Petra Lutheran Visitor's Guide
A Message from Our Pastor!
We have provided this page to answer questions visitors would like to know before visiting Petra. You may have basic questions like: What are the worship times? How do I find Petra? What will the service be like? What does Petra offer for my children? Sometimes the unknown can be intimidating. We would like to answer those unknowns with this page to help you feel more comfortable when coming to visit Petra for the first time.
It is our hope that you will come to visit Petra Lutheran Church in the near future where you will hear about your Savior Jesus directly from the pages of God's Word. Thank you for visiting our website, and the members of Petra look forward to meeting you soon.
Pastor Stephen Daley
Where is Petra Lutheran Located?
Petra Evangelical Lutheran Church and School
is located on 1st Avenue North near the corner of 10th Street North
in Sauk Rapids, just off of State Highway 15 and east from Benton Drive North.
Our address is:
1049 1st Avenue North
Sauk Rapids, MN 56379
Petra Lutheran Devotional Activities!
Regular Worship Services: (September - May) Sunday at 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
Summer Worship Services: (June - August) Sunday at 9:00 a.m. and Monday at 7:00 p.m.
Bible Studies: Various groups regularly gather together to read, reflect and discuss scripture from the bible.
Visit the Bible Studies page to find out more about these various groups.
Bible Basics Class: Those interested in becoming members of Petra will meet in this class
at a time and place that fits the participant's schedule.
Catechism Instruction: Students in Grades 5 through 8 receive Catechism Instruction
on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.,
September 7th, 2011 through May 9th, 2012.
However during Lent the class will meet
on Monday evenings from 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.,
February 20th, 2012 through April 2nd, 2012.
Special Events: Visit our Home page to see what events are coming up!
Petra Lutheran School
Educating Children for today, tomorrow and eternity!
Since it opened in 1986, our school has been an important part of the ministry here at Petra Lutheran Church. Complete with multiple computer learning stations in two classrooms on the main level, Petra Lutheran School is our base of Christian education and a source of pride for Petra's members.
Petra's curriculum integrates the Word of God throughout all of the academic subjects; while providing a Christian, caring environment for our major future resource, our children.
Petra Lutheran School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origins to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in the administration of our educational policies, admission policies, and other school-administered programs.
To discover more information about our school, visit the Petra Lutheran School page on this website.
What will I find at Petra Lutheran?
Whether you have known God your entire life or are just now seeking to learn about God's word, Petra Lutheran Church is a place for the opportunity for social interaction and spiritual growth. You will be joined by ordinary people, with the same day-to-day struggles as yourself, to hear the wonderful message of God's grace. We invite you to join with us in worshipping the Triune God: the Father who created us, the Son who redeemed us, and the Holy Spirit who sets us apart to God's people through his powerful word.
'Worship' is the acknowledgment of God and the glory that fills heaven and earth. The act of worship can be performed individually, in small informal groups, or in a formal group led by a designated leader. Worship should be performed daily with an emphasis on weekly social worship. At Petra, expressions of worship include prayer, sermons, songs of praise, scripture, sacraments, and communion.
The Holy Sacrament of our Savior's body and blood (receiving the Lord's Supper) is a gift which God has given to his church. It is our practice that one would establish fellowship with us before receiving the sacrament. We ask our visitors to respect our practice of 'Close Communion' in fellowship with our congregation members and members of sister congregations in the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) and the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS). We offer a Bible Basics Class for those who would like to establish communion fellowship with us. This is our way of providing an opportunity for you to decide if Petra Lutheran Church teaches the true and pure Word of God.
Common Questions Asked by Our Visitors!
How should I dress? The Bible has no required dress code other than that of common decency and humility. Your choice of dress, whether it be casual or formal, is acceptable by God; and is therefor acceptable at Petra.
What about the offering? Our offerings are gifts of love for God and the work of our congregation. When the offering plate is passed during the service, this is an opportunity for our regular members to actively respond to all God has given them by freely giving to support Petra. As a guest we do not expect you to contribute an offering and we do not want to pressure you into making an offering. But, you are welcome to give as your heart may lead you.
What if I'm afraid that I will feel out of place? We recognize that coming to a church for the first time is not easy. Our members made that awkward first visit to Petra too, so they know what it is like. We will not ask you to stand and introduce yourself as a visitor. Instead, we hope that you will meet our members after the service in casual conversations. We will not ask you to commit to a class or sign up to become a member at your first visit. Instead, we will let you decide when you would like to learn more about our church and about our membership classes. We would appreciate your efforts in filling out our Friendship Register in your pew. This will provide your contact information so we can stay in touch and share more about Petra by mail, email, or personal visit.
What if my child is noisy? Petra is blessed to have many young children. During worship you will hear the cries of babies mixed in with the hymns and readings from the Bible. At Petra we are used to hearing the little children, and we appreciate having them in worship where they hear God's Word. Sometimes our parents choose to take an upset child into the narthex or into the first classroom both of which have speakers making it possible to hear the pastor during worship. We have a diaper changing table in the unisex bathroom on our main floor. We also have activity bags for children with books and coloring pages for use during worship.
What if I know very little about the Bible? We would love to have you come for worship where we learn more about the message of the Bible. Every Sunday we learn more about God's love for sinners, and how he willingly sent his only Son to be our Savior to win forgiveness for every sin we have ever committed in our lives. No one knows everything about the Bible, and all of us have room to grow in our love for Jesus and our understanding of God's Word. Join us as we learn together.
A Final Note...
It is our prayer that this "Visitor's Guide" has helped to answer some of your basic questions and make you feel more comfortable about coming to visit Petra Lutheran Church for worship. If you have questions when you arrive, please ask our ushers, the ones handing out worship folders, or other members and they can direct you to bathrooms or introduce you to our pastor. If you would like a question answered that we did not cover, please use the following Contact Us form and we will get back to you with an email.