- Raised to the altars: one who fell for the poor
A champion of the poor or someone mixed up in politics? A man who died for the faith or because he was a political inconvenience? Archbishop Oscar Romero’s beatification today confirms his stature and illuminates his model of holiness
- Home News
- World News
- Parish Practice
- Letters Extra
- The living Spirit
- Pope Francis on giving up television, speaking without thinking and refusing to cry in public
- Vatican media must reallocate resources for the internet age, says Lord Patten after major review
- World needs 'charism of Catholic universities', Cardinal says at ceremony to install him as St Mary's chancellor
- Burke warns Oxford audience of dictatorship of relativism in which Christians seen as extremists
- Even the gangs declared a truce for Romero’s beatification Clare Dixon in San Salvador
- Irish vote shows the Church needs to rethink its theology of sexuality Ursula Halligan
- Greatest threat to Palmyra is Western apathy Nadim Nassar
A leading Anglican thinker has described popular charismatic “worship songs” as impoverishing Christian liturgy.
Tom Wright, the former Bishop of Durham, is concerned that contemporary Christian music neglects the Psalms, something he describes as “crazy”.
Wright, now Research Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at the University of St Andrews, argues that many of the growing churches in the charismatic movement do not use the Psalms in daily and weekly worship.
“The enormously popular ‘worship songs’, some of which use phrases from the Psalms here and there but most of which do not, have largely displaced, for thousands of regular and enthusiastic worshippers, the steady rhythm and deep soul searching of the Psalms themselves,” he writes in a new book, Finding God in the Psalms. “This, I believe, is a great impoverishment.”
He continues: “By all means write new songs. Each generation must do that. But to neglect the Church’s original hymn book is, to put it bluntly, crazy.”
“To worship without the Psalms is to risk planting seeds that will never take root,” Wright argues, adding that he finds it impossible to imagine a “growing and maturing” Church without the Psalms.
Have your say: Charismatics’ neglect of the psalms indicative of deeper malaise, argues Abigail Frymann
Above: Modern music has attracted large numbers of worshippers to church but Dr Wright fears they are missing out