In One Week: Electric Chapel

electrichcpaellSeveral years ago I organized three U2charist worship events at Fourth Church (one of which was covered by the Christian Century). Those were meaningful and fun, but didn’t really appeal to my target audience of youth as much as they did to adults my age or older. Ever since then I’ve been looking for an opportunity to put together a similar event that is geared more for youth. Well, it’s finally here. (Read more about my musings on pop music in worship here.)

For the past several months—though, as usual, most of the planning is coming together in the last weeks—some of our youth and leaders have been working on a similar event featuring the music of Lady Gaga. Next Saturday, January 26 at 7:00 pm is the premiere of Electric Chapel: Confronting Hate and Empowering Youth (A Lady Gaga Worship Event). It will be a worship experience planned and led by teens, featuring the music of Lady Gaga with a message of acceptance and inclusion. In addition to the music and prayers, a panel of high school students will reflect on the realities of hate, marginalization, and bullying in Chicago, telling their stories and sharing their vision for a better future.

I’m really excited about the interest and commitment a group of our youth has invested in this worship service. I’ve been consistently impressed with the underlying spirituality of many of Lady Gaga’s songs. And I believe that the message of this service is one that youth around our city—and beyond—need to hear.

So come meet us in Electric Chapel next Saturday and bring a bunch of young people with you!

John W. Vest

John W. Vest

John is the Visiting Assistant Professor of Evangelism at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia. He is co-founder of the Progressive Youth Ministry conference and blogs about his “Adventures in Post-Christendom” at An enthusiastic pitmaster, he dreams of one day achieving the mystical union of church and BBQ.
John W. Vest

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