Written by Stephen Levine, firstname.lastname@example.org Thursday, 15 August 2013 00:00
For the past 65 years, Resurrection Lutheran Church has proudly stood at its Stewart Avenue location in Garden City. The church’s humble beginnings started with a petition to turn a mansion into a church and now it hosts more than 900 members for its services.
“The people sustained us,” said current Pastor Jeff Browning. “A lot of great people. Amazing, exceptional people.”
The Lutheran Church, which recently has expanded to a second location at Old Westbury, offers a variety of programs and events for all of its members. Some of the most recognizable for the community include the Night at Bethlehem, where the church recreates the classic night of Jesusbirth throughout the village, Oktoberfest and events during Holy Week.
The main message of the church evokes the sense of community according to Pastor Browning.
“Jesus doesn’t change,” said Pastor Browning. “A lot of things in this world can change but the eternal message through Jesus will never change.”
Parents around the community are very appreciative of the church’s preschool which is offered on weekdays for 2-, 3- and 4-year-olds. During the summer, volunteers also run the Vacation Bible School for Kids from 9 a.m. to noon.
The Bible School for Kids is an all-inclusive Jesus experience, according to Pastor Browning, that is always full to the brim with more than 200 kids getting involved. The camp began Aug. 5 and this year the camp was dubbed “Kingdom Rock,” and hopes to help children understand the concept of heaven and how believing in it can change people’s lives forever. For the five days, students will have the chance to participate in activities, songs and learn about God’s love, family and friends, prayer, trusting God and the Bible.
While slightly less than half of the members are from Garden City, members travel from Suffolk County, Queens and Brooklyn to take part at Resurrection. The modern and coming of age vibe of the large church is no coincidence.
“We’re always trying to enhance and expand our existing facilities,” said Pastor Browning.
Although, the size of the church may be larger than the average sized church, there is always room for others to join, according to Pastor Browning.
“We offer a community/family atmosphere,” he says. “It’s back to the message of the love of Jesus. We’re a good sized family but we’re still a family.”