First English Ev. Lutheran Church
M AY 2 0 14 CHRIST IS RISEN! Easter Sunday April 20, 2014 FELC Matthew 28:1-10 Christ is Risen! (He is Risen Indeed!)
Inside this issue:
Pastor Schmidt's Easter Sunday Sermon
Pastor Chris Sunday Sermon
Call Process Update Summer Schedule
WoC Spring Event
Be a FriendBring a Friend
Attn: Graduates Financial Summary
Gift Wish List Organ Fund Columbarium
Board of Social Action Gardening Team With the Members
Board of Fellowship Sunday School/Youth News 11
Recycle Preschool Kroger Rewards
Serving in April
The Schlosskirche in Wittenberg, Germany is the final resting place of Martin Luther. Westminster Abbey of London houses the remains of famous English heroes. In Seville Cathedral one finds the tomb of Christopher Columbus. All of these places are famous, attracting many tourists because of the bodies they contain. There is all the difference in the world, however, between those monuments and tomb of Jesus. Although pilgrims still journey to Jerusalem to visit Jesus’ tomb, as we did last month, Jesus’ tomb is famous because JESUS TOMB IS EMPTY! Jesus Christ is risen from the dead. His tomb is empty. Our greatest enemy, death, could not hold our Lord, and because HE lives, we shall live also! Oh yes, just three days earlier, things certainly did not look very good for Jesus, or for that matter, for us. On Good Friday Jesus was hung on a cross to die, crucified unto death, a spear thrust into his side - just to make doubly certain that he was indeed dead! Then a hurried burial with Jesus lifeless body being placed in a borrowed tomb, a large stone placed over the opening to completely seal the tomb, and soldiers set on sentry to guard the tomb, just to make sure. But did you notice as our Easter Gospel was read how God in essence reverses all of the preparations made to make sure that Jesus was completely and forever sealed in this tomb? There is first of all the earthquake, and then an angel of God comes down to roll back the stone, and then in fear of the angel, the guards tremble and become like dead men; I guess these hardened, rough, tough soldiers simply fainted away. But the angel was more than simply some one to roll away the stone from the opening of the tomb. The angel was and is the messenger of Good News, as the angel says to the women and to us: “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come see the place where he lay.” Do you see what’s going on here, the stone is rolled back from the opening of the tomb, not to let Jesus out, no, Jesus is already risen from the dead, mere stones cannot stop God! No, the angel rolls the stone back from the opening of the tomb, not to let Jesus out, but to let those faithful women, to let you and me, in! God is letting us in to see for ourselves the empty tomb, God is letting us in on the greatest miracle of all, God is letting us in to see his great and awesome power, God is letting us in to see his gracious, unconditional, eternal love! God is letting us in so that we may see with our own eyes that he has defeated sin and death once and for all! Now we know that right, we know that because this message is the heart and center of the Gospel proclaimed by Christ’s church day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, decade after decade, century after century, millennium after millennium! But you know that is the problem with well known stories, we tend to kind of say to ourselves, “oh, yeah, I know that.” That is until, until death comes knocking for a loved one, a dear friend, or in our own lives. Then our Lord’s words “I am the resurrection and the life,” have new meaning, a new sense of urgency, a new reality. Then the resurrection of our Lord takes on a new perspective, then the resurrection of our Lord can change despair into hope - grief into peace - sorrow into victory and death into life! It is like this story of Maggie and Harold as told by their pastor. He says, “I found her in (Continued on page 4)
W E SM ’RE A w w R ON w. T P YO fe HO U el c. NE R or g
WINTER WORSHIP SCHEDULE Through May 18, 2014
9:30 a.m. - Contemporary Worship with Holy Communion 9:30 a.m. – Sunday School + Adult Sunday School 11:00 a.m. - Traditional Worship (Holy Communion 1st & 3rd Sunday) SUMMER SCHEDULE BEGINS - THURSDAY MAY 22 - see page 5
The Parable of Talents (Lent Week 5)
MISSION STATEMENT ‘GO, MAKE DISCIPLES’
First English Ev. Lutheran Church
800 Vernier Road Grosse Pointe Woods, 48236-1530 Phone: 313.884.5040 Fax: 313.884.4460 www.feelc.org
Senior Pastor Dr. Walter A. Schmidt email@example.com
Associate Pastor Rev. Christina Veres firstname.lastname@example.org
Renata Conger email@example.com Pastor Emeritus Rev. Paul F. Keppler
April 2, 2014
Grace and peace to you my sisters and brothers from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ. “For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance, but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away.” That’s not at all the message we have come to expect from Jesus! Jesus was after all most often seen as a champion of the down trodden, the lowly ones on the margins of society – the poor, the sick, children, widows, the designated sinners- tax collectors, prostitutes, even beggars. But here in the parable of the talents, the one with the least loses. Parables by their very nature were meant to get people’s attention. Jesus used events and objects from everyday life – familiar things that people would understand – the story would follow the usual trajectory, and then Jesus would shock his listeners with an unusual twist that would confound them and cause them to question their own actions. Listening required openness – because it was likely these stories would take strange turns. Here the one with the least loses! And the one with the most gets more! Parables were often written in a normal literary style, a style where you have the rule of three. It’s expected that the third person will do something different and come out on top. In the Three Little Pigs story, the third pig builds his house out of bricks and the big bad wolf can’t destroy it. In the story of Goldilocks & the Three Bears, the 3rd bowl of porridge, the 3rd chair, the 3rd bed is always “just right.” Parables were told and retold by early Christian teachers and preachers; inevitably, various modifications and versions evolved, long before being written down by the gospel writers. For example: Most of Matthew’s parables end in a downfall or a note of judgment. Parables in Matthew will likely end with a person or group being condemned for being foolish or wicked. There is a similar parable in Luke, The Parable of the Pounds, thought to have also originated from Jesus’ first teaching of the parable. In Luke’s version the slave who buries the money is rebuked and loses it to another, but he is not punished. Each version is told a little differently and even their placement within the two gospels tends to influence the reader’s understanding. Jesus meant for the parables to be open ended. They had great meaning then and continue to even in our day and age. The lessons are for all times and peoples.
