First and foremost, we are
Gathered to Worship. We donít gather ourselves, but we are gathered by
the Holy Spirit. Through the means of graceóthe Word and Holy SacramentsóGod has
called us out and gathered us as his people. So the Church is not like the
Rotary, the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, or any other voluntary organization. We
donít join of our own gumption or initiative. Rather, ďthe Holy Spirit has
called [us] through the Gospel, enlightened us with his gifts and sanctified and
kept [us] in the true faith...Ē (The Small Catechism, The
Apostlesí Creed, Third Article).
And our highest calling as those gathered by the Holy Spirit, is to worship our
Triune God. We are baptized in the name of the Father, and of + Son, and of the
Holy Spirit. And it is in that same name that we are gathered every Lordís
Dayógathered to offer our praise and thanks to God, to proclaim and hear the
Word proclaimed in scripture, liturgy, hymn and homily, and to joyously
celebrate the Holy Eucharist. Worship of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is what
the angels and Church Triumphant ceaselessly do in heaven. In our Sunday
gathering, we experience a foretaste of that heavenly praise. It is the source
and summit of our lives as Christians.
Secondly, we are Sent to Serve. Of course we serve God in worship,
but we continue to serve him by serving our neighbor, after we leave worship.
That service takes place as individual Christians in our various vocations, and
also corporately as members of the Body of Christ. So we serve in our families
by caring for those entrusted to us, and we serve in our homes and places of
employment by diligently assuming the tasks set before us. And we serve more
specifically as the Church by teaching, by serving on committees and boards, by
singing or playing music, by helping with any number of social ministry
ventures, and on and on. Rightly understood, our whole life is one of
serviceóservice to God and service to the neighbor.
Welcome to our website. We hope you will find it to be an aid and inspiration as
Gathered to Worship
Sent to Serve.
In Christís Service,
The Rev. Peter C. Jacobson+, sts