As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. (Ephesians 4:1-6)
[Jesus said,] I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power ofyour name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. (John 17:11)
Dear members and friends of Messiah Lutheran:
As announced in our newsletter and at worship, we have the great opportunity to concretely live out Paul’s hope for unity among believers and Christ’s prayer that we live as one. Our brothers and sisters of All Souls Episcopal (a mission congregation) will begin worshiping at 9:30 AM on most Sundays as our regular guest while they work toward establishing their own facility. This required we set new worship times of 8:00 AM and 11:00 AM starting this Sunday, August 12th.
Please join me in welcoming them, as I am confident they will welcome you, as one family in Christ. Along with our worship space, we will be sharing in some ministries to build up the body of Christ and share Christ’s love within our community. We hope this sets a firm foundation for when they have their own building; that this cooperative relationship continues to the glory of God.
The early Lutheran Reformers did not see themselves as fracturing the church, but rather hoped to repair divisions while living consistent with their individual understandings of scripture. Thus, the vast majority of Lutheran bodies throughout the world have been open to ecumenical efforts from the beginning. To learn more about the special cooperative relationship of the ELCA and Episcopal Church as well as with five other denominations in the United States, follow this link:
A “full communion” relationship does not indicate a merging of these denominations with the ELCA, but it instead declares our intention to live as one as much as possible (repairing historic wounds while helping one another through the sharing of pastors, ministries and assets whenever deemed appropriate).
Thank you for your willingness to try to live out this unity in Christ. If you note any problems or concerns, or you have ideas of how to do something better while the All Souls community remains our guest, please be sure to speak with me or a council representative. See you Sunday!