Happening Now Blog

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Capital Campaign Update

Have you wondered?
Some may question why we continue to have a Capital Campaign when we have general fund deficit and there are improvements or maintenance issue for the current building we occupy.

It is not all uncommon in today's economic times for churches to be having general budget deficit.

Improvements and or maintenance issues, to our current building, continue to be on the forefront of how best to maintain the current facility until such time as a new building can be constructed while maintaining the fiduciary responsibility of the building fund.

That being said the largest obstacle we (SOV) faces is waiting for the property/land to sell in order to have the funds necessary to fulfill the hopes and dreams of the future of SOV's building project. Just because the property (land) does not sell does not mean the money raised and being raised is at a loss.

We can always re-evaluate our current building dreams should that become necessary.

We would like to "Thank" everyone for the gifts whether you are one time givers or regular givers.

As we said in the beginning of the Capital Campaign; contributions to the Capital Campaign are to be given after your funds are contributed to the general fund of the Church.

We trust our vision, hopes and dreams will allow your continued support of the reality of the Capital Campaign.

"Building on Christ our Foundation"

Bob R. McFall & Tammy McDonald
Executive Directors - Capital Campaign

Invitation from your parish nurse

Friday's Prayer Vigil; if you are unable to attend the prayer vigil on Friday, January 29th from 10:00 - 8:00, you may send your prayer requests to secretarysov [at] gmail [dot] com. Those attending the prayer vigil will include your requests in prayers held through out the day.
Two Baptisms will take place at Shepherd of the Valley on Sunday, January 31st.
Corrine Gilbertson and Jordan Gilbertson will be Baptized at the 11:00 service on Sunday .  They are Granddaughter's of Larry and Corrine Gilbertson and currently attending college in Oregon.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"Light is sweet, and it is pleasant for the eyes to see the sun."  Ecclesiastes 11:7
It was one of those days that was not really expected, and the light was a sweet surprise.  The sun was out and the temperature mild and thoughts turned to spring even though it is only the end of January.  (Truthfully though there are things sprouting at home, and buds on some of the bushes, so the time is not too far off.)
It is the kind of time that lifts the spirits and draws me outside to do nothing but stand and look.  The view from the deck of the church is a pretty interesting one.  Yes there is traffic on both sides which provides a constant hum if not a dull roar.  But there is much more.  It is all enhanced by the light of the sun.  Even the mounds of the pocket gophers don't seem so bad (okay, that is easy to say from up on the deck) each is the enhancement of the sun light.
There were a few robins hopping around, cocking their heads in the funny way they do before they find another worm to mince up and then gobble down.  And there is the group of ducks, don't know if it is more than one family or not.  Every time someone approaches the bridge that crosses Bronson Creek the ducks come hustling out of the tall grasses as if to collect a toll.  Enough people bring bread to toss to them that they seem to believe that everyone will do the same.  Their optimistic expectations make me smile and give encouragement as well.
There are many more people out than usual, dogs and kids running ahead.  The sun will do that.  It is "sweet" and "pleasant" indeed. 
And the moment of this writing it is now dark and the rains have returned again.  But the light and warmth of this day remains sweet and pleasant in my mind.  Thanks for the gifts Lord and for the chance to take it all in.
Much peace,
Pastor Randy
"Open our eyes, O gracious God, to all the good that you provide us.  Let us look back upon past blessings ... and then forward to blessings we anticipate.  And in between past and future, show us how many kindnesses you are providing right now, beginning with your ever-present love in Jesus Christ, our Savior, who shared our pain and joy, and shares in it still.  Amen."
This evening; 
 Healing Worship Service at 6:30 pm

Friday January 29th, Prayer Vigil 10:00 - 8:00 pm
Feel free to stop by anytime to spend a moment in silent prayer; for you, the church or the world as a whole, materials will be available to guide you if needed.

Sunday January 31st at both worship services
A day of celebration and reflection on our past, current and future commitments to the church and to God.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

This week at SOV

Events you won't want to miss ...

Wednesday, January 27, 2010 6:30 PM Healing Worship Service

Friday, January 29, 2010 10:00 – 8:00 PM Prayer Vigil, (take time from your busy day to stop by and pray for your needs and/or the needs of the church, the world)

Sunday, January 31, 2010 Re commitment Sunday

The Capital Campaign committee is preparing a special time during our worship services on January 31. Starting a new year in a new decade gives us the opportunity to come together and recommit ourselves to the ministry and missions of our church as individuals and a body of Christ at SOV. We can also share in celebrating what we have accomplished, where we are and the plans for growth together. This will also be a time that we can reaffirm our baptism and how we can live our lives for His service.

