National Lutheran News

LCMS, ELCA preparing new worship books

Largest two U.S. Lutheran bodies respond to need for new worship reources

The 2.49 million-member Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LC MS) has entered the production phase on a new worship resource for congregations. After almost six years in development, issuance of Lutheran Service Book (LSB) was overwhelmingly ap-proved by the delegates to the denomination’s 2004 convention (1,014-130).

The new resource, which Concordia Publishing House will release in Fall 2006, will replace Lutheran Worship, which appeared 20 years ago. As with previous books, the new service manual will include hymns and liturgical settings of the Lutheran order of worship. A pastor’s lectionary planning resource will be published in three volumes, one for each of the three years in the lectionary cycle.

Meanwhile, the 4.9 million member Evangelical Lu-theran Church in America (ELCA) is in the process of developing new worship materials as well. On Octo-ber 27, the ELCA’s Board of the Division for Congre-gational Ministries forwarded a report to the church council which includes “provisions for finishing the development of a new primary book of worship.”

The board also encouraged the council to ask the 2005 Churchwide Assembly, which meets in Orlando in August, to affirm “steps toward renewal” in the ELCA’s worship life. A rough outline of what might be in a new worship book has been created, along with suggestions for “a constellation of other materials.”