Saturday, November 28, 2009

#54 Theater Seating

White Christians have said "PU" to the pew.
Pews are out. Seats are in.

For
megachurches , wanna-be megachurches, or even just your run of the mill warehouse style rent-a-church, there's just no better way to seat white Christians.

The great theater seating initiative has been on the white Christian agenda for some time. For decades now, white Christians have been moving down the spectrum from group mentality toward an emphasis on individuals. This lead to the need for individual seating. White Christians logically determined that since they treat each service like entertainment, they might as well arrange church seating as if they're running a movie theater.

The transition to individualized comfortable chairs is only the first step in the white Christian church furniture revamp. They're likely just a few years away from big-gulp 
cup holders and a computerized magnetic strip that allows participants to scan their credit card during the offering.

With so many white Christian churches eliminating their pews, and with the white Christian community's love of stewardship and antiques, the discarded pews frequently live on- as decorative furniture in the basements, garages, and summer cottages.

For white Christians, the only conceivable negative of theater seating (other than making the worship experience SO comfortable that attendees fall asleep) is that in non-capacity crowds, individual seats require all church goers to maintain a regulated, standardized distance away from each other. This means that when the offering plates are passed, there's no more of that good old fashioned "pew-slide" to get the plate from one end of the half-empty row to the other. White Christians are now forced to stand up and implement the awkward offertory two-step: the side-shuffle to to pass the plate across 10 empty chairs to the closest fellow-congregant.



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7 comments:

Anonymous said...

The church I just started going to actually does have cup holders for each theater seat. And besides coffee, they also have fountain drink stations for those who would rather have Dr. Pepper.. Now only if those seats would recline!

Love your blog!

Luther Zwingli said...

HA! Anonymous- that is awesome! I think that our SWCL community would appreciate seeing this. Could you perhaps snap a quick pic with a cell phone (silence it before you enter church!) and post it on the SWCL fan page? We'd LOVE to see what this looks like!

Anonymous said...

The picture should show seats without armrests! That seems to be more of the trend now...don't want to fight over that armrest with your brother or sister in Christ.

Anonymous said...

This JUMP to theater seats actually has a lot more to do with space efficiency and stewardship than the writer understands.....theater seats actually allow for a 20% gain in seat capacity than pews or stackable chairs in the same space - meaning that a building can be built 20% smaller but can accomodate the same number of persons....and the cost of building a worship space 20% larger is much more expensive than simply going to theater style seats. It all has to do with what is allowed by building code - and properly designed theater seats optimize and save space - and save cost...

Anonymous said...

My parents have their own small independent church. Their seats are swivel chairs. These are great, because if no one is sitting in front of you, they very easily turn into a footrest...

Anonymous said...

Love the blog!
I've recently visited a church that not only had theater seating, the rows and seats were numbered! I think I was in J23 :) And this wasn't a mega-arena-sized church either.

Janni said...

It is good that your church has a sense of humor. Too often we turn people off by acting like church has to be all serious and somber. God has a great sense of humor! I was happy to hear the youth pastor at our grandson's church joke about how someone was willing to pay the pastor $5 to hold one of the boys who was being baptized under the water for an extra few minutes. Then one of the men pulled out his wallet and offered another $5 to ensure that he was held under an additional time.Theater Seating