Fundamental invitation: What in the world is God up to? Declarations:
- God acts in the world delivering blessing and extending his gifts of freedom, healing, reconciliation, justice and love to the world. (Broken and distorted as it is, the world is God’s workplace) The cross and resurrection confirm the gracious presence of God in Jesus in this world declaring both radical criticism of oppressive culture and the present promise of new life in faith.
- It is by faith this present promise is recognized and celebrated; faith is shaped and enlivened by Bible content, prayer, worship, service and community.
- In the life, death and resurrection of Jesus the full measure of God’s actions in the world are revealed to faith.
- The fullness and passion of life is celebrated by joining in on what God is doing in the world.
Reconciling in Christ Congregation
Saint Paulus Lutheran Church is “an inclusive community of God’s diverse people visible in the world”*… as such we celebrate the sexual diversity of God’s world welcoming and embracing our brothers and sisters – lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, queer – in communion in all its forms – worship, baptism, marriage, leadership. The richness of God’s creation is reflected in the life and ministry of this congregation.
“There is no longer Jews or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are on in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28) Hallelujah! Amen!
*from Saint Paulus’ Mission Statement
Saint Paulus Lutheran Church Council
The Church Council of Saint Paulus is a deliberative body of 7-9 persons chosen by a vote of the congregation gathered at an Annual Congregational Meeting generally held in January of each year. It is the responsibility of the Council to provide organizational and material support for the ministry and mission of Saint Paulus. This is accomplished by both listening to the membership of the church and by being intentionally open to the guidance of the Holy Spirit so that in deliberation with each other, the Council, individually and collectively, can partner with God in his work of freeing, reconciling, and blessing the world. Council members are elected to 2 year terms, with the option of continuing as the Congregation (Spirit) expresses its will through the election process. The deliberative group organizes itself with prescribed positions: President, Vice-president, Treasurer and Secretary. The operations of the Council are divided among five Teams: Executive, Finance, Property, Community Life, and Music. The Council meets generally on the third Wednesday of each month to consider issues, policies, and directions. Any member in good standing may be elected. The Council, the Pastor of the congregation is a member ex-officio, but has no vote, only voice. Council members for 2015 include:
- Jordan Ward, President
- Barbara Solberg, Vice President
- Stephen Camarota, Secretary
- Larry Dannenberg, Treasurer
- Doug Merritt
- Garrett Smith
- Brian Herman
Membership in Saint Paulus is a living relationship, not a statistical status. In keeping with this understanding, Saint Paulus encourages those who come into the sphere to engage in the life of the congregation, to taste its fruits, and test its self-definition, and only thereafter, consider whether or not a formal relationship is worth it for them. For some, formal membership follows quickly, for others an extended review period is taken, and for others, the association remains unofficial. During this time, all elements of Saint Paulus’ life are one for participation, except casting votes in any official meeting of the organization; worship and bible studies are encouraged; literature is made available; conversation with the pastor is welcomed. There is an unspoken invitation for those in the process of acquaintanceship to take on formal membership, and sometimes a direct invitation is offered. When a person desires to formalize a relationship with Saint Paulus as a member he/she makes the request, a conversation with the Pastor follows, and arrangements are made to receive that person into membership in a formal and public rite of membership during a Sunday morning worship service. Upon this public proclamation, that person is joined to the community of Saint Paulus as a member. The rights and privileges of membership include the ability to vote in all congregational meetings and to be able to hold an office in the church corporation. The expectation of membership include participation in worship, using the Mission Statement as the guide for congregational witness, involvement in some form in the congregational ministry, contribute as able to the financial support of the congregation, pray for each other, and be generous in love.