What is a Lutheran?
Lutherans place their hope in the justifying grace of God through Jesus Christ. That is, we are “justified” or “put in right relationship with God” purely as a free gift from God. There is nothing we can do to earn God’s love. Instead, because God loves us and has saved us from sin and death we are therefore moved to share that love with all people.
Lutherans place special importance on Holy Baptism and Holy Communion as particular moments in which God’s grace comes to us in the fullest way. Lutherans also cherish the belief that all people have a vocation—a calling from God through which they serve God, God’s people and God’s world.
Christ the King is a congregation of the New England Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The ELCA is compromised of some 10,000 congregations and nearly 4 million members throughout the United States. Christ the King is blessed to be a part of this Church which works to care for the poor and hungry in this country and around the world. The ELCA operates 26 colleges and universities, 8 seminaries, 145 camp and retreat centers and has over 240 missionaries serving in 40 countries around the world.
What is an Episcopalian?
Episcopalians see themselves as a via media, or “middle way” between the Catholic and Protestant Christian traditions. Worship is paramount for Episcopalians. In fact, the Anglican/Episcopal tradition does not have the huge number of binding doctrine common among some churches. Instead, Episcopalians believe that it is in our worship that our belief is expressed. The theological and intellectual space allowed by such an understanding has led some to remark that the Episcopal Church is one where “you don’t have to check your brain at the door.”
The Episcopal Church is a public church. Episcopalians are committed to respecting the dignity of every person, and make that known. You will often hear our Bishops speaking out on issues of justice in our society. And all of the baptized, lay and ordained, are expected to advocate on behalf of the poor and oppressed, and share the love of God with the world.
From the Berkshires to Worcester County, the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts is more than 55 vibrant congregations. We are a unique local expression of the Episcopal Church – a faith as old as Christianity but particularly American in its origins. We are focused on Jesus’ mission of mercy, compassion and hope here and around the world. We encourage you to visit the Episcopal Church’s website to learn more about what shapes and motivates the Church – what we value, what we hope for and seek. You will find a Church engaged in social justice, and in proclaiming God’s reign here on earth. With our Presiding Bishop, the Most Reverend Michael Bruce Curry, we strive to make this world more like God’s dream for us …