Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church Lillian Alabama February 2015 Lent We live in difficult times. Our culture is changing rapidly. Sometimes we feel left behind, left out, uncertain of our place in this “postmodern” world. Our mid-week Lenten services this year will help us to put things in perspective and allow us to understand how God has called us into community in His church and how this “communion of saints” can bring us much comfort, strength and hope as we walk together on our way to the cross, His empty tomb, and our resurrection unto eternal life. Come join us on Wednesday evenings beginning on Feb. 18 as our little community of saints here at Shepherd of the Bay meet at 6:00 pm for a soup and sandwich supper and then gather together for Divine Service to hear God’s word for us. Pastor Leigeber Ash Wednesday February 18 From our Hearts Valentine Collection Personal Care Kits During February and March we will be gathering personal care kits and fleece blankets for Lutheran World Relief. We will collect the stuff at the Lent services and at the Valentine Lunch For details see the LWML and PSM articles on page 2. For details on the Valentine Lunch see the Lunch Bunch article on page 6. LWML - Personal Care Kits We will assemble kits at Easter that will be sent to mission fields by Lutheran World Relief. Our goal is to have 50 kits this year, twice as many as we have ever done before. Please help – there will be a basket at the church to drop your donations in: Bars of Soap - unopened. Major item, lots needed Bath Towels lightweight, 27X52” maximum Toothbrushes. Adult. Unopened Combs and Nail clippers Cash (or check) donations can be used to purchase items we need. Donations for the kits will also be collected at the Lunch Bunch Valentine Lunch. It will be your “ticket” to get in. Give a gift from the heart.... Prayer Shawl Ministry (PSM) will meet Friday, February 13, 1-3PM in the Fellowship Hall. At the meeting we will begin making No-Sew Fleece Tied Blankets for Lutheran World Relief, which will use them to protect and comfort needy people around the world.. Bright, colorful, sturdy and warm, Fleece Tied Blankets are a soft, cozy reminder that someone cares. This is an easy and fun global outreach service project sponsored by our LWML. All you need to bring to the meeting is a part of sharp scissors, and know how to tie a knot. It is that simple. Funding to help purchase fleece material is generously given to us by Thrivent Financial for Lutherans. Please come and bring a friend. To God Be the Glory. Sally Smith Pastor Wargo's Bible Class God Is Not! Dead February 9 – 16 – 23 We will look at the movie “God's Not Dead” and Bible study material designed for churches using the film in Bible Classes. This was a very successful movie by Hollywood standards; lots of people came to see it in the theaters. However, it was also criticized by reviewers in the press for the script, characters, and various story lines not being very realistic. This may be true, but the issues of faith and witness are indeed real. We will focus on the issues of faith, in particular how faith in the existence of God is defended. And we will look at our own lives, particularly in light of 1 Peter 3:15: Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have...” In order to maintain continuity as we watch the movie we will have class THREE MONDAYS IN A ROW in February. Lunch at 11:30 and class from noon to 1:00 (or so....). The movie includes an appearance and music by the Newsboys. If you aren't familiar with this group you might want to check them out online, especially the songs “God is Not Dead” and “We Believe”. For those who like the movie we could plan to go as group to see the sequel “Do You Believe” when it comes out in theaters on March 20. From the Pastor Let us set our eyes on Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2 In a couple of weeks we will celebrate Ash Wednesday and begin a journey to the cross with Jesus. On this journey, we learn from him how to live with joy, even in a broken and dying world. He has overcome the world, for us. The time is short for us here. We are looking for a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness. Our home…forever. Let us set our eyes on Jesus. He was the King. “His first home was a palace. Servants were at his fingertips. The snap of his fingers changed the course of history. His name was known and loved. He had everything – wealth, power, respect. And then…. he had nothing.” (Max Lacado) How could a king lose everything in one instant? He went from plenty to poverty. He