Germany: Podcast “With Body and Soul” launched

German Youth Committee working on the podcast “With Body and Soul”. Photo: GNC/LWF
German Youth Committee working on the podcast “With Body and Soul”. Photo: GNC/LWF 

Young people in conversation with guests from the Lutheran communion 

(LWI) – “With Body and Soul” (Mit Leib und Seele) is the name of the new podcast produced by the Youth Committee of the German National Committee of the Lutheran World Federation (GNC/LWF).

In the podcast, members of the Youth Committee talk with persons from the Lutheran communion about their church involvement and personal beliefs. 

The first episode, “A Selfie with the Pope – Talking to Julia Braband,” was launched on 26 September. A new episode will be released at the end of each month. 

In this first episode, Tim Götz, a member of the GNC/LWF Youth Committee, talks with Braband, who has been a member of the LWF Council as a youth delegate since 2017. She attended the 2018 General Assembly of the Synod of Catholic Bishops at the Vatican in that capacity. https://www.lutheranworld.org/news/meeting-eye-level-church-all-generations  Here, she took the selfie with Pope Francis, which is addressed in the roughly ten-minute episode.  

After long planning and much preliminary deliberation, this first recording was a “personal highlight” for him, Götz said. “It is exciting and a joy to listen and talk to people about things they are passionate about.” 

People and topics 

Topics include “Why are you committed to the church with heart and soul?” or “What does it mean to you to be Lutheran?” Depending on the interviewee, a conversation might touch on women’s ordination, migration and refugees, ecumenical relations, and understanding justice. 

Above all, it is the interviewees themselves who spark interest. For example, an episode with outgoing LWF general secretary Martin Junge is already in the making. “We also plan to talk with Karla Steilmann about the Lutheran church in her home country; she is a young member of the LWF Council who comes from Latin America,” says Christina Kwade, who is also on the podcast team. “And it would be great if we could talk to people like Anna-Nicole Heinrich, the 25-year-old new president of the Evangelical Church in Germany.”

Planning and preparation

The preparation for an episode starts with a meeting of our podcast team, where we compile relevant questions and topics, says Goetz. “Then we meet with the person to be interviewed and go over the potential questions, add some more or sort some out. Once that is done, we meet for the actual recording.” 

Kwade contributes to the success of the podcast project with her technical expertise: “After the interview, the audio must be edited and cut; that takes some time.” The podcast group had also created an intro and outro themselves. “Publishing the podcast is the final step,” Kwade said. “I don’t think the next episodes will take quite as much time because we will have more practice by then. Nevertheless, one should not underestimate the work required.” 

With the podcast, all participants trod new ground and have already acquired a lot of knowledge in the course of the project – regarding moderation, music, editing. However, a recording studio of their own is not necessary for the project. Instead, a quiet place and a mobile phone with the appropriate app make for sound recordings. Also, editing and background music are possible with free software. “Above all else, you need the desire to engage with the other person and ask interested questions,” says Kwade, summarizing the requirements for a successful podcast. 

A new episode of the podcast is released monthly on the last day of the month. It is available on the GNC/LWF website and Anchor, Spotify, and other platforms. 

By LWF/A. Weyermüller 

Young people from the eleven LWF member churches in Germany participate in the GNC/LWF Youth Committee. The podcast “With Body and Soul” contributes to the study process “Lutheran Identities”, which the LWF has been conducting since 2019. The podcast also provides insights into the LWF’s work areas in the run-up to the Thirteenth Assembly in Krakow, Poland, in 2023.