divine service

Teaching about the Divine Service

Joe Willmann Teaching the Faith at Home 19 Comments

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Are We Weird?

My wife and I were chatting on the car ride home from church last week like we do every week. We always use this time to reflect on the things we took away from Bible study and the Divine Service. This week, for some reason, our conversation drifted to how we have friends we have met in St. Louis who don’t have a background in The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. We discussed how we could invite these folks to come to the Divine Service with us. Here are some questions we started chatting about:

  • Would they have ever experienced a historic liturgy before?
  • Would we show them the hymnal before we go to the Divine Service?
  • How would we explain why our children stay with us during service?
  • Would they think we were weird being so worried about all of these things?

Isn’t that just so human? We get so worried about everything and seem to forget who is in charge. When we get worked up about all of these things, I thank God that it is not our work, but His work that causes faith.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8–10 ESV

What about Our Kids?

As we think about these questions in the context of outreach, is it possible to think about them in relation to our own children? Do our kids know what happens during the Divine Service? If someone asked them, “Why do you say, ‘I, a poor, miserable sinner’?” would they know what to say?

I’m not sure I could have answered those things when I was a child. I’m really not even sure I would have been able to give a great answer when I was in high school. In our day and age, where people are striving to be “relevant,” it is important for our children to understand why the Divine Service is the most relevant part of their week.

Over the next six weeks, we will be going through the parts of the Divine Service:

Each post will contain practical advice on how to teach your children about what is going on and why we do what we do in the Divine Service. I hope you will join us on this journey!

God’s blessings as you teach your children the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 1:3 ESV).

 

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About the Author

Joe Willmann

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Joe Willmann is the Senior Instructional Designer for Concordia Publishing House in St. Louis, MO. A former teacher and administrator, Joe has a passion for education and learning theory. He earned his Bachelor's Degree from Ball State University and his Master's Degree from Concordia University - Ann Arbor. He lives with his wife, Nicole, his daughter Ava, and his son Carter. You can read his latest posts here.

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Laura NyeHelen PriceKaren LangendorfPaul KritschSarah Gorman Recent comment authors
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Laura
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Laura

Great topic! Even those of us who regularly attend Divine Service sometimes need a refresher.

Tanya
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Tanya

Looking forward to these teachings and will discuss with our kids!! Thank you in advance!

Earl Major
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Earl Major

As someone who still feels relatively new to the Lutheran faith (even after 23 years!), I look forward to this series. Thank you!!

Morgan
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Morgan

Where was the picture taken?

Kate
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Kate

I’m looking forward to reading about our divine service and how to teach it!! As a inexperienced, new to the Lutheran faith, home school mom and SS teacher, I’m starving for this information!

Matthew Kelpe
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Matthew Kelpe

Joe,
Great post, and I’ll be looking forward to the next in the series. Just out of curiosity, where is the church pictured at the top of the article? It’s beautiful!

Pastor K.C. Dehning
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I happened to come across this article on Twitter. Is it possible to receive email notifications when the next part is published?

Sarah Gorman
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Sarah Gorman

Great idea! I concur. I don’t want to miss a post.

Cindy
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Cindy

Great idea! Education is a vital key to our future

Debbie Greene
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Debbie Greene

As a person who works with the pastor at our church to present a worship folder, we have incorporated a one or two sentence explanation for each portion of the liturgy with its title. For example: at the point of the Kyrie, the sentence reads: The first prayer of our worship asking God to have mercy upon both His church and the world. These sentences were inspired by CPH’s Worship with Angels and Archangels, An Introduction to the Divine Service copyright 2005. When this was published and on sale, we purchased one for each family of the congregation and a… Read more »

Debbie Thompson
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Debbie Thompson

I, too, am a church secretary and I think what you’ve done is a wonderful idea. I plan to share this information. Thank you!

Jody Bevan
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Jody Bevan

I will be reading this with interest. Always want to learn more, or clear the cobwebs away. Thanks for this great topic.

Paul Kritsch
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Paul Kritsch

Thank you for this series

Karen Langendorf
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Karen Langendorf

Looking forward to it.

Helen Price
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Helen Price

I’m a life long Lutheran and I look forward to reading this series and sharing it with my grands.

Laura Nye
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Laura Nye

I remember learning about some of those things in Confirmation classes …… back in the 70s!