was homeless. He owned nothing but the clothes on his back. He was dependent upon handouts for his income. He was sometimes so hungry he would eat raw grain from the field or pick fruit off a tree. He knew what it was like to be rained on, to be cold. He went from riches to rags in a moment. His palace grounds had been spotless; now he was exposed to filth. He had never known disease,but was now surrounded by illness. In his kingdom he had been revered; now he was ridiculed. Hisneighbors tried to lynch him. Some called him a lunatic. Those who didn’t ridicule him tried to use him. They wanted favors. They wanted tricks. He was a novelty. They wanted to be seen with him – that is, until being with him was out of fashion. THEN they wanted to kill him. He was accused of a crime he never committed. Witnesses were hired to lie. The jury was rigged. No lawyer was assigned to his defense. A Judge swayed by politics handed down the death penalty. They killed him. He was buried in a borrowed grave, his funeral financed by a friend. Though he once had everything, he died with nothing. He should have been miserable. He should have been bitter. He had every right to be a pot of boiling anger. But he wasn’t. He was joyful…He was joyful when he was poor. He was joyful when he was abandoned. He was joyful when he was betrayed. He was even joyful as he hung on a cross, his hands pierced with six-inch Roman spikes…Jesus embodied a stubborn joy; a joy that refused to bend in the wind of hard times. A joy that held its ground against pain…." Here we see the very truth that the writer of Hebrews proclaims, “For the joy that was set beforeHim, Jesus endured the cross!” He endured the cross for you and for me and He did so with greatjoy knowing that it was the only way for us to be saved. As we move forward into this year, as we quickly approach the Lenten season; let us remember with never ending joy that God, the word made flesh came and lived among us and died upon the cross so that we might be saved. Lord we pray that You keep our eyes focused upon His glory until He comes again! Pastor Leigeber Stewardship CONGRATULATIONS!! WE HAVE RAISED 118% OF OUR GIVING GOAL FOR THE 2 MONTHS SINCE OUR CONGREGATIONAL MEETING IN NOVEMBER. Our general offerings goal for January was $9,154. Our actual offerings for January were $10,202. Our estimated expenses for February are $8,544. Word and Deed continues. It ensures that our neighbors’ state and well-being is cared for and attended to. It ensures that our neighbors have access to our heavenly Father’s mercy just as we have received it here in time for all eternity. (LCMS Stewardship Resources) Debby Rotonda, Susan Church, Sally Smith Crossword Puzzle- How much do you know? 1 2 Our estimated expenses for March are $12,753. 3 It is important to build a healthy bank balance in these EARLY months in order to cover the expenses that need to be paid over the summer months when our attendance drops and the snowbirds return north. 4 E 5 6 7 8 We have a quarterly insurance bill that will have to be paid in March for $2,932. Our generous giving during these early months will enable us to meet these quarterly payments and still continue to pay the normal expenses. Be merciful as your Father in heaven is merciful” (Luke 6:36). The word for mercy that Jesus uses here has a more concrete meaning than what we typically associate with mercy. It means more than just being kind. It means to be concerned about your neighbor’s state and well-being. Thus, Jesus taught that we are to care, to be concerned about our neighbor’s state and well-being even as our Father in heaven cares for and is concerned about our state and well-being. And since this is how the church lives and what the church does, this is likewise how Christians live and what Christians do. That is why giving to the church is so important. It ensures that the proclamation of the forgiveness of sins in 9 R Across: 2. treasurer 4.things we plan to buy in the near future are called 7. a plan to balance income and expenses 9.highest expense Down: 1.second highest expense 3. council president 5. money set aside for future needs 6. average lowest giving month 8. head elder Puzzle answers next month or for those that can’t wait go to http://www.puzzlefast.com/en/puzzles/20150122 280062 Elder’s Report Food pantry Elders include Pastor Leigeber, Dan Church, Mike Rotunda, John Young, and Gary Bobleter. Our meeting included discussion points submitted by individual Elders. A good dialog followed to address each of the items; following is a brief summary. Gary will get out a schedule of Elders