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January 2012

Peace Notes

Peace Lutheran Church


Praising the Lord at the Academy

Fund Raising far exceeds any imagination.

At the darkest financial hour The Lutheran Academy had ever faced, half way through November, an anonymous donor challenged that they would match donations up to $15,000. It is thrilling to report that at this moment there is $32,000 in the bank account - far exceeding any expectation, AND... the word is that there is still more financial support that has not yet been received. What can one say? Can anyone know what the Lord will do that confirms that yes, HE is still alive and well in the hearts of His people! He is good and His mercy endures forever!

IN THIS NEWSLETTER: • • • • • • • • • •

Academy Fundraiser Year of the Bible New Furnaces An Amazing Choir March For Life Stewardship Notes Marriage Invitational Carsten Bjornstad Youth Lock in - Feb. Planning Ahead

Obviously this event will be transformational for the future of the Academy. The Academy board of directors will be meeting January 8th and will be discussing and praying about what this means for us and Lutheran Christian education in the near future. Certainly it means that this institution can be well established and families can have faith in the ongoing viability of the school's ministry. It also means that our congregation will be strengthened

with beautiful families who want to have a safe and Christian education for their children. Our good establishment also means that we can support and work with the Immanuel Preschool in as many ways as we can - building up both institutions for the Glory of God's name and the salvation of many souls! As a final note it must be mentioned that almost 30 different individuals and families contributed the fund drive - from both Peace and Immanuel. We THANK you all! Your support is precious to every one of God's children who will be nurtured at The Lutheran Academy!

For I will proclaim the name of the LORD; ascribe greatness to our God! Deut. 32:3

An Ap o s to l ic Mis sion Co ngregation of Th e Lutheran Ch urch Mi s souri Sy n od

THE FEAST AND SEASON OF THE EPIPHANY The observance had its origins in the Eastern Christian Churches and was a general celebration of the manifestation of the Incarnation of Jesus Christ. It included the commemoration of his birth; the visit of the Magi to Bethlehem; all of Jesus' childhood events, up to and including his baptism in the Jordan by John the Baptist; and even the miracle at the wedding at Cana in Galilee. It seems fairly clear that the Baptism was the primary event being commemorated.

From the Pastor's Heart Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. - Col. 3:16 Dear friends in Jesus! In 2011 we spent the year here at Peace trying to spotlight the work of God's mercy demonstrated in and through our lives “Year of God's Mercy”. And that Mercy was so powerful in our lives! Praise the Lord! For the year 2012, my encouragement to the congregation is to be faithful in the Word of God and seek His blessing therein. To have the Word of God available, to teach and admonish each other with all wisdom, it the most amazing gift that we have in life - and yet it is SO very neglected! In the Fall we will begin a great journey through the Bible that will in fact extend into 2013, but that can't stop us from sharing among us for the first part of the year! We will be blessed! Join me in the “Year of the Bible” here at Peace! Pastor Bjornstad

INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT THE BIBLE: + The Bible was written by the Holy Spirit through 40 men over a period of about 1600 years dating from 1500 BC to about 100 years after Christ. + The Bible is the only holy book that claims to be true historically and has yet to be proven untrue! + The system of chapters was introduced in A.D. 1227 by Cardinal Hugo de S. Caro, while the verse notations were added in + 1551 by Robertus Stephanus,

after the advent of printing. The first translation of the English Bible was initiated by John Wycliffe and completed by John Purvey in 1380. + A Bible in the University of Gottingen is written on 2,470 palm leaves. + The Bible can be read aloud in 70 hours. + According to statistics from Wycliffe International, the Society of Gideons, and the International Bible Society, the number of new Bibles that are sold, given away, or otherwise distributed in USA is about 168,000 per day.

WERE YOU THE RECIPIENT OF A NEW KINDLE OR SMART PHONE FOR CHRISTMAS? Please be aware that you can easily download a multitude of Bibles and Christian devotional materials for the benefit of your faith! Also available for FREE is Luther's Small Catechism!

Man does not live by bread alone but the very Word of God!


LOTS AND LOTS OF WORK BEING DONE AT THE CHURCH... Above we have pictured some of our most helpful men of the church working on the new shed installing shelving and electricity! The trustees have been VERY busy at the church these past few weeks. Not only was our new shed and church van port built in December, but now in the new year we have had NEW FURNACES installed for a price of over $6000. There were several "cool" worship services in December! Thankfully we are now all "set" for any cold weather this winter! The OTHER unfortunate work that had to be done was three (plus) days of ELECTRICAL WORK. For a couple months the one light in the narthex would not go on. Upon further examination it was discovered that the electricians who were paid to install all new wiring in the 1990's decided that the wiring in the narthex was too difficult and simply attached new wires to the old ones several inches up from the switch boxes - so it LOOKED like new wiring, but really wasn't! It was quite a dangerous situation and we can praise the Lord that no fires caused by the bad wiring. THIRDLY, new CUPBOARDS were installed in the basement as the old ones had come away from the wall.

