Happening Now Blog

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"After Jesus had spoken these words, he went out with his disciples........"   John 18:1
These words Jesus had spoken were the longest prayer he offers in the any of the gospels.  He prayed for the protection of his disciples and all those who would come to faith as a result of their witness.  So, he prayed for us as well.  He had already washed their feet, instituted the meal we still celebrate, and spoke to them of a love that would set them apart in the world.
And then he went out, to his betrayal, his suffering and death on the cross.
Tonight there will be a service of prayer and healing and then begins the "Sacred Triduum" consisting of Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.  In those days we focus on the Eucharist, the triumph of the cross, and baptism.  At one time in history most buying and selling stopped so the days could receive their due focus.  That is not our present reality, but we can still take some moments to dwell on the drama that unfolds and the divine mystery that lies before us.
Prepare for the resurrection of the Christ.
In His name,
Pastor Randy
"Almighty God, your Son our Savior suffered at human hands and endured the shame of the cross.  Grant that we may walk in the way of his cross and find it the way of life and peace, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen."

This week
Wednesday;  Healing Service 6:30 pm
Thursday;      Maundy Thursday Service 6:30 pm
Friday;          Stations of the Cross 12:00 - 6:00 pm
                     Good Friday Service 6:30 pm
Sunday;        Easter Sunday Services at 8:30 & 11:00 am
                     Easter Breakfast 9:45 - 10:45 am
                     Easter Egg Hunt 12:00 pm

April Newsletter is available online 

Friday, March 26, 2010

See their faces, hear their stories and feel their struggle

Remember Me:


Faces of the Missing

Dear Friend,

Remember Me: Voices of the Silenced in Colombia is an exhibit of original art created and inspired by victims of violence in Colombia.


On April 18, 2010, Lutheran World Relief is launching a three-year tour of Remember Me. From April 2010 to April 2011, the gallery will be on display in locations around the Midwest. The gallery will be on display from 2011-12 throughout the west coast. East coast showings will take place from early 2012 to 2013.

LWR invites you to come, see the experience through their eyes, and let your heart be moved.

To learn more about the "Remember Me" exhibit, please visit remember.lwr.org.


April 18-May 3 Central Lutheran Church Minneapolis, MN
May 7-8 SE Minnesota Assembly Rochester, MN
May 10-16 Augustana College Sioux Falls, SD
May 18-31 First Lutheran Church Sioux Falls, SD
June 2-9 St. Marks Lutheran Church Sioux Falls, SD
June 10-13 South Dakota Synod Assembly Rapid City, SD
June 15-23 Our Saviors Lutheran Church Sioux Falls, SD
June 25-26 Mountain Lake Public School Mountain Lake, MN
August 1-29 Gethsemane Lutheran Church Hopkins, MN








Or please consider hosting Remember Me if you don't see a location near you.

By and large, the stories of victims go untold. Truth is silenced with fear and deadly oppression. But to achieve peace, these voices must be heard!

We cannot change the painful history of Colombia, but together we can change the future.

Please click here to preview the art.

In Christ,

John A. Nunes

John A. Nunes
President and CEO
Lutheran World Relief

Thursday, March 25, 2010

In Memory of Pr. Don Beake

Our brother, retired Pastor Don Beake, passed away last Friday after a battle with cancer. While certainly a loss for us all, Don's wife Jean reports that he died peacefully at home and that both she and their daughter Jody were present for his passing. They rejoice in his life and the certainty of the life to come. Thank you for your prayers and support of the family during Don's illness.

A service of worship and celebration offered in Don's memory will be held Saturday, April 10, 2010 at 11 AM at Zion Lutheran Church in Redmond, OR.  Pr. John Maas, a close friend of Don's, will be preaching and Pr. Frank Brocker will preside. Any and all friends and family are welcome to attend. Clergy will not be vesting, but please grace the family with your presence as possible. Memorial gifts may be made to the Zion Lutheran Church Building Fund.

Rest eternal grant Don, dear Lord, and peace and promise for his family.