and ushers to support worship services. A class for training will be held on January 25. Men and women members (including winter only Visitors) may serve as ushers. (There is a volunteer usher sign up list in the Narthex.) A volunteer “visitor’s pool” will be reactivated to assist pastor to make followup calls on prospective new members, members with special needs, and others in the community needing help. Pastor will not be expected to make every call, but there will be a list of members whom he can call on to either make calls with him or in his place. Plans are underway to reactivate our Men’s‘ Club. We will begin to review the possibility of providing a community dinner one Sunday a month at the Lillian Community Club beginning next fall. The congregation will be asked for their input on this subject. It was agreed that we should update our church photo directory with new photos, as several new members have joined the church since the last directory was published. Loree Hadley has agreed to take the photos as well as process them for the new directory. This task should be completed in February. Respectfully Submitted, Gary Bobleter Notice: This just In...... LWML ladies will provide lunch on February 21 for Habitat for Humanity workers building a house in Foley sponsored by Thrivent. Contact Marie to help. Marie Anderson Some of the 1474 pounds of food delivered to the Food Pantry on January 22. The Food Pantry will be open this month on Tuesdays, Feb 10 & 24. If you can help to hand out all this food please contact me. Claudette Bobleter. Outreach Evangelism is allowing God to use you today, as you are and where you are!!! Sometimes we think we need to change and be better before we can be God’s witnesses. St. Paul writes in 1 Cor. 7:29 “The appointed time has grown very short”. There is no time to waste. Today is the day to reach out with the love of Christ and touch others. Stop procrastinating! The time is short. 1Cor. 1:18-31 reminds us that it is ultimately not about us….but about God: what God is doing for us, in us and through us. Take a few moments today to consider what God has done for you by giving his Son to die your death and rise from the grave to give you eternal life. Consider how God has blessed you with hope and comfort that can’t be found in this world. Consider how God is calling you to be his witness to those around you. Then be prepared to share your faith and your Savior with the people in your life by what you say and do. Vera Jacobson Notice: This Just In..... Choir is starting up again. Rehearsals will be Thursdays at 10:00 and Sundays at 8:15 and we will be practicing for Easter as well as Sundays! Pastor Wargo will show video from the Songfest in Bible Class on Feb. 9 Fred Heinecke is settled in at his new home at Belvedere in Franklin, TN. Son, Kurt, and his family visit every day. They was able to find the Portals of Prayer devotion they had shared with Mom the last time they saw her on January 11 last year. Kurt and Dad had a nice devotion to celebrate Mom's life and reflect on what a year it has been. Pastor Harold Hoeferkamp and Ellie were here for the service on January 11. He is retiring from substitute preaching so we celebrated with a special cake. God's blessings to Pastor H! We will miss you!! Fred with granddaughter Gretchen In memory of Betty the LWML is sending $100 to Valparaiso in her name for the Music program. The Lunch Bunch will have a special Good Shepherd Lutheran School, Elberta, was proud to join with the nearly 2,300 preschools, elementary schools and high schools nationwide in observing National Lutheran Schools Week, Jan. 25 thru 31. This year's theme, "Standing in Christ, serving others", is based on "For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). Lutheran schools have a history of providing excellent academic preparation while also helping to raise up the next generation of faithful Christian disciples. Good Shepherd Lutheran School is located next to St. Mark's Lutheran School, Elberta. Charlotte Bailey “From the Heart” Valentine lunch at Lillian Pizza on Perdido Key on Thursday, February 12, at 11:30. They have a pizza buffet and a large seating area. All you snowbirds are invited to share this special time with us. Bring an item or two for the Personal Care Kits as your “ticket”. Cash donations will do, too. In January the Lunch Bunch met in the wine cellar at Vallartas, which is actually a secret tunnel under the bay for the benefit of their customers in the event the bridge is blocked by snow drifts after a blizzard.
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