by Chris Bodenner

A reader writes:

Thanks for asking the question recently about whether the church can be hip.  In the interest of disclosure, I am an Episcopal priest, and I find great value in traditional worship and music.  I listen to a wide range of music, but I’m often suspicious of “Christian” artists because, frankly, most of them are lame.  Not all, but most.  I can get on board with a lot of what you’ve cited as hip Christian music on the blog recently.  The problem with all of this for me, however, is that I do not believe church is about being entertained.  I believe it’s about worshiping the living God.  Now, that doesn’t mean that worship should be a lifeless snooze fest, but I think there’s an appropriate time and place for everything.  I have about a million different entertainment choices every day.  If I want to be entertained, I can find something.  But that’s not what church is about to me.  When the church seeks to be hip, relevant, or whatever you want to call it, what you often end up with is [the video above].  For me ultimately it’s manipulative and all about “me” and my desire to be entertained rather than about God.  But that’s just me.

It's not just you; another reader, who passed along the same video, writes:

A friend just sent me this.  I think it pretty much sums up my experience of the "contemporary" church scene. I do, in fact, think church music can be hip. But if hip is your goal, then you've really missed the point.

For the most excruciating example of a church trying to be hip, go here.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to