Back from the Edge of homelessness – Sun Nov. 11 9:45am!

Back from the Edge! Come learn how Emmanuel helps pull people back from the edge of homelessness and how you can become involved at the Adult Forum this Sunday, Nov 11th, in the sanctuary at 9:45 a.m.

Vienna/Oakton Community Thanksgiving Service

The 20th Annual Vienna/Oakton Ecumenical Community Thanksgiving Service is being held:

Sunday, November 18 at 6:00 p.m. at Emmanuel Lutheran Church.

Join your friends and neighbors for an evening together with area faith communities in an ecumenical service of giving thanks followed by a pie social. Our guest speaker will be Laurie DiRocco, mayor of Vienna. A special offering to benefit The Lamb Center and The Shepherd’s Center will be collected.

Young at Hearts is Back, Thu, Oct 11

Young at Hearts is Back, Thu, Oct 11

Mark your calendar for the next Young at Hearts event on Thursday, October 11 at noon at Emmanuel. After a short summer break, the fall season will kick off with lunch, followed by a speaker from the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA. Elena Romanova will discuss the education programs offered at the Workhouse Arts Center and the development leading up to creating this center in Fairfax County. If you are planning to attend, please bring a favorite food to share. If you have any questions, please contact Pam Cunningham at

God’s Work. Our Hands. Sunday Sep. 9

On this special day celebrated by Lutherans across the country, the congregation from NEW HOPE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH in Chantilly will be joining us for worship at 9:30 AM and for GWOH activities following worship. New Hope ministers to the homeless and less fortunate from our communities. Find out more about New Hope Fellowship.

Childcare will be provided for ages 3 and under.

The opportunities for us to do God’s Work with Our Hands include:


  • Join in worship with our brothers and sisters in Christ from New Hope
  • Provide food for a light breakfast for our guests and/or for lunch for all GWOH workers.
  • Set up, serve and/or clean up breakfast or lunch
  • Take part in fellowship as we work together to spruce up Emmanuel.
  • Join Robert Morehead and other singers to share songs with the guests.

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Strategic Plan Approved

Emmanuel’s Council has approved the 5-year Strategic Plan. The plan will be discussed at the June 10 annual meeting. Copies are available in the centrum or download the pdf.


New Member Group (starting Oct. 7)

We will meet with those interested in becoming new members or finding out more about the congregation on Sundays in October (7th, 14th, and 21st) from 9:45am to 10:45 a.m. downstairs in room 10. All are welcome!

We are looking forward to a bright future of ministry here at Emmanuel, and we welcome you to join us in working together to further the gospel of Jesus Christ in this community and God’s world.

Oct. 7: Getting to Know Each Other.
Oct. 14: Getting to Know the ELCA.
Oct. 21: Getting to Know the Ministries of Emmanuel.
Oct. 28: Welcoming New Members in Worship!

Contact Pastor Tony Prinsen if you have any questions or would like to sign up for the group at

Welcome Pastor Tony Prinsen!

Pastor Prinsen began his work at Emmanuel Monday, January 15. He comes to us from First United Lutheran Church in Kennesaw, GA. Previously he served as an associate pastor at United Lutheran Church in Grand Forks, ND. Pastor Prinsen is a graduate of Concordia College, Moorhead State University, Wartburg Seminary, and Luther Seminary. Prior to seminary, he served as the director of youth ministries at Bethany Lutheran Church in Denver, CO.

Pastor Tony’s ministry passions are worshiping, learning, and serving with all ages as we grow and share our faith together in God’s mission of love for the world. He looks forward to getting to know the members of the congregation, learning our faith stories, and working together to invite and welcome others into the ministries of Emmanuel. Please know that he is available for conversation and coffee, so just contact him and make an appointment at (703) 938-2119 or

Pastor’s spouse, Marcy, and their children, Greta, Talia, and Gunnar will arrive after the sale of their house in Georgia. We eagerly anticipate welcoming them too! Our thanks to the call committee, congregational council, and the transition team for all their work in this process.

Save the Date: Bon Voyage to Pastor Beth May 19

Mark your calendars now for Pastor Beth’s Bon Voyage Celebration, Friday, May 19. Festivities will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary, with dinner beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Emmanuel’s new Fellowship Hall.

Instead of a gift from the church, Pastor Beth is asking that you donate to a Haiti Travel Scholarship Fund in support of Emmanuel’s annual mission trip to the Village of Hope. Checks can be made out to Emmanuel, with the note reading “Haiti/Pastor Beth.”

There are several ways for you to participate in Pastor Beth’s celebration. One way is to support Master Chef Matt Crudder’s efforts in the new church kitchen, beginning Thursday, May 18. Another is to volunteer as part of the event set-up crew, be a food server, or assist with decorating. Sign-up to help ASAP in the Centrum. Lastly, if you’re not physically able to volunteer, RSVP to attend by Sunday, May 14. Space is at a premium, and the event committee needs a good head count.

