Tuesday, April 19, 2022

In case you have not heard. . .

Now some sixteen years after the publication of Lutheran Service Book, and rather quickly on the heels of the publication of the long awaited Hymnal Companion (in two volumes), the Companion to the Services is ready.  Set for release on July 1 (at least at the time of writing this blog), it is sure to become a very valuable tool in understanding and appreciating the LSB hymnal.  God knows, no hymnal is perfect (not even, dare I say it, THE Lutheran Hymnal).  The LSB has been around long enough to know what it does well and what it does not and, on the whole, it is a very serviceable book and resource.  Yes, I have my own problems with a few things but it was not my approval that was necessary to get this book in the pews.  Sometimes I forget that.  It has long been wondered, however, why and how the contributors and editors of LSB made the choices they made and I hope this will help to answer that question.  

I knew this was coming out soon as soon as I discovered that Lutheran Worship: History and Practice, was no longer in print.  That is a shame.  This resource, which also came out long after LW, has served the churches well both to instruct and guide the use of the resources not simply of LW but of Lutheran worship forms and practices over the years.  As good as I expect this new volume will be, I do not believe that it will completely replace History and Practice.  Like Luther Reed's volumes on worship several generations before, we do not always appreciate these volumes until later in time.

According to Amazon:

Lutheran Service Book has been foundational to LCMS worship for years, and now, for the first time in history, this hymnal gets an in-depth companion volume. Twelve authors have come together to create Companion to the Services to give you a deeper understand to the services and other parts of Lutheran Service Book. This comprehensive book will cover various topics, including theology of worship, Psalmody, Divine Service, Baptism, Creeds, music in the liturgy, and more. This groundbreaking work is essential for church musicians, pastors, and all who wish to know more about the beloved work in the pages of Lutheran Service Book.

Some will inevitably balk at the price (expected to be about $85) but I think it will be a bargain and expect that if a pastor or parish musician begins to use it, they will find it very important and I hope that the binding breaks for such constant use.  So dig in your piggy bank and cough up the money.  I pray it will be worth the wait.

No comments: