What kind of money are we talking about when it comes to non-denominational church lighting, and band equipment?

I do well on defending the church and her precious jewels/gold in the mass. We know God is not opposed to gold. We know that these things only have value because secular people place monetary value on it. This conversation came up with a friend who helps set the “stage” for “worship” service in his non-denominational church. I would like to know from someone more experience in these type of things what as church can typically expect to pay for exotic light show church services and drumsets? Personally I cannot see it being any less expensive than gold candle holders, and chalices.

The issue is not so much the expense of music and light shows, it is the concept of a worship service as a show to entertain the audience. This is in opposition to the original concept of the liturgy as Christ-centered, not human-centered.

:thumbsup:

it’s hardly as black and white as “if it’s not liturgical, it’s entertainment”.

at my baptist church of about 200-300 people, our music consists of contemporary stuff, without being “over-produced”, for a lack of a better term. chris tomlin, hillsong, that sort of thing, and the occasional hymn for good measure. the main instrument is piano, and we also use acoustic guitar (or tasteful-sounding electric, depending on who’s on the roster), organ, bass and drums (me! :)).

as far as the gear is concerned, we’re not exactly drowning in bling. the church owns a basic electronic piano, an entry/midrange drum kit, and a bass amp. an old organ too, but it hardly rates a mention, considering it’d fetch about $40 at a garage sale. :stuck_out_tongue: apart from those, everyone brings their own stuff. i’m not too sure about most of it, but i know the deacons set a budget of about $2k for the drums, and this was to replace a hunk of junk i donated some time ago (that now gets used in one of the sunday school rooms).

and let me tell you this so there’s absolutely no misunderstanding: there is nothing human-centred about our services. we don’t perform a show, we use our instruments and sing to the glory of god, and pray before every service that we remember that calling. the fact that we don’t use a traditional liturgy doesn’t change that.

honestly, i don’t know why this is even a debate. i’ve been to several catholic churches in the past, and all of them were running sound equipment and projectors just the same as any other. :shrug: maybe i could sympathise with the argument if all protestant churches looked like planetshakers on crack, but that’s simply not the case.

btw, odell, please don’t use scare quotes around christian terminology when referring to protestant churches. :slight_smile:

The OP was speaking to non denominational Churches, not the Baptist Church.
Welcome to the forums by the way! First post I’ve seen of yours.
Mary.

well, churches like mine often come in the firing line of the worshiptainment accusation, so i figured i was qualified to give my experience.

Welcome to the forums by the way! First post I’ve seen of yours.
Mary.

cheers! long time lurker and all…

I wasn’t aware that Baptists are ‘charged with’ the entertainment for worship issue.
Yes you are indeed qualified to give your experience. I have known many Baptists and they are all Christ centered.

Hey Cheers to you too, lurk less and post more :smiley:
Mary.

I had to laugh at the last bit. Odell, I agree with lantheria, there’s no need for the quotation marks around “worship”. That’s somewhere between really silly and pretty offensive.

I find both modern and older types of services can be reverent and awe-filled. Conversely, both can fall into ostentatious pageantry.

I can’t speak with any authority about the money spent in non-denomination churches for lighting and music; I haven’t been in a non-d church in several years, and the Protestant churches that I go to (for yearly Decoration Day services at cemetaries where my relatives are buried) are all little country congregations. However, our Catholic parish just spent $10k+ to upgrade the sound system.

Been down that road already :wink:

as far as the gear is concerned, we’re not exactly drowning in bling. the church owns a basic electronic piano, an entry/midrange drum kit, and a bass amp. an old organ too, but it hardly rates a mention, considering it’d fetch about $40 at a garage sale. :stuck_out_tongue: apart from those, everyone brings their own stuff.

This is sorta to one of the points I was making towards my friend. I see no difference in people bringing their own stuff for church than the church taking from collection to have gold. The candles, incense, alter, icons are all there for me to enjoy and lift up my spirit to heaven.

and let me tell you this so there’s absolutely no misunderstanding: there is nothing human-centred about our services. we don’t perform a show, we use our instruments and sing to the glory of god, and pray before every service that we remember that calling. the fact that we don’t use a traditional liturgy doesn’t change that.