This past year has been a challenging one for all of us. The national/ global recession continues to impact us on all levels of financial capacity and stability. Our congregation clearly has been impacted by the economy with the reality of being faced with a $12,000 deficit in our general budget for 2009 and as we face tough decisions for our 2010 budget.

Working towards strengthening of our Capital Campaign is about the whole ministry of Shepherd of the Valley; us as individuals within the church family as well as recommitting to our financial goals. It is a time to ask ourselves how we can fund and implement being, "A caring community, touched by Christ, touching others for Christ".

In all that is happening in the world we are given the knowledge once again that we need to come together….for our families, our church, our community and for needs in the world. Decisions and the commitment to our decisions will help make a difference in all areas of our congregation. As a family of Christ at Shepherd of the Valley we can take this time to prayerfully recommit ourselves to the direction for growth with our membership; for enhancing our programs; our missions and outreach; financially supporting our general budget and planning for our future.

Let's work to live out our mission statement and continue to be a church that is "Building on Christ our Foundation". As we work together to be a Body of Christ, one in faith and one in our mission we will accomplish what God has planned for SOV.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Healing Service, Prayer Vigil, Re-Commitment Sunday

Have you included SOV in your agenda next week?

An opportunity for healing, a time for prayerful reflection and your commitment to God, will be offered next week at Shepherd of the Valley.
Wednesday, January 27th at 6:30 pm  Healing Worship Service~
Friday, January 29th 10:00 - 8:00 pm Prayer Vigil~  (click here for details - PDF)

Sunday, January 31st
The Capital Campaign committee is preparing a special time during our worship services on January 31. We will use this opportunity to recommit ourselves to the present and future of our congregation.

Starting a new year in a new decade gives us the opportunity to come together and recommit ourselves to the ministry and missions of our church as individuals and a body of Christ at SOV. We can also share in celebrating what we have accomplished, where we are and the plans for growth together. This special Sunday can also be a time to reflect and recommit ourselves to our own baptism.

Working towards strengthening of our Capital Campaign is about the whole ministry of Shepherd of the Valley; us as individuals within the church family as well as recommitting to our financial goals. 

Come and join in the worship and fellowship of this special Sunday and be part of shaping the future of our congregation. Please continue to keep our church in your prayers as we work to "Build on Christ, Our foundation".

...remembering that everything we have comes from Him.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises."  Psalm 98:4
Every year at this time, or at least the last 13 years of my existence, time is marked by the singing of frogs.  Our house is near Cox Creek, a hot bed for frogs, and usually at the season of Lent they begin to sing ( a little earlier this year because of a couple of weeks of mild temperatures I guess).  To some it may not sound like singing at all, but more a cacophon (isn't that a great word?) of sound.  In the dead of winter, when so much seems lifeless, the frogs are singing.  For me they are what the psalmist is writing about.  Their noise is a joyful one indeed, almost like clockwork, "all the earth" offers song to the Lord.
Hear the singing too sometimes when I am sitting in my office.  This time it is a flock of geese landing in Bronson Creek Park, right behind the church.  They announce themselves before they really arrive.  Oh, I know they make a mess, and not everyone is wild about their presence, but as they swoop in, and after a few passes begin to land, their honking is a song to my ears, and a magnificent one at that.
Sitting in a meeting Tuesday night, hearing the youth choir practice and there is more of the same happening.  They "break forth into joyous song and sing praises".
It seems the "joyful noise" is all over the place.  May we hear it.  May we become part of it ourselves.  Don't worry about it being pretty by others standards, the joy will do, and shine through grandly. 
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"God of majesty, whom saints and angels delight to worship:  Pour out your Spirit on your servants who, with the gifts of music, enliven our praises and proclaim your word with power.  Give us a new awareness of your beauty and grace, and join our voices with all the choirs of heaven, both now and forever; through your son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen."
Tonight; Evening worship 6:30 pm

Council Meeting, Thursday January 21 @ 7:00 pm
Confirmation Retreat; Friday January 22, 6:00 pm - Saturday 12:00 pm

Remember the prayer vigil, Friday January 29th 10 - 8 pm watch for more information about it.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

