Tuesday, April 25, 2006

New Hymnal or Hurricane Relief?

The powers that be in Louisville (PCUSA headquarters) have WAY too much time on their hands.

You'd think that with General Assembly coming up in barely two months, they'd be plenty busy what with an agenda that includes divisive reports on ordination standards, divestment of investments in Israeli-related companies, proposals to ordain Christian Educators, an unbalanced budget demanding serious cutting and personnel layoffs, and the controversial proposal to move the Presbyterian Historical Society archives away from Montreat. Not to mention the precipitous decline in membership that fuels some of these issues.

But NO! Someone wants to stir up the worship wars by proposing that the PCUSA develop a new hymnal. They ask: Will the PCUSA need a new hymnal by 2013? What lunacy! Will the PCUSA still be around in 2013?? Countless PCUSA churches in my area still use the old red hymnal and refuse to change to the "new" blue one. So now we're going to ask the publication arm of the denomination to publish another one ?

Let's see.. red +blue =purple. PURPLE: the color of denial.

Full Court Presbyterian lamented yesterday that the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina (and I would add, Hurricane Rita) did not make the Stated Clerk's list of the top 10 issues facing the General Assembly. He pointed out that if the denomination united in an effort to help reconstruct these areas the church could make a real difference.

Let's add number 11 to the Stated Clerk's list. A new purple hymnal or hurricane relief for the Gulf Coast? You make the call.


St. Casserole said...

Many churches couldn't afford the last "NEW" hymnal. We need a new hymnal as much as we need extra toes.
I agree with you, Sistah!

Pastor Lance said...

I agree 100%!!


SpookyRach said...

Wow. The time and money we devote to these "important" issues is just staggering, isn't it.

Classical Presbyterian said...

Fiddling while Rome burns again?

This is all too familiar...

What was that saying about priorities? I remember:
"Real ministry is about learning to separate what is crucial from what is merely important."
--Henri Nouwen

apstraight said...

Actually, a new hymnal might be really good- especially if it is done well-

What about a cyber hymnal? A permanent hymnal committee that would consider new hymns and styles of music and send free updates every six months?
Formats that allow congregations the flexibility to have a print hymnal or project the hymnal onto a screen?

You're right, we don't need to redo the same hymnal style we have, but what about something that recognizes that we are in the 21st century?

PJ said...

classical Presbyterian said... "Fiddling while Rome burns again?"

And I always thought an organ was a Presbyterian's instrument of choice… of course you never know what kind of innovations church leaders can create…

hipastorzwife2B said...

I don't think most lay people pay that much attention to the things that happen at GA. And this is probably why these things happen. Which in turn, is why people don't want to participate.

Its a vicious circle.

As for a hymnal, I remember my grandpa-in-law telling me how he left the Episcopalians over their "new" the prayerbook. I wonder where he'll go this time?

Michael Robinson said...

Concerning the GA.

Reminds me of something President Reagan was famous for saying.

(In his response to criticism by an opponent.)

"There he (they) go again."