"Times are changing and so are we."
That's the opinion of Mark Levy, pastor of Fresh Winds Church of God. For some time now Levy's church of 500 has moved away from many of the traditional elements of worship into new approaches. One of those approaches is doing away with the word "amen" and replacing it with a new more "relevant" phrase - "boo-yeah."
"We're here to worship today, boo-yeah?" Levy enthusiastically asks his congregation. "Boo-Yeah!" they all respond in unison.
Throughout the church's worship time "amen" is consistently replaced. Praise and Worship songs are changed. After prayers the one praying will say "And all God's people said..." to which the congregation replies appropriately. "Amen" is even replaced in the Scripture readings Levy uses.
As Levy begins his sermon Deuteronomy 27:16 appears on the church's overhead projector;
"Cursed is the man who dishonors his father or his mother." Then all the people shall say, "Boo-Yeah!"
"We're just keeping with the times." Said Levy. "The word 'amen' has become so old and outdated. People don't want to walk around saying 'amen' anymore. We need something that really grabs people's attention, something powerful. I truly think that 'boo-yeah' is our own modern day 'amen.'"