Forums Offered to Discuss Hospitality for our LGBT+ Sept 28 & 29

Widening Our Welcome at Bethel:
Forums Offered to Discuss Hospitality for our LGBT+
Sept 28 & 29 at 10:15am in Borgwardt Hall

From the days in 1853, when Pastor H.A. Preus rode into town on his horse to help start what would become Bethel Lutheran Church, Bethel has pushed pass barriers for the sake of the gospel to bring ministry and faith to more and more people. Even the name of Bethel Lutheran Church represents one of those moments. In 1896, before it was known as Bethel, the church was called the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Madison. The name was changed after decades of use because it was believed that saying the church was “Norwegian” kept some people away. In changing the name, the church widened its welcome. As a result, more people came to learn about Jesus. The church grew. In 1905, Bethel made another move to widen its welcome when it began offering worship services in English. More people were reached with the message of Jesus. And by 1929, all services were in English. The church grew. Buildings were erected. A decade after the move to all English services, the current sanctuary was built, making even more room for newcomers.

The story of Bethel’s ability to adapt and extend its reach into the community and grow appears again in the development of the Bethel Bible Study, the Bethel radio program, the Bethel TV broadcasts, the various international missions, the Latino ministry, and the homeless ministry. Widening our welcome is what we do at Bethel. It is the cause of our historic growth and place in the church. It is one of our defining characteristics. There are new opportunities for us to extend ourselves for others. There are new communities to reach with the good news. Sunday we will continue the movement that started in 1853 as we talk about how to open wide our welcome to people in the community who are LGBT+.

You are invited to join this very exciting and very Bethel conversation. The forums will be in Borgwardt Hall, Sat, Sept 28nat 3:30pm and Sun, Sept 29, at 10:15am.

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