Frequently Asked Questions
    Who may attend worship services?
  • You may! You'll find a wonderful group of fun, caring people. We come from all backgrounds and all walks of life. You'll fit in just fine!
    What is worship like?
  • At Emmanuel we plan our worship around a biblical theme for the day. The songs we sing (mostly hymns) and the portions of the Bible that we read are selected to reinforce that theme. We have opportunity to listen to God speaking to us, and we have the opportunity to praise him, pray to him, and sing to him in return.

    God is a majestic and transcendent God. In our worship service we want to approach him in reverence, awe and humility – but at the same time with joy and celebration. Our service is carefully planned, and it's printed out, so you'll know what's coming next.
    What is the sermon going to be like?
  • God's word has relevant and personal things to say to people in the 21st century. More than anything, we hope that the sermon relates God's timeless truths to the challenges you're confronting in your life today. We hope that the sermon reinforces things you already knew,teaches you something you didn't know, encourages you in your walk with Jesus, and leaves you with the peace and assurance of God's embracing love and complete forgiveness in Christ.
    How long is the worship service?
  • A typical worship service lasts about an hour.
    Are you going to call attention to me as a visitor?
  • Not at all! We want you to feel welcome – and we hope you're warmly greeted by other Emmanuel worshipers – but we won't single you out or put you on the spot. You won't be asked to stand up and introduce yourself. There won't be a quiz later on the names of people you met. You can worship as anonymously as you choose. We're just very glad when you can join us to hear the good news about Jesus Christ!
    How much is it going to cost me?
  • Ah, that's an important question! We gather an offering of thanks during the service, usually after the sermon, because it gives our worshipers another chance to praise God with their gift. The offering is completely voluntary – you don't have to participate at all, if you don't care to. When the plate comes by, you may simply pass it along. Nobody will think badly of you or look at you funny if you do so. Quite frankly, our goal is to give something to you, not to take something away from you.

    What does it mean to be a "member"?
  • Membership in Jesus' church isn't like a membership at a club or a membership at Costco. There is no application to fill out, and there are no annual dues to pay. However, that doesn't mean there are no requirements for membership. Infants and children become members of the congregation when they are baptized. This means that the congregation and the pastors assume responsibility for their spiritual care. As Christians grow and mature in our faith, we reach the point where we are ready to receive Holy Communion. Youth and adults become communicant members after they have completed a course of instruction in the basic teachings of the Bible (catechism instruction or adult membership class). Once instructed, they are able to declare publicly that they are in complete agreement with God's word, and they are ready to receive the Sacrament. All Christians desire to be part of a fellowship of believers and receive the gifts that God has given to his church.
    Do I have to be a member to attend worship or other events?
  • We welcome everyone to worship, to activities, to outings. You'll find a welcoming group of friendly people. Baptism is for everyone who desires it, and the Pastor will be happy to speak with you about baptism for you and your children (if you haven't been baptized already). Since Holy Communion requires some important knowledge of the Bible, we respectfully ask that people receive Communion only after they have been instructed and declare their agreement with our church's teachings.
Start worshiping with us! Find out the wonderful things God has to say to your heart. That's the first step. At least twice a year the Pastor offers membership classes. The series, entitled Bible Basics, takes about 15 weeks to complete. You'll enjoy a lively discussion with other participants about basic teachings of the Bible applied to real life today. Feeling a bit apprehensive? Don't worry – we're all there to learn, and the Pastor will do everything he can to help you feel comfortable. You just might find some solid friends for life! One class is offered after the new year and another in the fall. If you can't make the regularly scheduled classes, the Pastor will be happy to meet with you separately according to your schedule.
    I've moved here from another church in the WELS. How do I transfer my membership to Emmanuel?
  • If you've already been instructed and confirmed in a sister congregation in the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, you don't need to take the membership class all over. (On the other hand . . . if it's been awhile, you might find that Bible Basics is a refreshing review for you and a huge faith-building experience!) To transfer, simply contact your Pastor (e-mail or a letter is best, but phone works just as well) and ask that your membership be transferred to Emmanuel in Tempe, Arizona. At the same time, please mention to a Pastor here at Emmanuel that you've made the request, and he'll make arrangements to meet with you and help get you settled into your new church home.
    What is the "WELS"?
  • "WELS" stands for Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. A "synod" is a group of congregations who choose to walk together as Christians united in our teaching. "Wisconsin" is simply a reference to the geographical origins of our synod (our synod's headquarters are in Waukesha, Wisconsin). "Evangelical" means that we emphasize the gospel, or "good news" that Jesus is our Savior from sin. We have adopted the name "Lutheran," because we follow all the teachings of the Bible as explained correctly by Dr. Martin Luther (1483-1546) and expounded in the Book of Concord of 1580.

For more information about Emmanuel, please read Worship at Emmanuel and What We Believe and Teach.