I don’t know about you but I love a good Christian parody. It serves to show that not all Christians are puritanical, sticks in the mud and – if done well – neatly touch on specific Christian cultural references without making them too obscure for the uninitiated. Good, clean family-fun.
A case in point would be Community Christian Church‘s version of Rebecca Black’s Friday (now called Sunday, naturally) which – whilst not a parody in the strictest sense – is a faithful frame-by-frame video of the original but now with wholesome lyrics such as “Worshippin’, worshippin’ – YEAH! Worshippin’, worshippin’ – YEAH” replacing Rebecca Black’s preternatural lust for “Partyin’, partyin’ – YEAH”.
Just to be clear: Sunday – as a song - is absolutely terrible and in many ways is worse than the original. However, as a marketing campaign to raise awareness about Community Christian Church and upcoming Easter services it is a stroke of genius. With 537,878 views in 3 days (at time of writing) this is certainly one of the most effective new media church campaigns of recent years. The song has capitalized on the recent buzz of Friday and is using it as a chance to reach a new ‘tweenage’ audience and encourage them to go to an Easter service at one of CCC’s many churches in Chicago.
The Christian Post spoke to the Eric Bramlett – one of the Creative Arts staff at Community Christian Church – who said:
“There are plenty of places in the Bible where God displays a sense of humor and almost all of them were contextual, based on the time in which they were living…If we’re going to try and reach out to the next generation, we’ve got a lot of work to do. There’s an embracing of pop culture that people are a bit afraid of.”
To read more about the motives of the CCC creative team, the interview can be seen in full here.
I wrote in March about the importance of us as Christians not jumping on bandwagons and gracelessly kicking easy targets with the rest of the world. Sunday has knowing nods to the inanity of Friday, but in my mind rises above the ruthless mockery of other Friday versions and for that it should be applauded.
I will never ever ever watch Sunday again but I am sure in the future it will be held up as a notable case-study in church marketing history. Well done CCC!
Addendum: This is not the first time the church has gone into the realm of parody to be more culturally relevant. Check out this Christian remix of Sir Mix-A-Lot’s licentious ode to voluminous buttocks Baby Got Back: