Glossary of PFLC terms

This page is still under construction.  Contact the webmaster if there’s a term used on the website or in worship that you would like to see defined.

Here are some terms you’ll hear often around PFLC:

mission: A Christian’s mission is to tell of and show people the love of God in Christ.  A congregation’s mission is the same, but a congregation does it together as a group.  A congregation might display God’s love through service projects, donations to charities, working with other community groups, and intentionally supporting people going through difficult times.

vocation: You might have heard this word used interchangeably with “occupation”, but vocation is a broader concept. Occupation is what you do to earn money, vocation is your purpose in life. Christian vocation is to serve God and neighbor. That’s it. Serve. In every moment of every day, to pay attention to the people and creation around us, and work for their benefit.

baptismal calling: In baptism, not only does God gift us with forgiveness and salvation, God also gives us a purpose, a vocation, a life that Jesus calls “abundant”, filled with joy (but not necessarily happiness), direction (though sometimes we can’t see it clearly), and blessing (though not of the material kind). (See vocation)

stewardship: Stewardship is the care and keeping of what we have. We believe that all we have belongs to God and is merely entrusted to us. To be a good steward is to be grateful that God takes care of us and to use all that we have to share the love of God in Christ

gospel: The word “gospel” is a transliteration of a word that means “good story” or “good news.” The good news of Jesus is that in Jesus, you can see that God loves you. God loves you enough to let go of the  benefits of being divine to become human. God loves you enough to experience death, and God loves you enough to make sure you see that death is not the final word. The good news is that God loves you. No conditions, no strings, no ultimatums. God loves you.

Circles: A “Circle” is a group of people (traditionally a group of women) who gather regularly for bible study, support, friendship, and prayer. And usually food. Jesus said, “Where two or more of you are gathered, there I am in the midst of you.” And since Jesus also said, “I am the bread of life,” Lutherans seem to think that where two or more are gathered, there food is in their midst. OK, I’m joking, but really, church folk often bring food when we gather.

tithe: A tithe is a return to God of 10% of our income. From early times, God set the tithe as a way to keep the work of the church alive and to take care of those in the community who cannot support themselves because of the cultural norms of the day. Offerings, then, are above that 10%, and are given out of thankfulness and recognition that some of us have more than we need, and God calls us to redistribute that wealth. Tithes and offerings come in many forms, but since most of us receive our income monitarily, our tithes and offerings are given likewise.



body of christ