Corny Churchy Stuff That Scatters Not Gathers

Image by Alberto Adán from Pixabay

To a person knee deep in a culture that promotes self esteem, egoism and the importance of looking cool in front ones friends, the Church looks corny and off putting. When they hear a four chord pop song of a man with a soft voice singing, “Oh Jesus loves me”, a bell goes off inside their head and it will often illicit facial expressions of disgust and repugnancy.

I get where they’re coming from having been a part of the leftist music culture since the day I was born. It’s so strange because many laity and religious seem to think that Gregorian chant and choral music is corny.

This is their reasoning for eliminating it from the Mass because it sounds too religious and doesn’t mesh with the Popular culture. The problem is, they’ve never been anywhere close to the popular culture with their modern guitar music.

As a musician I know that popular culture changes by the decade sometimes sooner. Certain styles of music within a particular country will last around 10 years or so. You’ll notice the sound and genre rapidly changing from the 70s, 80s to the 90s and so on.

With this in mind the Jesus music that attempts to reflect Popular culture written in the 80s won’t have the same affect in the 2000’s and by then will come across as corny. And the issue is…they’re not keeping up with the culture but playing this same repetitive genre of folk, country and pop.

The best way forward for the Church is to continue its practice of authentic original music written by the Church for the Church. It’s cool, it’s timeless and it’s “Universal” to the ear. You can rarely disappoint the subjective earhole of modern society regardless of their own personal taste of music with it. It does not matter what you think surrounding the theology of why we play music at Mass being only for Christ. The truth is that you have an audience.

In this audience you’ve got people with a wide variety of tastes of music. It’s impossible to please them all with one genre of watered down pop music and folk guitars. It’s not realistic to play death metal music either and expect much of the congregation to clap along and return next Sunday.

Therefore by playing to the popular culture to convert people you’ve got to be so careful how you approach that. Why? Because not everyone shares your personal taste and view of what pop culture is. Yes, conversion is a mixed bag of tricks, but some tricks are better than others.

I’ve noticed some Catholics are so attached to their approach which they call “Charismatic” that there’s no talking to them. There’s no talking to hardline liberal lefties and right wing traditional types who refuse to let go of their own ego for two seconds, that we can strategize in this game of evangelization.

Sadly, in my experience, everyone wants to do their own thing. In doing so we run the risk of losing souls and in not seeing the head of Christ by lowering our own. Don’t get me wrong, any genre of music out there that praises Jesus is great, but not in the setting of the Liturgy only retreats.

There needs to be discipline in the Liturgical approach because right now, to the general audience of the secular world, the music is corny, outdated and it gives them reason to rebel against the greatest rebellion there ever was in the world.

Do the world a favour and change the tune.

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