chapter  5
17 Pages

Making Borrowed Songs: Mennonite Hymns, Appropriation and Media

This chapter explores 'just singing' and 'really worshipping' through the lens of hermeneutic phenomenology as espoused by Max van Manen. Phenomenology attempts to give a 'direct description of our experience as it is' and engages with the pre-reflective human world, the primary experience and the significances of it. It addresses some theological implications of 'really worshipping', providing a framework for Christian church leaders and musicians to more deeply consider the experience of congregational singing from a theological perspective. The chapter proposes a typology of experiences within 'just singing': un-minded singing, meaningless words and dispassionate singing. It is also possible to sing being fully cognizant of some significance of the tune and text and yet not have an adequate feeling of the song. Really worshipping singers seem to experience something feelingful and rich that is centred on and given form primarily by the sung word.