OFFICE HOURS 8a.m. — 12:30 p.m. ****
1:30p.m. — 4:00p.m. (Monday—Friday)
For our ease in understanding there are a couple of things that would have been common knowledge for the early hearers that might need some explanation today. First: A talent was a unit of money. It equaled about 6,000 denarii. You might remember from an earlier parable, that 1 denarius was equal to a day’s wage. (Continued on page 3)
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1 talent equaled about 20 years of wages 5 talents equaled about 100 years of wages—several billion in today’s money! The “master” in this story is leaving his slaves in charge of an over the top, amazing, amount of money! Second: A slave was not the same as we picture today It was not racially based and the slaves were regarded as full person They were often educated, owned property, and held high-ranking profession Still they were subject to the will or whim of their master and could receive harsh punishment. The “slaves” in this story would have been “managerial” in nature and the early readers would have been well acquainted with such a position. But they would have been totally shocked with the staggering sums of money the master was leaving the slaves in charge of. So that’s a little bit of background for us – 21st century listeners. As the parable unfolds, we are only told that the money is entrusted to the three slaves and the manager goes away, evidently leaving no directions. Each of the three is given a different amount, according to his ability. An interesting thing to consider here is the Greek word for ability. Dynamis is often translated as power. So it would seem to follow that what the master knows and trusts in each of his three “managerial slaves” is their power. They can be trusted to act wisely in handling the master’s talents- his money. Our current definition of ability may or may not be perceived as power, but it’s interesting that ability is often thought of as “talent.” We speak of our God given gifts and talents – the things we have a natural aptitude for or are skilled at – and money may not even be part of the picture. We as 21st century listeners may have an entirely different perception in mind as we hear the parable. Were you surprised that the third slave buried the money? In the day of Jesus it would have been a common practice. Rabbinic law prescribed that the burial of money was the best security against theft. Josephus, a writer of ancient history, described how after destroying Jerusalem, the Romans recovered much of the city’s wealth from where its owners had buried it in the ground. And is that much different than someone who hides money in a mattress, or safe deposit box rather than risking opportunities to invest it in stocks, bonds, an education or some other worthwhile cause? After a long time the master returns. The first two slaves are anxious to report their success and come forward with the news of how the original investment has doubled in size. The master, God, is pleased and compliments them on their success – “well done, good and trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things.” Is that what you expected to happen? It sounds like a reasonable enough outcome. Now imagine the expectations of the third slave: Did he expect to receive the same accolades because he had been successful in keeping the money safe even though it had not grown in size? Or was he dreading coming home like a student with the bad grade report when the other siblings in the family have straight A’s” He pleads his case but it sounds more like excuses. In essence he is saying -- Master, I know you have high standards and hate careless ways, that you demand the best and make no allowances for error. I was afraid I might disappoint you, so I found a good hiding place and secured your money. Here it is safe and sound down to the last cent. Here in Matthew’s version the master replies by calling the slave wicked and lazy! Were you shocked by that reaction? It would have shocked the early Christians too! It is evident that the master is not pleased that nothing has been done with the “talent” that was given to the slave. Remember, burying money for safekeeping was a common practice. The slave didn’t do anything “out of the ordinary” (Continued on page 12)
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the midnight-darkened hallway of the hospital as she waited for the five minutes each hour she was allowed to go in to be with her husband. They had never been apart, she told me. In the 55 years they had been married, they had never spent a night apart. Through all of the years on the farm, the births and raising of their children, through illnesses they had both suffered, they had never been apart. Now he was dying. I think she knew, but the doctor wanted me to tell her that her beloved Harold could not last the night. ‘Why don’t you go home,’ I suggested, ‘you’ve been here all day and all night.’ I’ll sit here a while.’ ‘I can’t go,’ she said. The nurse told us that we could have our five minutes. ‘Don’t forget the gowns and masks,’ she said, ‘we don’t want the infection to spread.’ Harold didn’t seem to recognize the two green shrouded figures that came to his bed, at least not until Maggie took his hand, moved her mask and touched her lips to his cheek. I said a prayer out loud but all the time she was whispering to him. She kept her head right alongside his on the pillow, talking to him like she belonged there. Later in the hallway, she was weeping. ‘What did you say to Harold?’ I asked, more to cover the silence than to get information. ‘I told him that I loved him and that I would stay with him.’ ‘You know he’s very ill,’ I said. ‘He may not be with us in the morning.’ She stared at the floor for a long time. ‘I know,” she replied. ‘He knows he’s dying too. He’s afraid, a little. I can tell by the way he holds my hand. But it’s all right. I told him that it will be Easter in the morning.’ I didn’t know what to say. It was November. Had she forgotten? ‘Um,’ I said, ‘It’s not really Easter,’ ‘I know, Pastor,’ she said patiently. ‘But it is for us. We’ve practiced celebrating Easter together for all of our years. Now for Harold and me, tomorrow IS our Easter.’” For Maggie and Harold, Easter was not just long ago and far away, Easter was here and now and present in their everyday lives and it gave them peace and strength and comfort to make it through their most difficult hour. Easter is why we gather together to offer up our thanks and praise to God and to hear his word and to share in his supper, not just on Easter Sunday, but each and every Sunday. Easter is why our life and our death will never be the same, for as St. Paul reminds us, “whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s!” You know Jesus’ resurrection is not about ancient history, not about what happened 2000 years ago, but rather Jesus’ resurrection is about what God has done and continues to do each and every generation, including our generation, granting you and me, and all people newness of life, both now and forever! Thus neither is Easter just about our “some day” off in the future, our eternal victory over death, as important as that is - Easter is about our life today, tomorrow, every day of our lives unto eternity. For Easter brings us not only the promise of life eternal - Easter brings to us that newness of life NOW, as God day by day surrounds us with his love, his care, his strength, his peace, his comfort, his forgiveness, for our here and now! Yes, just like those women there that first Easter, God invites you and me to come and see. And if we look at Matthew’s gospel, we see that it is those same women who are the first witnesses to the resurrection, who also were there when Jesus was crucified and when his lifeless body laid in the tomb. Through their eyes and ears and yes, their hearts, as recorded in the gospels, we also are there. We can and should and must answer yes to the question, “where you there when they crucified my Lord?” and, “Were you there when he rose up from the dead?” Yes, Jesus suffering, death and resurrection must be a reality in our hearts and lives now, if we are to truly understand what this day is all about and what this day, the resurrection of our Lord means for us. Faith is a living, dynamic, ongoing relationship with our risen Lord, Jesus the Christ, who has promised to be with us always. And our Lord calls upon us to put our faith into action. Again from our gospel reading for today, the angel of God not only invites the women to come and see, but also commands the women to go and tell so that all might know and live in God great and gracious love! The resurrection of Jesus from the dead is not an end unto itself, but a new beginning - the beginning of newness and meaning in life now, and fulfilled in that world to come. In addition, did you notice that it was while those women were carrying out that command to go and tell - that the resurrected Lord comes to them and greets them? The living Christ is on the move, out ahead of us, leading us, guiding us, directing us. You know, just as the tomb could not hold Jesus, neither can we ultimately hold Jesus! Yes, certainly, Jesus fills our life with blessings from above, he promises to be with us every second of our lives, he promises us eternity, but our Lord is not our own little, personal possession that we can keep all to ourselves. Our Lord Jesus Christ is always out front, ahead of us. Our Lord is out front, calling upon us to deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow him in paths of loving service in a life that reflects his love to us - through our worship and service to him, and care and concern to others. Yes, this day, the resurrection of our Lord is that day of newness of life now and forever. And I ask you, does not the promise of life eternal empower us to live our lives in God’s glory, here and now? To illustrate my point, let me conclude with this story. I use this story, for just having returned from hosting our tour (Continued on page 5)
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to the Holy Land, these images are very fresh in my mind. “There are two seas in the same country, both within a relatively short distance of each other, both fed by the same stream of water. But they are as different from each other as day and night. The one, the Sea of Galilee, is alive and fresh, its waters sweet and pure, a home of fish, a bearer of commerce. Vegetation crowds its shores. It gives as much as it receives. It takes the waters of the Jordan into itself and generously sends that water into the valley to the south toward the other sea, giving life to all. The second, the Dead Sea, lies in a sunken valley, lifeless and still. There is no life in its salty waters; no commerce, no vegetation. It swallows up all the water brought to it by the Jordan River which feeds its, but not a drop does it give off or send on, and it remains what it has been for centuries – a lifeless, barren, watery waste; a Dead Sea!” Yes, this day, Easter Sunday, the resurrection of our Lord, fills us up and invigorates us with the fresh waters of newness of life, not just for eternity, but for each and ever day of our lives. Indeed, Jesus’ death and resurrection not only shows us how to die, but even more importantly Jesus’ death and resurrection, shows us how to live! Jesus Christ is risen today. Alleluia! AMEN Preached Easter Sunday – Dr. Walter A. Schmidt
Call Process Update As Pastor Schmidt’s last day serving First English quickly approaches the Church Council is preparing to initiate the process of calling a new pastor. Although Sunday, October 26 seems a far off date, several things need to happen in order to make the transition as smooth as possible from Pastor Schmidt to a new senior pastor at First English. The first step is for the Church Council to meet with the Bishop of the Synod to begin the process and this meeting with Bishop Kreiss has been scheduled for Tuesday, May 13. Some discussion points will include where the congregation is today and where we would like to be in the future. At the May 18th Council meeting the members for the call committee will be discussed. The call committee will be comprised of approximately eight members representing a cross section of the congregation. If you are interested in serving on the call committee please let me or one of the pastors know. If you have any questions or concerns as we embark on finding a new pastor for First English please feel free to call me at 313.886.6544 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Respectfully, Marc Simone, Council President
SUMMER SCHEDULE & THANK YOU SUNDAY SCHOOL STAFF
Yes, it has been a long, snowy winter, but the month of May brings us to our Summer Schedule of Worship Services. Beginning Sunday, May 25, 2014, we begin our Summer Sunday Schedule with Contemporary Worship at 9:00 a.m. and Traditional Worship at 10:30 a.m. Sunday School does not meet during the summer months. We once again this summer will have Thursday evening worship at 7:00 PM for our members who are out of town on weekends. Our first Thursday worship will be Thursday, May 22, 2014. This summer schedule will continue through Labor Day Weekend. As we move into our Summer Schedule and complete our Sunday School year, we express our sincere thanks to all of our members who have assisted with our Sunday School program throughout the year. Your efforts in teaching the Bible stories to our children are both meaningful for our youth and very important for their growth in faith. Thank You!