Let’s send Pastor Beth off into retirement in grand style!

Contact Doris Stegeman or Chris Moyer with questions.


Pastor’s February Message: “Rediscovering Jesus”

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Free to the first 144 households…

Now that I have your attention, either by the use of italics or bold print or simply the word “free” in my opening line, be assured, this is not simply a gimmick. I do plan to give away 144 gifts in the
coming month, but I need you to read on to understand why.

Last summer I lunched with a former member of Emmanuel. As we talked, she encouraged me to
read several books—books that she had used in her new church home in Florida—and more
importantly, books that had inspired her own faith life. One was “Rediscovering Jesus” by
Matthew Kelly. Its back cover describes this book as “a profound invitation to seek deeply personal answers to our deeply personal questions. Each page seems to effortlessly reach deep into our lives, providing spiritual wisdom and practical insights that help us get to know both Jesus and ourselves in a new way.” The cover went on to say that “Rediscovering Jesus” was part of a 2016 Best Lent Ever ministry organized by the Dynamic Catholic Institute—an organization “passionate about re-energizing Catholics and their parishes.” So moved by this book, my Lutheran friend ordered six additional copies to give away and apologized for not having one left for me. No matter. I was intrigued enough to order my own–and then six more to share with staff. I found that in its 40 devotions—each simple enough to read in minutes and powerful enough to contemplate for hours—Matthew Kelly guided his readers to rediscover One who comes to Catholics and Lutherans alike as “Savior,” “Teacher,” “Master” and “Friend.”

Last fall, I began imagining all of Emmanuel rediscovering Jesus and having one of the best Lents
ever in 2017. Especially as my parish ministry nears completion, I could think of no greater legacy
than to have helped others know the love revealed by God in Jesus and the abundant life realized
when following his Way. And then the idea hit me. What if I were to follow my friend’s lead and
purchase copies of “Rediscovering Jesus” to distribute among my friends at Emmanuel? What if
members were to commit to pondering these daily devotionals throughout Lent—perhaps even
joining small groups to discuss what they rediscovered about our Lord? What if we kicked off this
500th Anniversary Year of the Reformation with a greater belief in the “holy catholic church,” a
church Jesus still desires to unite as one? What if other readers became so enthused, they bought
copies of the book to share, and this study expanded to enfold many others with the good news
of Jesus Christ? What impact could my gift have?

We are about to find out! I have purchased 144 books—twelve dozen copies of “Rediscovering
Jesus.” In the Bible, the number twelve suggests the complete nature of God’s goodness. Both
the 12 Tribes of Israel and the 12 Disciples called by Jesus were deemed enough by God to help
build a holy kingdom on earth. I trust God will use my gift of 12 dozen books to further that work
and complete my service to Emmanuel in a good way.

But I need your help. I will not simply put out the 144 books to be dispensed. I’d like to know
who’s yearning for Jesus to be rediscovered in their lives and in the life of our church. Then, as I
reserve each copy, I will write a personal note in the book and pray each takes its reader(s)
through one of their best Lents ever. I’ll prepare these books throughout February and have them
ready for your pick-up before Ash Wednesday, March 1.

Please take some time now to consider this offer. The book is free, but you can choose to refuse
it. If you decide to join the congregation in reading this book, reserve one of the 144 copies of
“Rediscovering Jesus” by emailing me at or by phoning the church
office at 703-938-2119. Or sign up for a copy (and perhaps an accompanying small group study) in
the Centrum over the coming weeks. For now, I’m asking that we keep it one copy per family. And
if we should run out, don’t worry. With a problem like that, it will be a pleasure to order more!
I look forward to hearing from you; and, excited about your partnership in the gospel, I remain,
yours in Christ! Pastor Beth

A Prayer for Refugees

Courtesy of the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service: 

Our Gracious Lord,

There are many in Your world today who have been forced from their homes by persecution and violence.

Keep them in your constant care, and bring them to a place of safety.

Be the Good Shepherd to refugees who are in flight. Guide them to the green pastures of safety.

Be the Everlasting Father to refugees who have lost home and loved ones. Lead, protect and provide for them.

Be the Great Physician to refugees who are suffering. Grant them healing and hope.

Be the Hiding Place to refugees who are languishing in camps. Shelter their souls as well as their bodies.

Be the Deliverer to refugees who have been able to return home. Restore their lives so that those who have sown in tears may reap in joy.

Be the Wonderful Counselor to refugees who have been resettled. Help them find their way in a new land.

Be the Giver of all good gifts to those who serve refugees. Empower them to do justice and love mercy and walk humbly with You.

Be the Lord of lords to all the earth, that those who rule would do so in justice and righteousness, and no one would have to become a refugee anymore.

We ask these things in the precious and powerful name of Jesus. Amen.