What We Believe
Welcome to First Lutheran, and thanks for taking the time to get to know us better. As a large downtown church, we believe God has placed us in "the Heart of the City, to be God's Heart for ALL in the City."
Centered in Christ, we are Called to a personal relationship with God in Jesus Christ, Gathered into Christ's family, Transformed into Christ-likeness, and Sent out to love serve the world in Christ's name.
Feel free to email any questions you might have at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Vision Statement
Imagine an extended family of thousands of passionate people of various ages who are fascinated with this simple fact: they are each CALLED by their loving God for a purpose. An onlooker will easily witness the vibrant rainbow of diversity here – different bodies, different ways of speaking, different ethnic heritage, different preferences for living. The community celebrates one another, aware that they are only a true community when all are radically welcomed, and guests are celebrated in whatever lot they are in. (Romans 12:3-5, 9-18)
This family knows well that all have been created in God’s holy image (Genesis 1:27) and GATHERED for God’s holy vision for the world. They are continually amazed that, in their averageness, they are called by the Holy One to participate in Christ’s healing of the world (John 3:16-17). In their broken and mistake-riddled lives, they find themselves continually forgiven and renewed (Psalm 51), strengthened and equipped, as if drinking from a never-ending well.
On any given day, they can be found in their various vocations serving the needs of the world – all manner of activities (1 Corinthians 12:4-31) – school, work, relationships, ways of being simply present. They enjoy God and each other as they each say a passionate YES to being part of God’s holy vision for the world (Matthew 6:10).
Regularly, this extended family meets at a kind of mission post which they call the church building of First Lutheran Church. Here, in the center of the city, they play, dream, worship, work, practice the vision of God for the world, and share a very common but holy meal around an enormous table. Just like their ancient ancestors in faith (Hebrews 12:1). Here they taste Christ in the bread and the fruit of the vine, in the sharing of fellowship, in witnessing the Word among them (Acts 2:42). Day after day, the people are TRANSFORMED.
The community is always pointing to the love of Christ. Rather than formulas, easy answers, and churchy slogans, the community is deeply committed to radically welcoming anyone and everyone into the journey of faith. Their numbers grow continually because of the love (Romans 13:8) that invites spectators to be included in God’s vision of hope. They are surprising folks. They are less interested in assimilating members into their own circle than in creating disciples of Christ.
From this mission post they are SENT out again to their unique and colorful callings (Ephesians 4:1-6). Every once in a while they understand the fullness of what God is calling them to: nothing less than the transformation of the world into the healing, challenging, globally-connected-in-all-time-and-space, culturally-subversive, powerful and tender, earthy and glorious presence of Christ (Ephesians 2:4-10; 1 John 1:1-10; John 3:1-17; Luke 13:18-21; Matthew 5:1-16).