By the end of January congregational members should be receiving their donation receipts from our Financial Secretary Eileen Duffy. Please check them over and if there are any discrepancies from your own records, please feel free to give Eileen a call at 350-5312. We are very thankful for her services to our church over the past two years! As Eileen is having to move out of town shortly she is handing over the work to Rick Hellard. Thank you Rick for your willingness to serve! PLEASE BE AWARE THAT YOUR REGULAR FINANCIAL SUPPORT OF PEACE IS SO VERY ESSENTIAL! We are an active and vital church and this year our budget is significantly higher than last year's with the addition of the new Choir Director position! Yes, the proper support of the Lord's ministry is more important than the dream vacation and that extra nice car. We have many devoted Christians who give generously, but there are always many others who have not discovered the blessing in tithing! There are many who give much more than $25/week to the ministry work here at Peace, but if every envelope (on average, because we know that some cannot give that much) gave $25/week, our budget would be exceeded by a large margin. If you have been blessed by the Lord, and are not already extending your faith with a regular tithe, please consider a regular tithe of $25/wk!

PLEASE PRAY FOR CARSTEN BJORNSTAD, father of Pastor Bjornstad... who January 3rd traveled to Las Pas, Bolivia to begin a three month stint at teaching the children of a missionary family there. His first email is as follows: Dear family and friends, I just want you to know that I arrived safely in La Paz, Bolivia, and that I am enjoying good company here in the home of WMPL missionaries Juan and Anne Fernandez. I seem to be adjusting well to the altitude and lack of oxygen. I've experienced only a slight headache and slow reactions, and they are already going away. The city of La Paz is located on side of a mountain; I have stunning views from the window here. Boredom will never be an issue here. The kids are delightful. Tomorrow we're going to have our first drawing and music lessons and play some games together. Next week we'll start the academics. Besides the city itself, the kids and the challenges of helping them with their schooling, I've had wonderfully engaging conversations with Juan and Anne. I'll be letting you know details of their work in the coming days. Thank you all for your prayers and good wishes. Please continue thinking of me and praying for the Lord's work here. Please share the news that I am well and enjoying God's blessings. God bless you all, Carsten

ALSO: THE BJORNSTAD FAMILY WOULD LIKE TO SHARE A BIT OF A CHRISTMAS CD of music performed by the four girls and their father. A token of their appreciation of all you do for our family! If you have not received a CD, please ask for one. As well, you can hear the music by going the the church website.

1Pet. 3:15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect...

It has been a couple years since Joe was able to attend church, but for those of us who knew him, we will always remember his gentle spirit among us. We pray for Charlotte and the whole family.

REMEMBERING JOE HAFICH Joe Hafich of Bell Mountain died peacefully under hospice care in his home, surrounded by his loved ones, on Sunday, December 18th, after an illness. He is survived by his loving wife of fifty-four years, the former Charlotte Kriger. Joseph '"Joe" Hafich was born in Dunmore, Pennsylvania on February 15, 1930. He joined the U.S. Navy at age seventeen and served for five years. As a crewman on the U.S.S. Manchester, he saw combat during the Korean War. After his honorable discharge in 1952, he sailed the Great Lakes and the Gulf of Mexico as an able-bodied seaman on various freighter ships and tankers. During that time he visited ports in many South and Central American countries and transited the Panama Canal. After leaving the merchant

marine, he worked as a machinist at Chamberlain Manufacturing Company for thirty-eight years. During many of those years he served diligently as financial secretary of Local Lodge 847 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. He was justly proud of his military service and of his service to his fellow IAM workers. Above all, Joe was a family man. He was never happier than when he was spending time at the beach or a campground with his family, and he never missed an opportunity to do so. He loved camping with his wife and daughters, and over the years he drove his motor home thousands of miles up and down the East Coast, from Maine to Florida. In retirement he and Charlotte often took their camper to various bluegrass festivals to indulge his great love of bluegrass music. A lifelong baseball fan and a respectable ballplayer himself, he earned a tryout with the Detroit Tigers as a young man, but his loyalty was to his beloved Philadelphia Phillies. He shared his love of baseball with his five grandsons, all of whom could count on him to be in the stands at their little league games, even if it meant traveling to Indiana or New York. Joe Hafich leaves behind his three daughters: Dara Devereaux and her husband, Darren, of Throop; Cheryl Hafich Yagelski and her husband, Robert, of Porter Corners, New York; and Kimberly

+++ We also pray for the family of Peg and Ed Gutowski, as they mourned over Christmas the passing of Mary Gutowski, Ed's mother. +++

Gadwah and her husband, Ronald, of Clifton Park, New York. A fourth daughter, Jodi, passed away in 1981. He also leaves behind five grandsons: Adam and Aaron Yagelski, of Albany, New York; Joshua and Jacob Gadwah, of Clifton Park, New York; and Kyle Devereaux, of Throop, PA. He is also survived by his sister Julie Roberts. He was preceded in death by his brother John and sister Marion.

