More Resources for Organists
Since organists take part in every service, I would like to see more helps for them in RW; many choirs sing far less often.
Elaine De Groot
Time to Listen and Learn
James Calvin Schaap really missed it in his recent article, "Our Church Is Cruisin'." I knew he had missed the point when on page 41 he used the line, "Reminded me forever of the Beaver." It's "The Beav" or it's nothing. I'm surprised that an English teacher wouldn't know that—and it probably means that a) he's too old, b) he's not very good at sarcasm, c) he's unsure of his motivation in writing this article. I vote for c.
In a flash-and-dash era it is tempting to throw everything out of the worship service in a search for relevance. That almost never works. What does work is an honest search for elements of worship that make sense. For years churches have made the mistake of insisting that young people pattern their service after the "grown-up" service. For too long we have kept the creative ideas of women out of worship: we've let them teach Sunday school and make banners—but never lead the congregation in prayer. And we've continually made the error of assuming that people from non-European cultures are dying to throw away their faith and practice to assume ours.
In most ways your journal seems light years ahead of the Christian Reformed churches I am familiar with—and I must admit light years ahead of the German Reformed churches that populate this area of Pennsylvania. But there is hope for growth in all of our churches whenever we are willing to listen to the worship ideas of those long relegated to the fringe of our congregations, when we are willing to enlist the aid of those our society keeps marginalized as we write our prayers and hymns, when we seek out the attraction of heavy metal as we try to understand what sort of love our teenagers are longing for, when we recognize that the elements of worship which were so helpful to our grandparents may have little meaning to our generation.
Keep up the good work!
In the article "From Morning to Exaltation" in RW 17, we identified author Peter Hogeterp and artist Chris Stoffel Overvoorde, but neglected to give credit for all the hymn and anthem suggestions. Those suggestions were prepared by Georgina VandeZande, a music teacher and member of First Christian Reformed Church in London, Ontario. Our apologies, Georgina. We know your work took a lot of effort and will be very helpful to worship planners.