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Julie Seedorf: Lutherans can be looney, too, you know

Sprinkled Notes by Julie Seedorf

 

It’s a holly jolly Christmas.

I must admit I still wasn’t feeling that old Christmas cheer yet this year. I was having a low-key joy, but music always makes me feel better and brings me out of the holiday doldrums. When the weather is cold and my fireplace is warm, all I want to do is hibernate and read a good book. The more I hibernate, the more I feel my holiday mood hibernate, too.

This past weekend the joy found me, and who would have thought the word “Lutheran” would bring me wild Christmas joy. I know, you don’t exactly think of rabble-rousing, toe-tapping, raise-your-hands-in-joy and praise and clap loudly plus dancing when you think of the Lutheran.

Admit it, the first thing that comes to mind when you ask someone to associate something with the word Lutheran is Jello. And if you don’t think of that word when you hear the word Lutheran, look it up. They are closely related.

I grew up Catholic and converted to Lutheran. Now, my dad’s roots are more toward the Evangelical and Baptist side of religion. There have been occasions where I feel something missing when I worship. I restrain myself from loud clapping, dressing wildly and raising my hands in praise at our services. No one has ever told me this isn’t allowed, but I assumed it wasn’t since no one else is praising loudly. Of course, I never realized until this weekend my soul is yearning for the churning of the clap and the dance. And who would guess I would learn it from the Lutherans.

Our first outing was to St. Olaf College in Northfield for the gospel concert put on by the student gospel choir. It was a concert/worship held in a coffee house and yes, I had coffee while attending.

Let me tell you, buying coffee was a mistake. Do you know how hard it is to clap, dance and lift your arms in praise while holding a cup of coffee? Students of all races and nationalities led us in praising the Lord. Tears streamed down a few students cheeks as they raised their voices in song. People young and old from this country and all over the world worshiped together as one. Music is a voice that unites and brings joy all year long.

On Sunday we celebrated the holiday with the Looney Lutherans at Marion Ross Performing Arts Center in Albert Lea. There wasn’t anything staid about these Looney Lutherans.

Here is what they taught me. Just because you are Lutheran doesn’t mean you can’t wear wild leggings, be jolly, shake your tush and meet your neighbor in unusual circumstances. These Looney Lutherans taught me you can learn many things about another person and their Christmas activities if you ask the right questions. I also learned you can fall out of your seat laughing and not get hurt.

Yes, my holiday spirit improved with the lively happenings we attended. My impression of Lutherans, myself included, changed. I have just been led astray because of Jello.

It’s two weeks before Christmas. I can’t wait to stay out of hibernation and experience music that heals the soul, changes our lives and our moods and teaches us not only that “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer,” but while it might be a “White Christmas” here, “Away in a Manger” “When a Child is Born” in “The Little Town of Bethlehem” we need to “Tell It on a Mountain” and shout “Hallelujah” because “This Child” has brought “Joy to the World.”

Find the music and hold it in your heart the entire season long.

Wells resident Julie Seedorf’s column appears every Thursday. Email her at hermionyvidaliabooks@gmail.com.