Faith Lutheran News

From the Pastor’s Desk…

From the Pastor’s Desk…

Greetings children of God.

The division in our world only seems to be growing. A person who sees, hears, thinks, looks or lives differently than what someone thinks is acceptable is vilified and becomes the target of hate filled rhetoric or hate filled acts. Unity doesn’t seem possible but I believe it is. In 1 John 3:16, we read, We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us—and we ought to lay down our lives for one another.” Jesus laid down his life that we may have salvation in his name and Jesus wants us to use our lives to do the same, to love others as he has loved us. Y’all have heard me say before that it’s okay that we all have different opinions and views on faith, politics and the world. We don’t all have to be the same but as Christians, we do need to treat one another with respect and by doing so, unity is possible. I’ll give you two examples. One of my classmates and friends from seminary is very liberal and if y’all have figured it out by now, I’m very conservative. We both have vastly different views and opinions on much of what is happening in our world today but we also have respect for each other and we can agree to disagree. The other example is similar. A friend of me and Angi’s from our former congregation was very conservative and he became friends with a former pastor of the congregation who was very liberal. Like my friend and I, they both shared very different views on the world but they formed an extremely close friendship until our friend passed away a couple weeks before me and Angi’s wedding. When we take the Apostle John’s words to heart, We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us—and we ought to lay down our lives for one another,” we can realize that unity is possible but it won’t be easy and will take some work.

The outside work for our spring clean-up/love your church day is postponed until next Saturday May 1. If you’re interested in coming to help with the spring cleaning inside, that is still going to happen this Saturday.

Our make-up date for pictures for our directory is Monday April 26 between 2pm-8pm. If you weren’t able to make it in February to have your picture taken or if you had your picture taken during the first round and you’re not happy with it, you are able to have it taken again. The sign-up sheet is in the narthex.

We are about to begin the process of revising our mission statement and core values. To do this, we have created a Vision Team that consists of Annie Gazdecki, Emily Riehle, Peggy Koch and Kim Smith. They will be collecting and processing data from the community including local leaders, business owners, ecumenical partners, and our congregation. It will be a 6-12 month process and we will keep the congregation informed every step of the way.

On Sunday May 16 we will have a special congregational meeting after worship. The Church Council will be presenting the congregation with recommended improvement projects for the church. A vote is required. Please attend to hear about these exciting projects.

Blessings on your day,

Pastor Tim

Faith Formation at Home from Bishop Daniel

Faith Formation at Home from Bishop Daniel

I want to share Bishop Daniel’s thoughts on this with y’all.

Dear Friends in Christ,

“Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead, and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (Deuteronomy 6:6-9).

 

On Sunday morning September 27, I led worship at St. Paul, Jenera. For the children’s message, I simply read the story “Words or Actions?” based on Matthew 21:23-32 in the Whirl Story Bible. After the story I mentioned to the congregation that one of my earliest memories as a child is of my grandmother reading Bible stories to me from a children’s Bible. I then encouraged the grandparents and parents present to take the time to read Bible stories to their children and grandchildren.

The response to that simple encouragement caught me off guard. There were many comments after worship and two e-mails. “Bishop, I do that every time my grandkids visit!” “That’s a great idea. We’ll start today!” “What was the name of that Bible you used? And where can we get one?” A long e-mail arrived on Monday from a woman sharing her memories of sitting with her grandma who read her Bible story after Bible story.

This simple encouragement (which I’ve shared in many parishes) was heard in a new way on Sunday morning and I’m trying to sort out why? Surely the COVID-19 pandemic plays a part. And a longing for a simpler time, perhaps. Or maybe God is reminding us once again, of the importance of faith formation in our homes.

The Rev. Dr. David Anderson is a Lutheran pastor who serves as the co-director of Milestones Ministry. This is a ministry committed to faith formation in the church and in the home. “A healthy church is a church that practices faith at home!” I am intrigued by Pastor Anderson’s five principles of faith formation.

1.      Faith is formed by the power of the Holy Spirit through personal, trusted relationships – often in our own homes.

2.      The church is a living partnership between the ministry of the congregation and ministry of the home.

3.       Where Christ is present in faith, the home is church, too!

4.      Faith is caught more than it is taught.

5.      If we want Christian children and youth, we need Christian adults who practice the faith with them.

As you reflect on the words from Deuteronomy 6 above, what are some of the ways we have encouraged our children to keep God’s Word in their hearts and on their minds?

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Tim

This just in…

This just in…

Greetings children of God,

This year, the NWOS is inviting everyone to join them in 2021, as they read through the entire New Testament in Chronological Order. Not Matthew to Revelation, but James to Revelation. You may be surprised to know that many of the New Testament Letters were composed before the Gospels were written. You can click on the link below to get the daily reading guide. Spending time reading God’s Word daily is something we should all do and many times, it feels daunting or more like a task, something we have to do instead of something we want to do, because we’re not sure how long we should read for or how much we should read. The daily reading guide for the New Testament solves those issues as the readings are a chapter a day, sometimes less. Reading a chapter a day takes about 3-5 minutes and after reading, I encourage you to spend some time reflecting on what you’ve read. You may just be surprised as to what you think, feel or experience. I look forward to this journey with you.

God’s blessings,

Pastor Tim

https://files.constantcontact.com/8f1c062f001/00c3b4ce-9a87-42a3-8bbf-52b4da8cdadf.pdf