5 books for ministry

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (Augsburg Fortress). I would bundle this latest Lutheran hymnal with its earlier iterations, the most important being The Lutheran Hymnal of 1941, as well as The Daily Office, published in 1965. They are the portable containers for the Psalms, canticles, prayers and the church’s liturgical language, which in my ministry proved to be the most important components of every hospital visit, counseling session and private devotion.

Faith and Freedom: An Invitation to the Writings of Martin Luther, by Martin Luther; edited by John F. Thornton and Susan B. Varenne (Vintage). I was shaped theologically by Luther’s exposition of the gospel, his sermons and his commentaries on scripture. What I find valuable about this book is its orientation to Luther’s pastoral writing. One can hear his voice in the letters, sermons and treatises included in this volume.


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