A pastor in Atlanta posted on social media that his church would start incorporating aerialists in worship services after attending a conference where they were included. Like all things, some people loved it and some hated it.
The pastor, Apostle Bryan Meadows of Embassy Church International, made the announcement April 9, saying:
“@EmbassyCity fully plans on making aerialists a FULL PART of our normal worship experience! We endeavor to create a culture driven by the creativity and character of Christ! This was one of my favorite highlights!!! #everygiftexpressed#CREATE18”
CREATE18 refers to the Christian conference CREATE that incorporates arts of all kinds, media, technology and entertainment, so people can use their individual gifts for the Church.
Critics have acknowledged aspects like the worship becoming a performance that takes away from the praise portion of things.
Meadows responded to critics on social media, essentially saying that creatives of all kinds should be able to find a home for their art in the Church.
Because they shouldn’t have to go to the circus to use the gifts that God gave them! The church should be able to create space so that everyone can use their gifts to glorify God … People may be distracted for a couple weeks but they will get used to it! If people can get used to all of the other foolery that happens in church … I’m sure they can get used to somebody genuinely trying to use their gifts to worship God.
Others suggested the aerialists be covered up in their leotards “it can be as distracting as a male worshipper topless.” Meadows responded with: “Sure. That can be discussed. That’s all wisdom!” (Aerialists and gymnasts generally wear leotards for a full range of motion, and to see the lines their bodies are creating more clearly.)
According to the church:[lborder]
As the 21st century Church we must be apostolic in our approach, and not just invade different geographical regions but also various world systems and sectors, such as: government, business, entertainment, family, arts and media, and education. This is how this generation will rise and establish the Throne of our God, the Lord Jesus Christ.[/lborder]