Title: The Restoration of Critical Catholicity in North American Lutheran Worship
In his liturgical essays, Formula Missae (1523) and Deutsche Messe (1526) Luther develops a distinctive hermeneutic for the reform and practice of public worship. This hermeneutic is best described as a critical appropriation of western catholic liturgical tradition for the sake of the clear proclamation of the Gospel. This workshop will examine the historical and theological evolution and use of Luther's liturgical hermeneutic in North American Lutheran worship. We will look especially at the deterioration and loss of the Lutheran liturgical identity in 19th Century American worship books under the pressure of Evangelical Revivalism. The revival hermeneutic will then be compared to the Lutheran liturgical restoration which begins with the Common Service (1888) and culminates with Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006). Finally, it will become clear that Evangelical Lutheran Worship in particular returns to Luther's classic notion of liturgical reform as proposal and we will assess the fate of this hermeneutic and its vital importance for today and the church in the future.
BIO: Shane Brinegar earned his M.Div. in 2012 at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. Immediately following he began work on the Master of Sacred Theology degree, under the supervision of Dr. Timothy J. Wengert, Ministerium of Pennsylvania Professor of Reformation History, Emeritus (LTSP). His work focused primarily on Luther's theology of the Means of Grace, and its practical and pastoral implications for the life of the church today. In May of 2014 Shane successfully defended his thesis, A Wittenberg Liturgical Theology: Critical Catholicism in Practice, with distinction. Dr. Gordon W. Lathrop, Charles A. Schieren Professor of Liturgy, Emeritus (LTSP) served on his thesis panel. Shane is currently a student in the Doctor of Theology (Th.D.) program at the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church focusing on Anglican Liturgy and Ecumenism.
Pastor Felde will review the main points of the Nairobi Statement on Worship and Culture, and relate them to the perpetual task of cultivating a hymnody in a congregation which respects its ownership of certain hymns while opening it to the necessity of continually enriching the repertoire. Hymns function like local creeds, grounding the universal faith in an expanding web of times and places in which the church has lived.
BIO: Marcus Felde served as a missionary in Papua New Guinea from 1975-82 and 1990-96. During that time he participated in the Lutheran World Federation study of Worship and Culture. He has served as a pastor in Terre Haute, Olean, and (at present) Indianapolis, Indiana. He is a graduate of Seminex and holds a Ph.D. in theology from the University of Chicago. He is president of Crossings, a group devoted to the gospel. When he was in primary school, he and his family helped his father introduce the Service Book and Hymnal to congregations in North Dakota and the Northwest. His dissertation, Faith Aloud, was published in PNG. He has published articles in Lutheran Partners, The Hymn, CrossAccents, International Review of Mission, Currents in Theology and Mission, as well as online. He is married, with four children and seven grandchildren, and plays violin.
Title: Growing Active Worshipers: Faith Formation Through the Children's Choir
There is a lot more to directing a children's choir than teaching an anthem. This workshop will discuss the need for deliberate and intentional spiritual and worship instruction, as well as offer practical teaching suggestions and repertoire ideas.
BIO: Sarah Hawbecker is Organist and Director of Children's Music at Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Atlanta, where she has served since 1996. She is also a project consultant for Orgues Letourneau Limitee of St-Hyacinthe, Quebec. A prize winner of numberous competitions, she has performed and presented workshops for conventions of the American Guild of Organist (AGO) and the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians (ALCM), and served as adjudicator for several organ competitions. She has published articles in The American Organist and CrossAccent, and her organ performances have been broadcast on American Public Media's Pipedreams. Ms. Hawbecker earned the Master of Music degree in Organ Performance from the Eastman School of Music, and a Bachelor of Music degree from St. Olaf College. She served three terms on the AGO's National Council, and currently serves on the Board of ALCM.
Title: Beginning Improvisation Techniques for the Organ
Improvisations does not begin with sitting at the organ bench and waiting for a glorious toccata to miraculously occur! This workshop will provide strategies and skills to make organ improvisation less of a mystery and more of a practical art for the parish organist.
BIO: Kevin Hildebrand is Kantor at Concordia Theological Seminary and St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Fort Wayne, Indiana. He holds degrees in music and theology from The University of Michigan and Concordia Theological Seminary, respectively. An experienced teacher of both children and adults, he directs choirs including the Youth Choir at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, and the seminary Kantorei and Schola Cantorum. His compositions for organ and choir are published by various composers, and he serves as the editor of the Hymn Prelude Library from Concordia Publishing House, a 12-volume set of new organ compositions.