Bishop Dave Brauer-Rieke

In Memory of
the Rev. Donald McRae Beake
December 29th, 1931 - March 19th, 2010

The Rev. Donald Beake was born on December 29, 1931 in Youngstown, Ohio.  He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at Capital University and then continued his preparation for ministry at Capital Seminary, from which he was graduated in 1958.  He was ordained on June 8, 1958 by the American Lutheran Church.  He and his wife, Jean, were married later that month in Oregon City, Oregon. 

Pastor Beake served faithfully at Good Hope Lutheran Church in Lind, Washington (1958-1962), at Fir Lawn Lutheran Church in Sweet Home, Oregon (1962-1968), and finally at First Lutheran Church in Bend, Oregon (1968-1993).  During his years in ministry, the Rev. Beake served on the Board of Pacific Lutheran University, the Northwest Synod Board, and the Oregon Synod Organization Board.  He also volunteered his time on various community boards, including the Red Cross, Hospice of Central Oregon, the Bend Housing Shelter Board, and Deschutes County Mental Health.  In retirement, he and his wife were active members at Zion Lutheran Church in Redmond. 

The Rev. Beake is survived by his wife, Jean, and their children, Jon and Jody.

Pastor's Weekly Message

As the prophet Zechariah writes about God returning to Zion, "And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in its streets." (Zecharaiah 8:5)
This seems like a very Un-Lenten (is that even a word?) thing to write about.  This is spring break week, which may not mean much to many, but if you are still connected with school age kids, its means young lives that have extra time off.  For Choice and I it means a little extra, and cherished, time with grand kids that are growing up so quickly.  It meant time to play , and play we did.
It was not spectacular stuff.  We rode bikes, went to the creek, walked across fields, got out the monopoly game, and more, and even some yard work that we did had a sense of play.  Was I always ready for more?  Not exactly.  but the effort put forth held no regret at the end of the day.  And the tired feeling was a sweet and blessed one.
We cannot play all the time, but maybe a playful attitude is not a bad thing to take into some of the times that we treat so seriously.  As has been voiced before, I doubt that at the end of this life I will wish I had worked more and played less.
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"For the gifts of the days of our lives we thank you Lord.  Please guide us in good use of them.  May we know joy and peace, and share the same with those around us.  In the name of the Christ.  Amen."

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

SOV Hunger Challenge

Don't forget to send your experiences, recipes, and suggestions to: SOVHungerChallenge@gmail.com!  We're hoping to compile a booklet of recipes to go along with Shepherd's Storehouse emergency food boxes to help recipients make the most of what they are given.

If you haven't taken one of our challenges yet, the information and shopping lists are still on the Social Concerns bulletin board in the Rainbow Room this week and they'll remain on our web site here.  Just click on the "Social Concerns" button and then the "Hunger Challenge Details" and "Shopping Lists" buttons!  Not only is it a great chance to learn and grow, but you might save some money, too!  (One family of four saved $100 in one week!)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"He has made everything beautiful in its time; also he has put eternity into their mind, yet so that they cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end."  Ecclesiastes 3:11 (RSV)

The frogs of Cox Creek (right near my home) are still singing.  (As they are at Rock Creek, my most recent temporary home.)  A few isolated croakings during the day, but at night a marvelous cacophony.  If I didn't know this time of year this choir would let me know.  It is a beautiful sound that will dwindle soon enough.
While the daffodils are fading, the buds on the fruit tress are about to burst forth, and the leaves are coming on several of the trees.  The stark bareness of one season overcome by the unrestrained promise of life found in another.  There are moments to stand and take it all in while the warmth of the sun seems to touch me to the very heart.  There are no words that truly capture the power and promise of the beauty.
Pulling into the church parking lot there is a varied greeting committee.  Two geese (huge birds) barely off of Cornell don't really care to budge as I creep by them.  There is a robin sitting in the space where I usually park, and just slightly beyond a mallard couple, the female sitting, seemingly unconcerned about the busyness of the world around her, unfazed and unmoving.  A smile slowly spreads at taking in this unexpected sight.
The day saw moments of challenge and sorrow too, and those things sometimes threaten to overwhelm the whole of life.  Sometimes I think I know some things, or am on the verge of becoming a little smarter. (Some may figure there is a lot of room for growth there.)  But often I am simply mystified with the grandeur that surrounds me.  The work of the Creator continues, and the best I can do is take it in, at least a little.  May we all take some moments to do the same, and maybe get a little wiser along the way.
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"Eternal God, help us to lay aside all that distracts and burdens us so we may hear your still small voice speak to us the word of truth, beauty and grace.  May you be all that we seek or desire.  We ask that you meet us in our places of brokenness and need, for the sake of the Christ.  Amen."
Lenten soup/supper @ 5:45 pm
Vesper Service @ 6:30 pm

