ELCA Worship News – July 2019

Dear church,

“I thank my God every time I remember you, constantly praying with joy in every one of my prayers for all of you, because of your sharing in the gospel from the first day until now” (Philippians 1:3-5).

For these past five years, I have had the joy and responsibility of serving as your assistant to the presiding bishop and executive for worship for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. It has been my greatest joy to serve in this call. I will end my call following Churchwide Assembly and then will begin my new call to serve as the bishop of the Southeastern Synod (Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee).

Worship is central to who we are as the people of God. Each week, across the ELCA, we gather in sanctuaries, in streets with the homeless, in prison, with campus ministries, at camp, and in brand new communities that are forming in homes. Week in and week out, we gather around the means of grace and are called to be that grace to a world in need. It has been one of my greatest life’s joys to help center this church’s ministry and work around worship and the means of grace.

I give thanks for the incredible team that I have been gifted to work with, Deacon John Weit, Deacon Jennifer Baker-Trinity and Ms. BethAnn Lynch. These faithful servants will continue serving the church and helping to guide this church’s worship life. Deacon Weit will serve as the interim assistant to the presiding bishop and executive for worship until a new person is called.

I thank my God every time I remember each of you and will constantly pray with joy as we continue to share in the gospel, keep worship central and invite others into the life-changing grace of God. Thank you!

Kevin L. Strickland
Assisting to the Presiding Bishop, Executive for Worship
Bishop-Elect, Southeastern Synod

Hear My Voice: A Prison Prayer Book
“Hear My Voice: A Prison Prayer Book”

We are pleased to announce that a new prayer book resource is available through Augsburg Fortress. “Hear My Voice” is a collaborative effort sponsored by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and Augsburg Fortress. This enduring and conveniently sized book, designed to be permitted in prisons, is enhanced with beautiful color artwork and provides prayers for many times and circumstances.

To read more about “Hear My Voice: A Prison Prayer Book“, check out a blog post by Deacon Mitzi Budde.

Wayne L Wold
“God’s Work, Our Hands” Hymn winner

A hymn titled “God’s Work, Our Hands,”written by Wayne Wold, was selected as the winning entry in the ELCA’s “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday hymn contest. People submitted original compositions to be considered as a hymn for the ELCA’s annual day of service.

Wold is a professor and chair of the music department at Hood College in Frederick, Md., where he also serves as concert manager and college organist. Wold is also the director of music ministry at First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ellicott City, Md. The selected hymn represents the official tagline of the ELCA and expresses how the people of this church live in service for the life of the world. The hymn is available as a year-round worship resource.

Frequently asked questions

Have you ever wondered?

What is a Worship Committee?

How and when might congregations conduct surveys about worship styles and practices?

How do we evaluate worship?

If you would like additional information or do not find the question you need answered, we invite you to contact the worship staff at worship@elca.org.

Events and Resources

Christ Church Sugar Land, Sugar Land, Texas (Houston)
Aug. 17, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

The Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod invite people to join them for their sixth annual “TUNE UP worship band gathering” in Houston. The cost is just $25 per person, including lunch, with a maximum per church of $150.

tune up
“Leading Worship Matters”: A Sourcebook for Preparing Worship Leaders

“Leading Worship Matters” is a valuable resource for congregations that want to prepare their worship leaders for a ministry—not just a task—and that want to renew their worship life and deepen their understanding of worship as mission.

Leading Worship Matters
Sundays and Seasons: Guide to Worship Planning, Year A 2020

The entire library of “Sundays and Seasons” resources for Year A is available. Use the “Sundays and Seasons” print edition together withwww.sundaysandseasons.com for effective and efficient planning, preparation and production of all your worship needs.

guide to Sundays-and-Seasons-Guide-to-Worship-Planning-Year-A-2020
Augsburg Fortress Music Clinics: Summer 2019

There are still sessions available. Learn more about locations, leaders and activities.

augsburg fortress music clinics
Association of Lutheran Church Musicians hymn text competition

The Association of Lutheran Church Musicians invites submissions for new hymn texts for several existing hymn tunes. The deadline for submissions is Aug. 15.

“Hearts • Hands • Voices” events are affordable, practical workshops with a focus on skill-building. Workshops are held in a variety of locations and cover a variety of topics.
whats, hows and whys
“For Glory and for Beauty: Poetry in the Service of God”
Sept. 12, 2 p.m. (Eastern Time)

Registration is open for the latest in the series of church musician webinars sponsored by the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians presented by Susan Palo Cherwien.

whats, hows and whys
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