About Us


LynnandCharlesPhotoTogether, Dr. Charles Kniker and Dr. Lynn Zeigler have over forty years of ministries in a variety of ecumenical settings.

Charles is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ (UCC) with a specialty in Religion and Education, a long-time professor at Iowa State University, and the former President of Eden Theological Seminary.

Lynn is Professor Emeritus of Music from Iowa State University where she taught organ, harpsichord and music theory. She has been a church organist serving at the Duke University Chapel as well as UCC, Presbyterian and Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) congregations.


What specific expertise and experiences do they bring to the purpose and structure of this hymn collection?


Dr. Charles Kniker

knickerAs an ordained minister, Charles served congregations in Missouri, California, New Jersey, Iowa and Texas. While in seminary, he spent a year serving as a missionary in Honduras. While there, he felt called to an educational ministry. He holds a graduate degree from the Graduate Theological Union (primary residence at the San Francisco Theological Seminary, San Anselmo, CA) and a doctorate in religious education from Union Seminary and Teachers College, Columbia University. He served as a professor of education at Iowa State University from 1969-1993. While there, he founded the journal, Religion & Public Education (now Religion & Education). He left Iowa State to become president of Eden Theological Seminary in Webster Groves, Missouri, in 1993. In 1996, he became pastor of Faith United Church of Christ, Bryan, Texas. He has authored six books, contributed articles to edited volumes, and has published many articles on religion and education. He also holds degrees from Elmhurst College, Eden Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Humane Letters awarded by Elmhurst College. Charles is a member of the Hymn Society of the United States and Canada.

Books, Articles and Presentations by Charles:

“Shouts of Joy! A Program of New Hymns” presented with Lynn Zeigler in Ames, IA, Des Moines, IA, and Forest City, IA (2012 and 2013).

“How Can We Keep from Singing?” A PowerPoint program presented in numerous church services and adult education classes in the past several years.  (Iowa, Massachusetts, and Virginia recently)

“A Life of Faith: The Basics.” Currently developing a new curriculum on personalities of the Hebrew Scriptures.  Entitled “Heroes, Heroines, Heavies and Helpers,” it describes how eight individuals were God’s truth-tellers.  The curriculum would be appropriate for Vacation Bible School or Church School classes; a song about each main character is included.  Joint author of a curriculum for adult education classes in a local church.   Prepared originally for a Fall 2012 class for the Ames United Church of Christ with Rev.   Jonathan Page, the course surveys traditional and contemporary questions about God, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, Bible, salvation/humanity, ecclesiology, ethics, other faiths, and ethics for  daily living.  A key component of each “answer” is references to classic and current hymns that also attempt to answer these questions. Hymns from the collection, Songs for Disciples, are also included.

“Teaching about Religion in Public Schools,” in James Carper and Thomas Hunt, eds. The Praeger Handbook of Religion and Education in the United States, Vol. II  (Westport, CT:  Praeger Publishing, 2009), pp. 368-370.

“Civil Religion,” in James Carper and Thomas Hunt, eds., The Praeger Handbook of Religion and   Education in the United States, Vol. 1 (Westport, CT:  Praeger Publishing, 2009), pp. 144-149.

“Spirituality,” in James Carper and Thomas Hunt, Religion and Education in the United States, Vol. II  (Praeger, 2009), pp. 431-432.

Myth and Reality: A Reader for Educational Foundations with L. Glenn Smith (Boston: Allyn and        Bacon, two editions: 1972 and 1975).

You and Values Education (Columbus, OH: Charles E. Merrill,1977).

Teaching Today and Tomorrow with Natalie A. Naylor (Columbus, OH: Charles E Merrill, 1981).