Title: In the Dark and Dawn: Earthly Worship and Poetic Life
With special reference to the writing of 17th century German mystic Jacob Boehme and the lyrical compositions of contemporary psalmist Bruce Cockburn, this workshop will focus on the intersection of earthly experience and incarnational life.
BIO: Joel Kurz serves as pastor of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Warrensburg, Missouri (which received a grant from The Valparaiso Project of its community garden). He serves on various local social ministry and community organization boards, as well as with the humanitarian agency With God's Little Ones. He edited, along with C. George Fry, Lively Stone: The Autobiography of Berthold von Schenk, and his essays and poems have appeared in a variety of journals, including The Cresset. He also has been a contributing writer for Concordia Seminary's Center for the Care of Creation.
Title: The Lectionary on the Cosmos in Praise and Lament
(This workshop will be repeated)
This workshop will be a text study, intended for preachers, presiders and worship planners, on the texts that will be read in an assembly using the RCL on the two first Sundays after Trinity this year, Lectionary 10B and Lectionary 11B (or Proper 5 and 6) for June 7 and 14, 2015, the Second and the Third Sundays after Pentecost. At that time in the church year, we will begin to read from Mark again, accompanied by passeages from 2 Corinthians, Genesis and Ezekiel. How do these texts speak of our life in Christ as life on this earth? How is the gospel to be preached from these texts?
Title: "We lift them to the Lord": The Eucharist as source for sarcophilic living
Many themes of the Christian celebration of the Lord's Supper point to a kind of religion and a style of life that honors the conditions of the flesh, that is "sacrophilic." What are those themes? How may we teach and practice them again? How is the Eucharist source of the Christian life? And what does it mean that we engage to lift up our hearts not out of the world, but "to the Lord"?
BIO: Gordon W. Lathrop is a pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and a retired professor of liturgy. In recent years he has taught at the St. Thomas Aquinas University in Rome, the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and the Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, VA. From 2006-2010 he was Visiting Professor of Liturgical Studies in Yale Divinity School and the Institute of Sacred Music. After teaching at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia from 1984 until 2004, he was named Professor of Liturgy Emeritus there. He is author of several books, including Holy Ground: A Liturgical Cosmology (Fortress 2003), The Pastor: A Spirituality (Fortress 2006), and The Four Gospels on Sunday: The New Testament and the Reform of Christian Worship (Fortress 2012). He was a participant in the preparation of Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006). He is an Editorial Consultant of the journal Worship. In 1985 he was the President of the North American Academy of Liturgy. In 2006 he received that Academy's Berakah Award. From August 2011 until August 2013 he was President of Societas Liturgica, the international society of scholars in liturgy. In 2011 he received an honorary doctorate in theology from the University of Helsinki, Finland. He lives now in Arlington, Virginia, in the greater Washington DC area.
Title: Does a Threatened Cosmos Need a Crucified Christ?
The specter of environmental disaster coupled with incessant warfare all over the planet brings out the inner prophet lurking in most preachers. We cry out for justice and aim our righteous diatribes at the plundering economic machines and violent trouble-makers whose ruthlessness may leave our grandchildren or great-grandchildren a ruined, uninhabitable planet. Who needs to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ the crucified when the real problem is ISIS-Monsanto-BP-Halliburton? If we can't answer that, we might as well quit pretending to be the church.
BIO: Dr. Frederick Niedner is Senior Research Professor (academic code for "allegedly retired") at Valparaiso University and Associate Director of the Institute of Liturgical Studies. He writes for numerous publications that support the ministry of preaching, and his fortnightly columns on religion and culture appear in the Sun-Times' northwest Indiana edition. He also leads Valparaiso University's Cambridge Seminar for New Faculty.
Title: Liturgical Art: Not Just Interior Design
Liturgical art, what is it? Decoration? Illumination of the gospel? Beauty for it's own sake? Unnecessary? Expensive? In this workshop we will explore what liturgical art is and can be as well as look at one method for how to incorporate art into your worship through practicing the process of collaborative creation. No artistic ability required!
