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A blog of the Evangelical Lutheran Liturgy

A Serious Proposal

Two years ago our district's pastoral conference dealt with worship. We had an excellent panel of pastors representing all sides of the divisions among us. At the end of it, putting on my best churchmanly behavior I asked if the panelists would each consider the following proposal. Use whatever instrumentation, whatever songs, whatever state of unvestedness, whatever PowerPoint slides you prefer in your congregation's worship: but for the actual words, the order of the service, use one of the services as printed in LSB, TLH, or LW.

I think this would be a great step toward unity in worship among us. Given the rhetoric from the advocates of contemporary worship, I also thought that this would be an acceptable middle road for them. After all, they would still have all the accoutrements they claim necessary to reaching out in today's world.

But, oddly enough, the chief proponent of contemporary worship on the panel reacted negatively. It seems that there really is more to it than the externalities: he wanted control over the words, too. He wanted the opportunity to tell his congregation what to say each week and in what order to say it.

Well, his reaction aside, I still think the proposal is a good one. I think men of good will who have an honest disagreement with TGC (The Gottesdienst Crowd) would find this acceptable. And I think it would redound to the whole Synod's benefit. One small step, and all that.

Pr. H. R.40 Comments