Our Savior’s Lutheran will host a shared service on June 9th for PENTECOST SUNDAY with Messiah Lutheran Church and Gethsemane Lutheran Church @ 9:30am. *Pentecost is a day of promises fulfilled. The promised Spirit of God is poured out. You may prepare for Pentecost Sunday by reading Acts 2.
*Sundays & Seasons, 2019
SUMMER EVENING SERVICES
We will hold additional Sunday Evening Summer Services @ 6pm for the month of June.
Messiah Lutheran Church will hold the Summer Evening Services in July, and Gethsemane Lutheran Church will host them in August.
We are happy to provide these additional services for people who spend time away from home during the summer months, or who spend weekends away and are unable to make it for the morning worship services.
After the celebratory service on Pentecost Sunday, we will also hold a “COMMUNITY BIKE BLESSING” in our front lawn & parking lot approximately 10:45-11:00 am. The Christian Motorcycle Association will be here for the special blessing.
Everyone in the local community & greater Virginia area is invited to bring wagons, walkers & wheelchairs, scooters, skateboards & strollers, trikes, bikes & motorcycles – Come rain or shine, our doors will be open!
1 Six days before the Passover Jesus came to Bethany, the home of Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 2 There they gave a dinner for him. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those at the table with him. 3 Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus’ feet, and wiped them with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4 But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (the one who was about to betray him), said, 5 “Why was this perfume not sold for three hundred denarii and the money given to the poor?” 6 (He said this not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief; he kept the common purse and used to steal what was put into it.) 7 Jesus said, “Leave her alone. She bought it so that she might keep it for the day of my burial. 8 You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.”
What an amazing text for Sunday. Jesus is being anointed for burial in this passage. Whenever this reading comes up in the lectionary- you know Holy Week is approaching.
This reading is located in the 12th chapter. Contextually, there is plotting of Jesus’ death going on amongst his adversaries. Jesus has spoken about his death and resurrection, and people are plotting. It is not a secret and anybody paying attention to what is going on is aware “something is going to happen soon.” Mary is aware. She is preparing his body for burial. Her action is selfless and caring. I think Judas is aware also. He currently has a financially good thing going. He is in charge of the communal purse and he helps himself to whatever he wants. This arrangement is about to be over. He is concerned about padding the purse as much as possible in these last few days in order to skim as much as possible. His action is selfish and dishonest.
There is so much to discuss and learn from these verses, but in a big picture sort of way it points to how “we,” as followers of Jesus can/should respond to future challenges. Even when life is difficult and painful, do we respond selflessly or selfishly. Essentially, everything that happens to us in life, the good and bad, can be approached as an opportunity to care for others.
Blessings to you as we continue our Lenten reflections~ Pastor Erik
2 Corinthians 9:11
11 You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
8 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind, 9 for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
Happy Thanksgiving! This week I especially pray for you and all people to experience on overflow of generosity- both generosity from and generosity toward. I pray for you to have a generous portion of kindness, compassion, quality time, rest and relaxation, love, peace, and good food. Our national day of Thanksgiving is centered on giving thanks to God for all the blessings God has bestowed upon us. Just as God has acted generously towards each of us in our lives and faith, let us reflect God’s generous character to our families and neighbors.
God Bless you~ Pr. Erik
38 John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he was not following us.” 39 But Jesus said, “Do not stop him; for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. 40 Whoever is not against us is for us.
There are an estimated 40,000 different Christian denominations in the world. That is a lot! The majority of the 40,000 are small splinter groups from mainline denominations or they are unaffiliated stand-alone congregations. For me, it is interesting to think about how one Bible is the authority of so many different groups. Different groups mean different theological interpretations, different points of emphasis, and different ways of worship. A look at the nightly news and basic study of history shows that people often look towards other denominations with suspicion and even aggression. World history headlines from the past two thousand years show that these differences have directly led to, or at least played a role in major wars resulting in countless tragedies. This reading from Mark 9 firmly directs us to reexamine how we interact with and treat people from other Christian traditions. Simply stated, Jesus tells us that different is ok. The name of Jesus is what truly matters, and the name of Jesus is what transcends cultural, linguistic, and ethnic differences in order to bring all people together.
