What to Expect at Bethlehem Ev. Lutheran Church
It can be hard to go to a church for the first time. There are so many questions that aren't answered when all you know is that you are looking for a church. Hopefully the information on this website will put your mind at ease as you consider visiting us for the first time.
Location and Time
Bethlehm Evangelical Lutheran Church is located at:
203 N. Nash St.
Hortonville, WI 54944
Worship is on Sundays at 8 am and 10:00 am (Memorial Day - Labor Day)
Worship is on Sundays at 8 am and 10:30 am (Labor Day - Memorial Day)
Sunday School, Teen Bible Class, & Adult Bible Class are Sundays at 9:15 am.
The services focus on readings from the Bible. Music and singing are an important part of our services, too. Loud or soft, in unison or rich harmony, all our praises are music to God.
The Services usually include the following parts in a variety of forms:
Each week the service is printed in the worship folder. The readings from the Bible for that week and prayers are printed for you. Our songs for worship are either in the worship folder or in the hymnal and are easy to locate.
Every church has its own style of worship. We hope you'll enjoy the services at Bethlehem Ev. Lutheran Church, but as in any church you should expect it to take a couple of Sundays to become accustomed to our way of praising God together.
+ The Invocation - We call on the name of our Savior God as we praise him.
+ Admitting Sins and Receiving Forgiveness - We acknowledge that we have not been or done what God asks us. Then we are assured of his forgiveness in Jesus.
+ Bible Readings - We read selections from God's Old Testament prophets, Jesus' apostles, and from Jesus himself in the Gospels. The pastor gives a brief explanation of each reading.
+ Sermon - Our pastor offers encouragement and instruction in a Bible based sermon. Expect God's grace and guidance for dealing with problems as well as the promise of eternal life in heaven through Jesus.
+ Response to the Word - We respond with offerings and prayers for the things he has promised to us and for strength to do what he has asked.
+ Parting Blessing - We hear another assurance of God's care.
Mixed throughout these different parts of our worship are hymns and short songs to praise God. Our worship uses traditional forms along with modern language and application. The traditional brings us the best from God's Church throughout the ages, and the contemporary brings God's promises and his will into our daily lives. We hope you enjoy both.
"I rejoiced with those who said to me, 'Let us go to the house of the Lord.'" Psalm 122:1
Sometimes people wonder how they are expected to dress at a church they've never visited. Since the Bible presents no dress code, aside from simply decency and Christian humility, Bethlehem Ev. Lutheran Church doesn't make any rules either.
Like most people, our members try to make their worship time at church a special time. This is often reflected in the way they dress. But dress is a personal matter of worship before God. One may dress casusally and rejoice that we have a God who accepts us as we are. Another may dress to reflect the awe and reverence we have for our Savior King.
On any Sunday as our church you may see running shoes and high heels, jeans and suits, open collars and ties, and even work uniforms. When a person dresses out of love for God, the choice of dress - casual or more formal - is acceptable to God...and us.
"Come! Whoever is thirsty, take the free gift of the water of life." Revelation 22:17
Attending church somewhere for the first time can be intimidating. Here are some common worries:
"I would just die if they made me stand up and say something." We assure you, we won't embarrass you in this or any other way. We want you to feel comfortable and at home with us. Church should be an enjoyable and uplifting experience. We promise to do all we can so you can learn about your Savior. Come, relax and enjoy!
"I know my child is going to be too noisy." We love children in the worship service. In fact, a children's bulletin matching the day's theme is available each week. However, if you feel they are causing a distraction, we have cryroom at the back for your use. Feel free to take your child to this area anytime during the service.
"I know I will feel out of place." We hope that this website will ease your mind. But if you have a question, please ask someone for help. Don't hesitate to say, "I am new. What is this about?" Our congregation is very friendly and would be happy to help.
About our Church Body
Bethlehem Ev. Lutheran Church is a member of the national church body called the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS).
This church body got its name because it was formed in Wisconsin in the 1850's. Our membership in this national church body unites us with Christians across our country and the world. It allows us to pool our resources for mission work, the production of Bible-based Christian literature, and the training of pastors and grade school teachers. But above all, we can be comforted by the fact that we know there are Christians throughout the world who share a common faith with us.
Our congregation and our national church body are solidly based in the Bible. We believe that Jesus is our Savior and the only way to heaven. Through faith in Jesus we are united to him and each other.
The name "Lutheran" comes from the great reformer, Martin Luther. In a period of history when the Church had lost sight of its Savior and the truth of his Word, Martin Luther boldly challenged these errors and preached Jesus Christ as Savior. We are proud to remember his work in bringing the truth of God's Word by using his name to identify ourselves.