About Us

Who makes up Augustana?

Embodying a ministry of radical, gracious welcome centered in vibrant, historic liturgy, we are a diverse, intercultural congregation that welcomes people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Augustana has been racially integrated since 1954 and Reconciling in Christ (open and affirming of the LGBTQ community) since 1987. We are a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), rooted firmly in our Lutheran heritage and expression, yet joyfully ecumenical in composition, with people coming to worship from a wide variety of religious backgrounds. We celebrate Holy Communion in English in the morning and Spanish in the afternoon. Currently, we are 450+ diverse members plus friends and visitors who live in the District of Columbia and its metropolitan area, with about 100-150 in worship on Sundays.

In 2005, Augustana made a major investment to assure its facilities would welcome and be accessible to people whose mobility is limited by temporary, chronic or permanent physical disabilities. Members and visitors regularly utilize these improvements to the building to fully participate in our life together.

Augustana delights in being a “family of choice” for a rainbow mix of people. On a given Sunday, you will find people of all ages, with a growing group of young adults that reflects our changing neighborhood. You will also find an energizing mix of interests, backgrounds, and passions in our diverse faith community, with a strong commitment to making a progressive difference in our neighborhood, city, and world. At the center of it all, you will find our shared joy in celebrating the grace we have received in Jesus Christ, expressed in vibrant, welcoming, traditional-yet-always-new liturgy – a real foretaste of the Feast to come! Know that YOU are welcome here!

Our worship

Sunday morning worship at Augustana; reading of the Gospel lessonAugustana revels in the gift of the historic liturgy we have received from the church, and celebrates bringing it to life in our current context. Our liturgy combines excellent music with strong biblical preaching and prayerful concern for one another and the world in which we live. We mark the start of worship by ringing chimes that tell people to stand and face the baptismal font at the entrance to the church  for brief public confession. Each Sunday, we process to the center of the sanctuary, lifting the Gospel book high as a sign of our belief that the Christ is truly present as the Living Word, and we gather, in all our diversity, around a common table where we receive that Word in bread and wine. With a love for the rhythm of the church year and its traditions, we celebrate the cycle of liturgical seasons and mark festival days with incense, special music, and traditional prayers. Ours is a living liturgy, meant to form a faithful and vibrant people who will go into the world bearing Christ’s name.

Our Spanish-speaking ministry, La Comunidad de Santa Maria, roots its mission of service, justice, and community in the living worship of Jesus our Savior.  Santa Misa, Domingos a las 5:00 pm. Servicio de Sanidad, tercer domingo del mes. Escuela dominical durante la misa.

The first Sunday of the month, September through May, the Swedish Lutheran Church of Washington, D.C. worships in Augustana’s sanctuary at 8:30 a.m.

The Crossroad Center at Augustana

For more than 40 years, Augustana has housed social service agencies, child care centers, and charter schools that needed space for purposes that fit the mission of Augustana and also financially contributed to operating the building. In 2009, Augustana began to more clearly articulate its commitment to sharing its facilities with community-based organizations and neighbors whose activities extend Augustana’s mission as a crossroad into our community through service to our neighbors.

Two full-time tenants now provide child care for infants and toddlers and after-school programming for older children. Regular renters include Capoeria classes and recovery groups such as AA. Occasional renters use space to teach classes, hold meetings or programs, and celebrate birthdays or other special occasions.

Interested parties can initiate inquiries by contacting the church office.