Monday, March 24, 2008

Worship in the Bar/Brothel

"Anointing" is such an overused word.

But why let the charismaniacs have it all the time?

Besides, it's a biblical word, and a biblical phenomenon.

And I can think of no more appropriate word for the perceived manifest presence of God that I
often experience in worship.. bars!

From the classic 77s concert "You gotta have Jesus; that's all") at The Wild Blue in 1986,
to the 1990s Michael Pritzl of The Violet Burning absolutely lost in passionate worship ("Lay Your hands now on me..") the bartender, apparently oblivious to the Holy Shekinah on stage, nonchalantly played cards....I bet St. Ryan Towsend has some great stories here.

I dare to believe there is an anointing and receptivity for worship in the most "secular" of places. Sometimes even the bartenders ARE caught up in the moment; intrigued.
I have seen it; heart-arrows drawn to Jesus right there in "pagan" space...go figure(:

Which is why I love hearing about the church in The Trash Bar, and other recent examples of this stuff working; and not resulting in cheap cheesiness, or artificial or manipulative attempts to "close the deal."

"Can we worship in the public space? Of course, but we are going to have to find ways to connect with God, that, rather than alienating, attract people and spark their of the most missional things that a church community could do is simply get out of their buildings and go to where the people are--and be God's people in that place in a way that invites people into the equation!"
(Hirsch, "The Forgotten Ways," p, 240)

All that to say, check out Andy Roger's blog report on "Leading Worship in Bars, Night Clubs and Brothels," here; with his two videos representing two different approaches to doing this posted below. He was so right on in noting that " both models work, one isn't any better or more 'spiritual' than the other. It depends on context and partnering with the local believers, churches and ministries." Interesting that the second model (and second video below) was the more direct approach, and it was the more "worldly" venue..essentially a brothel.

Smells like Jesus to me.

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