That Polka Worship Thing

My town of Appleton, Wisconsin is experiencing a religious revival that might be something like the revivals that were going on in Joseph Smith’s day around the time of the First Vision. But instead of fervent camp meetings, religious zeal in this area is expressed in other ways.

It’s not just the Packers and the cheesehead thing. Polka worship is where it’s really at. I’ve previously documented the local Catholic outreach effort through their polka mass program. Now the Lutherans are turning up the heat in the competition for converts with their own polka worship service. It seems to be working well.

Meanwhile, our local LDS leaders are still hesitant about polka. We’ll just have to wait until General Conference to do our polka thing in the streets while also running our Octoberfest fundraising booth in downtown Appleton, which then becomes a cornucopia of polka delight for those who venture away, ever so briefly, from the sanctity of our Tiger Paws manufacturing booth.

Update for offended souls: This is meant to poke fun at Wisconsin, not the fun that other churches have with their music. Polka, Packers, cheesehead hats, and brats are just so Wisconsin, and naturally have an impact on local worship. People in Utah need to know what they’re missing and hustle out here to Wisconsin. Where else can you find polka on the religion page? Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with polka or even with accordions. And in spite of my Scottish heritage, I personally would prefer an accordion and a polka tune on Sunday over almost any hymn on a bagpipe.

(The photo comes from the Aug. 12, 2006 Post-Crescent newspaper of Appleton, Wisconsin.)


Author: Jeff Lindsay

8 thoughts on “That Polka Worship Thing

  1. I could get my Dad coverted if we did polka worship! 🙂

    Born and raised in Wisconsin, Dad thinks there is nothing better then a polka. Almost 80 and he can out dance most of us.

  2. Very typical church comments Mormanity. You fit right in with the “Self righteous”.

    We need to put an ad in the paper inviting people to our Fast and Testimony meetings.

    The church you are mocking has an outstanding traditional music program for most of its services. It has a choir that makes our ward choir look sick.

  3. CTR Church in Appleton also has a program with Camels etc. (I read your links re: other Yaks) I challenge you to attend their christmas program this year. You will enjoy it. CTR has plans for a 2800 seat chapel. They have recorded many CD’s.

    Calvary Church has a large Christmas tree set in Neenah. The choir actually becomes a christmas tree. They seat 2100. Rev. Dr. Harry would be glad to have you.

    Appleton Apostolic is building a chapel that will seat 3200. The head minister there has offered his facility to us if we have a General Authority visit the area and need the space. They have a great music program.

  4. I could see the newspaper advertisement:

    Come hear the mormons sing of planet Kolob.
    Hear them Praise the Man!

  5. It’s interesting to see those who are accusing Jeff of sniping at the Polka service doing the same to him in their responses. What is that word that Jesus used to describe that kind of behavior? Oh, yeah, hypocrisy.

    A more interesting rebuttal would be to note that David danced becore the Lord. Or that Brigham Young encouraged dance among the Mormon pioneers to dance while camping on their trek. Or that dance is an important part of the Sufi religious tradition.

    With respect to other church’s music, don’t forget that they are typically paid for their work and may not even be members of that particular congregation. We had a ward member who worked as the organist at the local Methodist church.

  6. Hey, this is poking fun at Wisconsin, not the fun that other churches have with polka. Where else do you find polka on the religion page? And maybe you missed the gentle jab at our own ward regarding Octoberfest?

    No question other local churches have fine music, both choral, classical, popular, and some of the best polka you’ll ever hear.

    Please don’t be so easily offended.

  7. Floyd
    David and Brigham Young are two Istay away from when supporting the church.

    Brighan certainly did encourage dance. He encouraged it so much that he couldn’t get all his wives on his dance card.

    And David-well, I could not use him as a favorable example.

    Church organists that are paid could usually do better financially in a menial job. While the hourly rate is good—–there is a lot of “free” preparation.

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