The WELS Hymnal Project’s Executive Committee recently met at the synod’s Center for Mission and Ministry in Waukesha on February 11 and 12. Each of the project’s seven subcommittees (Hymnody, Rites, Scripture, Psalmody, Literature, Technology, Communications) presented what their committee has been developing over the last few months for the executive committee’s review and approval. At this point that material still consists mainly of plans, philosophy statements, and guiding principles more so than specific hymns, psalms, or orders of service.
During the next few months, some of the key issues that the subcommittees have been wrestling with and that were discussed at this recent meeting will be topics for articles here on our website. We look forward to giving you the opportunity to review what’s been discussed so far and react to it.
What Else Is Next…
In addition to updates here on our website, here’s what else you can look forward to from the WELS Hymnal project during the coming months.
A two-part article will appear in Forward in Christ summarizing what we have learned so far as a result of our various research efforts, including the four surveys we conducted in 2014. Among these four surveys, nearly 7,200 responses were received. We want to thank all those who took the time to fill out one or more of these surveys. The content of that summary article will also be shared in segments on our website and will be included in the Book of Reports and Memorials presented at this summer’s synod convention.
This spring, the Communications Committee will facilitate an opportunity for anyone interested to let us know what their most dearly-loved hymns are. This opportunity will be open to anyone, and a special effort will be made to reach the students in our synod’s schools and Sunday Schools. The survey will ask about hymns in Christian Worship and Christian Worship Supplement. It will also give people an opportunity to select hymns from The Lutheran Hymnal that they would like to see included as well as a place to suggest songs from outside of these resources for the committee’s consideration.
Starting in 2016, you will start to hear about an effort to update people on where we are headed and give them the opportunity to sample and react to specific materials that are being considered for inclusion. Every congregation and school in the synod will have the opportunity to participate.
Thank you for your continued interest in this project and prayers for God’s blessing on it.
Pastor Jonathan Bauer