Master’s Thesis, “Liturgical Inculturation Among Baptists in the United States”

Liturgical inculturation seeks to cultivate worship that is meaningful in the church’s context by joining texts and rites with the cultural pattern surrounding the church. This study begins with a brief investigation of historical influences on Baptist liturgical theology and music. It then introduces the study of liturgical inculturation, describing principles and methods developed by Catholic and Protestant liturgists. These principles and methods serve as a basis for application of liturgical inculturation among Baptists in the United States. Music as a means of inculturation receives particular consideration. Examples of liturgical inculturation among Baptists in the United States are presented, demonstrating the practicality of inculturation for Baptists in the past and present.

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“One Love, Many Powers: Jamaican Politics, Economics, and Music in the 1978 One Love Peace Concert”

This paper explores the fusion of music, culture, and politics in the 1978 One Love Peace Concert in Kingston, Jamaica. It describes how the organizers and participants attempted to use music to alleviate the violence caused by political unrest in Jamaica at that time, and the impact of the concert on the political situation. This paper addresses the overall subject of music and politics, and includes an overview of Jamaican culture and politics during the 1970s, characteristics of reggae music and its performers, background of the concert itself, and exploration of its impact.

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“The Vibe and the Spirit: Implications of Electronic Dance Music Culture for Christian Worship”

Unlike other youth movements, which are caught up in revolution and resistance, the culture surrounding electronic dance music emphasizes surrender. Participants strive to give themselves to the experience, and in doing so they develop a deep sense of community, an altered perception of reality, and a new form of identity. These outcomes are not foreign to Christian worship. The chief difference between the cultural expressions of electronic dance music and Christian worship may lie in the contrast of postmodern spirituality with modernistic institutional religion. This study investigates the role of ritual and music in electronic dance music experiences, how community and identity are formed by these experiences, what electronic dance music culture tells us about postmodern spirituality, and what implications the above have for the future of Christian worship.

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