I'm so glad that you're here. It has been my great honor to be the Transitional Pastor at Emmanuel since July of 2018. I was welcomed into this community with warmth and sincerity, and I have experienced the people of this congregation offering the same to everyone who has walked through our doors since that time.
This congregation is special in a lot of ways. One of the greatest strengths of Emmanuel is its genuine diversity of people. You will find people of various ages, beliefs, traditions, cultures, skin colors, gender identities, languages, socioeconomic status, education levels, abilities, and passions. It is a colorful experience to worship with us, singing praise music at one point in the service, a traditional Northern European hymn 500+ years old later, and maybe ending with a rhythmic gospel piece. Music is one of the things we do best. When we share the peace, it gets loud and bubbly, as people really move around to greet each other and check in. We gather around the communion table each week, and we expressly state that it is God's table, not our table, and we believe that EVERYONE is welcome at this celebratory meal.
Emmanuel is in the midst of a discovery process called LEAD (Living Every Day as Disciples) which is designed to help us grow our skills in listening to one another and to the context/local community in which we are doing ministry. The process is challenging us to become better leaders and community members, better listeners and observers, and to really dig into what direction God may be leading us. It is a new way of thinking, in that the result really is the process, without a specified end goal. What we trust is that as we engage faithfully in this work, we will hear where the greatest needs lie in our community and work to figure out how we, as people of faith, might address those needs meaningfully. We trust that God is guiding this process. "Vocation is the place where our deep gladness meets the world's deep need." -- Frederick Buechner
This is a warm and friendly congregation. Worship is relaxed and joy-filled. We enjoy gathering after worship to share some food and drink and conversation, checking in with one another in this congregation which is small enough to really know one another and feel like a large, boisterous family.
I hope that you will feel welcome to come and be among us, wherever you are on your journey.
Pastor Jill Heather