Worship the Lord – More Worship Words to Wrestle With

A series of articles on timeless topics of worship.

Worship the Lord – Worship and Outreach

This series on worship and outreach has a simple goal: to encourage all congregations to do their very best in both realms. But isn’t it fair to assume that they already are? Doing their best? By some measurements, yes. But it’s also clear that our churches face various challenges. If improvements can be realized, we are likely under God to see greater blessings in both worship and outreach.

So, this series will share perspectives and ideas from a variety of congregations, hoping to inspire ongoing attention to these twin priorities.

Worship the Lord – Hymnal Introduction Series

This series shares information regarding Christian Worship: Hymnal (CW21)

Notes regarding Vol. 102:

Worship the Lord – Audio, Acoustics, and Video in the Worship Setting

This series explores room acoustics along with sound systems and hearing assistance. It covers common deficiencies or mistakes along with solutions.

Worship the Lord – Wisdom from Wittenberg

This series of articles is based on the presentation by Rev. Mark Tiefel at the 2017 National Conference on Worship, Music, and the Arts.

Worship the Lord – Children in Worship

This series explores how the pastor and congregation can partner with the parents to assist parents in engaging their children in worship. It reviews the pros and cons of various strategies and concludes with suggested “best practice” ideas.

Worship the Lord – Worship Coordinators

This issue reminds us of the value of well planned worship, carried out in teamwork by the pastor and worship coordinator.

Worship the Lord – Technology in Worship

This article discusses the use of screens and technology in worship.

Worship the Lord – Renovation Projects

This issue launches a new series on renovation projects. It will feature projects from churches small and large. Often the concepts, goals, and process behind a renovation are most important, not the particulars of design or size. These are transferable and helpful for churches of any size.

WTL Vol. 80 – Hartford WI Renovation

View the supplemental documents for the Hartford, Wisconsin sanctuary renovation article in the July 2016 edition of Worship the Lord, Vol. 80.

Worship the Lord – Practical Ideas for Lutheran Worship


In the March 2014 WELS Connection video, which featured the 2014 national worship conference, Pastor Dan Sims commented on a trend he has sensed. He said that there has been a resurgence in WELS in the last decade of trying to do Lutheran worship really well. It is the hope of the Commission on Worship and the writers we engage that this series will assist you and others in your congregation toward that goal.

Worship the Lord – Confessional Perspectives on Worship


This issue begins a new series to explore various confessional perspectives on worship. May God grant that study and discussion of these confessional perspectives contribute to God-pleasing worship, to synodical unity, and to spiritual impact within our congregations and communities.

Worship the Lord – Challenges for the Lutheran Church Choir


A new series begins with this issue. It will explore various challenges affecting Lutheran choirs. Some articles will be written with the pastor’s role as worship planner in mind, others for sharing with a choir director, worship committee, or lay leaders for encouragement or training or solving challenges.

Worship the Lord – Worship Words


A new series begins with this issue. It will explore twelve key worship concepts. Some articles may be valuable for analysis in a pastors’ study group, board of elders, or worship committee. As WELS parishes work with these concepts, our worship will be enriched for the sake of both members and guests. It will be faithful to Scripture, to our Lutheran heritage, and to the challenges and opportunities of being 21st century followers of Jesus.

Worship the Lord – Christian Worship Supplement


A look at Christian Worship: Supplement by committee members responsible for its planning. The supplement was released in 2008.

Worship the Lord – Church Architecture

New Series: Church Architecture

Winston Churchill’s famous remark at the rebuilding of the Houses of Parliament is quoted in numerous books and articles on church architecture: “We shape our buildings, and ever after they shape us.” Perhaps Churchill is frequently quoted because people aren’t completely happy with their church designs. James White wrote, “Church architecture not only reflects the ways Christians worship but architecture also shapes worship or not uncommonly, misshapes it.”

This issue of Worship the Lord begins a series on church architecture. Most readers of this newsletter are not planning to build or renovate. Still, the principles to be articulated are worth our time and thought for minor changes to existing buildings or as catalyst for a more extensive future remodeling project. Design topics can be theological or practical. While there is no single correct way to design various features of a church, there is often room for improvement.

Worship the Lord – Worship Planning


Planning for worship involves far more than picking hymns and choir music [early enough!] for the coming season or year. Short range planning is important so that everyone can work together for the best possible worship. Long-range planning is also diverse but doesn’t always get the attention it deserves.

With this issue of Worship the Lord, we begin a series on worship planning. We hope that some of the ideas shared will be helpful for you. While pastors are the primary Worship the Lord audience, musicians and worship committee members might also benefit from reading these articles.

Worship the Lord – Contemplative Worship


Much recent attention given to worship, at least in some circles, is about making worship upbeat, energetic, and exciting. This trend has contributed to the much-discussed worship wars; a recent Google.com search showed almost half a million worship war links! This trend has led to arguing and division about an event that should display a parish’s love and unity: public worship.

Receiving far less attention, but significant and even newsworthy, is a growing interest in contemplative worship—worship that is quieter, calmer, and slower-paced. This worship allows time to pause and reflect, time for wonder and awe. This worship doesn’t depend on an energetic leader or music for its appeal. Its power lies in a simple dialogue between God and his people with ample time for meditation.

The next few issues of Worship the Lord will bring descriptions of contemplative worship from parishes in WELS that have been exploring such worship.

Worship the Lord – Liturgy

Worship the Lord

With this short newsletter we will bring you a variety of theoretical, theological, and practical worship ideas. Each issue will not always contain all areas, but the content will eventually be balanced among all three. The first topic is liturgy, and the first issue sets an important foundation by defining liturgy.