About Us

Our Story:

Love of Christ Lutheran Church has been a community of faith in the East Valley for over 30 years. We have a large campus with facilities that serve our membership and our community. We offer a variety of worship experiences throughout the year. We have programs for adults, youth, and children. We have an award winning preschool that offers a variety of year round opportunities. We have local, national, and international partnerships with faith organizations which help us to make a difference in our world.

We are community of faith with a diverse group of folks from different walks and backgrounds of life who are committed to following Jesus and sharing his love. You are invited to come and be a part of God's story as we learn, grow and serve together.

Mission and Belief:

Our mission: "As the people of God, we are called, gathered and sent to proclaim the grace and love of Jesus Christ." We seek to live this mission out through all faucets of our church, including our worship, service, and community.

Love of Christ is an Evangelical Lutheran Church in American (ELCA) congregation. The ECLA is one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States. The ELCA is a church of more than 3 million members who actively participate in God's work in the world. We believe that we are free in Christ to serve and love our neighbor. We are a church that believes God is calling us into the world - together.

The ELCA has 65 synods, we are a part of the Grand Canyon Synod. The territory of the Grand Canyon Synod includes the State of Arizona; the counties of Clark, Esmeralda, Lincoln, and Nye in the State of Nevada; and the new Promise Lutheran Church, in St. George Utah. Synods unite the work of congregations within their areas, serve as regional support, and guide pastoral and other staff candidates.

We are Christ's church, and we believe there is a place for you here. We are the church that shares a living, daring confidence in God's grace. Liberated by our faith, we embrace you as a whole person - questions, complexities and all!


A cradle that holds the infant Jesus. Baby blankets that clothe the newborn Christ. Lutherans often use these well-known metaphors from Martin Luther to describe the Christian Scriptures and their importance. These simple metaphors clearly and profoundly describe both what the Scriptures are and what is their purpose.

Simply Stated, the Scriptures tell about Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit uses the Scriptures to present Jesus to all who listen to or read them. That is why Lutheran Christians say that the Scriptures are the 'source and norm' of their teaching and practice. As the Gospel writer John wrote, "these things are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name" (John 20:21).

The Scriptures that are collected into a book or Bible describe and speak about many other things - everything from the creation of the world to the world's end. Because these writings originate from a time period that spans about a thousand years and come to us in a variety of handwritten manuscripts and fragments. The Scriptures have been studied carefully with all the tools of research that are available. This research continues to enrich understanding of the Scriptures and their message.

Despite the diversity of viewpoints and the complexity of the many narratives contained in the Scriptures, Lutheran Christians believe that the story of God's steadfast love and mercy in Jesus is the heart and center of what the Scriptures have to say.


Like the Scriptures, the three ecumenical creeds - the Apostles' Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed - are written documents. They originate from the earliest centuries of the Christian church's history, a time when theological and philosophical questions about the identity of Jesus were widely debated among Christians. All three creeds affirm that God is fully present in Jesus, that Jesus Christ is both God and human (not a semi-divine or superhuman creature that is neither). These three creeds are called ecumenical because they are all accepted and used by the overwhelming majority of the world's Christians. All three are affirmed in the Lutheran confessional writings and in the ELCA's governing documents.

Although these three creeds, like the Scriptures, are written, most Christians experience and use them spoken aloud with other Christians in worship. Along with many other Christians, Lutherans use the Apostles' Creed at baptism; it is also the Creed most often used in basic Christian education (as in the Small Catechism). Lutheran Christians often use the Nicene Creed at festivals like Easter and Christmas and during seasons of the year related to those festivals. Some Lutheran congregations recite the Athanasian Creed on Trinity Sunday (the Sunday after Pentecost) because of its focus on the relationships between the persons of the Triune God.

Lutheran Confessions:

On many occasions in the 16th century, Martin Luther and other evangelical reforms were asked to give an account of their teaching and practice. In response Philip Melanchthon, one of Luther's colleagues, wrote, "We must see what Scripture attributes to the law and what it attributes to the promises. For it praises and teaches good works in such a way as not to abolish the free promise and not to eliminate Christ." Although the writings that comprise the Book of Concord engage a range of issues regarding teaching and practice, they do not address every question or topic. Rather, they focus on the Scriptures' purpose: to present Jesus Christ to faith.

The Book of Concord includes seven writings composed by Luther and others. Lutheran churches around the world have affirmed these writings, and the ELCA affirms them in its governing documents. Lutherans most often use them in teaching - for example, when the Small Catechism is used in basic Christian instruction, or when the Augsburg Confession is used to teach women and men preparing for ministry.


For Lutherans, worship stands at the center of our life of faith. Through God's Word, water bread and prayer we are nurtured in faith and sent out into the world. Connected with and central to everything we do, worship unites us in celebration, engages us in thoughtful dialogue and helps us grow in faith. It grounds us in our Christian and Lutheran roots, while demonstrating practical relevance for today's world.

While some of the approaches to worship may differ from one ELCA congregation to another, we hold certain things in common. Central to our worship life is the presence of God through word and sacrament. The Word proclaimed and the sacraments - both Holy Baptism and Holy Communion - are called the means of grace. We believe that Jesus Christ is present in these means through the power of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes we describe worship as a "gathering around the means of grace."

There is also a basic pattern for worship among Lutherans. We gather. We encounter God's word. We share a meal at the Lord's table. And we are sent into the world. But we do not thin about worship so much in terms of what we do. Worship is fundamentally about what God is doing and our response to God's action. Worship is an encounter with God, who saves us through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

To learn more about the teachings of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, click here.

Staff and Leadership:

Pastoral Staff:

Steve Talmage

Senior Pastor

(480) 681-0939


Nanette Christofferson

Associate Pastor

(480) 681-0940


Office Staff:

Darlene Fleischhauer

Office Administrator

(480) 981-6198


Dick Beckman

Operations Manager

(480) 981-3550


Dianne Oien

New Member & Logistics Manager

(480) 681-0941


Ministry Staff:

Sarah Margalis

Preschool Director

(480) 681-0937


Jung Csuy

Director of Music Ministry

(480) 832-2449


William Hewes

Contemporary Music Director


Kevin Anderson

Director of Youth and Family Faith Formation

(480) 681-0935


Congregational Leadership:

Dan Wilke

Council President

Dave Dohrmann

Council Vice President

Denise Halaa

Council Secretary

Mike Obert

Council Treasurer

 Elizabeth Danielson   Council Member

Mike Barker

Council Member

 Jeff Michaels

Council Member

 Barb Hummel   Council Member

Clyde Anderson   Council Member