PURPOSE AND VISION

Good Shepherd's Purpose Statement

A caring Christian community where we:
SHARE God’s grace
GROW our faith
SERVE others

Our Vision

We are a vibrant, large, Christ-centered community of believers, servants and doers who use our hands to do God’s work - in Cincinnati and throughout the world. We serve others, share God’s grace with all, grow our knowledge of and faith in Jesus Christ, and care for one another in Christian community. We grow thoughtfully and creatively beyond our original physical walls, in order to best serve God and a diverse population. We are a blessed people, serving blessed people.

We SHARE God’s Grace:

  • Christ-centered worship is vital to our congregation. This is demonstrated by multiple, varied, joy-filled worship services that - along with adult and youth fellowship groups - continue to increase in attendance.
  • Technology enables our expanded education, partnerships and outreach, evolving us into a “church without walls.”

We GROW In Faith:

  • We value and invest in Christian education - faith formation - across all age groups and knowledge levels.

We SERVE Others:

  • A significant part of our budget is dedicated to serving others across our local and global communities.
  • We partner with churches both locally and globally to further serve God and our purpose.

We Care for One Another:

  • Visitors and new members alike cite our hospitality and visible compassion as key reasons for trying, and then staying with, Good Shepherd.
  • We value sincere human connections across all age groups.

CORE BELIEFS

GOD

We believe in one God who is revealed in Scripture as triune or “three-in-one”: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19-20)

  • Father: God is the Creator who made all things including us; who daily provides for our needs and desires to have a loving relationship with us. (Genesis 1:1-2, 26-27)
  • Son: God is the Son, who became a human being - Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus is the Messiah, whose death and resurrection demonstrate the depth of the Father’s eternal love for all creation. Jesus gives us salvation. (Romans 1:1-4)
  • Holy Spirit: God is the Spirit who brings people to faith in Jesus, the Son. The Holy Spirit is God’s presence among us, and empowers us to lead holy lives. (John 14:26)

CHURCH

We believe all who have faith in Jesus are part of the Church. The Bible calls the Church the "Body of Christ," whose mission is to share the good news of Jesus Christ - the salvation that He gives by grace. We welcome to our church all that are seeking God, no matter where they may be on their faith journey. (1 Corinthians 12:27)


JUSTIFICATION BY GRACE THROUGH FAITH

We believe God’s grace is fully and freely given to all through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Through this grace our sin is forgiven, healing our broken relationship with God. We cannot earn God’s love by our good works, good behavior, or being holy. Rather, we do such things in faith as a response to God’s grace in Christ.

Justification refers to the way God heals our broken relationship with Him through Jesus. Grace is God’s unconditional love for us. Justification by grace through faith in Jesus is the center of Lutheran theology. (Ephesians 2:8)


THE WORD OF GOD

 We believe that the Bible contains the Word of God, and that the Bible IS the Word of God because it reveals the gospel or “good news” of Jesus Christ.
(1 Thessalonians 2:13)

  • The Bible was given to us through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. It is the source of what we teach and the norm for how we are to live. (2 Timothy 3:16
  • Jesus is the Word of God in human form. (John 1:1-3)
  • The sacraments, as well as preaching, teaching, and actions that truly proclaim the gospel of Jesus, are also the Word of God.

SACRAMENTS

We believe a sacrament is an act that is commanded by Christ, uses a physical or earthly element, and through connection with the Word bears God’s promise of grace. We observe two sacraments: Baptism and Holy Communion.

  • In Baptism, we are joined to Jesus’ death, raised with Him to new life, forgiven of our sin, and claimed as God’s children forever. Because all humans have a sinful nature and in need of God’s grace, we affirm the practice of baptizing infants, as well as adults. (Romans 6:3-5)
  • In Holy Communion, God forgives our sins and strengthens us for holy living to renew our relationship with God and others. We believe in the “Real Presence” of Jesus in the bread and wine that we share. (1 Corinthians 11:23-25)

CREEDS AND CONFESSIONAL WRITINGS

We believe that the three ecumenical creeds of the Church (Apostles’Nicene and Athanasian) each bear true witness to who God is, and how God desires to be in loving relationship with us and with all creation.

We believe that the unaltered Augsburg Confession and the other Lutheran Confessional writings in the Book of Concord are also true understandings of the Christian faith. We rejoice in the role of Lutheran Christians who have made God’s love in Christ known to the world through the centuries.


WORSHIP

Worship is joyous praise and honor given to God with thanksgiving, and the heart of our life together as believers. We believe worship is the natural response to God’s creative love and amazing grace given in Jesus Christ. The worship we offer is varied, rich in tradition yet contemporary and relevant, and filled with joy and wonder. (Psalm 95:6; Luke 24:52-53)

Our Actions Are Guided By What We Value
Values serve as the parameters between which an individual or organization, especially a congregation, can operate while still being true to its core beliefs. While not exhaustive, these are the ten values that the pastors and lay leaders believe most fully reflect the beliefs of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church:

Unconditional love
Grace
Forgiveness
Faith
Service
Hospitality
Compassion
Stewardship
Integrity
Learning

 

Learn more about Good Shepherd in action over the past year through our Annual Report. (Our report is so robust that we had to break it into two separate links to avoid bogging down the website and PDF viewers!)

Annual Report

Annual Report Stats & Budget Info