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Thursday, November 09, 2006 

LSB Agenda And The Time Honored Rite Of Snake Handling

Last Saturday was my circuit's turn to host the introduction to the Lutheran Service Book. I went, got my copy of the LSB and am busy going through it. My initial thoughts are that it is a very good hymnal that hopefully my congregation will adopt. I only wish that the Litany had it’s musical setting included in the LSB. The good news is that it’s all there in the Agenda.

The introduction really wasn’t designed to spend a whole lot of time on the Agenda. That’s a shame really, but I’ll see it soon enough.

The reason I’m thinking about this is that a friend called me this morning to alert me to a news story in the local paper. Here’s how the AP story ran;

Snake Bite In Church Kills Woman
LONDON, Ky. -- The identity of a southeastern Kentucky woman who was bitten by a snake during a church service and later died has been released. Linda Long, 48, of London died Sunday at the University of Kentucky Medical Center, the Laurel County Sheriff's Office reported.
Det. Brad Mitchell said Long died about four hours after the bite was reported. Handling reptiles as part of religious services is illegal in Kentucky. Snake handling is a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine of $50 to $100. Police said they had not received reports about snake handling at the church. Snake handling is based on a passage in the Bible, in the Gospel of Mark, that says a sign of a true believer is the power to "take up serpents" without being harmed.
Church officials could not be reached for comment.

My question is this; does anyone know if the ancient liturgical Rite of Snake Handling is in the LSB Agenda? Gosh, I hope it is! What a tremendous outreach opportunity this is for the LCMS. Can’t you just imagine the Council of Presidents demonstrating the gift of snake handling? I know I can!

If the ancient liturgical Rite of Snake Handling isn’t in the LSB Agenda, then already we need another hymnal supplement. Gosh I hope it's in the Agenda!

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  • I'm Frank Gillespie
  • From The Haut South
  • Confessional Lutheran
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