First Lutheran Church in Decorah will resume its regular worship and education programming schedule this weekend.
Worship will take place in the Carriage House, located behind the church. The historic building, owned by Steve and Alice Runde of Decorah, has been renovated into an open-plan event space. First Lutheran has made plans to be in the Carriage House space for the next several months, allowing a semi-permanent set-up for worship that won't need to be moved on a regular basis.
"We are grateful for the generosity of the Rundes in allowing us the use of this beautiful space," said Lead Pastor Chad Huebner. "The configuration will be a little different than what we're used to, but we're looking forward to a connected and creative worship experience."
Huebner added the Carriage House has been set up to accommodate about 180 people.
Worship services will be held Saturdays at 5 p.m. and Sundays at 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. All worship services feature traditional liturgy and music. Children are welcome and are included in the service through a children's message. Coffee and fellowship will be available following 8:30 a.m. worship in the Carriage House.
Educational programming, including Orange, a dynamic learning program for kids and youth; adult forum and confirmation will resume at 9:50 a.m. in their usual classrooms.
First Lutheran learned in early December that it needed to close its sanctuary and fellowship hall due to concerns with the stability of the church's structure, specifically the roof and exterior walls. Work has been done to stabilize the walls, and evaluation of the building continues.
Pastor Huebner emphasized that although this is a transitional time for the congregation, all are welcome.
"We are, first and foremost, a welcoming community of faith," he said. "We invite all to join us, find comfort and purpose in God's love and grace, and be part of our First Lutheran family."