BIO: Alex Raabe is a recent graduate of the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago and a candidate for ministry in the ELCA. Right now he is working on planting a church in Austin, TX that bridges the deep tradition of the Lutheran theological tradition with Postmodern, Millenial culture. He is passionate about the interscetion of culture and theology and innovating with integrity--that is understanding our heritage to build on top of it and getting rid of barriers to participating in worship. His experience in liturgical art spans several states but was greatly enhanced during his internship at House For All Sinners and Saints in Denver, CO and LSTC where people encouraged multisensory worship experiences.
Title: How might Darwin pray? Evolution and Praise
Some recent Eucharistic prayers and many hymns praise God for creating an idyllic Eden-like earth. This workshop will consider how we might praise God for the evolving natural world that since its origins embraced both life and death.
BIO: Gail Ramshaw is a scholar of liturgical language. A graduate of Valparaiso University (BA), Sarah Lawrence College (MA), the University of Wisconsin-Madison (PhD) and Union Theological Seminary (MDiv), she lives outside of Washington, D.C. A past president of the North American Academy of Liturgy, a recipient of the NAAL Berakah award, and a member of Societas Liturgica, she is a Professor Emerita of Religion at LaSalle University.
Ramshaw has published two textbooks, What is Christianity? An Introduction to the Christian Religion (Fortress, 2013) and Christian Worship: 100,000 Sundays of Symbols and Rituals (Fortress, 2009). Her books about the meaning of liturgical language include A Three-Year Banquet: The Lectionary for the Assembly (Augsburg Fortress 2004); The Three-Day Feast: Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter (Augsburg Fortress 2004) and several others. Her prayers have been included in denominational worship resources published in the U.S., Canada, Sweden and New Zealand, and she has lectured on liturgical language in the U.S., Canada, and Scandinavian countries and the Far East.
Title: Praying in Seven Directions: Place and Native Traditions
All Native American traditions are rooted in a place, including prayer and ritual. The Sacred is not found in a location; it is the rootedness of life which builds communities in a place. How does prayer and ritual function when place has priority over space or location?
BIO: The Rev. Gordon J. Straw is an enrolled member of the Brothertown Indian Nation. He was ordained into public ministry in 1986. He currently serves as program director for Lay Schools for Ministry and interim director for American Indian and Alaska Native Ministries in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He earned his MDiv. degree at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, MN and a Th.M. in systematic theology at Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Chicago, IL.
Title: Worship in the ELCA - A church centered around the meand of grace.
In every celebration of the menas of grace, God acts to show forth both the need of the world and the truth of the Gospel. In every gathering of Christians around the proclaimed Word and the holy sacraments, God acts to empower the Church for mission. This conversation will help participants understand how The Use of the Means of Grace functions as a descriptive and not prescriptive sacramental practice statement of this church. What does it mean to be a church centered around the means of grace? What are the current conversation happening around the church in regards to worship and The Use of the Means of Grace?
BIO: Pastor Strickland was born and raised in Lexington, SC and is an honors graduate of Newberry College (Newberry, SC) with a Bachelor of Arts in Religion and Philosophy with a minor in History. He also obtained a Masters of Divinity from Lutheran Tehological Southern Seminary in Columbia, SC. Pastor Stickland served as pastor of several churches within SC and TN states and has served on various local non-profit boards and has a heart for justice and advocacy ministry. Pastor Strickland is humbled and honored to have been called into the position of Director for Worship of the ELCA.
Title: Singing Lament through Psalms and Hymns
The psalms have long been a souce of both praise and lament in sung in worship and private devotion. Hymns old and new give our assemblies a voice of personal lament, the church's lament, and God's lament, yet still a promise of hope. Together we study and sing hymns and psalms of lament that continue to sing through us today.
BIO: John Weit serves as Cantor to Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Worcester, MA where he facilitates the worship and music life of this urban congregation, serves as organist, and conducts various choirs and ensembles. Having previously served congregations in Philadelphia, Lititz, and Reading, PA, John relocated to New England from after earning the Master of Arts in Religion degree with concentration in Liturgy and Music from The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia. At the seminary he also served as Interim Seminary Musician for the 2008-09 academic year, coordinating music for daily chapel liturgies and conducting the seminary choir. John serves as President of Region 1 of the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians, as Treasurer of the Leadership Program for Musicians, and on the New England Synod Worship Team.