Next Week ...  Spring Break ...  office hours will be limited...

Monday, March 15, 2010

Fill the Well on World Water Day

Tell A FriendLutheran World Relief Logo

Dear Friends,

The demand for water is growing as the world's population increases. But at the same time, clean water is becoming more scarce. Of the limited water resources that are available, many are contaminated. And increasing droughts across the globe limit agricultural growth.

Did you know that:

  • 1.2 billion people lack access to clean and affordable water.
  • 2.6 billion people lack proper sanitation services.
  • 5 million people, mostly children, die each year from water-borne diseases.
Child with Bucket of Water on His Head

LWR is pleased to announce a one-year, $1 million campaign to help provide water to those in need throughout the world. Will you help LWRFill the Well?

The official start of the Fill the Well campaign is on March 22, World Water Day. Make plans now to get your congregation involved in a World Water service on Sunday, March 21 to help LWRFill the Well.

Visit lwr.org/water to download a bulletin insert, devotional, children's sermon and more. We hope you and your congregation will help LWR Fill the Well and provide plentiful water to our brothers and sisters who so desperately need it.

In Christ,

Donate Now
John A. Nunes

John A. Nunes
President and CEO
Lutheran World Relief

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil;" Psalm 23:4

The times we live in might be considered pretty scary by some.  There are plenty of folks who would tell us that is the case.  There is much shouting about being aware of leaders, mostly divisive stuff, devoid of answers and personal responsibility and sacrifice.
Fear is nothing new and we hardly have a corner on the market in this time and place.  (Actually some of our fears may seem silly to others, but fear is a relative thing and beyond the scope of these few words.)
This rambling is engendered by some words by Don Miller, founder of TheMentoringProject.org.  His thoughts stirred my thoughts, and so I share with you, "Over 200 times in the Bible, God tells us, 'Do not fear.'  Why?  Because God's pressing us into better stories.  Don't be afraid.  Do this thing.  It will make you a different person....The more conflict there is, the better the story is going to be.....   We have to lay down our lives.  We have to pull out of the silly, stupid stories that we are brainwashed into telling by commercial society - stories about cars, clothes- just dumb stories.   The NO. 1 way we consume stories- and have our moral compasses adjusted - is .....through each other.  People around us who are telling stories adjust what we think is beautiful and what we think profane, what we think is worth living for and what we think is worth dying for.   And when you tell a good story with your life, when you want a good thing, and are a person of great character, and will not compromise your story, the people around you will understand better how to tell good stories with their lives.  Your life, your story, must not be compromised."
Still thinking about that, but certain of one thing as I move ahead.  In the face of scary times we have the psalmist speaking with comforting words that help us face any fears, God is present with us.
In Christ,
Pastor Randy
"We revel in the glory of a new day as we gather to worship you, our Creator.  We delight in the knowledge that you have called each of us to be yours and know us each by name.  May our prayers, praise and proclamation be pleasing to you.  Amen."
Soup/Supper    @ 5:45 pm
Vesper Service @ 6:30 pm
Adult Choir       @ 7:00 pm

Remember in prayer Corrine and Larry in the death of Corrine's brother Erdman
Sunday March 14~ Don't forget to "spring forward" and move your clock ahead 1 hour... (before you go to bed Saturday evening)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Fan it Forward: Raise $1 for LWR

Lutheran World Relief Logo

Fan it Forward

Dear Friends,

LWR has an exciting opportunity to raise $10,000, and you can help with the click of a mouse!

