July 5, 2020
Flowers have been placed on the altar in gratitude for God’s love, grace and abundant mercy given freely to all his children.
MONTHLY DAY OF PRAYER – JULY 8th: The Wednesday Afternoon Prayer Group is pleased to invite you to join us in a Monthly Prayer Day initiative that we will be undertaking around a specific theme. The prayer group has designated every 2nd Wednesday of the month as a “Day of Prayer” and invite you to participate as well. July’s theme will be RESPECT. Whether you join us online from 1-2:30 pm, or simply pray within your own daily prayer practice on that day, we encourage you to pray for “respect” and all that that means to you as one of Christ’s disciples, so communally we will lift up our prayers for respect of our World, between countries, within our communities, within our relationships, in our homes, in our families and in our hearts. An email will be sent out this coming week that will include further details, and the links to the Zoom meeting.
Vacation Bible School: The past few months have been very different, with our church closed. Sadly, because of this, we are unable to host Vacation Bible School, this year. We had started planning for it last January. But, we will have to wait until another time before we can continue with the new curriculum.
Another option is available, if you know of children who would be interested. There is a program called “Bridges” that is an on-line Vacation Bible School. It started in 2017, in the Waterloo, Ontario region, for kids that couldn’t get to a church-run VBS. This year, it will run as “BridgesVBS@Home” and will feature daily videos, Bible stories, music, games, crafts, and more. Details are at: https://bridgesvbs.weekly.com I believe that it begins on July 6. If anyone would like to take part, you can sign up on-line. Hopefully, we will be able to offer our own program, next year.
A message of hope and encouragement from LWF “God’s call to mission remains unbroken”: The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) released a letter to all LWF member churches from LWF President Archbishop Dr. Musa Panti Filibus and LWF General Secretary Rev. Dr. Martin Junge. The joint letter was written to give encouragement to LWF member churches facing the impacts of COVID-19 and its various consequences on individuals and communities. Please read the letter by clicking here.
Joint Ecumenical Statement on the Planned Annexation of Occupied Palestinian Territory:
Faith based organizations representing believers worldwide, issued an ecumenical statement expressing its concern over the planned annexation of occupied Palestinian Territories in the West Bank by the Government of Israel. The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) joins with ACT Alliance, The World Communion of Reformed Churches, and the World Council of Churches in calling the international community to take immediate action to directly address the unilateral action. The new threat of annexation entrenches and compounds the ongoing situation of occupation, that has far too long undermined the rights and future of Palestinian people. Read the full text of the Statement when you click here.
LWF 2019 Annual Report: The Lutheran World Federation published its Annual Report for 2019 with the theme – Because We Know God’s Voice. The report highlights the Communion Office collaboration with churches as they witness in their local and global contexts, and their work together for justice, peace and reconciliation in the world. To view our work in this report, please click here.
LIFT (Leading in Faith Today) COURSES AVAILABLE: The Lay Academy is a collaborative program of the Lutheran Theological Seminary and the four Western Synods of the ELCIC, that seeks to provide continuing education opportunities for lay people. The establishment of the Lay Academy came in response to the leadership needs of congregations and the interest expressed by lay people for a comprehensive program of study. Lutheran Theological Seminary invites you to check out the available courses by visiting Leading in Faith Today
LIFT’s curriculum currently consists of 21 courses (over 82 hours of content) in the study areas of Leadership for Mission, Foundations of Ministry (Theology, Scripture, History of Christianity) and Practical Ministry (Worship, Preaching). The courses run from 2 to 6 hours in length and are designed for a lay person to study with the support of a pastor or mentor recommended by their Synod or Diocese Bishop. There are both instructor and student manuals, along with a mentoring guide. For more information see the FAQ section on the website.
PLANNED GIVING: Over the last few months of our personal experiences with the coronavirus, COVID-19, we have re-connected and we have re-evaluated what is important to us. It has been an unexpected journey and it is difficult to know where we will be in the next few weeks. During this time, our congregations have been thrown into the job of re-imagining how to be the church. As individuals, we may find ourselves re-evaluating our lives and what is important, and we may have looked at our Will and Power of Attorney documents to confirm that they are up to date and accurately reflect the legacy we want to leave. You may have gained a new appreciation of what your church is doing during this difficult time and understand that they are doing it with limited resources. A planned gift to your church can support them now and in the future and help them in providing ‘essential services’ during changing times.
A NEW BOOK: Advances in science are being discovered faster than ever. How do they fit with what we already know? How can science reinforce religion and what happened to philosophy anyway? Why is the gulf between them so large? Chris Pedersen is an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Delta and has just written a new book called “Excuse Me Life is Calling”. It is described as follows:
“An informative romp through history of all the great world religions and scientific discovery from the early Greeks to present day. Presented in an easy to read informative way with an enthusiastic writing style. The questions at the end of every chapter energize the reader and encourage discussion motivating conclusions of the readers own making. A worthwhile read for those who contemplate the events of our world both historical and present day that shape our civilization. Pedersen attempts to organize a discussion about the need for science-based religion and theologically influenced science to prevent world chaos.”
It is available at all book outlets, and online at Amazon, and as an e-Book for Kindle, KOBO and Apple Reader.