THANK YOU A sincere word of thanks to all of our members for your extra efforts throughout the Lent/ Holy Week Season. To all who assisted with the Lenten Lunches and Suppers, to our music people for all of the special music, for the donations and our Altar Guild for the lilies that adorned our Chancel, to our staff for all of the extra hours and to everyone who helped to make this a meaningful time – we say thank you for your efforts. 5
THE WOMEN OF THE CHURCH
Spring Event May 3, 2014, 11:00 a.m. The Women of the Church invite you to join us Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. for a presentation by “Motown Soup”. Since 2004 the group has packaged soup mixes and dry bake good mixes at Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church in Utica, Mi. They have donated over $330,000 to the community from sales of the mixes to feed the homeless and hungry. Major receivers of their profits are Detroit rescue mission, Mcrest, Gleaners food bank, Capuchin soup kitchen, Forgotten Harvest and more. Their motto is “all profits donated to help the homeless, the hungry and the hurting.” Faith and Hope Circles are providing a luncheon following the event at 12 noon. There you will be able to sample some of the soups and baked goods. The lunch will include chicken noodle soup, chicken salad croissant and dessert and beverage. Come and join us to learn of the worthwhile organization and enjoy Christian fellowship and lunch. Please call the office at 313-884-5040 (or e-mail email@example.com) with your intentions to attend so that lunch preparations can be made accordingly. We look forward to seeing you Saturday, May 3rd, at noon. THRIVENT CHOICE DOLLARS
ALTAR CLOTH Have you noticed the new Altar Cloth for our Contemporary Worship? Thinking that it would be very meaningful to have an Altar Cloth from the Holy city of Jerusalem, we purchased this Altar Cloth on our recent tour to Israel and Jordan.
We continue to receive your “Thrivent Choice Dollars” gifts! Thank you to all of our members who have directed their “Thrivent Choice Dollars” to support the mission and ministry of First English. Over $2,000.00 was donated last year to First English through this program. If you are a Thrivent policy holder you are eligible to also direct your support to First English. The rules have changed a bit in that now the gifting of the “Thrivent Choice Dollars” must be done annually. You can direct your gifts to First English by calling Thrivent at 1-800-THRIVENT (800-847-4836) and state “Thrivent Choice” or on line at Thrivent.com. Again, thank you for your support; it is greatly appreciated!
Did you know that private music lessons take place at First English Church? Piano with Carrie Roach (586) 530-8872; Piano/Organ with Donna Gorzelski (248) 990-3652 or firstname.lastname@example.org; and saxophone, flute, clarinet, and oboe with Laura Schwanitz (586) 744-5379 or email@example.com Give them a call if you're interested! 6
BE A FRIEND – BRING A FRIEND – VISITOR SUNDAY Yes, for the child of God every Sunday should be “Visitor Sunday” as our resurrected Lord calls upon us as his disciples to share the Good News of God’s great love as we “Go Make Disciples.” However, to focus our attention on our call to be our Lord’s witnesses our Board of Evangelism has set Sunday, June 22, 2014 as “Visitor Sunday.” We are calling this visitor emphasis “Be a Friend – Bring a Friend!” Whom might you be able to invite to join you for worship???
