A Day in Texas: Liturgy Solutions, the “Lutheran Cathedral,” Issues, Barbeque and Cigars

(from Pr. Rossow) Before I get to my day in Texas, I suggest you take a gander at a new blog site. A friend of BJS, Cantor Phil Magness is live blogging from the LCMS worship conference in Seward, Nebraska. His first post was quite positive but I think there may be some challenges to traditional worship that may arise in future posts. Check it out at http://liturgysolutions.blogspot.com/.


I took a couple vacation days to fly down to Texas to speak with the Texas Confessional Lutherans on unity in the conservative camp. I will share my presentation with you on this blog in a day or so when I return to Chicago.


Today was church tour day for BJS. I am scouting out potential churches for Elaine Gavin’s column “Steadfast Parish of the Month.” I was thoroughly moved by the incredible architecture and stunning artwork at a parish we could call the “Lutheran Cathedral,” Our Savior Lutheran Church in Houston, with Pastor Larry White. It is easily the most wonderfully appointed Lutheran church in the country. You will certainly be edified by the article when its turn comes up as steadfast parish of the month.


I also got to take photos at the church of a good friend and professor, Rev. Scott Murray. The church he serves, Memorial, Houston definitely qualifies as a steadfast parish. I thank Pastor Murray and his wife for hosting me for the evening. Mostly, I thank Pastor Murray for the six bottles of scotch that he carefully arranged on the kitchen table this evening and from which we chose our nightcap refreshment to enjoy along with the aromatic cigars that came from  a country south of Florida which shall remain nameless. There are few pleasures that match scotch sipping, cigar smoking and theology talkin.’  I believe Pastor Murray could possibly fill up an entire “No Pietists Allowed” blog all on his own!


As if that weren’t enough fun for one day I also got to eat barbeque with my old college roommate, Detlef Kemnitz. (How’s that for an authentic German Lutheran name?) I also got to plug BJS during an hour long pastor’s roundtable with Rev. Weedon and Rev. Kumm, talking about a prominent BJS theme – male headship in the church and the home. Look for future articles on this critical topic from Pastor Hein.


Tomorrow its off to Brenham, Texas for the presentation and hopefully time to photograph a confessional parish in Tombal, Texas. More to come…

About Pastor Tim Rossow

Rev. Dr. Timothy Rossow is the Director of Development for Lutherans in Africa. He served Bethany Lutheran Church in Naperville, IL as the Sr. Pastor for 22 years (1994-2016) and was Sr. Pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran in Dearborn, MI prior to that. He is the founder of Brothers of John the Steadfast but handed off the Sr. Editor position to Rev. Joshua Scheer in 2015. He currently resides in Ocean Shores WA with his wife Phyllis. He regularly teaches in Africa. He also paints watercolors, reads philosophy and golfs. He is currently represented in two art galleries in the Pacific Northwest. His M Div is from Concordia, St. Louis and he has an MA in philosophy from St. Louis University and a D Min from Concordia, Fort Wayne.


A Day in Texas: Liturgy Solutions, the “Lutheran Cathedral,” Issues, Barbeque and Cigars — 4 Comments

  1. Pr. Rossow,

    I’m trying to figure out how you can identify a confessional parish by the presence of architecture and artwork. Isn’t that pietism too?

  2. Timothy,

    Pastor Rossow doesn’t say one identifies confessionalism by the presence of architecture and artwork. Rather he exols the confession of the architecture and artwork at Our Savior’s in Houston. The art and architecture there articulate our theology well.

    There is a huge difference between that and simply being awed by the presence of artistic beauty in some sort of Romantic way.

    Phil Magness

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