What to Expect when Visiting St. Paul’s

I’ve never been to a Lutheran church. Am I still welcome?

Yes! We rejoice in a diversity of beliefs and traditions that people bring to our community, and our lives are truly enhanced by the presence of each. We welcome all through our doors.

I’ve never been to ANY church. Am I still welcome?

Yes! All are welcome – there is no entry requirement. We would be honored to play a role in your search. Just as Christ loved all people regardless of their upbringing, their sordid pasts, or their religious devotion (or not), we will lovingly receive you with open arms no matter where you came from or what you believe.
I have children. Are they welcome? We love children! There is nursery care for ages 6 and younger. For ages 4-18, we offer Sunday School Sept-May. Children come forward to communion first and then head to Sunday School until 11:00. There is always a children’s sermon offered before the Gospel reading – this is an opportunity for the kids to engage with the pastor and hear the day’s message in a way that is meaningful for them. We also provide some books and activity bags for kids who are looking for something to engage their young brains where they are.

Where is St. Paul’s? Where can I park?

St. Paul’s is located at 28 Lincoln Ave. in the picturesque village of Pittsford, on the corner of Washington Ave. and Lincoln Ave., right across the street from the Pittsford Rec Center. We have a small parking lot (~30 cars), and plenty of street parking is available, as well as overflow at the Rec Center on Sundays.

What should I wear?

You can wear whatever you are comfortable in. People tend to dress nicely, but jeans are fine if that’s what you have, and a suit is fine if that’s what you prefer!

How big is St. Paul’s?

We typically average about 100 people in worship. We have some who leave for the winter, and some who leave for the summer. Our total baptized membership is about 500.

What is your worship like?

Our worship is characterized by beautiful music and thoughtful and well-done liturgy. It is weekly enhanced by our talented minister of music, various singing choirs, and a hand bell choir, as well as several other instrumentalists who share their gifts. Our goal is for people to leave uplifted by having glorified God with hearts, bodies and minds. We use Evangelical Lutheran Worship as our primary worship resource, and we celebrate weekly communion.

What’s the difference between a ‘Lutheran’ and a ‘Christian’?

There isn’t a difference – a Lutheran IS a Christian! Christianity is our religion, and Lutheranism is our denomination. It is one expression of Christianity. See our “What We Believe” section to learn more about what makes Lutherans distinct.
What ‘brand’ of Lutheran is St. Paul’s, and how is that different from other Lutherans?
St. Paul’s belongs to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), which includes congregations all around the country. The ELCA shares its roots with the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Church. We share the same book of confessions (The Book of Concord), but the ELCA is unique among Lutheran bodies in America for several reasons, including its ordination of women and its acceptance of all baptized people to the communion table. For more information on the ELCA, click here.  
I’m not Lutheran, or I’m from a different Lutheran body. Can I take communion?
Yes! We welcome all baptized Christians who believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament to partake of this feast. You are welcome to come forward regardless and receive a blessing. If you are unable to come forward, we will gladly bring communion to you in your seat. Just let an usher know.
I was baptized in a church that isn’t Lutheran. Do I have to be rebaptized?
No, there is no need. Like most mainline Christian churches, Lutherans recognize that Baptism is not a denominational thing. Anyone baptized with water in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is, as far as we are concerned, a baptized child of God, whether that baptism took place in a Lutheran, Catholic, Presbyterian, Baptist or other church, and whether it was by “sprinkling,” “pouring” or “immersion”—the method doesn’t matter to us!
I’m interested in joining, or having my child baptized, or in my child having first communion, or in confirmation classes. What should I do?
Great! Talk to Pastor Johanna, and she would be happy to work with you.  Click HERE to contact us!