The life of Dr. Carl F. Schalk (1929–2021) is certainly one of the clearest and longest proclamations of the Gospel ever heard in the world of Lutheran church music.
He was a beloved husband, father, musician, writer, composer, and fervent advocate of the Lutheran Church. While Carl is dearly missed, he continues to sing the Church’s song, now proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ in His nearer presence.
Thanksgiving is approaching, and it’s likely that you or your music director and worship team have started planning for Thanksgiving services. If you’re looking for music to add a bright, festive note to your worship, or if you’re looking for pieces to include your choir or handbell teams, look no further. The organ, choral, and handbell selections below work well in a variety of settings, both for in-person worship and for recorded or live-stream online services. For additional inspiration, check out the Thanksgiving Music Playlist!
If you are a church musician, especially a handbell ringer, the last time you practiced was likely months ago. Or maybe your church is slowly allowing ringers and choirs to play again, albeit under irregular circumstances.
If you’re a church musician, chances are high that the way you’ve performed music (or haven’t) at church has been completely different from “normal” circumstances. Maybe you’ve switched to pre-recorded services, or livestreamed services with limited groups of musicians accompanying. In some cases, the organist and a soloist might be the safest options.
Think about your favorite hymn in Lutheran Service Book. If you have a hymnal handy, take a minute to look it up. In the bottom right corner of the page, there’s probably a name listed in all capital letters—this is the hymn tune. Some are simple, like CAROL or GREENSLEEVES. Others are phrases, often in Latin or German.
Today, we are celebrating an extraordinary event at Concordia Publishing House. Dr. Carl F. Schalk, renowned composer, music educator, distinguished professor, and beloved mentor turns ninety years young.
Worship is transcultural, but it is also supertemporal. Community worship bridges time and enables all believers living in the “now” to glimpse eternity. Whether it is in the Preface of the Service of the Sacrament when we join “with angels and archangels and with all the company of heaven” or in the private moments of Compline as we confess our sins “before the whole company of heaven,” worship goes beyond the present and joins with that of the great throng of angels and heavenly hosts.