Worship and the arts: Marco Lutheran a great place for the artistically inclined

Whether you’re new to the island or just visiting and looking for a worship service to fit your needs, Marco Lutheran Church on North Collier Boulevard may be right for you.

One feature that stands out about the service, held Sunday mornings at 9:30, is a commitment to the arts. If you are a musician, actress, writer, fine artist or just plain enjoy being part of a creative community, you will likely find a program at Marco Lutheran Church to encourage and showcase your passion for the arts.

Joyce Heffernan, The Family Minister at Marco Lutheran Church says the first thing people would notice when coming to a worship service here is that the pastor preaches well and that the people are friendly. Next, they would notice the artistic appeal.

“This would be an inspiring church to go to for an artist because they would be recognized and they would sense that what they are doing is important,” Heffernan says.

“Art is an outlet for people to express the joy, hope, praise and love they feel in life. Even if they can’t express it very well themselves, they appreciate and value the artistic talents of others being shared through our church community.”

Marco Lutheran offers a variety of programs, featuring the largest dramatic stage on the island, which seats 475 guests. The Marco Island YMCA uses the stage for both their summer and winter programs.

Joyce Heffernan, director of family ministry at the Marco Lutheran Church, asks children to look for an imaginary baby Moses floating down the canal. More than 70 Marco Island children are attending this week’s vacation Bible school.

Photo by JENNA BUZZACCO-FOERSTER, Eagle staff

Joyce Heffernan, director of family ministry at the Marco Lutheran Church, asks children to look for an imaginary baby Moses floating down the canal. More than 70 Marco Island children are attending this week’s vacation Bible school.

Each year, Marco Lutheran holds an artist series, where five or six groups come in and perform for the community.

On July 30, Creative Worship Arts Camp begins for first through sixth graders. The children will experience educational learning opportunities and fun in artistic activities such as puppetry, dance, handbells and singing. The public is welcome to attend.

Heffernan says many creative people in the community are part of the congregation at Marco Lutheran.

“We have a large choir of 50-60 people. These are musically inclined folks who have been singing in churches a long time. Once in a while we get someone who has never sung in a choir, but they want to become involved because our choir is quite large and the music is a good variety. We have professional level musicians, directors and artists. Some of our members are instructors at the art league here.”

The worship service line-up of gospel and music may appear very specific, orderly and even formal to a newcomer who has never experienced this style of worship before. Heffernan says a guest may come in and think it seems “stiff” at first, but then they will begin to notice the beautiful colors, and see that the service has a pretty dramatic appeal.

“We use puppetry and skits to get across real life messages in a unique way. Both the pastor and myself bring true-to-life examples and messages to the service so it’s not all auditory.”

Heffernan believes that most people notice very quickly the fact that her church tends to showcase the arts. She adds that many business people and other influential people who are captains of their industry also feel very comfortable making Marco Lutheran Church their worship home.

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Marco Lutheran Church

Address: 525 N. Collier Blvd.

Phone: 394-0332

Web site: www.marcolutheran.org

Sunday Worship 9:30 a.m.

Pastor: Rev. Ronald Biel

© 2007 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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