What can I expect?
Come as you are! We celebrate that you have been made in God’s image and welcome you just as you are.
We are a diverse gathering of people from many parts of the metro area and country (winter visitors). Our goal is always the same: to worship, celebrate God’s love, and to be spiritually fed by God’s word.
Visitor parking is well marked near the front of the building. Once inside, you will be greeted with a smile at our “Welcome” table. We love to give away banana bread, a small devotional, information about SOJ and help you get “oriented” to our building and introduce you to a few new friends so that you feel comfortable.
How do we Worship?
Our worship and teaching is biblical and we are a liturgical church with a modern flair. Each week is a little bit different, but generally you can expect readings from both the Old and New Testaments. Scripture grounds us in the patterns and actions of our worship as we participate in congregation wide confession and then hear the promise of God’s forgiveness in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
We sing hymns of praise led by our choir and praise band, pray the “Lords Prayer”, and share in Holy Communion together.
Pastor’s sermon (message) is given based on the scripture reading and challenges listeners to contemplate life and sin while proclaiming clearly the “Good News” of God’s forgiveness, grace, life, and love.
Come and be Fed by God’s word through our worship and prayer!
What We Believe
The ECLA confesses the Triune God — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. In our preaching and teaching the ELCA trusts the Gospel as the power of God for the salvation of all who believe.
ELCA teaching or theology serves the proclamation and ministry of this faith. It does not have an answer for all questions, not even all religious questions. Teaching or theology prepares members to be witnesses in speech and in action of God’s rich mercy in Jesus Christ.
Click the link below to learn more.
Scriptures, Creeds and Confessions
The ELCA’s official Confession of Faith identifies the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments (commonly called the Bible); the Apostles’, Nicene and Athanasian Creeds; and the Lutheran confessional writings in the Book of Concord as the basis for our teaching. ELCA congregations make the same affirmation in their governing documents, and ELCA pastors and deacons promise to carry out their ministry in accordance with these teaching sources. This Confession of Faith is more than just words in an official document. Every Sunday in worship, ELCA congregations hear God’s word from the Scriptures, pray as Jesus taught and come to the Lord’s Table expecting to receive the mercies that the Triune God promises. Throughout the week ELCA members continue to live by faith, serving others freely and generously in all that they do because they trust God’s promise in the Gospel. In small groups and at sick beds, in private devotions and in daily work, this faith saturates all of life.
Teaching for a life of faith
This connection to all of life is the clearest demonstration of the authority that the canonical Scriptures, the ecumenical Creeds and the Lutheran Confessions have in the ELCA. The Holy Spirit uses these witnesses to create, strengthen and sustain faith in Jesus Christ and the life we have in him. That life-giving work continues every day, as Martin Luther explained in the Small Catechism: the Holy Spirit “calls, gathers, enlightens and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth and preserves it in union with Jesus Christ in the one true faith.”
Communion: Who may participate?
We practice open communion at Spirit of Joy. We believe that it is the Lord’s table and that Jesus invites all people to partake.
Children – Children’s Church
We love children and encourage families to worship together. That is why we have dedicated tables with little chairs to accommodate little people with activities. You will also find activity bags at the back of the worship center with books and crayons. There will be a children's message each Sunday followed by an optional children's church so parents have the opportunity to focus on the message.
Private Nursing Room
Located off the worship space for parents’ convenience.