If you are a graduating from high school this spring the Board of Parish Education would like to recognize your accomplishments. Please provide us with a wallet sized photo of yourself as well as the name of your high school and plans after graduation. (i.e. name of college you’ll be attending, military branch, job market, etc.). We’ll use this information to recognize you on the bulletin board by the pastors’ offices. Also…if you are graduating from college this year, please let us know. Tell us the name of your college and the degree you have earned. Photos and information can be left in the Board of Parish Education mailbox in the church office or e-mail information to Christine at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking for a few willing volunteers who love senior citizens and serving... WHAT: Prepare and serve lunch to 20-25 senior citizens in the LifeBUILDERS community WHEN: Saturday, April 26, from approximately 9:00 AM 2:00 PM (or come for the first 2 1/2 hours to do food prep, or last 2 1/2 hours to take food, serve, and clean up) WHERE: Food preparation at FELC, serve lunch at the LifeBUILDERS community center building at 20141 Kelly Rd., Detroit (we will carpool together) WHY: The senior citizens from this community are poor and on a very limited income - we will be feeding their bodies and their souls If interested please contact: Patty Ford @ email@example.com (881-7300) or Sue Ulmer @ firstname.lastname@example.org (884-4726) *Note: If you are not available for April 26th, we also hope to do the following Saturdays-5/31, 7/26, 8/23, and 9/27. Please let us know if you would like to serve any of these dates. 7
Our Adult Sunday School Class is doing a most appropriate study for these Sundays after Easter titled JESUS – BETWEEN HIS RESURRECTION AND ASCENSION. These sessions will focus on Jesus’ post-resurrection appearances which are central to our resurrection belief. The resurrection belief of the early church rested not simply on the empty tomb, but even more so from our Lord’s postresurrection appearances as he showed himself victorious over sin and death! We meet during the Sunday School Hour, 9:30 – 10:30 AM, in the Lounge, and these sessions are led by Pastor Chris and Pastor Schmidt. We would love to have YOU join with us! Our last session will be May 18, 2014.
9:30 a.m. THURSDAY MORNING BIBLE STUDY BILL O’REILLY’S - KILLING JESUS We are having a very nice crowd joining together for our Thursday morning study, an overview of Bill O’Reilly’s book KILLING JESUS. Having just completed Lent and Holy Week this study is most timely as this best- selling book focuses on the background and details of Jesus’ crucifixion. (If you have read O’Reilly’s Killing Lincoln or Killing Kennedy you know that he is a gifted writer.) These sessions are led by Pastor Schmidt, and we meet Thursday mornings, 9:30 -11:00 AM, in the Lounge. We fill up the Lounge but we have room for YOU! We will not meet May 1 or May 15 as Pastor Schmidt will be out of town. Our last session will be Thursday, May 29, 2014. We still have a few copies of the book Killing Jesus remaining and are available from Pastor Schmidt, Pastor Chris and Sue, in the office, at the discounted price of $15.00.
WOMEN’S CIRCLE BIBLE STUDY
Grace Circle - Fourth Monday at 7:00 p. Peace Circle - First Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. Faith Circle - First Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. Hope Circle - Second Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. Check the calendar at www.feelc.org
Our Women’s Circle Bible study for this year through spring is “In Good Company: Stories of Biblical Women.” Focusing upon stories of women from the Bible as well as contemporary women, this study gives to us an opportunity to look closer at the role of women in the Bible as well as today. Our study for May is “Rahab: A Faithful Businesswoman.” Rahab, as you may recall, was the woman who assisted the Israelites in the conquering of Jericho in the time of Joshua. All women of First English are encouraged to attend a Circle; please check the calendar for the various Circles meeting schedule.
SCHEDULES & CONTACT NUMBERS Just a reminder concerning the schedules of Pastor Chris and Pastor Schmidt. Pastor Chris’ day off is Friday and in an emergency she can be contacted at 248-231-5091. Her email address is email@example.com. Pastor Schmidt’s day off remains on Monday and his home phone number for emergencies is 313-882-3520. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Church office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the office closed for lunch from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Sue’s email is email@example.com
GIFT WISH LIST TUCKPOINTING AND PILLAR REPAIRS This past year the first unit of our facility required tuck-pointing of the outer walls to prevent costly water damage. In addition the pillars by the southeast entrance to the Narthex required repair. Our Board of Church Properties received bids for the above repairs and the Church Council approved these projects. The total cost was $19,600.00, and these repairs have now all been completed. If you would like to assist with the cost of this project simply mail your check to the church or place in the offering plate. Please designate your gift for “Church Maintenance.” Thank You!
ORGAN FUND Our organ at First English is over fifty years old, and over the past 10 years has had switching components beginning to fail. Because the original components of the organ console haven’t been manufactured since the early 1970’s, the console and its related switching need to be rebuilt to have the organ fully functional again. The Peterson Company, which would do the console rebuild, estimates repairs to be approximately $110,000. We are currently awaiting one additional bid so that we might move forward with the necessary repairs. Our policy is to obtain three separate bids for major projects. Total funding at this point is at $62.954 in the Organ Fund, including the gracious gift from the estate of Gladys Greenburg. If you wish to help with these repairs, please mark your envelope "Organ Fund" and place in the offering plate or leave in the office. Thank you!-The Board of Worship and Music.
COLUMBARIUM FOR FIRST ENGLISH COLUMBARIUM FOR FIRST ENGLISH – CONGREGATIONAL MEETING SET FOR JUNE 1, 2014 IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THE LATE SERVICE First English’s Church Council voted to hold a congregational meeting after late service on Sunday, June 1, 2014 to vote on moving forward with the Columbarium Project for First English. The Board of Stewardship and Church Council have unanimously voted to move ahead with this project and they seek congregational approval to do so. Members who have purchased niches have expressed that they want to move forward and create closure for their loved ones by having the opportunity for committal. Before construction begins, the companion niches, which hold two urns, will be sold for $1,500.00; after construction begins they will sell for $1,800.00. We will give the congregation sixty days notice before raising the price to $1,800.00. Niches will be assigned on a “first come-firstserved” basis, with members being able to choose the location of their niche within the Columbarium. To date nine double niches have been sold. If you are interested in purchasing a companion niche, please speak to Pastor Schmidt.
