The presiding minister may conduct the Confession and Absolution from outside the chancel.
All of our Divine Services contain this as the first rubric of the service. What does it mean? It means that the Confession and Absolution are not actually part of the Divine Service itself, but are preparatory to it. The Divine Service proper starts during the Introit/Psalm/Entrance Hymn when:
The presiding minister and his assistants may enter the chancel.
In the overwhelming majority of the old Lutheran liturgies, THIS is when the Divine Service begins: the Introit! This movement confesses that NOW we have entered the most holy place through the blood of our Lord (which has secured our absolution). At St. Paul's the confession and absolution take place outside the great arch. The move toward the altar itself and the confession that we have no entered into the holy of holies before God, takes place during the Introit. Traditionally in the old Mass this is also when the altar is venerated and censed.