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martin_greenwood

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It's all about comfort zones, isn't it? Not about what is really needed or wanted.

Welcome to the club. :P

Well, I'm obviously the Club's newest member. I found the whole thing self-satisfied, smug, middle class, middle-of-the-road-mungous pap. And I used to enjoy working with an excellent local Christian music group. The arrangements were the only remotely interesting bits (some good playing!). Pity the Beeb managed to make the RAH organ sound like an electronic, with all those turbo-charged mixtures.

 

Radio 2 has at last moved with the times. It's a pity our 'worship leaders' haven't (or, at least, the safe ones that get the air time).

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Guest Cynic
Hi Lee

 

I hate to break it to you but the fact that you have enjoyed participating in something does not, alone, make it good, or worthy of prime time, public service broadcasting :P

 

The Big Sing was broadcast in the God slot which, traditionally, featured a service complete with prayers and lessons. Over the years the format has seen the religious element diluted in favour of more universally acceptable gaiety, reflecting similar changes in many parish churches. My concern is that The Big Sing represents a logical extension of this dilution to the point where all the religion has been stripped out of the service and one is left with a hotch-potch of sacred and secular music, performed averagely, in pursuit of the notion that this will get more bums on pews.

 

Well, I suppose it might. All I'm saying is that it will get my bum off the pew and in search of something less likely to rot my teeth, let alone my soul.

 

Whatever next? Candle I The Wind on Choral Evensong?

 

Best wishes

 

Jurassicdad

 

Paul - details here, http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/programmes/s...s/20071028.html

 

The usual suspects, I see.

Or should I say: I see, the usual suspects!?

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Guest Lee Blick
Hi Lee

 

I hate to break it to you but the fact that you have enjoyed participating in something does not, alone, make it good, or worthy of prime time, public service broadcasting :P

 

The Big Sing was broadcast in the God slot which, traditionally, featured a service complete with prayers and lessons. Over the years the format has seen the religious element diluted in favour of more universally acceptable gaiety, reflecting similar changes in many parish churches. My concern is that The Big Sing represents a logical extension of this dilution to the point where all the religion has been stripped out of the service and one is left with a hotch-potch of sacred and secular music, performed averagely, in pursuit of the notion that this will get more bums on pews.

 

Well, I suppose it might. All I'm saying is that it will get my bum off the pew and in search of something less likely to rot my teeth, let alone my soul.

 

Whatever next? Candle I The Wind on Choral Evensong?

 

Best wishes

 

Jurassicdad

 

Paul - details here, http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/programmes/s...s/20071028.html

 

I don't think I have really ever seen Songs of Praise being a complete service with prayers and lessons. That must have happened a long time ago when the church may have had some relevance to society. I have to say the current version of Songs of Praise with a magazine format, or with themes is a damn sight more interesting than the rather fake situation of getting loads of choirs to fill a church in which most of them have no affiliation to, to sing the same boring old hymns, week by week.

 

If you are expecting proper service conditions, go to a church. Popular television is not necessarily the vehicle for such programming. A couple weeks ago, Songs of Praise was about the Wesley's. I found that programme very informative, even though I am no longer a Christian.

 

I hate to break it to you but the fact that you have enjoyed participating in something does not, alone, make it good, or worthy of prime time, public service broadcasting

 

Of course not, if I was intending to take part in something that is musically edifying, I would not go anywhere near a church or a cathedral, I would go to a London concert hall or opera house, tbh.

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Of course not, if I was intending to take part in something that is musically edifying, I would not go anywhere near a church or a cathedral, I would go to a London concert hall or opera house, tbh.

I think that's a shame because, speaking purely for myself, I find well-performed church/cathedral music the most musically edifying and spiritually uplifting experience there is. But that's just me.

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I think that's a shame because, speaking purely for myself, I find well-performed church/cathedral music the most musically edifying and spiritually uplifting experience there is. But that's just me.

 

Me too, Vox....

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On the subject of music in worship, what was one supposed to make of last night's Songs of Praise - The Big Sing, from the Albert Hall?

 

It seemed to me to be all music and no worship; rather like a big participation event loosely themed around something vaguely religious. The authors of the 'bang up to the minute' song-type hymns were described as 'worship leaders' but their pieces seemed mostly like an excuse for a sing-song. I'm not sure what The Hills Are Alive With The Sound of Music (let alone Edelweiss or You'll Never Walk Alone) had to do with enhancing any liturgy.

