Happening Now Blog

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pastor's Weekly Message

Dear Friends in Christ,

This Sunday marks the beginning of Advent, our time of waiting and preparing for the coming of our Lord.  The psalmist's plea in Psalm 80:2, "Stir up your power and come!," has become familiar to us in the Advent prayers.  Similarly, Isaiah wants God to rip the heavens open and come down (Isaiah 64:1-9).  Both the psalmist and Isaiah cry out for an apparently distant, angry God to show up, to save, to restore.  When we hear Jesus describing the coming of the Son of Man with stars falling from heaven, it can sound dire and horrible, not like anything we would ever hope for (Mark 13:24-37).  But when we really look at the suffering of people God loves, we can share the hope that God would tear open the heavens and come.

Prayer of the Day

Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come.  By your merciful protection awaken us to the threatening dangers of our sins, and keep us blameless until the coming of your new day, for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen

Announcements:

· Advent begins this Sunday, November 30th, which means that SOV's weekly Advent soup suppers and worship will begin on Wednesday, Dec. 3rd.  Dinner will be served at 5:45 pm, and worship will follow at 6:30 pm.  Please join us for this welcome mid-week respite:  food for body and soul!

In our Prayers

· SOV's Call Committee—prayers for wisdom and guidance, as they review resumes and prepare for a new round of interviews;

· SOV's next pastor (God knows who this is!)—prayers for the guidance of the Holy Spirit, as he or she discerns God's call;

· Prayers for safety and wisdom for all who serve in the military;

· Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are caring for loved ones;

· Prayers of comfort and encourage for all who are seeking employment.

Congregational Meeting Dec. 7th

SOV Family,

We will gather after 11am church to discuss and vote on the 2009 General Operating Budget.  Pizza, salad and beverages will be served at Noon.  The meeting will start as soon as the pizza is served.  We will have a free will offering to help defray the costs of the pizza.  We hope to have day care available during the meeting.

Our council will be available to answer questions and be part of the discussion about our general operating budget for 2009. All members are encouraged to study the proposed budget that is available for review.

The council's goal was to give the congregation a clear picture of what it takes to run the      ministry, programs and pay for the staff of our congregation.

In the economic world that we live in now, the council is clear that the congregation needs to have time to review and discuss the needs and direction of our church as we go forward into a new operating budget for 2009.  This is a time for discussion and look at creative input in order to carry on the programs and needs of maintaining our church.  As we come together for discussion and vote, we hope that you will pray about the financial needs of our church and the reality of how we can work together to find solutions for building our ministry, take care of our current building and build towards the future of Shepherd of the Valley.

Together we can build a plan to find solutions and work as a family of Christ.  If you have any questions, concerns or input please come to the discussion between services on November 30 and to the congregational meeting on December 7. Your council members are always ready to hear your views and encourage everyone's participation in our budget.  Come be part of the excitement as we plan our financial future for 2009.

Together in Christ, all things are possible!

    Diane Lewis, SOV Council President

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Pastor's Weekly Message

Dear Friends in Christ,

This coming Sunday, the festival of Christ the King, marks the end the church year.  Our gospel lesson is Jesus' great story of judgment (Matthew 25:31-46).  In the end, the faithful are those who served Christ by ministering to those who are poor, hungry, naked, sick, or estranged.  In the appointed Old Testament lesson (Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24), God is the shepherd who seeks the lost, weak, and injured and feeds them with justice.  As we gather this Sunday, we celebrate the reign of Christ and his victory over death, yet we also await the consummation of all things yet to come.  Acknowledging Christ as our merciful ruler, we go forth so that his reign may be known in our loving words and deeds.

Prayer of the Day 

O God of power and might, your Son shows us the way of service, and in him we inherit the riches of your grace.  Give us the wisdom to know what is right and the strength to serve the world you have made, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen

Announcements:

· Church decorating for the Advent and Christmas season will take place on Monday, November 24th.  Stay tuned for the time!

· Advent begins on Sunday, November 30th.  That means that SOV's weekly Advent soup suppers and worship will begin on Wednesday, Dec. 3rd.  Dinner will begin at 5:45 pm, and worship will follow at 6:30 pm.

In our prayers:

· SOV's Call Committee—prayers for wisdom and guidance, as they prepare to receive names of pastoral candidates next week;

· SOV's next pastor (God knows who this is!)—prayers for the guidance of the Holy Spirit, as he or she discerns God's call;

· Prayers for safety and wisdom for all who serve in the military;

· Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are caring for loved ones;

· Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are unemployed.

Coffee Time

For those folks who might be new to the congregation and for those who have been around for some time, please remember that we have an early-morning coffee klatch at Tanasbourne Starbucks on Tuesdays.  Some come as early as 7:00am and others run a little late!!  We fellowship and drink some Starbucks.  We will not be meeting next week because of Thanksgiving, however, the following Tuesday, December 2nd, we plan on meeting.  Please join us for some wonderful conversation and enjoy the company of other SOV members.  It is a great way to get to know people in a small group setting.
 