Workshops by Charles

  • Learning and teaching values
  • So What?  The Legacy of the Church for Today
  • How Can We Keep from Singing?  [The Reasons Behind the Writing of Congregational Hymns]
  • Designing Worship Services and Writing Congregational Songs


Dr. Lynn Zeigler

Lynn holds an organ performance degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music where she was a student of David Boe and Fenner Douglass. Ms. Zeigler holds the Master of Music degree from Northwestern University where she studied with Grigg Fountain. After two years of study with Lionel Rogg at the Conservatory of Music in Geneva, Switzerland, Ms. Zeigler was awarded the Premier Prix de Virtuosité, the highest performance degree given in Europe. Lynn


Zeigler has attended master classes with several noted organists: among them, Werner Jacob, Luigi Tagliavini, Flor Peeters and Harold Vogel. Lynn Zeigler has won several first prizes in European organ competitions.

As a professional organist, Lynn Zeigler has made concert tours throughout Europe, including The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France and Switzerland. In Scandinavia: Denmark, Norway and Finland. Ms Zeigler has appeared on Eurovision (European television) and has made numerous recordings for Dutch, Swiss, Danish and Norwegian radios. Lynn Zeigler has recorded eleven organ and harpsichord pieces for the music history textbook, The Development of Western Music, A History by K Marie Stolba.

Lynn Zeigler has performed on three separate occasions in Honolulu and Maui, Hawaii. She has given concerts, workshops and master classes throughout the continental United States and has served as an adjudicator for organ competitions. Lynn Zeigler is heard on American radio and on Minnesota Public Radio’s well-known “Pipedreams.”

Lynn Zeigler has recorded for Raven Records of the Organ Historical Society, organ music of various periods and styles on the Dobson organ at Saint Michael’s Roman Catholic Church in Stillwater, Minnesota. Ms. Zeigler has also recorded a compact disc of organ music of various style periods, An Organ Performance, on the 1987 organ of John Brombaugh at Iowa State University.

She has recorded for Calcante Recordings, Ltd. of Ithaca, New York, the complete organ version of J.S. Bach’s Art of Fugue, a double compact disc, and a compact disc of organ pieces from twentieth century American composers, Notes from Iowa. Ms. Zeigler played continuo in The Lyremar Trio and recorded a compact disc of sonatas of Marcello, Flute Sonatas, Opus 2. All of the aforementioned recordings may be purchased by contacting Lynn Zeigler. Lynn continues to play organ and harpsichord in the duo, Basically Baroque, with Kevin Schilling, oboe.

As Professor of Music at Iowa State University, Lynn Zeigler taught organ, harpsichord and music theory. She founded and organized “Organists of Iowa,” an organ recital which showcased one organist living in Iowa each year. Ms. Zeigler also organized a weekly organ recital series held while the university was in session. Lynn Zeigler received the Liberal Arts and Sciences Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Activity from Iowa State University. She retired from Iowa State University in 2011. Lynn Zeigler is a long-time member of the American Guild of Organists and also a member of The Hymn Society of the United States and Canada.

As Professor Emeritus, Lynn Zeigler writes hymns in partnership with the Rev. Dr. Charles R. Kniker. She also devotes much of her research to writing a book on the organ and musicianship geared to informing the non-trained church organist.

(Lynn is pictured with two of her organ students at Iowa State.)


A Partial List of Presented Solo Organ Recitals by Lynn

United States – Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Denver, Duke University, Honolulu, Tucson, Washington, DC, University of Notre Dame


Denmark: Roskilde Cathedral; Copenhagen; Aarhus

Norway: Nidarosdomen, Trondheim; Bergen

Finland: Helsinki; Porvoo; Kuopio; Kuovula

Western Europe –

The Netherlands: Old Bavo, Haarlem; Heeswijk, Utrecht; Groningen; Rotterdam

Germany: Hamburg; Roggenburg; Konstanz

France: Chartres Cathedral

Belgium: Ghent, de Panne; Mol

Switzerland: St. Pierre Cathedral, Geneva; Grössmünster, Zurich; Magadino; Berne; Sion; Lausanne


Workshops Offerings by Lynn

  • The Pianist’s Approach to the Organ
  • Secrets to Successful Organ Playing: “Tricks of the Trade”
  • Stops, Registration, Technique and Hymn Playing
  • Music Theory as it relates to Music: Musicianship and Performance
  • Organ Styles and Interpretation: What’s the Difference?
  • The True Art of Organ Registration
  • Messa di Voce: Subtle Dynamics through Rhythm

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