Worship at Joy

Worship is a time for the Joy family to gather to hear and experience the love of God through Jesus Christ. We pray that your time with us is a blessing to you and to those who may be with you.

We invite you to take a moment to read about some of the things that make Joy a unique place of worship.

Lutheran Worship Is…

Liturgical
“Liturgical” means two things. First, it’s an orderly pattern of worship based on traditions that go back centuries – some to the earliest Christian communities. Second, it’s “the work of and for the people.” Liturgical worship is communal ministry, where worshippers participate in the actions of our worship, through readings, prayers, and singing.

Evangelical
Evangelical means gospel centered. The good news of Jesus’ Unconditional Love is the central message of our worship time. Through readings from the Bible, through prayers and hymns, and especially through the proclamation of God’s Word to us through the message or sermon, we believe that God speaks to us with a message of love and forgiveness.

Sacramental
Lutherans believe that Jesus comes to humans in two special ways: Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. In these sacraments, Jesus is present in the midst of the basic elements of water, bread, and wine and we receive the promise of grace. We celebrate the Lord’s Supper every Sunday – and all are always welcome at the Table. Young people who wish to receive communion hold out their hands as the pastor comes by with the bread.  If you have questions, please talk with the pastor.

We Love Kids!

Children are valued members of Joy

We are used to the joyful sounds of our youngest sisters and brothers.

  • To keep restless hands busy, you may want to use an activity bag, located near the main entrance to the sanctuary.
  • A Family Room is located just outside the sanctuary. It has a large window and a sound system so you can still follow the worship if you so choose.
  • Children’s Chapel is offered frequently during the sermon time.  An age-appropriate message and activities are offered for our younger sisters and brothers.

Music at Joy

Joy has been blessed with a strong tradition of music. We enjoying singing, and you’ll notice we have plenty of hymns as well as a musical setting for the words of the liturgy. The style of our music is what some call “convergent” – a mixture of old and new traditions.

Joy is somewhat unique in that we change our worship formats weekly. While each follow the same basic order of service, they offer a variety of unique musical styles. If you feel a little lost, don’t worry! It takes a little time to get to know them, but we hope you enjoy the worship experience that they provide during our fellowship. Currently, we use three different services:

  • Now the Feast and Celebration by Marty Haugen
  • Holy Communion by Bonnie Drewes. We call it simply, “Drewes.”
  • Spirit Song by Pastor Martin Eldred

You Are Welcome Here!

We extend a special welcome to those who are single, divorced, married, widowed, or if your relationship status is “complicated.”  We especially love wailing babies, excited toddlers, and grey-haired elders.  We love families, no matter how you define them.

We are glad you are here if you come every Sunday or if this is your first time at our church or any church at all.  You’re welcome if you know the Bible backwards and forwards, or have never really read it, if you know Jesus or are just curious to hear what he is all about.

We welcome you if you can sing like Pavarotti or specialize in “making a joyful noise.”  We welcome you if you have doubts about “organized religion” or are a “cradle Christian.”  We welcome liberals, conservatives, moderates, and undecided.  If you cheer for the right team, or don’t like sports, you are welcome here.

We especially welcome those who could use a prayer right now, or an assurance that God loves them, those who are struggling, and those who are doing okay.

Whoever you are, whatever your past or present – God welcomes you and so do we!

Joyous Offerings

As you look around the sanctuary, you may notice some of the ways that the people of Joy respond to needs in the world and at home.

Prayer Candles
In response to September 11, 2001, a prayer station with candles was created as a way to express our concerns and hopes for healing to God.

The prayers candles have become an integral part of our worship tradition. Everyone is welcome to light a candle and offer a prayer of hope, thanksgiving or joy.

Children’s Offering
Near the Baptism Font, you may notice a special offering container. The children of Joy contribute their coins and dollars to benefit the lives of children throughout the world and our community. Past projects have included…

“First Fruits” Red Wagon
If you attend Joy on the first Sunday of the month you will notice our young people pulling a red wagon to the front of the sanctuary. This offering of food and other staples is collected for the Chugiak Eagle River Food Pantry. Frequently, plastic tubs are also needed to hold the bounty. The 2017 offerings totaled more than one ton of food and other products!

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