Episode 092

Pregnancy Support Centers, Double Burdens, & Worship Music

May 10, 2022

Tensions are high after weekend attacks at pregnancy support centers and protests at churches following the leaked Supreme Court document indicating the possible overturn of the court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. Baptist ministers in Ukraine express a double burden, helping others survive the war while struggling to survive themselves. And a new study entitled “Worship at the Speed of Sound,” from Southern Wesleyan University professor Mike Tapper and colleagues, found that the lifespan of a hit worship song has declined dramatically in recent years.

Transcript

Tensions are high after weekend attacks at pregnancy support centers and protests at churches following the leaked Supreme Court document indicating the possible overturn of the court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.

“Our mission hasn’t changed,” Care Net-Madison (Wis.) Chief Executive Officer Sara Patterson told. Care Net’s facility was allegedly attacked. Investigators are looking into a fire set in the facility and the attempted used of a Molotov cocktail. In addition to the fire, messages scrawled on its building included, “If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either.”

The close proximity has spurred Care Net, where several Southern Baptists volunteer, to request more security.

“We’re OK so far but asking police to patrol extra,” Patterson told BP in email May 8.

Similar reports were made across the country over the weekend.

Baptist ministers in Ukraine express a double burden, helping others survive the war while struggling to survive themselves.

“They not only carry the burdens of those people they minister to,” Ukrainian Baptist Theological Seminary President Yarsolav “Slavik” Pyzh, told Baptist Press, “they’re carrying the same burdens themselves, because you’re living in the midst of war.

During 10 weeks of escalating war since Russia attacked Ukraine, the seminary has served as a refugee shelter and humanitarian aid center, helping thousands flee the war and sending food and supplies to several eastern communities that are the most embattled. Mass graves with bodies of civilians have been discovered in Kyiv and Bucha, with evidence of many being executed or shot at close range.

As of May 9, more than 7,000 civilians have died in the war in Ukraine, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Good News for Today is sponsored by The Voice of the Martyrs

Good News for Today is made possible through our friends at The Voice of the Martyrs, a nonprofit organization that serves persecuted Christians around the world. Founded in 1967 by Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM is dedicated to inspiring believers to deepen their commitment to Christ and to fulfill His Great Commission — no matter the cost. Find out more and sign up for their free monthly magazine at vom.org/goodnews.

A new study entitled “Worship at the Speed of Sound,” from Southern Wesleyan University professor Mike Tapper and colleagues, found that the lifespan of a hit worship song has declined dramatically in recent years.

In the mid-1990s, a popular song like “Refiner’s Fire,” or “In the Secret” had a lifespan of about a dozen years, rising for four to five years before hitting a slow decline. Two decades later, that lifespan has dropped down to three to four years, with songs like “Even So Come” or “Here as in Heaven” rising rapidly, then disappearing, according to the study, based on 32 years of CCLI data.

Tapper said the pace of new music, driven by technology, which allows new songs to be distributed far and wide quickly, has played a role in the declining lifespan of songs. So has the high quality of songs being produced, he said, which gives church leaders an overwhelming number of options.

Tapper and his team are trying to walk a fine line. They’re glad people are writing worship songs and are eager to sing God’s praises. But they worry about the unintended consequences of turning worship music into a disposable commodity – something Tapper says reflects the influence of the broader culture on churches.

Find more stories at BaptistPress.com.

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