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Upcoming. . .

  • Wreath Pick-Up Day, Sunday, Dec. 1st after worship, for those of you who ordered wreaths!
  • Mission Jamaica Meeting for the January 2020 trip, Sunday, Dec. 1st at 10:45am in the Fireside Room.
  • Lutefisk & Meatball Dinner, Tuesday, Dec. 3rd, 3-7pm. Adults $16, Children 6-12 $6.
  • Spiral Advent Service, Messiah Lutheran Church, Mt. Iron, Wednesday, Dec. 4th, @ 6:30pm.
  • Choralaires’ Concert, Friday Dec. 6th, 7pm @ OSLC, and Friday, Dec. 13th, 7pm @ Gethsemane Lutheran Church.
  • Date Night & Christmas Shopping, Saturday, Dec. 7th, 1-5pm @ Messiah Lutheran-bring your children for games and activities while you get your Christmas shopping done! Free will offering for youth & inter-generational missions trip in June. 
  • Lutefisk & Meatball Dinner, Trinity Lutheran Church in Cook, Saturday, Dec. 7th, 4-7pm. Adults $15, Children 10 & under $6. 
  • Children’s Christmas Program, OSLC, Sunday, Dec. 8th during worship, hosted by our Faith Finders students and Sunday School students!
  • Lessons & Carols, Sunday, Dec. 8th, 6pm at Gethsemane Lutheran.
  • Children’s Christmas Program at Messiah Lutheran Church during worship, Dec. 15th.
  • Hymn-Sing Worship Service, Sunday, Dec. 22nd. During our worship time we will have a service that includes your most loved traditional Christmas Hymns, 9:30am. 
  • Christmas Eve Service: 4pm, Tuesday, Dec. 24th. 

 

Youth & Family Ministry

A few fundraising events are happening to support our Confirmation Youth Mission Trip to Washington D.C. in June. And remember, it is for all ages, ADULTS ARE WELCOMED TO JOIN THE TRIP! A deposit is due Nov. 1, so please speak with Pastor Erik or Tauna Roth quickly concerning your desire to travel along. 

Sunday, Oct. 27th: Mt.Iron is hosting a Community Halloween Event from 11-3pm, with concessions and a baked goods sale provided by the Messiah and Our Savior’s Lutheran Confirmation Students and parents! The Confirmation Service is held at Gethsemane at 10:30am – when all is done,  head to the Mt.Iron Community Building to check out the Community Event and fundraiser. You may bring your donated baked goods to Messiah Lutheran on Saturday, Oct. 26th between 1-5pm to help them out for the sale if you like, or just go there Sunday to purchase food to help them raise funds for their June Missions trip!

Wreath Sale: Starting Nov. 3rd, you may order/reserve a handcrafted Christmas Wreath for $20.00. These are locally harvested Balsam Fir wreaths that are larger for your front door, garage or fence. They are a beautiful and sought after item here at OSLC. You may reserve the wreaths on Sundays, Nov. 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th. They will be ready to be picked up Dec. 1st! 

Date Night/Christmas Shopping Night: Every parent could benefit from this event! Do you want to get your Christmas shopping done without having to juggle finding care for your kids while you go to the store?  The OSLC & Messiah Confirmation Youth are offering an opportunity to relieve the stress of Christmas shopping with an event at Messiah Lutheran Saturday, Dec. 7th 1-5pm. There will be games, crafts, snacks and more for your kids to enjoy! They are not asking for a set amount, but any donation will help support their June Missions trip. 

Fall Youth Ministries:

Children’s Sunday School is held right after the Children’s Message portion of the worship service.

Faith Finders is an early release/after school program @ Our Savior’s Lutheran, 2-5pm every Wednesday

Make-it-Mondays is an after school program @ Messiah Lutheran, 3-5pm every Monday

Confirmation will be held in the fall and early winter @ Messiah Lutheran, and will be held at Our Savior’s Lutheran late winter and spring. There will be a 6pm meal and 6:30 class & worship.

Confirmation & Reformation Sunday will be October 27th at Gethsemane Lutheran Church – This is a join Our Savior’s, Messiah Lutheran, and Gethsemane Lutheran ministry. We will hold an 8:30am Reformation Sunday Service, and a 10:30am Rite of Confirmation Service. NO SERVICES WILL BE HELD @ OSLC OR MESSIAH LUTHERAN THAT DAY! We will celebrate with a cake reception &  fellowship afterwards. Bishop Tom Aitken will preside both services.

youth and family ministry (2)_Large_Moment

 

Thanksgiving Dinner @ OSLC

Come join us for Thanksgiving Dinner this year!