BOARD OF SOCIAL ACTION Pantry You’ve heard the expression “back to basics.” This time we’re talking food. Each month we’ll ask members to donate another “basic” to restock our pantry. May is canned fruit and vegetables month. Consider buying one or two for our shelves. Obviously if you find a great deal for other pantry basics, bring ‘em in. There’s always room for more! The pantry is always open on Sunday mornings, so come take a look.
Save the Date: CROP Walk, Sunday May 4 Fingers crossed, we won’t have to slog through snow in May to help eradicate world hunger! This year Salem Lutheran is acting as the host church; route to be determined. Forms are available, for anyone who wants to walk or donate, on the table outside the church office. The Feinstein Foundation (www.feinsteinfoundation.org) has agreed to divide $1 million among hunger-fighting agencies that raise funds during March and April, so every dollar will be increased this year! For more information on CROP walk, check out www.cwsglobal.org. In the meantime, get those walking shoes, not boots ready! Thank you! SPRING IS ON ITS WAY!! The FELC Gardening Team will, again, collect flowers on Mother’s Day (or the week of) to be planted in the gardens around the church. We are asking for BEGONIAS this year. Donations to purchase extra flowers and supplies for gardens and containers would also be appreciated. Call Carol Sauter (313 881-6959) or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need more information. Thank you.
We have received word that Beth Parsons passed away on March 22, 2014. “Thanks be to God who gives to us the victory through our Lord, Jesus Christ.” We have received word that Donald Elwert passed away Holy Week.. “Thanks be to God who gives to us the victory through our Lord, Jesus Christ.” Funeral Services were held for Barbara Wegner on Thursday, April 24, 2014. Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord, Jesus Christ. Samantha Potter and Zachary Potter received the Sacrament of Holy Baptism on Sunday, April 27, 2014. God’s richest blessings on their life in faith.
We are in the busy schedule of events at First English….a friendly reminder to turn off lights when leaving a room, and make sure that all of the doors are locked if you are the last one out. We want to keep our utility costs down and our facility safe and secure for all to use. Please remember that all facility requests should be made through Kyle Clor ((313)-881-9703 or via her e-mail at email@example.com.) 10
BOARD OF FELLOWSHIP news THANK YOU - THANK YOU - THANK YOU - to all those who hosted Lenten meals! Hope all who attended, enjoyed the fine food served & the fellowship. Now that Easter is over - Summer is fast approaching. Please consider hosting coffee hour during the summer, which begins on June 1 through August 31. Summer Worship services for coffee hours are 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. There is a sign-up poster on the Fellowship bulletin board in the hallway. Back by popular demand: Father's Day BBQ on June 15! It will be on the church lawn after the 10:30 AM service (in case of bad weather in the Luther Center). We will be grilling Hamburgers & Hot Dogs, also serving a salad bar, chips, fruit and beverage. There will be a 50/50 drawing, as well as drawing for a pair of Tiger tickets. Tigers game outing will be on Sunday July 20 at 1:00 p.m. Tickets will be going on sale, cost is $33 - you can pick your seats.
Parish Education/Youth News from Renata Education News Confirmation Sunday
Youth News A HUGE Thank You
The 8th Grade class will be confirmed on May Once again, the FEELC congregation has been 4th, during the 11:00am service. We hope that cur- amazingly supportive of its’ high school Youth. The Lenten rent and former confirmands will attend to share in dinner and jail bail raised $545 for the Work Camp mission this momentous occasion. trip this summer. Thank you so much!
The Sunday School academic year is coming to a close on May 18th. To celebrate anther great year of learning, this last day will consist of games and fun activities. We hope to see all of your children there and please make sure to thank the teachers and volunteers; it wouldn’t have been a great year without them!
Let us make lunch for you on May 18th! For $5.00, the Youth will serve you a hot dog, chips, drink, and ice cream drive-in style (on roller skates and everything). Sure to be entertaining and delicious!
Vacation Bible School The Board of Parish Education is excited about this summers’ VBS program, “Jungle Safari,” where children get to know God as their Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior, and King. VBS will run
8th Grade Move-up Lock-in To celebrate the newest additions to the Youth Group, there will be a high school lock-in, that includes the 8th graders as well, on May 16-17. This is a great opportunity to form new friendships and strengthen existing ones, so we hope to see you all there!
Important Dates May 1, 6:45-7:45pm HS Visit to Sunrise May 4, 11:00am Confirmation Sunday May 16-17 8th Grade Move-up Lock-in May 18, 9:30am/12:00pm Sunday School Field Day/Roller Lunch
August 4th-8th, 9:00am to noon, for children entering Preschool through 6th Grade. Lots of help is needed to make the program a success, so please keep an eye out for the sign-up poster near the Lounge. Adults as well as middle and high school students are encouraged to volunteer!