RESOURCES FOR LIVING CHRISTIANS AVAILABLE: + Funeral Witness and Testimony worksheet. Even as you prepare your will and purchase your grave, you can help plan your funeral - just the way you want it! Make sure that someone knows where your plans are kept! + Pastor also has beautiful audio book called "Preparing for Death" that you can borrow. + Martin Luther encouraged healthy, well, and young people to prepare for death - so that at the time of death they do not have to be burdened with it or fear it!

THE MUSIC CONTINUES! The rave reviews keep coming about how wonderful our new choir is sounding! We are thankful for how God has blessed us, but we definitely are looking for additional voices! You (and your friends!) are invited to join us! Please speak with our choir director Jill Trapane!

Life Sunday: Jan. 22 March for Life - Jan. 23 Calling all Christians! + The Church Van will be leaving at 6:00 pm January 22 (Sunday) to participate with Christians from all over the country to clearly state to our lawmakers how important it is that the rights to life and liberty of the unborn and defenseless be upheld by this nation. + It is truly an inspiring day for the whole family! We will be back Monday, Jan. 23 at 10pm. INVITE YOUR FRIENDS! + No cost (donations taken for gas!) We will stay overnight at a church in Baltimore. WORSHIP NOTES: Our Peace Worship Committee continues to meet and continually improve our worship experience here at Peace. It has truly been a blessing to Pastor to have input and support in the conducting of worship! Thank you to all who have been attending the meetings. If you have any suggestions for the worship, please speak with Beverly Gedrimas or attend the variously called meetings! SERMON SUGGESTIONS are being taken by Pastor Bjornstad. If you have any QUESTIONS OF THE FAITH, please speak with Pastor or email him! We want to address the concerns and questions of the congregation! No question is too small!

EVERY SUNDAY IS YOUR APPOINTMENT WITH THE KING! 8:15 EARLY WORSHIP with Holy Communion every Sunday! 9:15 Education Hour for Adults and Children! 10:30 WORSHIP CELEBRATION with Holy Communion the 1st and 3rd Sundays!

If you haven't yet, please say thank you to Ky Betts (newly elected as a church elder!) for the bulletin cover illustrations he makes every week! Here are a couple wonderful examples, and you can see them all on a gallery at the church website! He loves to serve the Lord in this way!

$OLJQLQJZLWK*RGÂśV:LOO A self discovery workshop designed to help you live your life to the fullest no matter your circumstance.

Do you feel like you are at a crossroad in your life? Do you feel unfulfilled in your current career? Are you on the right path, but without joy? Want to live life to the fullest no matter your circumstance?

Come and learn how to take the first steps of a journey living life with JOY! Date: Saturday January 28th, 2012 Cost: There is no charge for the workshop, lunch will be provided Time: 8:30am Registration, 9:00am-4:00pm Workshop Place: St Stephen Ev. Lutheran Church 25 Hillcrest Drive Dickson City, Pa 18447

Call 570-407-3997 to Register (Seats are Limited) Or email at

Are you on Facebook but don't know the church has a Facebook page? Look up and "like" our page! Participate in the discussions and prayers!

UPCOMING EVENTS: JANUARY 14: MARRIAGE INVITATIONAL DINNER: All married couples are invited to join our beautiful dinner and fellowship January 14th at 6pm here at the church! We are attempting to have Christine Erickson, Christian Counselor, come and share with us again! JANUARY 22-23: LIFE SUNDAY and MARCH FOR LIFE trip to Washington DC. See further information - page 5! JANUARY 28: MEN'S BREAKFAST! Calling all MEN! We will be meeting January 28th at 9am at Panera Bread in Dickson City!! Be there! Hopefully Brian Wrightson, of the Red Cross, will be able to come and tell us about his emergency relief work in Lackawanna County. JANUARY 28TH: ALIGNING WITH GOD'S WILL! Mike Mirarchi will be presenting his awesome workshop - this time at St. Stephen's Lutheran Church! See the information at the left! FEBRUARY 17-18: PRESIDENT'S DAY YOUTH LOCK-IN! All youth Confirmation age and older are welcome - with FRIENDS! We will have a "What would you do as President" theme!

PEACE NOTES January 2012  

The newsletter of Peace Lutheran Church, Scranton for January 2012