WELS National Conference on Worship, Music & the Arts — Gustavus Adulphus College

July 20th, 2011 Post by

We previously announced this conference on the Lutheran Calendar. Be sure to submit your events to the calendar.

We found information on the conference posted at Witness, Mercy, Life Together Blog. This is the conference that we posted on our facebook page:

Phillip Magness, Secretary of the LCMS Board for International Mission Presents on the Psalms as the Hymn Book of the Bible

Our steadfast brothers Johnson & Magness at Liturgy Solutions are having a great time at the WELS national worship conference – along with over 1000 conference attendees. With this many in attendance, perhaps this conference isn’t such a “secret.” Many familiar faces have been seen among the crowd: Jon Vieker, Al Collver, Raymond Hartwig, Larry Vogel, and John Wille.



WELS Worship Conference Book (Over 200 Pages Long)

Yesterday, a group of LCMS representatives arrived at Saint Peter, Minnesota, on the campus of Gustavus Adulphus College for the Wisconsin Synod’s National Conference on Worship. The Wisconsin Synod has been holding worship conferences since 1996, and this is their sixth conference. As of the end of June 2011, nearly 900 people registered for this worship conference. The plenary speaker stated that the WELS Conference on Worship is the largest worship conference in the Western Hemisphere. A significant percentage of WELS church workers (pastors and church musicians) attend the conference. This is remarkable considering the size of WELS (around 400,000 members) in comparison to the ELCA and the LCMS, not to mention other Protestant groups in North America. This shows in part WELS commitment to Lutheran Worship.

A recurring theme at the WELS Conference on Worship is “authentic Lutheran Worship.” Yesterday, I heard a presentation by Jonathan Schroeder about a WELS mission start in Atlanta (Faith, Sharpsburg, GA) in 2001. The pastor was confronted with starting a church in a strange land to Lutherans — the Deep South, where the predominate religious affiliation is Baptist and other Evangelical groups. He explained the recognition that he did not make a good baptist, nor could his fledging congregation compete with the musical groups or styles of the mega churches. His conclusion, the only option is to be authentically Lutheran. He had many good suggestions for being a “missional” church while remaining authentically Lutheran. Approximately 100 people attended Jonathan Schroeder’s session on “Teaching Worship.” This is a session that would have been good for me to hear starting out as a pastor.

Plenary Session “Passing the Torch”

By way of observation and not comment … Another interesting theme or motif that recurs among WELS people is the Synodical Conference. While I suspect many LCMS folk give little to no thought to the Synodical Conference that broke up in the late 1950s. Yet for many in WELS the Synodical Conference or rather the breakup of the Synodical Conference is a defining moment. In a sense, the break of the Synodical Conference is the sad story about the dissolution of a family — three sisters who could no longer have a Life Together. In any case, I cannot remember the last time I heard the Synodical Conference mentioned at an official LCMS event.

Faith, Sharpsburg, GA (A WELS Congregation)

The Conference Book is literally a book of over 200 pages. The conference is rather impressive and well done. Below are some photos of the Gustavus Adulphus Campus. Tomorrow, we have the opportunity to visit the Wisconsin Synod’s Martin Luther College in New Ulm, Minnesota.

2011 Worship Conf Brochure Web

Representatives from the LCMS include: Rev. Dr. Albert Collver, Rev. Herb Mueller, Rev. Dr. Joel Lehenbauer, Rev. Jon Vieker, Rev. Larry Vogel, and Rev. John Willie, District President of South Wisconsin. As few people know us, we are able to go about the conference more or less incognito. Thus far the conference is not only impressive but rather edifying.

For more pictures see Witness, Mercy, Life Together Blog.

Rules for comments on this site:

Engage the contents and substance of the post. Rabbit trails and side issues do not help the discussion of the topics.  Our authors work hard to write these articles and it is a disservice to them to distract from the topic at hand.  If you have a topic you think is important to have an article or discussion on, we invite you to submit a request through the "Ask a Pastor" link or submit a guest article.

Provide a valid email address. If you’re unwilling to do this, we are unwilling to let you comment.

Provide at least your first name. Please try to come up with a unique name; if you have a common name add something to it so you aren't confused with another user. We have several "john"'s already for example.  If you have a good reason to use a fake name, please do so but realize that the administrators of the site expect a valid email address and also reserve the right to ask you for your name privately at any time.

If you post as more than one person from the same IP address, we’ll block that address.

Do not engage in ad hominem arguments. We will delete such comments, and will not be obligated to respond to any complaints (public or private ones) about deleting your comments.

Interaction between people leaving comments ought to reflect Christian virtue, interaction that is gracious and respectful, not judging motives.  If error is to be rebuked, evidence of the error ought to be provided.

We reserve the right to identify and deal with trollish behavior as we see fit and without apology.  This may include warnings (public or private ones) or banning.

  1. Lloyd I. Cadle
    July 20th, 2011 at 22:55 | #1

    Through a WELS connection monthly video shown to our churches, President Schroeder indicated that our Synod is commited to teaching sacred worship music (hymns) to our children in the next generation.

    That is great news!

  2. Anonymous
    July 20th, 2011 at 23:20 | #2

    I don’t think I saw that video, but that sounds like the best WELS Connection video ever. What month was it?

  3. Perry Lund
    July 21st, 2011 at 06:31 | #3

    @Anonymous #2

    I believe the video was in April 2011 timeframe that talked about the Worship Conference.

    @Lloyd I. Cadle #1

    My wife is attending with my son who is in the children’s choir. They went to Mr. Magness’ presentation and enjoyed it.

  4. CDJ
    July 21st, 2011 at 06:47 | #4

    There really seems to be a cordiality between WELS & LCMS these days. Maybe a new day is dawning?

  5. Pastor Joshua Scheer
    July 21st, 2011 at 12:09 | #5

    @CDJ #4
    God’s will be done, each could certainly use the other (and don’t forget the ELS too!).

  6. Lloyd I. Cadle
    July 22nd, 2011 at 10:11 | #6

    @Perry Lund #3
    Hi Perry –

    They say that the worship conference is awesome!

    @Pastor Joshua Scheer #5
    I agree. There is nothing that could be better than having a strong confessional LCMS, WELS and ELS. If I may copy a phrase from the other Luther, “I have a dream!”

  7. July 30th, 2011 at 17:46 | #7

    @Lloyd I. Cadle #6
    A shared dream to be sure!

If you have problems commenting on this site, or need to change a comment after it has been posted on the site, please contact us. For help with getting your comment formatted, click here.
Subscribe to comments feed  ..  Subscribe to comments feed for this post
Anonymous comments are welcome on this board, but we do require a valid email address so the admins can verify who you are. Please try to come up with a unique name; if you have a common name add something to it so you aren't confused with another user. We have several "john"'s already for example. Email addresses are kept private on this site, and only available to the site admins. Comments posted without a valid email address may not be published. Want an icon to identify your comment? See this page to see how.

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.