach adults to sing theology-free modern worship to a compact disc. One kid whom I interviewed in discussion about the church issues even told me the children no longer have a choral music programme -- let alone a music programme.
Just fake it and it looks good while sounding well is all that's needed. If we teach kids to take a piano that's only a big wooden dummy that cannot move, that's all you need for music, it seems. They do not need a classical music education, orchestra, or organs when all that is required is for someon to pop a disc, play music, and get kids to fake the moves.
The kids talk about the words of the songs they perform, but as I listened to the practise, it was loud. The booming noise made it impossible to even hear the words, and this is intentional since the beat, not the message, is all that matters. They are being trained that church music is boom-boom-boom, listen to the bang, and ignoring words. Listen to any of service of an Emergent church (or other types of liberal churches -- and yes, that includes liberal Catholic organisations thanks to GIA, OCP, and the works) and you'll notice the same.
During one practice session I observed, the kids were doing a puppets and fake band routine to "Call Him Up" by Ron Kenoly. I noted after reading the lyrics of the song its lyrics were clearly Joel Osteen-like "prosperity gospel" teachings. Initially I heard the screaming "Jesus" incessantly and thought it could have been like a mantra in a Buddhist or Hindu temple. (I have been able to observe such recently as part of an attempt to research these events to notice the Emergent movement and how it takes from these New Age people.) When I found no theology and then read its "health-and-wealth" type lyrics, I wrote a friend who has more influence than I have at church who is as equally concerned. I've pulled my tithes off the church and to other ministries because of this attitude. I also questioned the lack of theology in "Saviour Song" -- a song which the kids love to dance "body worship" on stage. The kids are being taught MTV club dance, not classical choral singing, is church music.
The puppet and dance show was praised by leadership with its numbers, but with no Gospel message, and its body worship and faking it attitude, it concerns me. Give me an old sacred song such as the songs my voice teacher's "gray hairs" (she has a group of singers older than she is -- she is 30). My friend's son is taking piano and he loves the classics. The friend is growing concerned like me about church attitudes.
Last month during a church service, the officials organised it so that it consisted of young teenage girls in tee-shirts and jeans dancing to numerous pop tunes from the radio. Not a single Bible was opened or read. No stories from the Holy Bible were even read. What is appropriate for a dance recital of beginning youth (not an evening concert) at a major theatre on a Saturday morning is clearly not suited for a church service on Sunday morning. Too many people were unhappy, but the youth praised it and publicly denounced me by attacking on a few more viewpoints. They believed they were better for the dancing instead of studying the Gospel Truths. To end this trashing, they boasted the Bible has been altered numerous times, boasting it was not infallible and not God's Word.
What does this say about the postmodern generation?