Between now and March 31, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans will donate $1 to LWR for every new Facebook fan they get, up to $10,000.

You can help Thrivent "Fan it Forward" and reach their goal of 10,000 new members (and $10,000 for LWR) by going to Thrivent.com/facebook and clicking on the "Become a Fan" button.

By becoming a fan of Thrivent, look at what you can help LWR accomplish:

  • 25 fans ($25) will help start a crab-raising business for a woman in Southeast Asia.
  • 100 fans ($100) will provide a family a hearty goat, giving milk that nourishes and sells.
  • 375 fans ($375) will give a family a dairy cow that can produce more than six gallons of milk a day.

We are grateful for the support of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and YOU for making this campaign a success.

What are you waiting for? Spread the word, and Fan it Forward today!

Fan it Forward

In Christ,

John A. Nunes

John A. Nunes
President and CEO
Lutheran World Relief

P.S. If you're not already a Facebook fan of LWR, become one today

You TubeTwitter

LWR Haiti Update: Shelter from the Rain

LWR's assessment team returned home safely this week after three weeks in Haiti. While we are making good progress in Haiti, they report the need is still dire and growing as the rainy season approaches. That's why we're sending temporary shelter for 10,000 families in Haiti.

We are grateful for your continued support, which has enabled us to increase our commitment to $6 million to meet the growing needs in Haiti. Thank you. 

Please take a few minutes to watch this moving video to see how LWR is putting your support to work in Haiti.

Haiti Earthquake - Video

For all that you have done and all that you will do, we give thanks to God.

In Christ,

Donate NowJohn A. Nunes

John A. Nunes
President and CEO
Lutheran World Relief

Thursday, March 4, 2010

ELCA Chile Earthquake Relief

You have seen images of the widespread damage after one of the most powerful earthquakes in history struck Chile on Saturday morning. Today, the death toll in Chile is more than 800 and it is estimated that 2 million people have been displaced.

Blocked roads, collapsed bridges, and fallen electricity wires and phone lines have made it difficult for humanitarian aid to reach those with the greatest need.

This church is uniquely positioned to respond. Unlike other aid organizations, ELCA Disaster Response works through long-standing partnerships on the ground that are prepared and able to reach the most affected communities. One such partner, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Chile, reports that church buildings are already being used to shelter the homeless.

Our partners are in need of water, water filters, food, shelter and personal hygiene items to distribute to affected communities. 

Your donations are needed to bring these life-saving supplies to those in need. Will you help today?

Thanks to your regular Sunday morning offerings and gifts to ELCA Vision for Mission,
100 percent of your gifts designated for Chile Earthquake Relief will be used for this response effort.

Give today online (www.elca.org/chiledonate) or call 800-638-3522.

Thank you for your prayers, your gifts and your partnership.


The Rev. Daniel Rift
Director, ELCA World Hunger and Disaster Appeal

If you prefer to give by mail, please send checks to:

ELCA International Disaster Response
P.O. Box 71764
Chicago, IL 60694-1764

Note "Chile Earthquake Relief" on your check's memo line. To give over the phone, call 800-638-3522.

Synod Endowment Fund Applications

Greetings in Christ. Is your congregation looking for ways to fund its most creative ministry ideas? It's time to apply for support from the Synod Endowment Fund.

Creative Ministry grants can go for any number of projects, though the money may not be applied to staffing costs. Grants are typically for $500 to $1,000 and allow congregations to try something new. This program really helps provide a large enough "economy of scale" for smaller to mid-sized congregations to take on new ministries.

