Ack! Christian News

The words that no seminarian ever wants to hear are: “You’ve made Christian News!”

A friend of mine from Ft. Wayne, vicaring up in Wisconsin calls me this afternoon and utters those very words. The various four-letter words that came to my mind are not for print. Thankfully the mention of me (by way of this blog) was just in a list of Lutheran blogs that the publisher prints from time to time.

Whew…

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Thoughts on Lutheran Service Builder

First off, I’m not trying to knock CPH, the Commission on Worship, or the developers of Lutheran Service Builder, because I think all of them together have done an excellent job in the development of the hymnal and the software. Through my fieldwork congregation I’ve had the opportunity to work with the software and it is excellent, minus some small glitches which are obviously being corrected in updates.

My concern is that this software fosters in some pastors a “cut and paste” mentality. With the click of a button a pastor can quickly mash together any number of elements from any number of services. A service I recently attended included portions of DS 4, DS 3, and DS 1/2. This is done on a regular basis. What good does such mixing do?

My other problem with the software is in the printing of the liturgy. While I can see the use of printing the liturgy on certain occasions, I fail to see the value in printing the complete liturgy every week. I think that it discourages people from using and exploring the hymnal and also is a waste of paper. I do think it is fine to print an outline of the service (the bulletins with the extra tab on the side work really well for this!). This, combined with the ease of use of Lutheran Service Book makes the services quite easy to navigate.

I would like to hear some response to this… I’m open to arguments for or against…