The Common Service Book of the Lutheran Church was published in several editions, text only and text with music in 1917 and 1918. It is freely available through Google Books (text, text with music) and Archive.org (text, text with music). It was put together by the United Lutheran Church in America and several other American Lutheran bodies. Because of the date of publication, it is now in the public domain.
Other worship books like The Lutheran Hymnary (Norwegian Synods, 1913), Evangelical-Lutheran Hymn Book (LCMS, 1912), Book of Hymns (WELS, 1931) and The Lutheran Hymnal (LCMS-WELS-ELS Synodical Conference, 1941) drew from earlier versions of the rites when the Common Service was researched and compiled in 1888. Service Book and Hymnal (1958) built on the work of the Common Service Book and in many areas expanded the options in its services. Modern hymnals such as Lutheran Book of Worship, Lutheran Worship, Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal, Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, and Lutheran Service Book have all been greatly influenced by the rites and prayers in Common Service Book.
The services of the Common Service Book are in the tradition of the Western Rite. Roman Catholics will recognize these services as very similar to the texts of the Mass and the liturgies of the hours. Anglicans/Episcopalians will see common elements to the Book of Common Prayer.
The Common Service Book used Scripture texts from the King James Version of the Bible, used British spellings (Saviour, honour, etc.), and capitalized pronouns referring to the Deity, including Who/Whom, along with other words such as Name when referring to the name of God.
For this electronic edition, different editions were consulted, so the files below may not be exactly the same as any one print edition. These files were made by modifying and correcting the texts that were generated by the pdf files of the original books and putting them into a usable format. Headings and rubrics were put in red, even though they were printed black in the original books.
To properly display the docx files, you will need the fonts Old English Text MT and Liturgy. Updated contemporary versions also use the Liturgikon symbol font (embedded in the docx documents).
The Common Service Book of the Lutheran Church, Electronic Resources
- The Calendar [pdf] [docx]
- The Service [pdf] [docx]
- Matins [pdf] [docx]
- Vespers [pdf] [docx]
- Introits, Collects, Epistles, Graduals and Gospels [pdf] [docx]
- Updated versions of the introits, collects and graduals and lessons (ESV), prepared for the LCMS Lutheran Service Book are available at www.sanctus.org.
- Sentences for the Seasons [pdf] [docx]
- Invitatories, Antiphons and Responsories [pdf] [docx]
- Collects and Prayers [pdf] [docx]
- The Litany [pdf] [docx]
- The Suffrages [pdf] [docx]
- The Bidding Prayer [pdf] [docx]
- The General Prayers [pdf] [docx]
- The Canticles [pdf] [docx]
- Order for Public Confession (not in all editions of Common Service Book) [pdf] [docx]
- The Occasional Services [pdf] [docx]
- General Rubrics [pdf] [docx]
The hymns of the Common Service Book with Hymnal are available at Hymnary.org.
There’s more! Go to index.acollectionofprayers.com to access prayers by era, topic, liturgical use and author!
Put a link to the index on your computer or phone’s desktop for instant access to A Collection of Prayers as an online prayer book!
Lutheran Service Book, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal
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