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Intentionally multicultural

St. John Lutheran Church's celebration of Las Posadas is just the beginning

Las Posadas is a sign that St. John Lutheran Church, Sacramento, Calif., is “not multicultural by accident,” said Jose Luis La Torre, pastor.

Spanish- and English-speakers are blended into one faith community. One of four Sunday services, the 10:15 a.m. Spanish worship bridges generations. Children can participate in English-language Sunday school and confirmation classes, joining their parents for “Spanglish” coffee-hour conversation.

Leo Callo, a Peruvian-American member of St. John Lutheran Church in Sacramento, Calif., helps lead music during the Posada service.
Leo Callo, a Peruvian-American member of St. John Lutheran Church in Sacramento, Calif., helps lead music during the Posada service.

Pastoral care from St. John’s three pastors is available in two languages. Homemade “Lutheran tamales” go on sale once a month, and on Saturdays, the Spanish Academy invites Anglos to improve their Spanish.

Outreach to Spanish-speaking locals “is not a Lutheran inviting a Lutheran to join a Lutheran church,” La Torre said. “It’s a Lutheran pastor sharing his faith with Mr. Lopez or Perez who was baptized [in the] Catholic or Pentecostal [tradition], and the only point in common is that we both speak Spanish.”


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