Nancy
PS  Any questions, please give me a call at church - 645-4994.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Thanksgiving Baskets

Social Concerns will be leading the assembly and delivery of SOV's annual Thanksgiving Food Baskets this Saturday, November 22.  We still need people to meet at the Winco on Cornelius Pass Road at 8:00am to help purchase the food and bring it to church, as well as people to help with assembly at church at 10:00am and people to help deliver baskets afterwards.  If you can help with any of these things, please contact Larina Hoffbeck.  Knowing in advance how many people we have for each task greatly helps our ability to plan and organize so that things go smoothly on Saturday.  Thank you!


Saturday, November 22

RSVP for:
8am at Winco (Cornelius Pass/Cornell)
10am at SOV

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Pastor's Weekly Message

Dear Friends in Christ,

Our Scripture readings during November speak of the end times.  The prophets proclaim that the day of the Lord will be filled with wrath and distress. Paul says it will come like a thief in the night and urges us to be awake and sober.  Jesus tells the parable of the talents, calling us to use our gifts, while we still have time, for the greater and common good.  In a world filled with violence and despair, we gather around signs of hope—word, water, bread and wine—eager to welcome the good news of Christ's coming among us.

Prayer of the Day

Righteous God, our merciful master, you own the earth and all its peoples, and you give us all that we have.  Inspire us to serve you with justice and wisdom, and prepare us for the joy of the day of your coming, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.  Amen

Announcements

· Thanksgiving baskets will be assembled on Saturday morning, November 22nd, beginning at 10 am.  Helping hands are much appreciated!

· Church decorating for the Advent and Christmas season will take place on Monday, November 24th.  Stay tuned for the time!

· Advent begins on Sunday, November 30th.  That means that SOV's weekly Advent soup suppers and worship will begin on Wednesday, Dec. 3rd.  Dinner will begin at 5:45 pm, and worship will follow at 6:30 pm.

In our prayers

· SOV's Call Committee—prayers for wisdom and guidance, as they prepare to receive names of pastoral candidates next week;

· SOV's next pastor (God knows who this is!)—prayers for the guidance of the Holy Spirit, as he or she discerns God's call;

· Prayers for safety and wisdom for all who serve in the military;

· Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are caring for loved ones;

· Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are unemployed.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Potluck Potluck Potluck

To SOV family - a friendly reminder that there will be an old-fashioned potluck right after the second service this coming Sunday, November 9th.

Food! Fellowship! Sharing Information!

We are gathering after 11 AM church, on November 9, for an old-fashioned Lutheran potluck lunch.   (Red jello is optional)

After we share some fellowship time and our meal we will have the opportunity to ask questions about different areas of our congregations direction.

More information will be available on what we can expect for pay package options as the call committee prepares to receive names of prospective pastoral candidates.  We will have the opportunity to review our financial requests for the planning of our new general budget and work to help the congregation understand what goes into creating the proposed budget for the coming year.

Leadership will be available to receive and give information in areas of the building committee, ideas for paying off the mortgage, status of the capital campaign, KOK and any other areas of our church that our membership is interested in discussing.

We want to respond to our member's interest, ideas and questions as we work to build more unified community. Our goal is to share information with each other, become better informed and involved so that as a congregation can strengthen our foundation in Christ for all areas of ministry at Shepherd of the Valley.

If we are unable to answer a question, then we will research it and get back with a response.

This is a time for everyone to be better informed and part of how we can better serve each other and the ministries of our church. 

Members with last names A-L can bring a main dish and M-Z can bring a salad.  Ice cream and beverages will be provided. 

Child care will be available during our sharing time after we have lunch.

Please contact the Executive committee for further information.
(Diane Lewis, Peggy Vermaas, Lee Bonacker, Valsala George and Ken Harris)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Pastor's Weekly Message

Dear Friends in Christ,

During November our worship is filled with images of the communion of saints, judgment, and the Second Coming of Christ.  The prophet Amos says the day of the Lord will be one of gloom and darkness, and he calls for justice to roll down like waters (Amos 5:18-24).   Promoting justice is one of the ways you and I can help prepare the way of the Lord.  In our gospel lesson, Jesus tells the parable of the wise and foolish bridesmaids in order to illustrate the urgency of living in readiness for the Lord's coming at all times (Matthew 25:1-13).

Prayer of the Day

O God of justice and love, you illumine our way through life with the words of your Son.  Give us the light we need and awaken us to the needs of others, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.  Amen

Announcements:

THANK YOU to all who helped provide the wonderful Thanksgiving dinner here at SOV last night!  I heard that the crew set up 156 chairs, and there weren't very many empty ones!  There weren't any empty tummies or hearts, either.

This coming Sunday, November 9th, there will be another opportunity to gather together as a church family.  We will share a potluck meal, and members of the congregation's leadership will share information about what's going on with the ministries of SOV.  Food for body, mind, and soul—don't miss out! 

In our prayers:

·Prayers for safety and wisdom for all who serve in the military;

·Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are caring for loved ones;

·Prayers for strength and guidance for all who are unemployed.