Ways to be a baptized, communicant member of Gloria Christi
So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. Lk 24
6 Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call
upon Him while He is near. 7 Let the wicked
forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let
him return to the LORD, And He will have mercy on him; And
to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.
37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter
and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized
in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord
our God will call.”40 And with many other words he testified and exhorted them,
saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” 41 Then those who gladly[g] received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. 42
And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.
PATHS TO COMMUNICANT MEMBERSHIP IN OUR FELLOWSHIP AT GLORIA CHRISTI
Which path toward membership is determined to a large degree by the individual’s background. Likewise, becoming a
part of our congregation is not merely a matter of going through a class, but is the taking on of an understanding of life,
a confession of the faith, a way of worship, and being part of a particular fellowship. Meeting with the pastor is the best
place to start. But generally speaking, the following description of the paths toward baptized, communicant membership are
+ TRANSFER – For those coming from another congregation of The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod (or a congregation
in our church fellowship, such as TAALC or LC-C), who are already baptized communicant members of their previous congregation,
are usually simply transferred by action of both congregations. The pastor will still wish to discuss matters of teaching
and practice given the divergences in some LCMS congregations. We cannot receive transfers from ELCA or other non-LCMS Lutheran
+ GENERAL ADULT CATECHISM CLASS – For those coming from non-Lutheran Christian background (for example Pentecostal,
Roman Catholic, Episcopal, Methodist, Baptist, ELCA, non-denominational, etc.) usually adult catechesis (instruction) is held
to cover biblical teaching as summarized in the catechism and to cover the historic Lutheran liturgy. This course usually
will go for some months, but usually less than a year. Because of radically divergent issues between the LCMS and the ELCA,
prospective members from congregations of the ELCA will typically be asked to go through adult catechism class as well.
Public confirmation and affirmation of our confession of the faith is mandatory before being received into communicant membership.
Those received into communicant membership (regular or associate) cannot hold membership in the LCMS and a church body not
in fellowship with the LCMS.
+ ADULT CATECHISM CLASS WITH EXTRA ATTENTION – For those coming with no or little Christian background thorough catechesis
(instruction) will be needed toward both receiving Holy Baptism, public affirmation of the Lutheran confession of the faith,
and to be received as a communicant member of the congregation. In mind for this path are those coming from non-Christian
religions or no religion at all (for example Buddhist, Muslim, Mormon, Jehovah’s Witness, atheist, agnostic, pagan,
For those coming from other Christian denominations and are already baptized, we want to ensure in these days that such were
baptized with water in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. For those baptized with water in the
name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, there is no need for another baptism and it would be wrong to have
another one. Those baptized among Mormons or Jehovah’s Witnesses or Oneness Pentecostals will need to be baptized again,
so to speak, though in such cases those baptisms were not properly Scriptural.
+ YOUTH CATECHESIS (“confirmation”) – Baptized youths at Gloria Christi now are typically going through
Catechism Class (“confirmation”) with some flexibility as to which grade or the precise age. Our concern has
to do with the student’s readiness as well as the commitment of the parent(s). The pastor reserves the right to commend
a student for another year when deemed necessary for admission to the altar. Note: Generally only children of parents who
are already attending Divine Service regularly will be admitted to catechism class toward confirmation.
Parents seeking the sacrament of Holy Baptism for their children are asked to meet with the pastor regarding this. Grandparents
are not legal guardians of their grandchildren typically. Holy Baptism does not exist in isolation from “teaching
all things” Christ has given His church. It is expected that those parents seeking Holy Baptism will be regular participants
in the life of the church – the Divine Service, teaching, prayer, catechesis, etc.