On January 24, 2016, Emmaus Evangelical Lutheran Church and Parroquia Emaús voted to consolidate into one new congregation. The new congregation will be called Emaus ELCA, a name which reflects the spelling of the Spanish-speaking portion of the congregation and of the Danish-speaking founders of the original church.
The process was shepherded by Stephen Knowles, attorney for the Greater Milwaukee Synod. Each entity named three commissioners who will serve on the Transition Team: Antelmo Hernando, Cathy Meyer, Pablo Enriquez, Carol Yust, Maribel Ortiz, Pastor Mary Janz and the two council secretaries, Missy Porcaro and Luz Cetina. Greater Milwaukee Synod Director of Evangelical Mission Rev. Sandy Chrostowski and Rev. Hector Carrasquillo from the national office of the ELCA participated in the morning events.
Following the separate meetings, there were cheers of approval as the groups came together in the sanctuary. The Emmaus vote for approval of the consolidation was 39-5, with the vote of the Emaús congregation being unanimous at 57-0.
Chris Lamberton, Pastor Gabriel Marcano and Pastor Mary Janz led the first official congregational meeting of Emaus ELCA. Pastor Sandy and Pastor Hector offered an opening prayer. Following the introduction of the Transition Team, a new bilingual constitution was approved. The proposed unified budget of $371,000 was also approved, and the group agreed to extend the terms of the current council members for an additional four months.
The meeting ended with a sharing of the peace and then sharing a catered meal in the church basement.
Emaus ELCA will now operate with a single church council and will soon begin the call process for a new, bilingual pastor. The church will continue to offer separate services in English and Spanish, with occasional bilingual worship services to mark special occasions. English worship services are at 4:30 p.m. Saturdays and 9:00 a.m. Sundays; Spanish worship services are at 11:00 a.m. Sundays.
As part of the incorporation of Emaus ELCA by congregational vote on January 24, 2016, the congregation approved a new constitution. The constitution has been given the stamp of approval by the Secretary of the Greater Milwaukee Synod and has been forwarded to the churchwide office of the ELCA in Chicago.
Much of the new constitution is identical to that approved by the Emmaus Evangelical Lutheran Church congregation in January, 2015, but new provisions provide for one joint leadership council with co-leaders on the various teams (committees), for assuring representation from both English and Spanish speaking communities, and for rotation of the council presidency between English and Spanish speaking candidates.
A parallel version of the constitution (English on the left, Spanish on the right), is available for download here.
We thank the members of the Constitution Committee, including Cathy Meyer, Art Smith, Pastor Jhon Freddy Correa, Pastor Gabriel Marcano, and Pastor Mary Janz, for their diligent work.
What an amazing journey! Sunday, our English-speaking congregation (with over 160 years of history) and the seven-year-old mission congregation made up of Latinos voted overwhelmingly to become one, new bilingual congregation. We will be known as Emaus ELCA. History being made and a commitment to being a faith community that works tirelessly for justice and welcomes all!
Gracias to all who helped us get to this place!
Pastor Mary will officiate at the funeral service of Eleanor Lawrenz at Sturino Funeral Home on Tuesday, January 26 at 11:00 a.m. Visitation will be held at the funeral home on Monday, January 25 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. and will continue on Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. until service time. Mrs. Lawrenz will be laid to rest next to her husband at Graceland Cemetery following services.
🕙 Worship service times for Emmaus Evangelical Lutheran Church and Parroquia Emaús will change this weekend, January 23 and 24, 2016. Emmaus will not have a Saturday evening worship service, and both the English and Spanish language Sunday services will be at 10:00 a.m. Pastor Mary Janz will lead the English language service in the Sunset Room, while Pastor Gabriel Marcano will lead the Spanish language service in the sanctuary.
Después de las misas el domingo, las congregaciones se reunirán para disolver sus cuerpos eclesiásticos actuales y reconstituir como congregación unida. El nombre nuevo sera Emaus ELCA.
A partir del dia 30 de enero, las horas regulares de las misas en ingles seran a las 4:30 los sabados y a las 9:00 los domingos. El 31 de enero la misa en espanol se celebra a las 11:00 a.m.