Christian main page Toward faithful and effective worship
Worship is too often not fulfilling (hence not effective) and only Christian by tradition rather than conscious intention (hence not faithful).

Too often we are presented with a choice between worship that is orthodox and alienating on the one hand and pseudo-Christian and entertaining on the other. Neither should be our choice.

I believe that we can create worship that is faithful to God and is interesting and sustaining for the people. The false alternatives that have paralyzed our debates must be overturned.

The tradition is not empty of value for our contemporary lives, it can be a source for powerful worship. The tradition can speak to the contempory.

People can be attracted by being inspired not just by enteratinment. Speaking to people's needs is not


I can help your parish Consulting for worship renewal. I accept commissions to design worship services.


Worship Resources

Essays on Worship
  Hospitality in Worship, Workshop Participant Notes. This is the extended outline for a workshop focused on how congregations can, with out compromising their theology, develop worship that his more hospitable to visitors and their own members. (PDF format, 39k)
  Notes on Effective Worship: What is the purpose of worship, and what makes worship consistent with that purpose? (PDF format, 50k)

Thematic Coherence and Emotional Consistency. Some practical thoughts on one aspect of what makes for effective ritual (PDF format, 11k).

  Can Traditional Ritual be Evangelistic? A version of this appeared in Dialog magazine.
  "They've changed the hymns!", or An investigation of changes in hymnody in the hymnbooks of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The Hymn, Jan 1996, p.25ff. A statistical analysis of how the contents of hymn books of the ELCA and predecessor churches have changed over the years.
  Breaking the Hymnal Logjam: A Second Edition of the LBW, Lutheran Partners, May/June 1997, p.24ff. Proposal for a carefully structured revision of the LBW. By explicitly promising to retain the most popular hymns (which would likely have been done anyway), the new hymnal can avoid much of the conflict it would otherwise generate.
If you're interested in any of these, e-mail me for a copy. Please send me an e-mail if you download any of these.


Recommended Books [under construction]


Lutheran Harmony A Hymnal you should consider.

Last updated 6/4/06; first posted 9/22/00; © 2006 John P. Nordin