Pastor's Letter - October
Greetings to you from God our Father and his Son Jesus Christ. Amen.
Shortly before Timmy came into our lives and we could do things like go and see movies in the theatre, Michelle and I saw this movie called "The Shape of Water". I could tell you that this movie was a love story, and it is, but it's a very offbeat, dare I say weird, story. It involves this mute girl who works as a janitor at a government facility in the 1950's. In the movie, the facility houses a sea creature not unlike the Creature from the Black Lagoon. The mute janitor girl? SHE FALLS IN LOVE WITH THE CREATURE. If you want to see a truly original film, I recommend it- but beware for parents, there are some scenes definitely not meant for children. Underneath the strangeness, I saw this film as one that had heart underneath it. It dealt with women's roles in the 1950s work place, it dealt with feeling like you don't belong, and all of those human things in between the lines made me really appreciate the film.
Michelle, on the other hand, hated the movie. Let me say this- Michelle doesn't strongly hate anything! But this film? I have never seen her have such a negative visceral reaction to anything, much less a film. On the way home, I tried to discuss it, and she said repeatedly, "Honey, I'm trying to forget it- I don't want to talk about it." Okay, then.
Variety is the spice of life. This is why nowadays, you can watch just about anything you want, between Netflix, Hulu, Network television, Cable channels that are very specialized- you name it, it's out there if you search long enough. That might actually be a problem- we have created so much digestable content that some can spend their whole lives doing nothing but watching stories rather than living life.
Worship is no different. We have different ways of worshipping, and in the Lutheran church, that has traditionally been a liturgical worship with traditional hymns. If you took the Lutheran service order now and compared it to Luther's time, you would find little difference. Yet we know that there are other traditions, and other ways of worship. Some faith groups worship by gathering in silence and staying that way for most of their time. Some faith groups speak and worship almost entirely in Latin or Hebrew. Some use bands and sing rock songs that could either be about Jesus or a Girl ("You are my completion, I can't live without you"..... who is that really about?) And I would be remiss if I didn't mention the snake handlers in West Virginia and Kentucky.
I have heard growing voices at Trinity sharing their opinions that it is time to "shake things up." To some extent, we have begun that already. We do add one contemporary song each month during worship, and we have altered our words in liturgy from time to time. But as I hear these voices, I want to ask you truly what you want to see at Trinity. To that end, there will be a survey passed out in the coming weeks that will ask you to express your opinion. The Worship and Music Committee will look at those surveys and act accordingly.
I want you to be honest and forthcoming in your responses. The only way we get to see what you are thinking is if you tell us! Just one thing, though: if any suggests snake handling, I'm not doing it!
In all seriousness, though, thank you for your part in shaping our future here at Trinity.