 

The two 'traditional' hymns, O Praise Ye The Lord and Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer suffered from having every note banged out as if with a mallet, with no sense of singing through a line and were thus no more uplifting than the rest of the 'show'.

 

I have no idea which if any of the performers have any Christian faith and I don't know how many viewers it may have taken closer to God but it left me feeling that whatever it was about was nothing with which I wanted to be associated.

 

And can anyone tell me why it was felt desirable to make 'sing' into a noun? It's things like that that turn nice people into grumpy old men.

 

What was the point of the whole thing?

 

Best wishes

 

J

 

Hi

 

Songs of Praise is produced by the BBC's religious dept - but it has not been a church service format for a very long time, if ever! It was never intended to be.

 

I have reservations about some of the content in last Sundays show, as do others - but perhaps we should remember that TV is primarily about entertainment. The show is aimed at the mass audience (and SOP is unashamedly that) and has chosen to use a format that varies week to week - it's inevitable that some shows will appeal more than others.

 

I've been interested to hear some of the SOP arrangements - but very few would work in the average church! These days, the instrumentalists are almost always professionals - the BBC's argument being that most amateurs aren't up to scratch for national TV.

 

The bottom line is that SOP will continue while it draws a significant audience - and it seems to be doing that in the current format.

 

Every Blessing

 

Tony

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Guest Barry Williams

The last time I saw Songs of Praise the wholesale alterations in the words, mainly for no apparent reason, wrecked the poetry and often altered the meaning. Is this still going on? My wife and I do not have a television, so I am unaware if this is till the case.

 

Barry Williams

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The last time I saw Songs of Praise the wholesale alterations in the words, mainly for no apparent reason,

Barry Williams

 

Political correctness?

 

wrecked the poetry and often altered the meaning.

 

Barry Williams

 

Wonderfully put; and how refreshing to find someone who is not afraid to say so!

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Guest Barry Williams
Political correctness?

Wonderfully put; and how refreshing to find someone who is not afraid to say so!

 

 

Thank you.

 

A classic and typical mistake is the alteration of 'Thine be the glory' to 'Yours be the glory'. Modernisation would produce 'Yours is the glory' whereas the unintentionally bowldlerised version uses the rustic " 'e be" incorrectly.

 

I could give literally hundreds of examples of similar verbal ineptitude, both in hymns and Common Worship. Let no-one think that the Church of England or the church of rome has a modern language liturgy! Or hymns for that matter.

 

'And also with you' lacks verbal felicity and grace. 'And with you also' is fine. Even better, from the Book of Ruth is : 'The Lord be with you: The Lord bless you'. This at least has the strength of Biblical authority. All of this and much more was carefully put to the Liturgical Commission by many experts and rejected.

 

The worst hymn books of all for such matters are the various versions of Hymns Old and New, but those books have already been discussed on this Board.

 

Barry Williams

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Hi

 

Songs of Praise is produced by the BBC's religious dept - but it has not been a church service format for a very long time, if ever! It was never intended to be.

 

I have reservations about some of the content in last Sundays show, as do others - but perhaps we should remember that TV is primarily about entertainment. The show is aimed at the mass audience (and SOP is unashamedly that) and has chosen to use a format that varies week to week - it's inevitable that some shows will appeal more than others.

 

I've been interested to hear some of the SOP arrangements - but very few would work in the average church! These days, the instrumentalists are almost always professionals - the BBC's argument being that most amateurs aren't up to scratch for national TV.

 

The bottom line is that SOP will continue while it draws a significant audience - and it seems to be doing that in the current format.

In my naivety I'd always imagined that SOP was designed for the house- or hospital-bound. A "service" to those unable to get to a place of worship, in a similar way to, but perhaps more vital than, R3's Choral Evensong being a service for those unable to get to a cathedral. TV is the pre-eminent medium for many people.

 

I would be happy for SOP to be more of a service and less of a smug hymn-fest. And I would be happy, in these pluralist days, for it occasionally to offer Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, etc. services and for the Christian programmes to be, dare I say it, more Christian.

