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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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A new hue in the pew

ELCA introduces new hymnal, Evangelical Lutheran Worship

Question: How many Lutherans does it take to change a lightbulb? Answer: Change? What’s change?

In the anthology of lightbulb jokes, this one needs no apology. Many Lutherans take comfort in the same weekly bulletin inserts, the same Christmas program each year and the same potluck Jell-O salads.

But while many traditions seem almost to predate Martin Luther, the church has encountered new technology, increased its role in world ministry and seen a growing ecumenical consensus over the past 30 years.

In fall 2000, the boards of the then-Division for Congregational Ministries and Augsburg Fortress, Publishers, responded to such changes with Renewing Worship, a project that will soon reach congregations in the form of a new hymnal. (See  "Balance.")

Evangelical Lutheran Worship makes its nationwide debut this October, joining the Lutheran Book of Worship—or green book—that has dwelled in the pews since 1978.


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