Ipod Worship Resolves Music Preference Stress


(San Diego CA)  Justin Burke used to get in a bad mood long before the sermon was preached at Plaza Boulevard Assembly in San Diego.  “I hated the music so much by the time the preacher got up to speak I was so irritable I couldn’t listen.”  Plaza Boulevard Assembly solved all that last month by introducing its new “iPod worship venue under the direction of Chad Bruce, Worship Arts pastor.


iPod worship replaces all corporate worship music with a time where worshippers listen to the music of their choice on their iPods.  After an opening prayer Chad invites people to worship by saying, “now let us tune in our hearts to the music God has given us personally to aid us in personal worship” and the congregation immediately plugs in their earphones and tunes in to their own preferred music.  For those who do not have their personal iPods the church has 75 iPods they loan out already programmed with 14 different styles of worship music from traditional through rock and country “cowboy worship” format.


Senior Pastor Dwight Moyer was skeptical of the idea at first.  “I wondered if it is truly worship when the corporate body is not on the same page.”  But after three weeks trying the new format in August he was convinced: “There’s nothing like standing up to preach when the congregation is totally prepared by the sort of music they like best.”  Plus Plaza Boulevard church has seen their complaints on worship music virtually disappear.  “It’s just the logical end of “venue worship” says, Chad Bruce, worship arts pastor.  “We started with two services—traditional and contemporary in order to cater to the varied musical tastes.” Then Plaza Boulevard added two other services, “cowboy worship” using a country music flavor and “Contemplative worship” which offered classical music and lots of meditation.  “One be began parsing worship styles it occurred to us that each individual actually had a personal worship style and that’s when the idea o iPod worship emerged.


The latest idea Plaza Boulevard is introducing iPods into all of their venues.  “A couple often has different musical tastes but they want to sit together, so we’re thinking of encouraging one of them to simply brings an iPod and listen to their own personal worship music during the first half of our worship.  “I was against the idea at first,” concluded senior pastor Moyer, “but now I see that God has made each of us individually with individual tastes as different as each snowflake—now we can hook up these snowflakes to their own tailored musical experience and lead them closer to God in worship.”



(Of course I made all this up to make a point.  What do you think is the point?)


by Keith Drury 9/13/05 www.TuesdayColumn.com


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