We are hosting dinner at 1:30pm on Thanksgiving Day. The cost is $7.50 per person/12 and under are free.

Invite your family and friends for a traditional dinner with all the trimmings – and even dessert.

This community tradition is a great way to sit and relax while visiting with family and friends for the holiday – and without having to do the preparation and cleaning afterwards!

Reformation Sunday Oct. 27

REFORMATION SUNDAY:

Shared OMG services will be held @ Gethsemane

  • 8:30am (Reformation Service)
  • 10:30am (Confirmation Service).
  • NO worship service will be held at OSL or Messiah Lutheran Church next Sunday, Oct. 27th!
  • There will be a joined choir at the 8:30 service, you are invited to practice at GELC Wednesdays at 6:oopm for the service.                                

Bishop Tom Atkin will preside both services.

Ecclesiastes 5:18

Ecclesiastes 5:18

This is what I have seen to be good: it is fitting to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of the life God gives us; for this is our lot.

Wow, it is August! How did that happen? Is it just me or does it seem like the summer has flown by? Last May I wrote a list of all the things I want to do, places to see and house projects to complete during the summer… I still have a long way to go on my list. In reality, I haven’t achieved much on my list because this summer has been quite busy at church. But, busy is generally a good thing. Busy means that the Spirit is active and energized. My busy life received a wake-up call today when I read a daily devotional that my friend sent me. I read the book of Ecclesiastes. (I encourage you to read this book now before continuing with the newsletter. It is only 11 pages)

Ecclesiastes was written by a wise teacher. A teacher who reflects upon their life shares words of advice. The teacher realizes that many years were spent striving after riches, success, accomplishments, and even wisdom is like chasing after the wind. The teacher says that constant striving doesn’t bring fulfillment or meaning to life, and that life is meant to be enjoyed.

In the devotional, my friend reminded me that when I read Ecclesiastes to read it like it was written to me personally from a friend, from someone who knows me and knows what I need to hear. I suggest you do the same. When you read it, take it as encouragement to occasionally step back from the work of life. To take it as permission to leave your work, even if just for a moment, and to step out under the sun – after all it is August and the days are getting shorter every day. Ecclesiastes reminds us to accept God’s invitation to sabbath, as an invitation to rest.

These Holy words have been a major help to me this week and month. Summer is almost over, and it should be enjoyed and spent surrounded by loved ones. September is going to bring lots of exciting youth ministries and other activities, and we are going to need to be well-rested.

Your co-worker in Christ- Pastor Erik

 

Bible Study Times

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 Weekly Study meets at Rouchleau apartments.
  • Third Tuesday of the month @ 9:30am & 1pm at OSLC:  The WELCA Circles meet @ OSLC.
  • Wednesdays at 7:30am: The Men’s  Breakfast & Study Group meets weekly at Perkins in Mt. Iron.
  • Wednesdays @ 2pm: OSLC  Weekly Bible Study is in the Fireside or youth room meets and is open to everyone!
  • Thursdays at 3pm: The Ladies Weekly Study @ Adventures Restaurant meets.

A Challenging Love

John 14:23-29

23 Jesus answered him, “Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; and the word that you hear is not mine, but is from the Father who sent me. 25 “I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. 28 You heard me say to you, “I am going away, and I am coming to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. 29 And now I have told you this before it occurs, so that when it does occur, you may believe.

                Last week we focused on the “new commandment” that Jesus spoke of in John 13:34 “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.” I interpret this weeks Gospel reading from John 14 in light of John 13. Therefore, when Jesus instructs Judas (not Iscariot) that the keeping of Jesus’ word is connected to the love of the Father together with the mutual indwelling of Jesus and the Father with the disciple. So, loving each other just as Jesus modeled his love for people is what we are understanding verse 23 to be about. Again, this love that Jesus is commanding is agape love. It is not romantic (eros) love. It is brotherly/friendship love (philia). It is a self-giving, humbling, servant, promise of unconditional welcoming and acceptance type of love.

