Thursday, July 24, 2008

Father Hollywood Recommends...

Singing the Faith: Living the Lutheran Musical Heritage, a DVD-based mini-course teaching the basics of the history and ongoing significance of Lutheran hymnody.

This project comes from the Good Shepherd Institute which was "founded in the year 2000" at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne "to serve as a place dedicated to the recovery of the classic care of souls and the integration of theology into the pastoral life of the church."

Singing the Faith is based on four video presentations of roughly 20 minutes each on a DVD featuring short talks by various musical and liturgical scholars, musicians, and hymn writers, namely:
  • Christopher Boyd Brown, Boston University School of Theology
  • Kevin J. Hildebrand, Concordia Theological Seminary
  • Martin Jean, Yale University
  • Robin Leaver, Westminster Choir College
  • Richard C. Resch, Concordia Theological Seminary
  • Carl F. Schalk, Concordia University Chicago
  • Stephen P. Starke, St. John Lutheran Church, Bay City, Michigan
  • Daniel Zager, Eastman School of Music.
The course is well-suited to congregational Bible study, providing the pastor with a study guide and a series of handouts.

The video presentations are not only informative, but interesting, and aesthetically pleasing both to the eye and the ear. The lectures are well-paced, accessible to people with no musical training, and are punctuated by frequent musical performances - not only by choral and instrumental experts, but also by congregations and individuals - including people of every nationality and age. The trans-cultural and trans-generational nature of our hymnody is emphasized, as is the role of Lutheran hymnody in the catechetical formation of children.

I believe this mini-course, which sells for a modest $25, will instill a sense of reverence and appreciation for the treasure of traditional Lutheran hymnody in the life of the Christian - both in the Sunday liturgy and in the ongoing day-to-day life under the cross.

Pastors, if you're looking for a nice way to wind up your summer adult Bible classes, I highly recommend Singing the Faith as something that is not only theologically sound, but pleasant, informative, well-done in terms of production, professionalism, and polish, and rooted in the theology of the cross and of the Gospel.

Outstanding job, gentlemen!

1 comment:

Mike Keith said...

Thanks for the recommendation! I just ordered it. Looks great!