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expectations” And the master didn’t give any specific instructions about what they should do with the talents. What is Jesus getting at? Is there a message here for us? By their very nature parables may invite us to more than one trajectory of reflection, more than one possibility for decision. Our listening requires openness. Certainly one trajectory for reflection is one that treats the parable as an allegory. The master, God: Creates people Gives them gifts or responsibilities Gives directions to live by before he departs to heaven The people remain on earth The master, God will return at the end of time And did the people act in accord with the will of the creator? Another trajectory to consider is that the story is not really about a competition with each other but rather it’s a story about self-competition. What will the person do with what he has been given? Co-operate and grow? Refuse and stagnate? If you have had the opportunity to come by the church office this past week you may have seen another story of God’s creation unfolding on our church secretary’s computer screen. Off to the right hand side is a site with a live camera focused on the progress of a baby eagle as it considers leaving the nest. I would like to think that there were two others who have already ventured out into the world to live and grow as the eagles God created them to be. Like the two slaves in our parable who ventured out right away to make use of the talents they had been given. But all we really know is that there is one left in the nest – he has ventured briefly out on a limb only to hop back into the nest – still not venturesome enough to use the strong wings he’s been given. One of the best images of this whole scene is the mother eagle’s care and encouragement. She does not continually sit in the nest with the young one, but returns every now and then to give a little nudge and if still necessary brings some food for the reluctant one. What is your image of God? Is God a demanding master ready to throw us into outer darkness if we mess up and fail to make good use of what he has given us? Is your image closer to the care and concern of the mother eagle for her eaglet? Earlier in Matthew’s gospel, chapter 12 verse 20, Matthew uses words from the book of Isaiah 42:3 to describe Jesus as the one who “will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick.” If a candle was almost out, Jesus would not snuff it out. If a reed were so badly damaged it was almost separated, Jesus would never deliver the final blow and break it. We have a God who wants the very best from us and for us. We have a God of mercy and grace who gave us his only Son that we might have life and have it to the fullest. In the words of Paul from the Letter to the Colossians we heard in our 1st reading today: “God has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. What will your response to this amazing gift be? And all God’s people said Amen! Which is to say—Let it be so! Now may the peace of Christ, which passes all of our human understanding, be and remain with you this day and always. Amen. Pastor Christina Veres 12
RECYCLE PAPER BIN
BRING YOUR PAPER!!
Please take time to drop all your clean, dry newspapers, magazines, office and copy paper, advertising inserts and junk mail into the recycle bin in the parking lot. You don’t have to sort anything or remove staples. Please bag your shredded paper. NO CARDBOARD OR PHONE BOOKS ARE ACCEPTED. The AbiBow Recycling, LLC program is designed for organizations to recycle paper -- most of all, it’s an opportunity for us to recycle and help the environment.
Accepting enrollment for 3 & 4 year olds for 2014-15 First English Lutheran Preschool offers an academic program to help prepare your child for kindergarten. With a small class size, our program includes Bible lessons, math, music, science, art, language, beginning reading concepts and physical development. First English has a very large and bright classroom for your child to spend their morning socializing with friends. Call our director Christine Simone at (313)655-7367 for more information or to arrange a classroom visit.
May brings the last weeks of preschool for the school year. Over the year we’ve learned the entire alphabet, practiced our numbers, learned about Jesus, sang numerous songs, read countless books, painted with our friends and played with the blocks, cars, dolls, trains and puppets in our wonderful classroom. During this last month we’ll be making a special project for Mother’s Day, reviewing what we’ve learned and preparing songs for our end of the year program for parents. We wrap up the year on Friday, May 30 and wish all the best to our students going off to kindergarten in the fall and await the return of our younger students in September! Remember to watch our hallway outside our classroom as we put the last of our artwork for the year on display!
Please contact Christine Simone if you or a friend is seeking a preschool for the fall. Call Christine at (313)655-7367 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a classroom visit.