For me, this scripture is extremely upsetting and challenging and I worry that I can’t live up to this expectation. In fact, I know I can’t. However, I am greatly relieved and calmed by verse 26 because in it Jesus promises the Holy Spirit to be my guide, teacher and advocate. By naming the Holy Spirit as a teacher, Jesus acknowledges that he knows I still have more to learn and that “I’m not there yet.” So, of course I am upset and challenged, as I suspect most of you are to because at the moment, I am not equipped to fulfill this expectation. But I will be because of the Spirit’s promise. And you will be too.

Your co-worker in Christ~ Pastor Erik

“. . .If You Have Love for One Another”

“. . .If you have love for one another.” 

John 13:31-35 Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32 If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. 33 Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, “Where I am going, you cannot come.’ 34 I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples,  if you have love for one another.”

This Sunday’s gospel reading is commonly known as the “love commandment.” Interestingly, Jesus declares that he has a “new” commandment for the disciples. However, the commandment “love one another” is not new. It is a solid Old Testament theme that has been a foundation of the faith for many generations. Leviticus 19:18 states, “You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against any of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.” Also, Leviticus 19:34 “The foreigner who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the foreigner as yourself, for you were foreigners in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God”
So, in what sense is this new commandment to love one another new? Identifying the context of John 13 is helpful. John 13:1-21 is the depiction of Jesus portraying servant leadership by washing the feet of the disciples. Jesus is modeling love by humbling himself and serving rather than being served. Therefore, serving others is what love is. Then in John 13: 21-31, Jesus foretells his betrayal by Judas. This betrayal sets in motion the arrest, sentence, humiliation, crucifixion, and ultimately the death of Jesus. Wow. Judas has done immense evil and caused terrible pain. Jesus knew all along what Judas would do, but he still included him in the foot washing. So, Jesus models the act of love to include forgiveness and mercy. As if that is not enough John 13:36-38 is Jesus’ prediction that Peter will deny Jesus three times. So, Jesus’ love is even abundantly given to those who cowardly deny knowing him.
Loving others who are kind, gentle and loyal is easy. Jesus commands his followers to move above and beyond the easy and convenient life. Loving others who have betrayed us, caused pain, abandoned us, and live a life of greed and self-service what we are called to do. No, simple task, and we can’t do it alone. In order to lead a loving life we need to support of each other. We need to worship and be part of a community. We need to hear over and over again that we are loved, blessed and forgiven by God. We need to know that every day, through the gift of baptism, we are born-again and can start fresh.

God’s Love~ Pastor Erik

 

She gave out of all she had. . .

Mark 12:38-44

38 As he taught, he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, 39 and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets! 40 They devour widows’ houses and for the sake of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.” 41 He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. 42 A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny. 43 Then he called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury. 44 For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

                Jesus’ words have constantly and consistently been a problem and an inconvenience to the elite/wealthy members of society ever since he spoke them. The Gospels are filled with stories showing Jesus comforting the conflicted and conflicting the comfortable. Jesus brilliantly sees through and beyond the surface and recognizes the actual intentions and character of rich and poor alike. Do we follow Jesus example? Do we hold people accountable to their actions that denigrate and oppress the voiceless? Do we hold ourselves accountable for participating in systems of greed and oppression?

For the past several weeks I’ve found myself thinking back to a day in early October when I was in Honduras. We were in the 15-passenger van travelling to El Buen Pastor Lutheran (Good Shepherd Lutheran) for worship on a Sunday morning. During the drive I notice several huge factories on the outskirts of town. Each factory contained 10,000 workers devoted to making name brand shoes and clothes. The workers earn 8 dollars per full day of work. Next to the factories were several 2 to 3 million dollar homes with big fences and heavily armed security guards patrolling the properties. It is not secret to anyone that the people who own those homes are connected with gangs, narco-trafficking, and/or corrupted government. Seeing such stark examples of elite/poor, greedy/humble, oppressor/oppressed I couldn’t help but think of Jesus’ words. I do feel some comfort knowing that some day Jesus will right all these wrongs and bring into the fullness of Kingdom, but I am also impatient and upset that people are suffering now. But I am also encouraged that Jesus invites me and you into God’s powerful mission of sharing God’s love and peace with all. My wise Grandmother used to tell me that if I don’t like something instead of whining and complaining I should do something constructive to help change it.

Blessings~ Pr. Erik

Giving Thanks. . .

 

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.

Psalm 107:8-9

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

Rooted in Faith

Growing in Christ

Reaching to Serve