Cultural Relevance – Mark Mittelberg
The room was warm. The hymnals were easy to reach, and printed with large type. We sang familiar, encouraging songs with words like “Oh happy day, He taught me to watch and pray, and rejoice all day . . .” The sanctuary was clean and tidy. The lighting was bright, and the sound clear and fairly loud, making it easy to hear everything that was said. The minister wore a robe, and spoke slowly and deliberately. The message was right out of the biblical text, straightforward yet simple. Before the service ended, we recited the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer. Then we sang “What a Friend We Have in Jesus,” heard the benediction, and the service was over. It was one of the most relevant events I’d ever seen. Why? Because it was the chapel service at the nursing home of my grandmother, Effa Mittelberg, and most of those attending were men and women in their 90s who had grown up in traditional churches.