This year, the Endowment Board is honoring the wishes of a specific donor by encouraging grants to help fund creative Christian children's education. We will apply the criterion of whether a project is directed at children or youth only to the first two grants. Here are some recent recipients of Creative Ministry Grants:

-Faith Astoria for summer feeding program;

-Christ Aurora for pod-casting equipment;

-Bethel Portland for a "Community through Liturgy" program;

-Gloria Dei Coos Bay for their prayer shawl ministry;

-Faith Roseburg for their Homeless Youth Drop in Center;

-Christ the Healer UCC/Enterbeing/Redeemer Portland for a "folk church" ministry;

-Four congregations from Emerald Cluster of Eugene for a Saturday evening contemplative worship service

-Holy Trinity Portland for a mass mailing for a non-traditional worship service called "Koine Community". 

An application for the Creative Ministry grant is available at http://www.oregonsynod.org/faithinaction/give/endowmentgrantppp.pdf

Applications are due by April 2.

Maybe your congregation faces other financial needs. The Endowment Board also makes recommendations throughout the year regarding the Synod Loan Fund. These projects are frequently, though not necessarily, for capital improvements. For instance, we recommended that a youth program that wanted to buy a coffee cart to support their fundraising efforts receive a loan. Other recent projects that have been funded:

-Our Saviour's Lutheran Lebanon: air conditioning for sanctuary;

-Christ Lutheran Church Aurora: purchase of a copier;

-First Immanuel Portland: fire detection/alarm system;

-Redeemer Lutheran Church Portland: roof repair and conditional use permit

More information about loans is available at http://www.oregonsynod.org/faithinaction/give/09LoanFund_App.pdf or by contacting us below. We want to provide financial support for your ministries, and we are waiting to hear from you.

In Christ's Service

Your Synod Endowment Committee

Grieg Anderson, Bishop David Brauer-Rieke, Harold Britton,
Bonny Groshong, Rev. Craig Johnson, Rev. John Maas,
John Thom, Ron Pittman

Dr. Lynn E. Ries, Endowment Board of Trustees Chairwoman


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Pastor's Weekly Message

"The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come .....and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance." Song of Solomon 2:12a &13b
The number of dafodils up and down I-5 is pretty astounding.  There are huge bunches of them in the median and they certainly brighten what can be an otherwise boring drive.  Not sure if they have yet caused me to sing out loud, but they sure do help a sometimes surly early morning attitude, and have caused me to smile upon more than one occasion.  A simple, beautiful, bright reminder of the presence of the creator at 65 (and sometimes more) miles per hour.  Proof that even when we may be in a hurry God still tries to get our attention.
No matter how much we may know the truth of the beauty and its constance reminders are still necessary.  What a patient teacher and generous care taker.  And that is exactly what I was in need of when working outside again the other day.  Mowing, mowing and more mowing.  Looking more at my watch than anything else.  The hip feeling especially sore trying to duck under and around some bushes and vines.  Feeling morose for no other reason than it seemed I wanted to, hurrying purposefully.  And then I passed under a flowering plum (I believe) and there was perfume in the air, and a fluff of pink and white.  Time to stop and take a deep breath, recognize the richness, change the attitude, and give thanks.
The reminder will be needed again and again, we all know that, and the Creator continues creating with that reality seemingly in mind.  Thanks for the beauty and the moments appreciation.  The adventure continues.
In the peace and power of the cross,
Pastor Randy
"Lord, catch us off guard today.  Surprise us with some moment of beauty or pain so that for at least a moment we may be startled into seeing that you are with us here in all your splendor, always and everywhere, barely hidden, beneath, beyond, within this life we breathe.  Amen."  Frederick Buechner
Happening this week:
Wednesday March 3rd
Soup/Supper at 5:45 pm
Vesper service at 6:30 pm
Adult choir practice at 7:00pm
Thursday March 4th
Men's night at Ken Plinke's at 6:30 pm
Friday March 5th
Rummage Sale planning luncheon 12:00 pm
Confirmation Retreat at SOV 6:00 pm
Saturday March 6th
New to You outing meet at SOV 10:00 am