The WELS National Conference on Worship, Music, and the Arts has been held every three years since 1996 and has become the largest conference in the US focused on worship themes--not just of Lutherans, but of all Protestant denominations. This year was no exception with over 1000 people participating. I had the opportunity to attend this year, July 19-22, and was not disappointed.
The general focus of the conference was on "passing the torch to the next generation" and that fit nicely with my role as liturgy/worship professor. I attended workshops on Worship Education, Enhancing the Liturgical Year, Church Design for Worship and Outreach, and Freshness and Variety in Proclaiming Law and Gospel. I enjoyed visiting with others who share my desire to offer God our best as we declare his praises. Above all, I was strengthened and built up as more than 1000 fellow believers joined together for five worship services (focusing on Holy Week and the Easter season) and two concerts during the four days of the conference, at all times keeping the focus on God's Word and the Sacraments and telling what great things the Lord has done to save us.
Having experienced just "a little foretaste of heaven," I am refreshed. Now I look forward to passing the torch of excellence in worship to the men training to be leaders of worship in Latin America.
Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. --Psalm 145:3-4
Photo provided by WELS Communication Services.