Saturday, December 29, 2007

Got Fluff?

One of the most common and aggravating characteristics of an evangelical church service is the presence of fluff. Fluff is anything that takes up any amount of time in a worship service that is not really necessary to the overall purpose of the church service.

What can you identify (either in your church or another) as fluff?

Do you care about fluff, and if so, what do you do to insure that you minimize the fluff in your church service?

Jump into the discussion!



TerryKM said...

Time in the service set aside for members and visitors to ask for prayer requests and to give praises. In my church it rarely takes less than 10 minutes of the service, often taking more.

Vocally giving announcements, especially those that do not pertain to the whole church (i.e. "such and such committee is meeting on such and such day"). This often wastes anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes.

Giving an invitation, at the end of every single service, with a song being sung waiting for someone to walk down the isle.

And that's just for starters. . .

MilePost13 said...

don't let us stop you. :)

A few that we still deal with:

1) People coming up to us (leadership) right before a gathering begins asking if we can make one of those announcements that Terry mentioned.

2) Me talking too much cause I'm a dork.

A few more that we've got a handle on:

1) Dead time. Unless is planned and very clearly explained, dead time can kill a service.

2) "Special Music" that only ever seems to be special to the person singing...


jordan fowler said...

Actually if done well, announcements are an avenue towards outside the wall worship/service. We try to announce things that
1-an opportunity to serve making a glocal impact
2-a believer could bring a lost friend to.

Thus announcements can be the specifics of the "Here Am I Send Me". The where, what, when of the sending. So I don't anathematize them as some do. Announcing a committee meeting, that's just plain stupid. What we announce gets decided on Wednesday by myself and the exec pastor. If it doesn't apply as an opportunity for the whole body, it doesn't make the 4 that we do.

crawl in. get dirty. serve the body.

MilePost13 said...

exactly...we've come to that realization recently.

Pat said...

I'd say the biggest time killer in our services are the announcements. I say this not because I think we shouldn't have them. I just wish we were a lot more engaging/outsider friendly with them. But, all in good time.


Rick Lawrenson said...

Waiting on someone to come up to the platform to lead in prayer, preach, etc. If someone, including the pastor knows they're next on the agenda, they shouldn't wait until everything stops to begin their trek to the pulpit.

Rick Lawrenson said...

Back to what Terry said...
But what if the purpose of your church's service is to spend lots of time with prayer requests and communicating the church schedule? And I know some preachers who think their sermons are failures unless someone comes forward.

That to say this, know the purpose of what you're doing and let that purpose determine what happens. If your purpose is worship, then the other things [prayer requests, announcements) have to find another home and way to be communicated.

Max Power said...

It's ALWAYS the announcements! They should take less than 30 seconds (TOTAL) and direct people to the bulletin for more info.

There's a simple principle that says "The more you announce, the less people hear".

It takes the pastor being a bad ass and telling everyone on staff "No special announcements. No exceptions".

Plus, I think we all hate the way announcements break up the flow of the service from worship into the teaching time...

Or is it just me?