This week, I invite everyone to have a conversation with someone from a different Christian tradition to share something about church or worship style and to also learn something new about another group.
A few years ago I heard an excellent sermon which used the phrase, “remember, different people are not a failed attempt at being you. All people are unique expressions of being children of God.”
With grace~ Pastor Erik
We have various Bible Studies that are ongoing @ OSLC. You can check out one of these listed below, or stop by the office for a little more info about the topics being studied or who to get in contact with if you would like to try one out.
- Mondays @ 2pm: The Rouchleau Women’s Study meet at Rouchleau apartments.
- Tuesdays @ 9:30am & 1pm at OSLC: The WELCA Circles meet @ OSLC.
- Wednesdays at 7:30am: The Men’s Breakfast & Study Group meets at Perkins in Mt. Iron.
- Wednesdays @ 2pm: OSLC Bible Study is in the Fireside or youth room meets and is open to everyone!
- Thursdays at 3pm: The Ladies Study @ Adventures Restaurant meets.
Men in Missions – This group of men meets once a month to learn about service projects in the church and beyond that they can become involved in. It is part mentor-ship and part service, resulting in service to others.
“WELCA” Women of the ELCA – We are a group of ladies that love to share our interests and ideas about life with each other, and share the love of Christ with the outside world around us. Our circle groups are involved with many service projects, such as, creating newborn kits, school backpack kits, camperships for youth at Camp Vermilion, quilting, prayer shawls, hospital care kits, etc. If you attend the church, you are considered a member, and can join in the meetings and devotion times whenever you are able, and take part in whatever projects you feel called to do. We invite you to join us and share your ideas!
If you need a few resources to get you through the week, click on these links here for devotionals and information to lift your spirits!
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Every day I notice the maple tree in my front yard gets a few more red and yellow leaves on it. When the tree first started turning, I was dismayed and even a bit upset. I want to tell the tree that it is WAY too early. I’m not ready! Summer is not over yet. There are still summer events, destinations and projects on my to-do-list. Autumn means school is starting, rally day, confirmation, committee meetings, etc. Where did the time go? However, I only grumbled for a day or two, then I began viewing the colorful tree in a different way. I began viewing the tree with enthusiasm and joy, because it means that school is starting, confirmation will begin, the new committee structure will be presented and get into full action, and all the church people will be back in the pews on Sundays. Getting back into “full-church-mode” (quote from my grandma) is something to be very enthusiastic and joyful about. Full-church-mode is a good thing. It means the Spirit is active.
Speaking of my to-do-list, here are some updates I want to communicate with all of you.
- Our new Director of Youth and Christian Education, Ben Anderson, will be formally joining our ministry team on September 5th and Rally Sunday will be his first Sunday at Our Saviors! I know last December my family and I felt very welcomed by the church (I still feel very welcomed) and I know you’ll show the same generosity, kindness, and hospitality to Ben.
- Rally Sunday is Sept 9th! We will have a bouncy house, games and snacks after worship. During worship we will celebrate our youth by giving Bibles. We will also recognize the wonderful Eucharist team. Sunday school will begin the following Sunday. Full-church-mode!
- OSLC, Gethsemane, and Messiah will have confirmation together this year. This has been a big project in the making with lots of meetings and communication amongst the churches. I think that all the kids will benefit from having a large group of friends, guides, pastors and mentors walking with them in their faith journey. There are too many details to list and I am personally communicating with the confirmation families about dates and questions. It is going to be great!
- I am going to join our synod’s companion team trip to Honduras the first week in October. As you all know, Global Mission is a passion of mine and I am very excited about participating in this program. Several pastors from our synod are going to be leading theology, church administration, and pastoral-care workshops for newly ordained Honduran pastors. I will invite you to participate in a fund-raiser during September for a portion of the trip’s cost.
- Later in September, Pastor Amy Odgren from the Synod office will visit with the church councils of OSLC, Gethsemane, and Messiah and lead a visioning discussion about ministry, stewardship, and where is the Holy Spirit is leading our three congregations in the future.
I want to thank all of you for your faithfulness, grace, and kind words. There is a lot to look forward to and be excited about. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please let me know. You are the church and I am always looking for ways to serve the church better and more efficiently.
Autumn Blessings ~ Pastor Erik