A Light in the Downtown Community

During the annual Voices: Guest Speakers Series, those attending Downtown Faith love hearing interesting ideas about life and faith from people in all walks of life. Reverend Jason Adams, the senior pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church, will be speaking on Sunday, May 24. He will talk about how to live into your calling in the world and where do the needs of the community meet the desires of your heart.

Reformation Lutheran Church was founded in 1948 and is still serving the community in its church home built in 1956 as one of the oldest Lutheran churches located in Las Vegas. Reverend Jason Adams was brought to the church in 2014 by way of Florida, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Iowa, and back to Las Vegas.

Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Rev. Jason started sharing his gifts in the broadcasting industry. Los Angeles called his name in 2001, and he lived there for three years. In 2004, Jason moved to Las Vegas and worked at CBS Radio selling advertising.

It was during this period that Jason “found my way back to the church and found my home in the Lutheran Church. It was there that someone suggested I attend the seminary and become a pastor. Of course, this was the furthest thing from my mind.”

It was another life change when he met his wife, Ivy, and they started a family when they found their church home in the Lutheran religion. They moved to Iowa so he could study at Wartburg Theological Seminary, and, after four years, returned to Las Vegas.

“By God’s grace, I got that call to come back to Las Vegas [six years ago] since my wife’s family is here [Las Vegas], and she was born and raised in Vegas. I was also called to become the pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church.”

His family includes four children, and their deep connection with the city means they love living in Las Vegas, especially in their church role. Ivy works as a massage instructor at Northwest Career College.

As part of serving the community, Reformation Lutheran Church offers a free senior meal program Monday through Friday for those age 60 and older. Before the pandemic, meals were served in the community dining rooms so people could join each other in a meal and build relationships. It is now offered as a take out meal.

Many being fed are homeless, and the meal served could be the only meal they eat for the day. It is hot food prepared and delivered by the Culinary Training Academy, and managed by Lutheran Social Services courtesy with a state grant. It is a four-way partnership with Reformation Lutheran Church hosting the meal.

Another annual community event is “God’s Work, Our Hands.” In the past two years, the church has partnered with the Beverly Green Neighborhood Association and the City of Las Vegas for beautification projects. This includes scrubbing playground equipment at Baker Park as well as painting curbs and fire hydrants. Another project with the association is to place doggy bag poles in the neighborhood so people can bag up pet waste. The church also collects supplies for Fremont Middle School and baby items for mothers at University Medical Center.

“Maintaining relationships with the neighbors has been very meaningful for us,” says Rev. Jason. “We want people to know they can come here, and it is a safe place.”

As well as serving as the Pastor at Reformation Lutheran Church on a full-time basis, Jason also serves as a board member at Lutheran Social Services of Nevada and board member at Lutheran Men In Mission.

“Being a church in downtown Las Vegas means we are part of this community, and faith communities get to work together. That excites me and fires me up to work with Pastor Jeremy, Meredith Densford Spriggs of Caridad, Family Promise, and Lutheran Social Services. Everyone is all part of the meaningful mission we do here.”

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Article by: Debbie Hall

Voices Series: Pastor Jason Adams
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