Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ of Calvary Lutheran Church, Wellington,
Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
We are in the period of pre-lent right now, with all the Latin names for the Sundays leading up to the first Sunday in Lent: Septuagesima, Sexagesima, Quinquagesima. The words stand for the seventy, sixty and fifty days before Easter. It used to be that violet paraments and vestments were worn during the pre-lent season, but it is more common nowadays to use the color green for this season. But whatever color is used, we are approaching the season of Lent that begins with Ash Wednesday on February 10th very quickly.
During the season of Lent this year we will be having Wednesday services at 7 pm. Please join us for the Word of the Lord, “who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” (1 Peter 2:9).
Vickie, Vanessa and I want to thank everyone for their prayers during our travel to the west coast to see our new granddaughters, Autumn and Marian and our daughters Elizabeth and Amy, and their families, as well as my sister Diane and her husband. It seems all of our family is either in Kansas or the west coast. We had a great time. The high point was the baptism of our granddaughter Marian Grace Lyle at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Santa Rosa, California, which I had the privilege to perform.
We are continuing our Bible class study of the Augsburg Confession–a fifteen-part study of the Lutheran confession of faith that is the centerpiece of the Book of Concord. Each lesson in our study begins with prayer and then we look at contemporary life situation that relates to the article of the Augsburg Confession for that Sunday’s discussion. For instance, from our class two weeks ago:
“You are at a family reunion with family members representing a variety of religions and Christian denominations. The topic turns to a polite conversation about God. One family member says she likes to think of God as a force of good and evil in the world. Another family member says that God the father is the real god, his son is less than god but does the father’s work, and the Holy Spirit is the energy of the church. Another family member says that he’s a Christian, but believes the prayers of all people ultimately funnel to the same god. Another family member says that the father is the god of the Old Testament, Jesus is the god of the New Testament, and Holy Spirit is the god of the church today. Then someone ask you, ‘How would you describe God?’ How would you begin to formulate your thoughts?” (from Lutheran Doctrine and Practice Today: A Study of the Augsburg Confession, Rev. Dr. James A Baneck, CPH)
Hypothetical scenarios such as the one above kick-start spirited and open discussion among those in our Bible group, which then leads us naturally into the topic of the day from the Augsburg Confession– in the above case, Article I, God. We look at how God is presented and described in Holy Scripture, and how that scriptural testimony is presented and explained in the Augsburg Confession. Therefore, our Bible study is not simply a look at the history of the Lutheran confessions, but a realization of how they have expressed the true Christian faith for Lutherans for almost five centuries. As we rapidly approach our celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation in 2017, we will continue to look at what the Reformation was, and why it is still important.
So I invite all of you to join us in our study of the Lutheran confession of faith, what makes Lutherans Lutherans. We have copies of the Augsburg Confession for you to use. You don’t have to have been in the class from the beginning. Wherever you join in will be of benefit to you in your growing in the faith.
Our Sunday school program is using Concordia Publishing House (CPH) materials for lessons again. The materials are attractive, informative, and fun for the children, with stories, games and crafts ideas. The lessons are all Gospel oriented, as well. An additional benefit of using the CPH materials is that the major stories of the Bible are covered over a three year period.
Blessings in Christ,
We are still in need of ushers for this year. If you are interested in volunteering, please sign-up in the Parish Hall.
What is Lent?
It is forty days of stripping down to the living essentials; It is forty days of facing truth about one’s self-indulgent evasions; It is forty days of fellowshipping with Christ in the desert; It is forty days of rejoicing in God’s mercy and forgiveness.
Refocus for Lent
Give up complaining – focus on gratitude.
Give up harsh judgments – think kind thoughts.
Give up worry – trust God to provide.
Give up discouragement – be full of hope.
Give up bitterness – turn to forgiveness.
Give up hatred – return good for evil.
Give up anger – be more patient.
Give up pettiness – become mature.
Give up jealousy – pray for trust.
Give up gossiping – control your tongue.
Give up sin – turn to virtue.
Give up giving up – persevere.
Please remember the homebound
Elmer Naasz: 102 W. Botkin
Frances Meyers: 8300 N.W. Barry Road, Kansas City, MO 64153
Wanda Peterson: 1600 West 8th Room 110
Otto & Norma Fischer 750 N. Missouri St. Apt 119 Ulysses, KS 67880-1870