The rhythm and melodies of hymns and songs at church services have certainly evolved over the years. Is dance-oriented Techno and House music the next step in this progression? ITN News reports that those who attend the All Saints Church in Stockholm may believe so:
The Church of All Saints in Stockholm is a Lutheran Church, and the congregation's "techno Mass" accompanied by ultraviolet lighting is conducted Friday nights.
AP reports that the Mass is the church's latest attempt at attracting young congregations in a country where attendance at services has been dwindling for decades. Priest Olle Idestrom organizes the Mass and says that the feedback has been mainly been positive.
"There is already a hip hop Mass, there is a rock Mass and a jazz Mass," the 28-year-old priest told AP. "But it is mainly club music that we listen to and that we like dancing to, so it felt like a natural choice."
Idestrom told AP that he had to turn away worshippers at the first techno Mass in April:
"The service started with organ music and choir singing but soon broke into powerful techno beats to loud approving claps, shouts and cheers. People jumped up and danced at their seats while disco lights swirled over the ornamented wooden ceilings.
'It was superfun, it was really kicking, I didn't think it would be this good before I came,' said Ella Schwarz, 15. 'The church isn't really my kind of thing, but after this it seems like it is great,' she said.
Over the past 10 years, membership in Sweden's Lutheran church has fallen 13 percent and attendance at regular Sunday services plunged 50 percent to 4.6 million visits last year.