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A blog of the Evangelical Lutheran Liturgy

The Form for The Opening of Synods

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Below is The Form for the Opening of Synods, from The Lutheran Agenda, Concordia Publishing House, 1949 pp. 190-191. The prayers are certainly worthly of praying whether you will be in Tampa or not. It remains to be seen if the Athanasian Creed will be confessed at the opening service! If you will be there, keep an eye out for that gavel President Preus is wielding.

General Synodical Conventions and District Synods shall be opened with the Order of the Morning Service. The Athanasian Creed may be used in this Service. At the close of the Service the President shall open the Synod and say:

Dear Brethren:

Having therefore boldness to enter into the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, and having an High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering, for He is faithful that hath promised. And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. The Lord be with us, that we may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

I do now declare this Synod open, according to the principles and usages of our Church, for the glory of God and for the good of His kingdom. In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

Then the President shall say:

Let us pray:


O Almighty God, heavenly Father, we are assembled here to join our efforts in the discharge of duties which require the co-operation of many brethren. Without Thee we can do nothing, and therefore we humbly beseech Thee, Thou wouldst guide us with Thy counsel, strengthen us by Thy power, and bless us according to Thy mercy, that all our deliberations and transactions may redound to Thy glory and the promotion of Thy kingdom on earth.

O Lord Jesus Christ, Thou Head and Bishop of the Church, who hast promised to be with us alway, even unto the end of the world, be now in the midst of us, fill us with a lively sense of Thy divine presense, and stir mightily by Thy grace the hearts of Thy servants, that we may with rejoicing confess Thy holy name before men by word and deed.

O Holy Spirit, Thou heavenly Comforter and Guide, descend upon us with Thy gifts, and sanctify us by Thy grace, that we may so perform our several duties as we shall desire to have done when we are called to render account to the Judge of the quick and the dead.

O Lord, the Triune God, be gracious to us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yea, the work of our hands, establish Thou it. Amen.


O Almighty and Most Merciful God and Father, who has called us unto the fellowship of Thy Son and blessed us with the inestimable treasures of Thy grace, we beseech Thee, continue Thy loving-kindness unto us and defend us from all the temptations of the world and all the assaults and wiles of the evil Foe. Amidst the noise of many waters, when the floods lift up their waves and the billows lift up their voice, cause the ark of Thy Church to be safely anchored in Thy pure and everlasting Truth. Do not suffer Thy Word ever to be suppressed or restrained, but preserve Thy Church by Thine almighty power, that Thy name may be known and revered among us forevermore. Remember not against us our past iniquities, but, even as Thou hast been wont to forgive the transgressions of Thy people and to cover their sin, have mercy upon us, and grant us the continuance of all Thy blessings. Bestow Thy heavenly benediction upon the pastors and delegates here in Synod assembled and upon the work they are to perform in Thy name. Endue the laborers in Thy vineyard with the spirit of wisdom and power, of love, unity, and peace; and when they have planted and watered, do Thou give the increase. Enlighten and strengthen those whom we have entrusted with the management of our affairs, that they may promote the welfare of Thy Church. Cause Thy face to shine upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yea, the work of our hands establish Thou it. Into Thine almighty protection and gracious care we commit Thy saints everywhere, that the power of Thy Truth may be made manifest and Thy name glorified from the rising of the sun to the going down thereof. Hear our humble prayer, Lord, our God, for the sake of Jesus Christ, Thy dear Son, our Lord. Amen.

The daily sessions may be opened with a Hymn, followed by a Scripture lesson, a Collect, and the Benediction.

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