Doctrine & Practice
Baptized into the Family of God
Through Adam and Eve the entire world plunged into sin only to be rescued by the promise of God fulfilled in the Incarnation (the “enfleshment”) of God's Son, whose birth, holy life, innocent suffering and death, resurrection, and ascension have won for all mankind a place in heaven. Man's rescue takes place when he is baptized into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Therein his sins are forgiven and he receives adoption and the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise and gift is for adults and children alike as Jesus says, “Make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19-20) and the Apostle Peter states, "This promise is to you and to your children" (Acts 2:38-39).
Times of Refreshment
The Lord's Supper is provided regularly for the people of God as well as on festival days. Through participation in this holy meal, the children of God are sustained on their earthly pilgrimage by the very Body and true Blood of our Savior Jesus Christ until they reach the promised land of heaven. As a confessional church, we Lutherans take seriously the confession of the lips and therefore practice Close Communion (only those who share our confession of faith, that is, who say the same thing about God and His saving work in Jesus Christ, are eligible to commune). What is believed, not believing, determines unity.
Walking in One’s Baptism: A Clear Conscience for All
Holy Absolution is the individual reception of the remission of sins through the laying on of hands. We believe and teach that it, too, is a work of the Spirit and a gift of Christ to His Church, for Jesus says, "whosoever sins you remit, they are remitted unto them" John 20:23. Thus we read in The Apology of the Augsburg Confession * "Therefore Baptism, the Lord's Supper, and Absolution, which is the Sacrament of Repentance, are truly Sacraments. For these rites have God's command and the promise of grace, which is the heart of the New Testament." As practiced among us, Absolution is a cure without equal for troubled consciences.
We believe that Christ has established His Church on earth as the dispenser of His forgiveness. To this end He has given to the Church these means of grace which, with preaching and teaching, deliver poor sinners from sin, death and the devil and give eternal life to all who believe.