LWR and Haiti Earthquake

You can donate to Lutheran World Relief's Haiti earthquake response.  Here's the link to do it directly: http://www.lwr.org/emergencies/10/HaitiEarthquake/  or you can give to SOV, mark it "Haiti earthquake" on the memo line and SOV will send the funds on to LWR after a week or two?  Mercy Corps is also a consistently high-rated charity (by the American Institute of Philanthropy) that people might want to donate to: http://www.mercycorps.org/ in their response efforts.
Any questions can be directed to Larina Hoffbeck at hoffbeck [at] verizon [dot] net.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses."  I Corinthians 12:11
That is Paul's writing.  It is in the middle of this chapter, and he is focusing on gifts that people have been given, and are now sharing.  How those gifts are used to be a blessing to one another, to strengthen them in the unity of the Spirit.
Those words are still pertinent to the world of today.  So many gifts, so often mis-used, or allowed to languish, and the Spirit's choices are ignored, or battled belligerently.
As I sat the other day with a group of pastors, and heard of great joys and burdensome sorrows, and far too often of division within communities of faith.  (Not surprised, but still shocked, if that makes sense.)  Tale after tale of congregations suffering their own self-righteousness.  So much that needs to be done.  So many lives to touch and bless, and time is spent on in-fighting instead.  It is not necessarily a matter of judgment but shaking the head over energies and gifts better spent.
SOV has been richly blessed, so many gifts, personalities, possibilities.  The Spirit calls this community as well.  May we see clearly all that we share "together", and use our gifts well.  It is time to get busier.
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"We each bring many gifts to the church - each given by God for us to share without reservation.  For when we come together, sharing our gifts, the Spirit of God weaves them together, bringing unity.  All our gifts, activities and service come together for the common good.  We affirm the gifts of God: wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, discernment, speaking in various languages and their interpretation.  All these are the work of the same Spirit and are given to each by the grace of God, for the glory of God.  Amen."
Prayers for the people of Haiti as they try to recover from the devastating earth quake, for Christine Edgar's nephew Michael. 

Joyous Light Evening worship this evening at 6:30 pm
Adult Sunday School resumes this Sunday, January 17th @ 10:00 am
Ushers needed for both worship services March, April & May
Time slots still available for January 29th Prayer Vigil

Saturday, January 9, 2010

This Sunday January 10th

SOV Family
We had a wonderful open discussion on leadership, growing together and reaching out to others today with John Cross of Kairos.
Time ran out during our session to view a short video titled; Celebrating What's Right with the World.
This video presentation will be offered at 10 am this Sunday January 10th during adult Sunday school hour.
Please plan to attend this wonderful video presentation.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Do you really want to miss out?

Here is another invitation to join us on Saturday at SOV for the Stewardship/Leadership "Growing Together" training. Have you said to yourself "not really interested . . . . it cuts into my Saturday . . . . one day of church a week is enough . . . I don't want to be a leader." Here's another thought.

Have you become acquainted with all of the SOV family members? Are all acquainted with you? All our SOV activities, while having a focus, are really an opportunity for you to get better connected with one another. Connecting. It takes time and opportunity. Come to visit. Come to hear some ideas. Come to share some ideas. Working together. That's how things happen at SOV. Have you ever attended an event at SOV and not enjoyed yourself??? God is leading us.

Hope to see you there!!!!  
please RSVP to Tammy

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy." Matthew 2:10

The "they" in the verse are the "wise men" of course.  And the joy that they know is easily imaginable.  The search they had been undertaking had been sort of a wild gamble to begin with, and it had gone on and on.  They had known doubts and desperation and now their hopes had been met with a resounding yes, in the form of  a star and a child, and his mother.
Was it all they hoped for, because it really doesn't seem like all that much?  They "paid homage", gave gifts, and left, never to be heard of again in the writings of Matthew.  What we do know is they were "overwhelmed with joy".  Such joy may not last long, but the moment of it may last for a life time.  (It can be relived over and over again.)
Ah, the things we long for, search for, and the times we are "overwhelmed with joy".  Sometimes it seems the longing and searching never ends (did the wisemen feel that way too?).  Or maybe it all just starts over again.  So, there is a need to recall the moments of joy, and to recall them again and again, when the journey seems to go on too long.  Remember the things that bring a smile to your face, making the folks around you wonder why you are grinning like a fool.  It feels good doesn't it?
The adventure continues indeed, and it is a constant one.  What the wisemen were looking for is already ours.  Now we can also pay attention to the other joys that come our way, and see them all in the light of that star.
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"O God, on this day you revealed your Son to the nations by the leading of a star.  Lead us now by faith to know your presence in our lives, and bring us at last to the full vision of your glory, through your son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one god, now and forever.  Amen"
Joyous Light Evening worship service tonight  6:30pm
Men's Night @ Old Chicago Pizza Thursday 1/7
"Growing Together" session with John Cross Saturday 1/9 12-2pm
please RSVP to secretarysov [at] gmail [dot] com (lunch will be served)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Your invitation

Come One Come All

Whether or not you have ever thought of being a leader at SOV or elsewhere you have a wonderful opportunity to hear how God intends for you to lead.

Please come and learn from John Cross, (Kairos) Saturday January 9th at SOV, 12:00 noon until 2:00 PM

A light snack will be provided so please let Tammy McDonald know you are going to participate by emailing her, secretarysov [at] gmail [dot] com.

Blessings to you all

Bob R. McFall and Tammy McDonald
Executive Directors - Capital Campaign