The mission and vision of most Christian churches is based on two primary commands of Jesus in the New Testament. The first is the Great Commission. Matthew 28:19-20a reads,
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you.” (NRSV).
The second is Jesus’ reply to a question from one of the scribes. This is known as the Greatest Commandment. Mark 12:29-31 reads,
“‘The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; 30 you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.’” (NRSV).
The church is called to make disciples who are known by their love for God and for all people.
At Bethlehem Lutheran, our particular mission statement states that our community is best described as “open country, open hearts” with a mission “to be rooted in God’s grace, to support our community, to serve the world, to pass it on.”