 

On the other hand, perhaps such services might be (already are?) catered for by the denominations themselves via the internet or digital radio, in which case the BBC, I suppose, has every right to put out mindless "Christian" pap along with most of the rest of its "entertainment".

 

Sorry to sound so negative, it's been a long day.

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In my naivety I'd always imagined that SOP was designed for the house- or hospital-bound. A "service" to those unable to get to a place of worship, in a similar way to, but perhaps more vital than, R3's Choral Evensong being a service for those unable to get to a cathedral. TV is the pre-eminent medium for many people.

 

I would be happy for SOP to be more of a service and less of a smug hymn-fest. And I would be happy, in these pluralist days, for it occasionally to offer Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, etc. services and for the Christian programmes to be, dare I say it, more Christian.

 

On the other hand, perhaps such services might be (already are?) catered for by the denominations themselves via the internet or digital radio, in which case the BBC, I suppose, has every right to put out mindless "Christian" pap along with most of the rest of its "entertainment".

 

Sorry to sound so negative, it's been a long day.

 

Hi

 

I think you'll find that when SOP started, there was a service (or occaisionally an act of worship in another religious tradition) broadcast on Sunday mornings.

 

And yes - I think SOP (& certain other religious offerings from the BBC) could be more Christian.

 

Every Blessing

 

Tony

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Guest Barry Williams
I recall one edition of SOP coming from a synagogue, but can't remember where or when.

 

Peter

 

Songs of Praise came from the West London Synagogue in the mid nineteen eighties. My wife (who is not of the Hebrew faith) was featured somewhat in the front row.

 

Barry Williams

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Guest Cynic

Referring back a while in this topic to a serious question as to whether organists who are not 'believers' should be in their posts at all, some of a topic currently being discussed on 'Ship of Fools' puts this into perspective. Apparently, there are a growing number of ministers who do not believe in God, an example given: according to a recent article, as many as one in five ministers in the Dutch Protestant Church!

 

http://forum.ship-of-fools.com/threads/pur...ist_clergy.html

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A classic and typical mistake is the alteration of 'Thine be the glory' to 'Yours be the glory'. Modernisation would produce 'Yours is the glory'

I'm not sure I agree. I always thought "Thine be" was to be understood as the subjunctive ("Let it be so") rather than the indicative form ("It is so"). If I'm right, then I think "Yours be" would be correct.

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I'm not sure I agree. I always thought "Thine be" was to be understood as the subjunctive ("Let it be so") rather than the indicative form ("It is so"). If I'm right, then I think "Yours be" would be correct.

Good call, contrabordun. This has been nagging away at the back of my mind and "yours be" is fine. There are, and I know this isn't the right place to dicuss them, interesting points about how languages change and how theology can be expressed in the new language. There's something quite important in the Agnus Dei that got lost in the revisions of the last 40 years, I think, but I'm not sufficiently knowledgeable to explain it.

 

On "The Tudors" on TV last night I heard someone say "she and me are to get married". Is that what people said then? Or now?

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Guest Barry Williams

This forum is not the place for an extensive discussion of Tudor/Elizabethan/Edwardian grammar. But perhaps I could just mention that the oft quoted phrase "that both our hearts" in the service of Evening Prayer is a perfectly normal construction of the time and it was Mrs C F Alexander herself that changed "without a city wall" to "outside a city wall" when she learned that a misundertanding was occuring when 'without' was used as an adverb rather than a preposition.

 

Barry Williams

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There is no shortage of good organists, but a great shortage of organists in churches.

 

Barry Williams

 

Barry has hit the nail on the head with this one. If there was one statement which underlined the situation in churches today it is this!

 

I have just literally 'given up' (with) the position I have held in the Catholic church for the last 13 or so years. Due to a so-called Gospel Choir, MIND NUMBINGLY BORING MUSIC, an organ literally falling apart, the stupidest priest I have ever encountered, and a completely ineffective Diocesan Director of music, I now play for a charming little Church of England country church which has none of these things.

 

It does, however have:

 

A keen robed choir, of limited ability

A supportive priest

A keen desire to improve the music and encourage all round.

A organ which, although so much smaller than the one I was used to, at least doesn't break down every time the heating comes on.

 

I'm happier than I have been for years!

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