Bringing the Text to Life

The Leipziger Organist Psalm 100

The Leipziger Organist

Johann Sebastian Bach''s music was radical and rocking in his day, giving new expression to thanksgiving and praise. This year, on the 250th anniversary of his death, people are rediscovering the greatness of God through the music of an organist who lived in obscurity most of his life.

[NOTE: This sermon offers many ways to
creatively use music to animate the sermonic
experience. You might want to involve your choir in the singing of some stanzas of a Bach cantata, or hymn. Or, take a single Bach melody and at different intervals in the sermon, play it using a different instrument each time — for example,
harpsichord, organ, flute or bells. The service itself should feature the music of Bach, but consider bringing Bach into the third millennium by playing his music on a synthesizer and other electronic instrumentation. If your church is small and lacks the musicians to do some of this work, use CDs and have a volunteer play the selections on cue. Many high schools or local colleges have musicians who might be happy to
work with you on developing this service.]

The year is 1968.

The place: Karl Marx Platz, Leipzig, East Germany.

One day in May, thousands gather there to witness a cold, cruel sight. Walter Ulbricht, head of the Communist regime, architect of...

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