Last Posts

  • Leading the Church’s Song: free download


    Leading the Church’s Song, edited by Robert Buckley Farlee, is a an excellent practical guide to congregational song leadership. I have especially appreciated the notes on global song in this resource, but I thought it might be useful for you to know that recently the first two chapters, which are an orientation to the ministry of congregational song and the elements of the technique required, have been placed online, free, at  \”Leading the Church\’s Song\.  Here’s the end of the introduction:

    And something happens to us when we sing. On a communal level we become more conscious of how we fit into the group, of our role in the larger gathering. On a spiritual level, tune, text, and the sound of our singing can transport us to places we never thought possible. Catechetically, we internalize that which we sing. Propelled by the wings of melody, rhythm, and perhaps harmony, the message and images of the text pass through our lips finding ways into our memories as well as our hearts. The kernel of faith is nurtured. It has often been said that the way in which we pray (lex orandi) has great bearing on that which we believe (lex credendi). It is probably just as valid to say that what we sing also shapes our faith — lex cantandi lex credendi.We who lead that song are by nature servants of God’s people and serving them well requires work. The task calls us to continuous study of things churchly: scripture, historical models and the function of liturgy, the cycles of the church year. It requires of us constant study and practice to keep musical skills (instrumental, vocal, choral, conducting) at sufficiently high levels. And it challenges us frequently to risk something we have never done before. (Augsburg Fortress, 1998).

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  • Evangelical Lutheran Worship: Hymnal Companion


    The hymnal companion to Evangelical Lutheran Worship, which will give the context, origin and character of the hymns, is now ready to be ordered from Augsburg Fortress.  Twenty per cent discount if you order before September 1. You will note that the resource is prepared by Paul Westermeyer and you can be assured he is a Lutheran musician and theologian who cares deeply about music and worship for our time. I’m looking forward to his work, and I am grateful for it!

    Companion to Evangelical Lutheran Worship

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  • Assembly 2010: Worship Resources

    It was a privilege to work with the 2010 Assembly worship team: Michael Mills, Robb Wilson, Chun Zhang, Tuula Van Gaasbeek, Matthew Anderson, James Brown, Sebastian Meadows-Helmer and Mark Harris. We are glad to share our resources and original materials with you.  Included in this post you will find a word from Robb Wilson on the way he approaches the design of the worship space, the prayers that Matthew Anderson crafted throughout the Assembly, the Psalm James Brown composed for the Assembly, the liturgical texts Michael Mills created, and the entire liturgies with musical resources cited.

    The wonderful thing about being on a team like this is that when everyone does their particular piece of preparation with great care, and then comes with the understanding that the team will respond to the new space and developments throughout the Assembly, there is an attentiveness to the context and the ‘moment’, and a freedom to continue to create. The resources reflect what happened; what together, led by the Spirit, with so many who helped to enliven our worship, we created. Thanks be to God.

    If you have any questions, feel free to email me at .

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