|Veröffentlicht am Mo., 22. Apr. 2019 00:00 Uhr|
Please look here for more information in English.
Let’s Sing a Song
When I first arrived in Berlin five years ago to start an internship with this congregation, my German skills were atrophied and needed to strengthen and build up: first to the level I had years ago as a college student and then to continue improving far beyond that. I freely admit that in the beginning, I felt somewhat lost in Berlin. Fortunately, one area where I felt a familiar connection was with the music of the church.
The Lutheran Church denominations in the US are naturally related to the Evangelische Kirche Deutschland (EKD). However, they live in separate countries that use different languages. While studying for seminary classes with my American congregation, I was immersed in all aspects of our church, which included the choir. I enjoy singing and have periodically performed with a variety of church and private ensembles. As I learned more American Lutheran hymns throughout the year, the words and melodies became planted in my brain. And when I started attending Sunday worship services in Berlin, it was the melodies that I recognized. As we worked our way through the seasons in the Evangelisches Gesangbuch (EG), I discovered I already knew several of the melodies. At Christmas, “Tochter Zion” and “Stille Nacht” had the same musical notes and general, recognizable meanings as their English counterparts. Another hymn, “Lobe den Herrn, meine Seele” had the same melody, but slightly different wordings than the “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty” that I knew. And going back to the Reformer himself, Martin Luther, his “Ein Feste Burg ist unser Gott” was the source of the ever-popular “A Mighty Fortress is our God.” If I did not have those familiar church hymns, I might have lost all hope for improving my German skills!
For the dates, times and locations of our weekly worship services and events during the month of May, please check the center section of this Bote newsletter. Later in the month, Thursday, May 30th, is Christi Himmelfahrt (Feast of the Ascension). I suggest looking in the newsletter to see what special service will be take place to celebrate this holiday. If you have any church or travel-related questions as a visitor, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.