Worship is the hub of congregational life and ministries. Holy Communion is celebrated weekly. Other services are offered seasonally. Settings of the liturgy vary according to season and festival observances. Worship is enhanced by vocal and instrumental music offered by children, youth and adults. We encourage the sharing of time and abilities to enhance worship. A Bell Choir for older youth and adults and our Little Bells for younger children, as well as solo musical offerings play an important part in our worship life. Annually there is the Blessing of Animals and a Thanksgiving Service prior to the national Day of Thanksgiving.
Witness/Evangelism extends the hospitality of the Eucharist to those beyond and also strengthens relationships within the congregation. Programs like Vacation Bible School,
special concerts, and various communications, along with personal invitations to worship, are some of the ways we engage with others. Activities to foster bonds of Christian friendship include
weekly coffee hours, a Shrove Tuesday Potluck Supper, Easter Brunch, and an Egg Hunt for children. Other activities are arranged according to interest and availability, including outings to
museums, movies or shows, baseball and other sporting events, and picnics.
Learning is an ongoing component in the life of discipleship. Christian education includes Baptismal preparation, Sunday School for all ages, Bible study scheduled at times convenient for participants, First Holy Communion preparation for those age 7 or in grade 2 and above, and Confirmation instruction for those in grades 7 and 8 or above. Daily Bible reading is encouraged. Each Sunday a calendar of readings is provided for use during the week. Materials for summer vacation devotions are also available, as are materials to remember baptismal anniversaries in the home.
Service opportunities include ongoing support of FISH, our local agency for the hungry and homeless. Staple food items are gathered in our FISH Collection Box on a regular basis and taken to the FISH office for distribution. Our Sharing Table is a mini-farmers' market in summer. Members and friends bring extra produce from home. These items are available for a donation. At the end of the summer, the proceeds are passed on to FISH. In the fall there is a Holiday Food Drive for FISH prior to Thanksgiving so others might enjoy holiday meals with all the trimmings. During Advent, our Giving Tree goes up and is decorated with tags for the children who are clients of FISH. Members and friends take the tags, shop for gifts and return them with wrapping materials to the Giving Tree. The gifts and wrappings are passed along to the parents and guardians of the children, who then wrap and give the gifts.
The Prayer Shawl ministry makes many beautiful shawls and lap blankets which are given to those in need through individuals in the congregation or through agencies, like the Veterans' Administration in Lyons, NJ, and at times takes on other special hand-craft projects.
Each year the congregation chooses a special, year-long project to benefit others around the world through Lutheran World Relief. Funds for this need are gathered through the use of a dedicated large coin jug, special offerings, proceeds from the sale of hand-made greeting cards, Wednesday evening Lenten offerings, and Vacation Bible School offerings. Christian service also takes place as we care for each other in tangible ways at times of sickness, loss, or grief.
Support ministries include leadership opportunities, administrative and technology assistance, regular giving, participation in property maintenance and finance-related projects. Commitments of offerings, time and abilities are solicited annually on Commitment Sunday or as new members are received into the life of the congregation. All are invited to participate as we emphasize the sharing of abilities, time, and money as the responsibility of each member in support of our Lord's mission among and through us.
All Saints' Lutheran Church is a living organism. As we grow and change, so do the ministry opportunities by which we proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ in word and in deed and shape our life together.