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ELS Worship Essays


Luther’s Hymns in Our Hymnals Study of Luther’s hymns by the Rev. M. Fr. Wiese, one of the leading hymnologists in the old Norwegian Synod. Originally published in the Evangelisk Luthersk Kirketidene 29 (1901): 669-75, 717-22, 765-70.

O Come, Let Us Worship!  Study of the heritage of Lutheran liturgy and hymns in the ELS. Presented to the 78th Annual Convention of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod in June 1995.

Our Liturgy  Provides the background of the two major liturgies used in the ELS and explains the liturgical practice of ELS pastors in the first half of the 20th century. Printed in the Clergy Bulletin of the ELS, Vol. 17, No. 2 (1957).

Sacramental Worship, Sacramental Preaching: Treasures of Our Lutheran Church  “Our treasures are in the understanding of sacramental and sacrificial elements in the Divine Service, in understanding the Word and Sacraments as powerful and efficacious means of grace, and in the proper distinction between Law and Gospel.” Presented at the Evangelical Lutheran Confessional Forum of the ELS and WELS on October 12-13, 1998, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 38, No. 4 (December 1998), pp. 270-309.

The Centennial of The Lutheran Hymnary  A look back at the 1913 Lutheran Hymnary, which was the work of an inter-synodical committee of Norwegian Lutherans. Printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 54, No. 1 (March 2014), pp. 71-92.

The Festival Exordium It is a longstanding tradition in the ELS that at our festival services (Christmas/Easter/Pentecost) our pastors will deliver an exordium prior to the sermon, along with singing the appropriate exordium hymn stanza. This paper is an effort to explain and encourage this special practice among us. Printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 54, No. 4 (December 2014), pp. 371-408.

The Path of Understanding: The Development of Lectionaries and their use in the Lutheran Church  A critique and comparison of the Historic Lectionary and the ILCW (Three-Year) Lectionary. Printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 38, No. 2 (June 1998), pp. 90-124.

“Walking Together” in Faith and Worship Explores the relationship between doctrinal unity and liturgical unity in the Lutheran Church. Printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 52, Nos. 2-3 (June/September 2012), pp. 195-248.

Why Is the Lutheran Church a Liturgical Church?  An anthology of quotations from the Lutheran Confessions which provide direction for Lutheran liturgical practice. Printed in the Lutheran Synod Quarterly, Vol. 32, No. 2 (June 1992), pp. 6-17.