To Mary’s point I was not talking about baptist. You may not be liturgical, but I am sure you see the difference in your worship and non-denominational worship. They are hardly any different than going to a live concert and are indeed entertainment and not worship. At least not worship in the biblical sense.

honestly, i don’t know why this is even a debate. i’ve been to several catholic churches in the past, and all of them were running sound equipment and projectors just the same as any other. :shrug: maybe i could sympathise with the argument if all protestant churches looked like planetshakers on crack, but that’s simply not the case.

btw, odell, please don’t use scare quotes around christian terminology when referring to protestant churches. :slight_smile:

Perhaps I should have just said its not worship in the biblical sense. Somehow I dont think that would have gone over as well either. Never meant to offend anyone.

I knew it wasn’t cheap! You know that could have done a lot towards feeding the poor. :slight_smile:

Well, in all fairness, the old system was a hodge-podge, and some elements were competing with other elements to the point that in some parts of the church the amplified speech was rather garbled. However, I was noticing this morning that I was still having to concentrate to hear and understand what was being said, and I was sitting within 5 yards of one of the speakers.

All that said, our St. Vincent de Paul does a land-office business every week.

I can’t comment on how much it costs but I’m sure that it’s expensive. Yes, I would compare it to the gold, stainless glass, statues, massive stone Church’s, etc that the CC has.

There’s nothing wrong with worshipers worshiping with all of their hearts, souls and strength based on their culture. To tell Africans they can’t worship God with African music, to tell Rome that they can’t sing songs of praise in Latin and to tell new Christians from North America in their early 20’s that they can’t worship to rock music is a joke.

This is why many members are important. I love Catholicism but in all honesty when I went to my local Cathedral it was all elderly people and families. My Church’s majority is 40 and under, a lot come in alone as they are new converts. We have over 3000 of these people come through over one weekend. It’s a very good thing, you’re just not used to it.

How can you possibly know they’re not rendering worship to God? You can’t see their souls, minds and hearts.

I do not know how much a ‘non-denominational’ church spends on this stuff, but it must be a sizeable amount.

There is a local parish that bought their church from a Pentecostal “non-denominational” church that went defunct and they can’t afford to have all the show-biz stuff removed. The speaker system alone large enough for a rock concert in a big stadium is built into the church and the church would have to be structurally rebuilt to remove it and that goes for the video screens as well.

So they focus on making the place fit for Catholic worship, putting in an altar, tabernacle, statuary, crucifix and paraments. I personally donated a crucifix.

Much of the extraneous stuff is just ignored for the time being, and some of the stuff will have to remain since no-one can afford to basically rebuild the church.

PS, the term “non–denominational” really gets my goat, these churches ecclesial bodies are all fundamentalist and usually Pentecostal or Baptist. They are all denominational.

PPS, I have the same problem with people who call themselves “Christian” with no qualifiers. They imply that they are the ONLY Christians, and if you don’t ‘get saved’ you are not a Christian at all.

As Catholic Christians we call Protestants separated brothers. but they often call us “un-saved people who need to come to Christ”.

“Planetshakers on crack” . . . LOL.

I saw them a few years ago in Atlanta, Georgia. I prefer Hillsong’s lyrics over their’s, but when I heard them live, God really used them. :thumbsup:

You don’t have to defend the church. Let those that want to rail against her do so alone.

My wife goes to a “mega-church” and I recently saw one of their budgets. For the branch my wife attends, the budget was 16 million and most of that went to compensation in one for or another. Less than $300 k was slotted for missions. That’s less than they pay for “music” which is money for professional musicians. They may not have the bling showing but they’re spending the money.

All and all, those churches are doing good work. They’re mostly for the unchurched. Spiritually, they’re a mile wide and an inch deep.

Baptists have indeed seen their fair share of battles over the “worship wars.” When it comes to contemporary worship, many Baptist and non-denominational churches are on the same page.

What is “non-denominational worship?” Last I checked, the only thing that made a non-denominational church a non-denominational church is that its independent of a denomination . . . .

Cedar Creek Community Church . . . rather than Cedar Creek Baptist/Presbyterian/Pentecostal/etc.

What you are referring to as “non-denominational worship” is actually just contemporary worship and aesthetics (lightshows, warehouse furnishings, and over the top sound system).

Any type of church can adopt this “non-denominational worship style.” In fact, many of the mega-churches you may have in mind as “non-denominational” are in fact Baptist mega-churches who have just eliminated the word “Baptist” from their church signs.

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