The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


A coat of many colors

Congregation, synod wrap a needy community in care

A woman who goes by the name Lady Lexus stands in front of the altar on a Saturday night and reads a poem she wrote about her dream called "'Cause the World Ain't Sufferin' No More."

Led by scholar Robert Jefferson, people
Led by scholar Robert Jefferson, people share what's important to them during an open mic night at Joseph's Coat of Many Colors Lutheran Church, Bridgeport, Conn. Jonathan Hevita (above), pastor, says the congregation's name reflects its multilingual, multicultural makeup.

The somberness in the sanctuary quickly changes to laughter as audio is played of comedian Larry Wilmore discussing biblical clues that Jesus was black. Clue No. 1: Jesus walked on water. "Why would anyone walk on water?" he asks. Punchline: "Because brothers can't swim." He continues: "Jesus also had a cousin with the first hip-hop name — John the Baptist."

In levity and seriousness, people take the microphone at Spoken Word Works, an outreach ministry of Joseph's Coat of Many Colors, a revitalized Lutheran congregation in Bridgeport, Conn. People are invited to present original writings, music, dance or simply discuss what's on their minds.

"Our God is a listening God," said Jonathan Hevita, pastor of the congregation.

Spoken Word Works is an experiment for Joseph's Coat. The congregation is another experiment.

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March issue

MARCH issue:

All are welcome