Glendale, Kentucky: This morning we headed to a WELS church about 20 miles up the road. We had no idea where we would find it, so we left early enough so we could search around if necessary. We got to the town and saw a visitor information building so we pulled in so I could ask for directions. The place was closed (of course, people don't need information on Sunday, right?) so we turned around and were heading back to the highway. Then I spied it! Right across the road was a sign on a storefront stating Faith Lutheran Church. It was 10:05 and we had information that the service started at 10:30, but there were a lot of cars there already. We went in, and sure enough, they had already sung the first hymn. After the usher had someone move over one folding chair to make room for us, we sat down and for the next hour worshiped with these 60 or so strangers. I felt like I was in a room of friends. When you worship with folks who believe the same as you do, there are no strangers.
We attended the Bible Study after the service. We met the pastor and he explained that they had just changed the starting time from 10:30 to 10:00 and that information hadn't been published yet. Upon further talking with him, I discovered that he is good friends with JPZ! Hubby had gone fishing with JP's father up in Alaska in 1992 on our first trip up there. In the Bible Class we were discusing liturgy and people were commenting on little differences they had noticed in the traditions of different Lutheran churches, and one woman said she had come from the ELS and that such and such was done a little differently. That is our church synod, so after class ended I questioned her. Imagine my surprize to find out that the pastor who confirmed her out in Washington state is the pastor that married hubby and me, and that we knew other pastors in common also.
Yes, it's a small world. Especially in the world of WELS and ELS Lutherans.