Sunday, October 01, 2006

Church #20: Lutheran Church of the Resurrection

1. Who attended? Bradley & Erica.

How was the experience?
1: I was so uncomfortable and/or offended that I did not stay to the end of services.
10: This church was welcoming and thought-provoking. I would recommend that others experience this church.

Bradley: 6, there was a lot to take in.

3. Picture(s) of the church

4. Name/location of the church:
Lutheran Church of the Resurrection
1950 Nagel Road
Cincinnati, OH 45255

5. Was it recommended to Church Hop?
Nope-- Bradley found this church in passing.

6. Time/duration of services:

7. What type of religion did the church cater to?

8. Who did you meet?
Many people, especially Kris and Lisa, made us feel welcome. We were also able to meet Pastor Zorn after service.

9. If applicable, scans of handouts, tracts, etc

10. Church Hopper’s personal experience with the church, additional details:

ERICA: I was mostly comfortable here-- we were welcomed right away, shown to the colorful and brightly-lit auditorium, etc. The room was even brighter than usual, as their quilting club had put together quilts for Lutheran World Relief, and they were all over the seats, waiting to be dedicated by the congregation. The room was really beautiful and comfortable.

As with the other Lutheran church we've visited (not last week, as Bradley misspoke, but back in May), the service is too strict for my taste. Granted, the congregation did not seem to be phoning it in at all-- they seemed truly engaged. Still, the "sit now, stand now" approach just doesn't fit with me. I feel too confined; there was very little opportunity for personal reflection and expression.

One thing that was different about Lutheran C of the R-- not only from Prince of Peace but really from all churches we've been to-- is child involvement. When the prelude was being played I winced as a few notes were missed, until I realized that it was a very young girl playing the piano. Kids helped usher, lit the candles, and even read the lessons. They seemed to take it very seriously and did an amazing job with their responsibilities. This really impressed me.

I really liked the pastor-- I thought he was animated and articulate. The service was waaaaay too long for my taste, but what can ya do. This isn't my religion to mess with.

Here's a question I put to anyone who's reading this: I don't take communion, as I feel it's wrong when I don't really believe in what it symolizes, and I feel it would insult the people who do. However, in places like LCR, I felt really embarrassed to be the only one sitting (well, with Bradley) while the rest of the congregation was in a circle in the front. What is the best way to deal with this? This is not the first time that I've felt this way-- some churches pass around the Eucharist and etc, and that makes it a little easier to pass on. But when it's a big event like this... is there a more discreet way to pass on communion? Just a talking point; any feedback is welcome.

Bradley: I'll tell 'ya, this church was beautiful. The looks of this church were what attracted me to go there in the first place. It looked like a giant glass egg, just sitting on a hill. I was very curious upon entry to find out what buildling would look like, and I was very pleased.

We signed in, in the guestbook (for some odd reason, that's only the second guest thing we signed, that wasn't a card, but rather a book), and talked a little with some people from the lobby, who were telling us about the church. They covered some of the things they do, and led us into a brief hallway, full of hand-made quilts. They were all very, very well made. I was taken back by the thought of how much time had to have gone into those. Very impressive.

We walked in, and took our seats, past the small pool of running water. I only say that, because of the destinct sound it made when the room was quiet. We sat down, and got situated, and started to skim our hand-outs, when the morning service started. It was a new thing for me to see teens and kids taking part in the morning service, (lighting candles and such) and it made me think, what is required to do something like that? Hm.

Anyway, they played a few songs, and gave some morning announcements about what's going on. To be honest, I wasn't really listening, because I was still gazing around the large glass windows. It wasn't too long before the sermon started. At first, I really had a hard time getting in the pastors grove, but I guess in retrospect, I really liked the sermon he gave. He pulled in a few messages with references to himself (something I always like), and a strong connection to the church members. The most odd part, was of course, communion. Sitting there, and being the only ones not observing the tradition is a little strange, and makes you feel like an outcast. Erica brought up a very good point in her post, because I sometimes don't belive in some of the traditions, but I don't want to be doing them just to do them, that's wrong for the people that DO belive in it. It's very odd, and this church really made me think about it too.

Also! This week Bradley and I received this thank you letter from Anderson Hills Christian Church, which we attended last week. It reads:

Dear Bradley and Erica:

We were very happy to have you worship with us this past Sunday and I was glad to have the chance to meet you. I do hope that you were blessed by your time with us.

I invite you to join us again for worship and to have the chance to get to know you better. We do have an active youth fellowship that meets twice a month and sometimes includes some students from the Glen Este campus. Out next meeting is on Sunday, October 8th at 5:00 p.m. and we invite you to join us.

In His Love,
Nik Donges