Luther's Hymn "Mighty Fortress"
The most widely used hymn among congregations of the Lutheran Church in America (LCA) is "Holy, Holy, Holy," according to a recent survey.
Martin Luther's hymn "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" turned up in second place.
The survey was conducted by the Reverend Ralph R. Van Loon, LCA worship coordinator, to assist the Inter-Lutheran Commission on Worship in selecting hymns for a new service book and hymnal.
Congregations were asked to list hymns they had used in the past two years, and responses came from 3,169 congregations, slightly more than half of the denominational total.
Other hymns in the top ten were:
(3) "The Church's One Foundation,"
(4) "Joy to the World,"
(5) "Beautiful Saviour,"
(6) "Jesus Christ Is Risen Today,"
(7) "Come, Thou Almighty King,"
(8) "Praise to the Lord,"
(9) "My Faith Looks Up to Thee," and
(10) "I Know That My Redeemer Lives."
Congregations were also asked to recommend hymns not included in the currently used hymnal. Those receiving 'most frequent mention were "How Great Thou Art," "Amazing Grace," and "We Are One in the Spirit." Religious News Service
Ten Commandments for Churchgoers
1. You shall worship God rather than your pastor.
2. When you enter God's house you will treat it with respect.
3. When you see other people you will pleasantly speak to them.
4. You shall ask people their names and give them your own.
5. You shall express friendship with a handclasp that says, "I'm glad to meet you!"
6. You shall flash the sign of friendship, a smile.
7. You shall be friendly to all persons, even the ones who "snub" you.
8. You shall be concerned about the needs of others, and share help from your spiritual resources.
9. You shall find greater happiness by giving praise rather than criticism.
10.You shall begin your service after the benediction, sharing your Sabbath blessings with those you meet. Dr. Lester L. Haws, St. Andrew's United Methodist Church Used by permission.
The Work of the Minister
"If I stop speaking by 11:45 don't think it is because I have nothing more to say." This was our new pastor speaking at his first Sabbath morning service in our church. He explained the reason for his short sermons as follows:
"When I was a lad my parents always took me to Sabbath school and church. At times the service lasted until 12:30 and often longer. I made up my mind that if I ever became a minister (and that was my plan) I would not weary children, young people, or older folks with long sermons, thinking that everyone was so eager to hear what I had to say that I must say it regardless of the time."
He faithfully carried out his promise to the delight of all. His sermons were short, wellplanned, and no one was wearied by them. Members living in divided homes were able to get home early to their husband or wife, as the case might be.
By contrast we had one pastor who would often say, "I am going to talk until 12:30; if any of you have to be home before then you better leave now." To keep from being embarrassed or embarrassing the pastor, most did stay, but reluctantly. Consequently they received very little from the sermon. John Herbert
1. "Beye therefore perfect" (Matt.5:48).2. "Be ye holy in all manner of conversation;... Be ye holy, for I am holy" (1 Peter 1: 15, 16).
3. "Bepatient" (James 5:7).
4. "Be at peace" (Job 22:21).
5. "Be of good cheer; ...be not afraid" (Matt. 14:27).
6. "Be diligent that ye maybe found of him in peace, without spot" (2 Peter 3:14).
7 . "Be subject one to another" (I Peter 5:5).
8. "Be clothed with humility" (1 Peter 5:8).
9. "Be sober, be vigilant" (1 Peter 5:8).
10. "Be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another" (Eph. 4:32).
11. "Be strong and of a good courage" (Joshua 1:6).
Hold the Line
"O, how Satan would rejoice if he could succeed in his efforts to get in among this people, and disorganize the work at a time when thorough organization is essential and will be the greatest power to keep out spurious uprisings, and to refute claims not endorsed by the word of God! We want to hold the lines evenly, that there shall be no breaking down of the system of organization and order that has been built up by wise, careful labor. License must not be given to disorderly elements that desire to control the work at this time." Ellen G. White, Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 9, p. 19. (Italics supplied.)
From church bulletin board
"If Your Day Is Hemmed With Prayer It Is Less Likely to Unravel."
Henry Feyerabend writes from Oshawa, Ontario. He is the speaker for It Is Written in Canada.