I’ve been very open with my parishioners about my “band life.” Partly because I don’t want them to find out from some other source, and partly because it is a real part of who I am as a person and as a priest. They tend to think that it’s cool that their priest is “in a band” (a phrase that makes me laugh at this point in life), but I think that it’s more important that they have a share in how I live my life since I am their priest. I have a responsibility to them that transcends my own personal decisions to some degree, so they ought to know that these sorts of things are a part of my life and of who I am.

It’s probably important to know that in Orthodox Christian worship, there is no use of instrumentation. There are no guitars or drums or “praise bands,” and the manner of our worship is not something that each priest or church group develops along lines of taste or preference. There is simply what we would call a “received tradition” of faith, worship and doctrine. So it’s not as if we can somehow combine our musical talents as members of a rock band with our priestly activities. But somehow, almost mysteriously, that rock band is a part of what it means for the three of us to be priests.

Jamey Bozeman, of the band Luxury. In evangelical-type churches, we so frequently seek ways to shoehorn things we like to do into church, and simmer and gripe that we’re not getting to “use our gifts” if we can’t. Maybe we need to be open to the possibility that those gifts have a more “mysterious” contribution to what it means to be a Christian.