Author Topic: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"  (Read 8658 times)

Pilgrim

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1637
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
"Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« on: June 05, 2015, 10:39:44 AM »
I heard this morning, and saw a picture of - an allegedly "ballet drag performer" recruited from New York City to perform a liturgical dance at the North Carolina Synod Assembly worship. The picture I saw showed him performing in "tidy whites & t-shirt". True? I'm curious. It's one of those things that boggles the mind, if in fact it occurred. It apparently appeared on "Lutheran Satire" and was removed by the ELCA according to the reports from Lutheran Satire.
Pr. Tim Christ, STS

Dan Fienen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 13369
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2015, 10:53:21 AM »
Like any other art form used in worship, liturgical dance can be done poorly, in poor taste or pointlessly.  Like any other art form in worship its introduction where it has not previously been used must be done carefully with much education and explanation.  Otherwise it becomes simply a novelty, entertainment, or distraction.

Lets not forget that an early proponent of liturgical dance was one David, son of Jesse.
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

Buckeye Deaconess

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 3047
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2015, 11:02:18 AM »
It has since been removed from that particular synod's facebook page.  I think it broke the internet yesterday.  ;D

Dan Fienen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 13369
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2015, 11:05:49 AM »
As I recall reading the use of pipe organs in worship was quite controversial when they were first introduced.  Previously they had been used for pagan Roman religious festivals and gladiatorial spectacles.
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2015, 11:09:40 AM »
Like any other art form used in worship, liturgical dance can be done poorly, in poor taste or pointlessly.  Like any other art form in worship its introduction where it has not previously been used must be done carefully with much education and explanation.  Otherwise it becomes simply a novelty, entertainment, or distraction.

Lets not forget that an early proponent of liturgical dance was one David, son of Jesse.

*Like* +1

As I recall reading the use of pipe organs in worship was quite controversial when they were first introduced.  Previously they had been used for pagan Roman religious festivals and gladiatorial spectacles.

*Like* +2
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Voelker

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2015, 11:11:51 AM »
As I recall reading the use of pipe organs in worship was quite controversial when they were first introduced.  Previously they had been used for pagan Roman religious festivals and gladiatorial spectacles.
They still are controversial, it would seem! I've come across the blog of a Calvinist professor who regularly goes off on, and quotes Calvinists on all eras against, instrumentation in worship. The argument: since God never told us to use instruments in NT-era worship, we can't. That's OT stuff, with the harps and lyres and horns and stuff. I'm fascinated by this line of thinking in a rubbernecking-on-the-highway sort of way.

SomeoneWrites

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 2596
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2015, 11:19:33 AM »
Like +3 to Dan Fienen


http://stlorenz.org/ministry/girls-of-grace/
This always impressed me, though I do think it's gender structured as all heck, and that bothers me.  But it is interesting that liturgical dance is done at a place that carries a huge reverence for its worship space, particularly chancel and pulpit. 

Liturgical dance isn't my thing, but I'm glad it's there. 
FWIW my Lutheran life was Red Hymnal >>>>> emergent>> contemporary.  Aesthetically speaking, of course. 

They still are controversial, it would seem! I've come across the blog of a Calvinist professor who regularly goes off on, and quotes Calvinists on all eras against, instrumentation in worship. The argument: since God never told us to use instruments in NT-era worship, we can't. That's OT stuff, with the harps and lyres and horns and stuff. I'm fascinated by this line of thinking in a rubbernecking-on-the-highway sort of way.

I think you're on to something.  I think it expresses my troubles as I've watched the LCMS and ELCA argue back and forth on some topics - particularly where people feel that Scripture supports them. 

