For Visitors

What is a Lutheran?

o While our name is based off of our founder Martain Luther, we do not in any way consider him or his writings as superior or even equivalent to Scripture. The name Lutheran was itself given to the first Lutherans as a negative label. In those times, if the Roman Catholic Church believed someone to be a heretic they named the movement the person started after them in order to discredit it. Lutherans at the time actually preferred to be called Evangelicals.

o Instead, we are Christians who confess that we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, as revealed in Scripture alone. In Latin this is written Sola Gratia, Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura, Solus Christus. Collectively they are called the Solas.

o Additionally, Lutherans subscribe to the doctrine as presented in the Book of Concord as an accurate and exposition of Scripture. As such, even though the Book of Concord is certainly not inerrant or directly inspired, it is still a faithful representation of the truth as revealed in Scripture.

When are services?

o The Divine Service is celebrated every week at 10:30am.

o The Lord’s Supper is offered every other week, excluding 5 th Sundays. It is also offered on Holy days as well.

o Bible study is at 9:15am and everyone is encouraged to attend, members and visitors alike. Fear not, we have coffee.

Where should I park?

o All visitors are welcome to park wherever they would like. However, there are designated spots for visitor in the S. 7 th parking lot.

What is worship like?

o Our worship is liturgical. This means it uses a pattern of worship that has remained relatively unchanged over the millennia since the days of the early church. While some things have indeed been added, most retains a similar structure and purpose to that used by Christians of the first and second centuries.

o There is a great deal of Scripture read, recited as a congregation, or spoken responsively with the pastor. From the Old Testament and Psalms to the Gospels and writings of the Apostles a diverse body of Scripture is read in every service. Some parts will change each week and other parts will change with the season of the Church Year.

o Several hymns are sung, a sermon is given based on Law and Gospel, Holy Communion is given to the members of the congregation, and on occasion Baptisms are performed. It can be a very different experience if you are visiting from most other Protestant denominations, yet despite many outward appearances, we are not Roman Catholic. Afterall, we are the ones that started the Reformation in 1517.

o We encourage you to keep your mind open and let the Word of God wash over you during your visit for the liturgical service is saturated with it.

Do you have a contemporary service?

o No, we do not. While there is nothing inherently wrong with using a different and more “modern” form of music, much of contermporary worship music is sorely lacking in solid theological meaning and instead relies primarily on evoking emotions in the listener. The liturgy by contrast both speaks and sings the truth of God’s Word in meaty chunks for the purpose of edification. In short, we feel that if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

Is child care available?

o We strongly encourage you to keep your children with you in the pews during the service. We believe as Scripture states that where God’s Word is present change, growth, and learning happen. Even among the youngest of us God’s Word is powerful to do such things.

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my  word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

(Isaiah 55:10-11)

o In contrast, we encourage families with younger children to sit up front where their children can see the more fascinating parts of the service. If they do become loud or disruptive you may walk them to one of the doors to the sanctuary so that you both may continue to participate, even passively. Alternatively you can take them into our nursery with no fear of judgment. Know that we want both you and your children to be welcome among us in the house of God. Children are a gift from the Lord (Psalm 17:14) and we do not wish to hinder them from coming to our Lord. (Matthew 19:14)

Is it true I can’t come as I am and take communion with you?

o This is not a completely accurate assumption. A question like this requires a nuanced answer because Communion is a vital part of being a Christian.

o First, we believe that Holy Communion is actually the body and blood of our risen Lord, Jesus Christ and it is eaten and drink for the forgiveness of our sins. This is a weighty thing and should not be treated flippantly or with any disregard. Doing so is perilous. (1 Corinthians 11:27-30)

o Additionally, we believe as Scripture teaches that to participate in Communion with one another is to testify to your unity with each other. Also, we are commanded not to share it with those who do not believe as we. (1  Corinthians 10:16-22)

o Because of this reality we believe it is important for our pastor to speak with anyone not a member of our church prior to them participating in Communion so that we may teach what we believe.