Multicultural Challenges

In our worship committee meeting yesterday, Barry was sharing from the classic John 4 passage of the woman at the well where Jesus says that his worshipers will worship in spirit and in truth. This was a response to the Samaritan woman’s question to Jesus about worship and culture. She wanted to know if Jesus’ kingdom would set up a system of worship that was for just the Jews or for Samaritan’s also. Jesus response was to say that there would be freedom in the hearts of his followers through the gift of the Holy Spirit and through the gift of the truth of God’s Word. The gospel is for all cultures and can be transferred to places, people and languages all over the world.
So at a church like New City Fellowship, we have tried to implement this concept by giving all the cultures in our community room at the worship table. The result is a gumbo of languages and styles in which the different flavors blend together and create a new flavor. Praise the Lord!
However, in our pursuit of a multicultural sound, do we end up robbing each individual culture of the good things that are unique? Barry’s challenge to me was to look for ways to give the different ethnic cultures in our church an opportunity to share a slice of their culture.
Do we accomplish this already? How can we do it better? How can we organize these kinds of culturally exclusive music when we are trying to keep all our housechurches, our teams, and ministries diverse?

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