A first service for the Reformation Anniversary was held Nov. 6, 2016, at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, jointly through the Missouri, Southern Illinois, and Central Illinois Districts. People from all three districts came together at 4 p.m. to sing Vespers in the Chapel of Sts. Timothy and Titus. The nave was packed. The music was absolutely astounding. A mass choir under direction of Dr. Mark Bender; a brass choir; Jim Marriott on the organ bench; and the wind symphony from Lutheran High South. The three District Presidents read the readings; Dean Burreson served as liturgist; President Harrison preached. But that's not quite at it. He let Dr. Luther preach (from sayings in which Luther found consolation, which, I couldn't help but note, included passages also from Sirach and Maccabees) and framed the whole with the story about the sword thrust aimed at Luther's neck in the Cranach Altarpiece: "Even in death, the beast rages on." Armed with the consolations of the Word, President Harrison urged us not to be afraid, but to rage on! To speak the Gospel of free forgiveness to our neighbors, in our homes, and wherever we go. The worst that can happen is we are killed, and not even that can take the life that's ours in Jesus. Rage on! John Klinger played music on the Carillon, including "Thy Strong Word."
You can download a PDF of the Vespers at this link:
Since whoever is disabling the embed, click here to watch the service. . .