KROGER COMMUNITY REWARDS PROGRAM - Time to Re-enroll Have you enrolled or re-enrolled yet?? Please take the time to go online and sign-up or renew your card and make your donation designation to First English (#83535). If you don’t remember the email address that you used previously to enroll, you can call (877)576-7587 to remove any email attached to your card number and then proceed to enroll again. Our fundraising efforts, by participating in the Kroger Community Rewards Program, have added up to significant money - just by purchasing your weekly groceries! DOWN a little from the last quarter, our latest quarterly check was in the amount of $263.40!! If you have never signed up – go to Kroger’s website krogercommunityrewards.com and follow the prompts. You will need your Kroger card. 13
5/1: Blake DiCicco, Sara Sawdon
5/16: Leonard Engle, James Zwicker
5/2: Greg Blackburn
5/17: Craig Frohock, Alyssa Rozycki,
5/4: Natalie Hays, Joanne Herrington, Kevyn Sawdon, Nicholas Schreiber 5/5: Blake Stevens
Sean Udell 5/18: Patricia Chantler 5/19 Robert McIntyre
5/6: Mark Collins,
5/20: Jennifer Passamani,
Allison Liebold, Jeff Lieder,
5/21: Chrissy Anderson,
Matthew Nyquist 5/7: Christine Earles. Eric Reardon 5/8: Becky Bauer, Carl Bauer,
Julie DiCicco, Andrea Marcolini, Fiona DiMarzio
Nicholas Dinverno, Andrea Glynn, Anna Marschner, Matthew Pautke, Gerry Udell
5/22: Brian Bledsoe 5/23: Lynne Evers 5/24: Nicole McCarthy
5/9: Michael Moore 5/10: Miranda Berkesch, BJ Decker, Eve Feldman
5/25: James Cisco, Kathleen Jevons, James Lieder, David Ulmer
5/12: Thomas Bloom, Joshua Frohock,
5/27: Claire Ford, Brandon Michoski 5/28: Gennette Faust, Daniel Harris
5/29: Suzanne Lieder
5/14: Kyle Clor, Gary Hubbard, Bethany Marchetti,
5/30: Raymond Francis,
James Nelson, Autin Tilford
Jaclyn Lieder, Patricia Milne, Russell Milne,
5/15: Christopher Desbien, Kevin Hendricks, James McGraw, Jordan Ulmer 14
LAY READERS 9:30 A.M. May 4 Jackie Tambourine May 11 Mike Garrisi May 18 Brandon Tambourine May 25 Kathy Lang
ACOLYTES May 4
USHER May 4
GREETERS May 4 May 11 May 18 May 25
9:30 A.M. Andrew Bezel
Team #10 Dan Rustmann
Team #7 Ken Kohler
9:30 A.M. Team #1 Mike Guest
9:30 A.M. the Bezel family Shirley Lamar Sue & Marty Bay Sue Reck
11:00 A.M. Cindy Jevons Patty Foster Dan Rustmann Yvonne Winston
Samantha Potter Daniel Feldman
Anna Jackson Katie Link
Nora Smith Nathan Ford
11:00 A.M. Ella Ford Kristen Smith
Team #1 Mike Guest
Team #9 David Zwicker
11:00 A.M. Team #2 Mark Berkesch
11:00 A.M. Judy Leo Rosemary Yake Marion McClendon Matt Nyquist
#3 #2 #7 #6
11:00 A.M. Dennis Gates Kathy Gates
Nancy McCarthy Nicole McCarthy
Ruth Engle Nancy Heaphy Patty Ford Kyle Clor
COMMUNION ASSISTANTS 9:30 A.M. May 4 Kathy Lang Steve Lang May 11 Shirley Lamar Mike Garrisi May 18 Brandon Tambourine Jackie Tambourine May 25 Kathy Lang Steve Lang
Team Team Team Team
COFFEE HOUR May 4 Stewardship May 11 Thrivent May 18 Hope Circle May 25 Social Action COUNTERS May 4 May 11 May 18 May 25
FRIENDLY CALLERS May 4 Caryl Litzenberger May 11 Margot Kahl May 18 Waynette Hostetler May 25 Patty Foster
ALTAR GUILD Anna Unit: Nancy Heaphy/Doris Lamore Lydia Unit: Waynette Hostetler/Judy Leo
9:30 Contemporary Worship 9:30 Sunday School 11:00 Confirmation Sunday 11:00 Traditional Worship 1:00 Jerry Luck Recital
Mother's Day 9:30 Contemporary Worship 9:30 Sunday School 11:00 Traditional Worship
18 9:30 SS Year-end Party 9:30 Contemporary Worship 11:00 Traditional Worship 2:00 Youth Roller Skate Lunch 6:30 Board & Council Mtgs
9:00 Contemporary Worship 10:30 Traditional Worship
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 3:30 Music Lessons
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 3:00 Music Lessons 6:30 Girl Scouts Trefoil
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 3:30 Music Lessons
26 Memorial Day - Office Closed
10:00 GPN Pizza Lunch 10:30 Faith Circle 3:00 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 7:00 Peace Circle
10:00 GPN Pizza Lunch 3:00 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 Grief Support 7:00 Board of Church Property
20 10:00 GPN Pizza Lunch 10:30 Faith Circle 3:00 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 7:00 Good News Ringers
27 3:00 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 7:00 Good News Ringers
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 11:30 Hope Circle 3:30 Music Lessons 5:15 Lord's Company Ringers 6:00 Lord's Company Singers 6:00 Grief Support
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 3:30 Music Lessons 5:15 Lord's Company Ringers 6:00 Grief Support
8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 5:15 Lord's Company Ringers 6:00 Grief Support
28 8:45 Preschool 9:30 Exercise Class 3:30 Music Lessons 5:15 Lord's Company Ringers 7:00 Preschool Year-end Program
Thu 9:30 Bible Study 3:30 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 HS Youth Group 8:10 Good News Ringers
9:30 Bible Study 3:30 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 Good News Singers 6:30 HS Youth Group 8:10 Good News Ringers
9:30 Bible Study 3:30 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 Good News Singers 6:30 HS Youth Group 8:10 Good News Ringers
22 9:30 Bible Study 3:30 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 High School Youth 7:00 Summer Worship Service 8:10 Good News Ringers
29 9:30 Bible Study 3:30 Music Lessons 5:30 Exercise Class 6:30 High School Youth 7:00 Summer Worship Service 8:10 Good News Ringers
8:45 Preschool 9:00 Piano Guild
8:45 Preschool 6:00 8th Grade Move-up/Lock-in
17 10:00-2:00 Sports 4:00 DeMarzio Birthday Party 4:00 Scheich Wedding