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Ask the Pastor

† Theological musings and answers to selected questions by a confessional Lutheran pastor.

16 January 2007

Service Planning for Lent

Introducing a New Lenten Resource

Our Suffering ServantSome time ago, Concordia Publishing House began preparing a Lenten series based on Christopher W. Mitchell’s Our Suffering Savior, a book some readers may already own. CPH wanted to produce an integrated series with sermonic materials, devotions, and service planning resources based on Isaiah 52:13-53:12. As part of this, they asked me to write forty-seven devotions for Ash Wednesday through Easter. The entire package, including thematic bulletin covers, is now available.

I think that most LCMS congregations or parish pastors got the promotional kit a while back. The book is now in its second edition, but the main change is the supplemental worship material. If you have the original, Concordia also has the extras in a separate volume. Besides those items I already mentioned, the supplement includes a number of choral music suggestions.

Either way, you get a CD-ROM resource disk with the books. The disk is compatible with Windows and Macintosh. It includes sermons, children’s messages, orders of service, and Bible studies.

Until Holy Week, the midweek sermons and each Wednesday – Tuesday cycle of devotions take their direction from the Wednesday readings from Isaiah. Then, each day’s devotion relates to the specific day but remains fully integrated with the rest of the series.

Ash Wednesday: “Who Has Believed?” (Isaiah 53:1)
Midweek 2: Appearances Can Be Deceiving (Isaiah 52:14; 53:2-3)
Midweek 3: “By His Wounds We Are Healed” (Isaiah 53:4-5)
Midweek 4: Stray Sheep (Isaiah 53:6)
Midweek 5: Knowing When to Keep Quiet (Isaiah 53:7)
Midweek 6: Is There No Justice? (Isaiah 53:8)
Maundy Thursday: Bloodbath (Isaiah 52:15)
Good Friday: A Rich Burial (Isaiah 53:9)
Easter Sunday: Satisfaction Guaranteed (Isaiah 53:10-12)

Our Suffering Savior — Christopher Mitchell with Carol Albrecht, Paul Beisel, Kevin Hildebrand, and Walter Snyder.

By coincidence, I also have my hand in next year’s Lenten materials. I wrote sermon studies and children’s messages for Concordia Pulpit Resources for Lent 1 and Lent 2 in Series A.

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