Blended worship is a phrase used to describe the experience where a contemporary service and a traditional service converge in a medley of music and hymns and lasers and liturgy. Instead of having two different types of services, a church will mix them both together. It can be a beautiful experience when it’s woven together perfectly or it can be like putting a cougar inside an IT department. That analogy made no sense, but that’s how blended worship can go sometimes. Nonsensically.
I think the road to whoa begins with the phrase “blended worship.” It sounds more like a delicious coffee beverage than a worship service. I should be able to walk into a coffee shop and get a non fat, light foam venti blended worship with room on the top for me to put some prayer in.
Maybe all we need is a new name. I have three possible alternatives:
1. Rock & Scroll
I can’t be the first person to think of that phrase. Seriously, it’s so obvious and delightfully puntastic. Just imagine, a guy playing an electric guitar solo and someone else reading from a long scroll.
2. Anger Squared or A2
I saw a documentary on the show “Saturday Night Live” one time and when one of the skits got rewritten, comedian Colin Quinn said something like, “Yeah, let’s compromise, that way, we’ll both lose.” Sometimes that’s how blended worship feels. The people that want to hear hymns all day get angry because there are praise songs. The people that want to hear praise songs get angry because there are hymns up in the mix. Both groups get a little angry, which makes the name “Anger squared” perfect. At least being up front about it might encourage people to come across the aisle and say, “I’m so angry about these hymns.” And then someone else can say, “I’m angry too, I hate praise songs. Yeah, for the A2 service. We’re both angry. Success!”
3. Grab Bag
That’s what you’re getting. Sometimes, a blended service is going to be like some sort of mixed medium work of art where oil paints meet a steel sculpture meet a Will Hoge song and it all comes together. Other times, well, you read the cougar line above, it will be like that. So celebrate that fact by naming the service “grab bag” and give people bags o’ mystery when they come to service. In some bags will be chips and gum. In other bags, you’ll get paper clips that have been bent all out of shape so they don’t hold paper together and pieces of old wigs. That’s just what happens on grab bag Sunday.
I’m cool with blended worship. Honestly. Although I tease, I should probably warn you that the church I start, iGracePointeLifeTruthHouseNorthRiverElevate, is going to have blended worship. It’s going to be a blend of awesome and wicked awesome.
p.s. thanks for the idea Scott.