An example reading.
http://www.bereacoc.com/whychrisworship.htm
LCMS raised
LCMS theology major
LCMS sem grad
Atheist

BrotherBoris

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2015, 11:44:22 AM »
I am not a fan of liturgical dance.  However, if we must have it, or at least must tolerate it, and we are going to give Middle Eastern precedents for it, like David dancing in front of the Ark in the Old Testament, then I submit we should have liturgical belly dancing.  Belly Dancing grows out of the same Middle Eastern culture that gave us the Bible. Its rhythm reminds of Moses and Miriam dancing by the shores of the Red Sea as the evil Egyptians were washed away. You can hear the sound of Israeli campfire music in it and the roots of Jewish and Byzantine chant.

I think it would work best liturgically during an extended Allleluia during a Gospel Procession. As the Alleluia is sung in three times in rapid succession, three groups of three female belly dancers could erotically add "life" to these supposedly 'dead' liturgical forms, by twirling, gyrating, and bouncing their hips back and forth like the skipping she-goats of the Song of Solomon. It would certainly be a service I would attend.  And think of the unchurched men it would attract.

Something like this:  https://youtu.be/8YQM_zfYO7Q
 

scott8

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2015, 11:54:27 AM »
It wasn't the fact that the liturgical dancer was male that was so disturbing about the picture posted on the Synod's official FB page; he was wearing the equivalent of tighty-whities (sp?) or perhaps Hooter's hot pants and a tee-shirt that showed his belly in the pose pictured.  I cannot imagine any female liturgical dancer wearing the same without generating extreme controversy.  He was intentionally showing off his body (like I said, the pants didn't really fully cover his, um, cheeks) in a way that would be extraordinarily inappropriate regardless of whether he was male or female.

scott8

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2015, 11:59:04 AM »
This being the internet, I found the picture.  Click here for it (though I feel like I need to give a trigger warning).

Brian Stoffregen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 44433
  • ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν, ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν
    • View Profile
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2015, 12:05:40 PM »
In the early days, there were attempts to avoid the word "dance," so a congregation might have a "motion choir".


The choir at the college I attended would sign Beautiful Savior as they sang. (They began doing this when the parents of one of the members were deaf. It was so well received they kept doing it.) Could those arm and hand movements be considered a type of dance?
"The church had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Charles Austin

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 14880
    • View Profile
    • Charles is Coloring
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2015, 12:49:10 PM »
 I'm not sure about the point of getting all upset about what someone else far away does.  If you don't like this kind of liturgical action, don't schedule it for any of your events.  I'm wondering why the deaconness wanted to post that picture here. On second thought, I'm not wondering at all.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2015, 12:52:10 PM by Charles Austin »
Retired ELCA Pastor. Iowa native. Now in Minneapolis. It is now clear that the election of 2020 was not stolen. But we see now how it was nearly stolen after the balloting. Some of our top officials assisted by corrupt lawyers, attempted to steal the electoral college. Some true patriots saved us.

Daniel L. Gard

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2015, 01:16:37 PM »
I'm not sure about the point of getting all upset about what someone else far away does.  If you don't like this kind of liturgical action, don't schedule it for any of your events.  I'm wondering why the deaconness wanted to post that picture here. On second thought, I'm not wondering at all.

Uh....the Deaconess never said she wanted to post it nor did she post the picture. Wait....maybe she uses the pseudonym Scott Yakimow and is actually a man with a beard.

You wonder about some things. So do I. I wonder if you jump to criticize the good Deaconess because she is a living contradiction of what you believe women to be and think. "On second thought, I'm not wondering at all."
« Last Edit: June 05, 2015, 01:19:30 PM by Daniel L. Gard »

Daniel L. Gard

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2015, 01:18:36 PM »
This being the internet, I found the picture.  Click here for it (though I feel like I need to give a trigger warning).

Thanks a lot, Professor. I clicked on the link and now I cannot un-see it.  :-\

scott8

  • Guest
Re: "Liturgical Dance? Really?"
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2015, 01:22:01 PM »
This being the internet, I found the picture.  Click here for it (though I feel like I need to give a trigger warning).

Thanks a lot, Professor. I clicked on the link and now I cannot un-see it.  :-\

You're welcome. Glad to be of help.