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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

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Worship music continues to revamp styles

The music begins as the church’s congregation stands to sing and worship, reading words off an overhead projector. This common scene throughout the nation’s churches drastically contrasts from the more traditional churches of the world where churchgoers stand and reach for their hymnals.

Traditional church hymns and songs seem to be going out the window these days, as more modern and contemporary music moves into its place.

“When congregations stand to sing, they no longer reach for their hymnals,” Meredith Grudger, a student at the Drew Theological Seminary, said in her Aug. ’03 interview.

“Overhead projectors flash each verse on a wall in front of the congregation? New church leaders proclaim, ?Those stuffy old songs aren’t the language of the people. We need to bring in new music to reach a new generation.'”

This generation’s music preferences include new and more ?hip’ instruments according to Kevin Reed, ’05.

“We have electric, acoustic, and bass guitars, drums, keyboard, flute, viola, and of course voices,” Reed said. “When I was younger, we only had a piano and an organ.”

Over the past 25 years, traditional instruments have given way to the more contemporary mediums of music-making.

“Organs are really on their way out these days,” Gloria Enns, Valley Christian Center organist, said. “They’re being replaced by keyboards now. It’s really too bad.”

Many local churches continue to use these traditional hymns and sing them on a regular basis. Concert Choir and Ensemble teacher, Aaron Bryan, enjoys these hymns.

“In the church I attend we sing hymns more than newer songs,” Bryan said. “I believe our worship should come from our own hearts and not be manipulated by the “mood” some churches try to set for their members.”

This “mood” churches set reflects the hearts of students on campus during their worship time in campus chapel services, according to Principal Gary Schultz.

“Fresno Christian High School leans more toward the contemporary worship,” Schultz said. “We like to cater to our students’ worship needs. Whatever gets the students excited for Christ is our desire.”

The purpose of worship comes out in the hearts of believers and is demonstrated through the songs powerful lyrics.

“By scraping old hymns,” Grudger, said. “We lose the wisdom of those journey-makers who went before us. We neglect the complexity of our faith, glooming onto a prefab formula. Without the tradition of our faith, we become nothing but irrational Bible shouters, repeating the same phrases over and over and over.”

Contrary to Grudger’s disapproval of the incessant repetition and ?irrational Bible shouters’, Bryan sites the Bible as the answer to her condemnation.

“Repetition is a part of our worship,” Bryan said. “The Bible tells us that the angels in heaven simply sing, ?holy, holy, holy’ over and over again to God in their worship. Why shouldn’t we do the same?”

Church has been used as a vehicle for believers to comfortably worship Christ in the atmosphere they desire most.

“I’ve attended Peoples church for quite sometime now and I have no problem worshipping Him with all of my heart and all of my soul,” Schultz said. “People purposely seek a church where they can comfortably worship. There are plenty of traditional churches out there who sing hymns but frankly I desire a more exciting form.”

Time will tell what the future will carry when it comes to worship music; according to Tony Manjarez, worship Pastor at Valley Christian Center, tradition is key.

“We cannot discard the past,” Manjarrez said. “It’s our heritage. Worship is a very personal expression to God. It’s a heart issue. There are so many ways we can worship Christ. He’s such a creative God that he never gets stuck on one way.”

For more information on campus worship and the school’s mission statement, students and parents can contact the high school office at 299-1695, ext. 5.

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