"We need a contemporary worship!" cried the masses.

As I continue to pray for direction in the discernment of the future of worship at my local church community, I continue to be intrigued with the language that is used when talking about worship.

At my local community there is an expressed need to have an alternative worship celebration offered. All of the conversation about this alternate worship is always described as "contemporary". Then there is discussion about what "contemporary worship" means. Most contemporary worship services have many traditional things:
Prayer, Scripture, Song, Preaching, and maybe even Communion.

So it seems to me that when we talk about contemporary worship we are not really talking about worship itself but about the way these essential elements of worship are acted out.

No big surprise there, I suppose.

I suppose what is interesting to me is the limited view of what an alternative worship at my community could look like. That is any alternative worship is contemporary. I do not hear alternate worship service opportunities described as contemplative or mission driven or traditional re-imagined or ancient/future or silent or ecumenical or the like. It is as though there are only two worship styles: Traditional and Contemporary (oh and by the way Contemporary really means a more casual form of Traditional).

How do we break from the idea that there are two types of worship?

Perhaps it just takes creating an alternative worship that is not a typical "Contemporary" worship in order for us to see the multiple and vast array of worship in the Christian tradition.

I hope there is courage and imagination to help lead in these directions.