the Friday Pickle - should we be selling tickets for worship events?

Posted by Craig Borlase on 10 June 2014

Selling tickets to go to a night of worship is nothing new, and it doesn’t seem to be limited to any particular denomination or style. But, just because everyone’s doing it, does that make it OK? 

Perhaps you’re in the ‘yes’ camp. You see no difference between paying to go to a night of worship and paying to go to a three-day Christian festival; both are great opportunities for Christians to gather, to worship and to come away inspired and equipped. Both set the production bar nice and high, so why shouldn’t you pay to attend? Besides, many worship events these days have the feel of mainstream gigs - with great use of technology to help draw people in. You’d rather your buddies paid to come along and get inspired by Gungor, Tomlin or Rend than have them sit through an evening of all that Bieber nonsense. 

Or perhaps you disagree. Perhaps you see the idea of ticketed worship events as the straw that breaks the camel’s back. You can accept the idea of a worship music business - where songwriters are rewarded for their work - but when we are asked to pay to come to church and worship, it’s all just too much. The way you see it, when the church doors are locked to those who can't - or won't - pay, something's terribly wrong. Perhaps there have been times when, among the merch stalls that you file past as you leave the building, you’re reminded of the merchants in the courts of the temple. Perhaps you’ve wanted to turn a few tables over yourself, but never quite summoned the courage. 

What’s the answer? What’s your take on it all?

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