The first visit to any new community means encountering the new, the different or the unexpected. Whether you’re a lifelong Lutheran or have never set foot in a Lutheran church before, we want you to be comfortable, so we offer these few notes.
Lutherans are a “liturgical” bunch. That means our worship has the same general outline used by Christians since the earliest days of the Church. While there are variations each week, the general order is the same: we Gather (sing and pray together), hear the Word (Scripture readings and sermon), come to the Table (to receive Holy Communion), and are Sent (blessed to go into the world as disciples). “Liturgy” means “the work of the people.” There are no spectators in worship – all are participants.
Music is essential to worship (hymns, parts of the liturgy, special music sung or played by individuals/groups), but you don’t have to be a musician to join in. Our postures – standing, sitting, kneeling, turning, walking – reflect the action going on in worship at the moment. Our worship space is filled with visual symbols of the faith – banners, robes, candles, crosses.
The entire order of worship is laid out in the worship bulletin and is easy to follow. Expect to be greeted during the “passing of the peace” in the middle of the service, and don’t be afraid to ask the ushers (or anyone else) for information or assistance.
Before & After Worship
Some have joked that coffee is a sacrament in the Lutheran church. In truth, we’re less interested in the coffee – or tea, lemonade, etc. – than in the conversation that develops when people share refreshments. Stop in the Narthex outside the worship space or the Community Hall to grab a beverage and a snack and strike up a conversation. And check out the Welcome Center, located outside the Community Hall, to see what information might be of interest to you.
Hope Lutheran is a place where all are welcome and grace is the guiding principle. We are drawn by Christ’s love and strive to share it with others. We invite and encourage you to be our guest. We look forward to meeting you.