Our Church

The ministry that God does in this place can be summed up simply:

  1. We preach the historic Faith
  2. We gather & celebrate using the Church's classic forms of worship
  3. We seek to offer the Redeeming love of Christ with a friendly face

First and foremost, we confess that God has called us to proclaim the historic and Biblical Faith that salvation is given to us in Christ Jesus alone. Christ is the center of the Scriptures, and we seek to keep Christ at the center of all we do and say. We are bold to declare with the Church of all ages that by the gracious work of the Spirit, and through the Word, men and women born to sin and death can be reborn to eternal life in Christ. This new life is a life of faith, and is less concerned with our works than with clinging faithfully to Him Who is our Redeemer.

Second, like the first Christians in Jerusalem, we seek to gather together to devote ourselves to the “teaching of the apostles, the prayers, and the breaking of the bread”(Acts 2:42). The worship life of the Christian Church over the past 2000 years has been rich and varied, but there are classic hymns, prayers, and orders of worship that have nourished believers in the Word regardless of their language, culture, or place of history. At Mt. Calvary, we seek to hold to the practices of the Church that will lift up the Word as Law and Gospel, and that will, through constant use, become a part of us so they shape our thoughts, feelings and whole life.

Finally, as we rejoice in the gifts that we receive in Christ, we seek to serve all people in His name and with a friendly face. The brotherly love that is a gift of the Spirit to those reborn to faith leads us to kindness, gentleness, peace, and patience, and we seek to exercise those virtues through activities of fellowship and outreach.

We welcome you to our church family and hope that you will be blessed in your relationship with Christ.

In His Name,
Pastor Barry A. Long

Mt Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church
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Pastor Barry Long

Meet Our Pastor

After two years of wrestling with his vocation, Pastor Long enrolled in the Master of Divinity program at the Yale Divinity School. He graduated in 1988, completed a unit of hospital chaplaincy in Seattle, Washington, and then did an internship (vicarage) at Immanuel Lutheran Church (ELCA) in Los Altos, California.

Following that year, he did a year of graduate work in Philosophy at the University of Illinois, and then finished his requirements for ordination by completing a year of studies at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, California. He was called to St. Timothy Lutheran Church (ELCA), Wyoming, Illinois, and ordained in 1991. In 1997 he was received into the LCMS in September by colloquy, and began serving Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church as its interim pastor in November of 1997. The congregation formally called him as pastor in the Spring of 1998.

Since coming to Mt. Calvary he has assisted in teaching religion classes at Concordia Lutheran School, taught mathematics at Preus Lutheran High School (now closed), and served as Peoria Circuit Counselor.

Pastor Long and his wife, Sherri, were joined in holy matrimony in 2001. In 2007, Pastor and Sherri were blessed with the birth of their first child, Sarah. They welcomed their second daughter Rebekah in the spring of 2009, and a son, Michael, in March of 2012.

What We Believe

Lutherans don’t so much look for what will make them “different” from other denominations, as they seek what will join them to Christ through the faithful keeping of what the prophets and apostles have taught. What joins us to believers of all times and places can be summed up in four points:

Sola Gratia - "Grace Alone"
Fallen humans are only restored to live with God by His good will toward us, shown in Christ. We can do nothing to earn or deserve God’s love.
Sola Fide — “Faith Alone”
A believer receives the benefit of God's grace and Christ’s work by trusting God’s Word and promise. Faith is not so much a “decision” as it is the movement of the heart that the Holy Spirit works in us when we are born to a new life.
Sola Scriptura — “The Word Alone”
The Holy Bible, inspired by God, is the only reliable source of truth about grace and life. In the history it recounts, the Bible shows us exactly what we need to know and believe (no more, no less) to have a life in Christ. Because the Scriptures were inspired, we also teach that as God originally gave them, the writings were without error.
Solus Christus — “Christ Alone”
Jesus Christ, perfectly divine and perfectly human, is the center of Scripture, the object of faith, and our hope for grace; it is in Christ alone that we have new life. It is Christ alone Whose death covers our sin; it is Christ alone Who, rising from the grave gives eternal life to those who call upon Him in faith.

Have Questions?

For further information or answers to a specific concern, position papers of the Lutheran Church — Missouri Synod may be obtained free of charge by calling Mt. Calvary’s church office at (309) 688-4321 and requesting the “What about...” series.

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June 14, 2024 Daily Devotion from Lutheran Hour Ministries

Published on: Friday, June 14, 2024