Peace Talk - February 2011
Apostolic Mission Congregation of the LCMS Pastor Kristian Bjornstad 2506 N. Main Ave. 343-9828 www.yourpeace.org
FROM THE PASTOR’S HEART: “God is Love” - 1 John 4:8
It is a most amazing thing to think on the sentence that “God is Love”. What is “Love”? It is somehow the very essence of God. And what kind of love is St. John speaking about? The great church father Chrysostom wrote: “What kind of love are we talking about here? It is the true love and not simply what people use this word to mean. It comes from our attitude and knowledge and must proceed from a pure heart. For there is also a love of evil things.. Robbers love other robbers, and murderers love each other too, not out of love which comes from a good conscience but from a bad one.” Many can say that they “love”, but only a Christian can claim it in the full. Only the Christian can taste in the love of God in Jesus Christ. Another church father Issac the Syrian wrote: “Because God is love, the one who lives in love reaps the fruit of life from God. While still in this world, he even now breathes the air of the resurrection.” This Valentines Day remember the true source of love does not come from within ourselves, but from without... from the very seat of heaven itself! Praise God for love and our sharing in it! Please know that I love each and every one of you! In Jesus, Pastor Bjornstad
MISCELANEOUS NOTES: PRAISING GOD! + For the Safe Return and the Beautiful Mercy that was shown by our mission team in the New Orleans! As Sharon Alexander, a team member, shared “We received so much more than we gave!” + The Confirmation Class and other Youth are playing the bells during the Communion Service! Currently they know the Sanctus, but we hope to expand the repertoire! + A new year of 2011 has dawned and the Lord has promised to bless us in it! We praise Him for our baptisms and the undeserved MERCY He will show!
CHRISTIAN HISTORY: Rev. Dasler, the first pastor of Peace Lutheran Church! Rev. Dasler was the pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church when there was “some” kind of unrest between the Polish and the German speaking members. (Time has somewhat confused the story!) And so there came a point at the end of 1916 that Rev. Dalser and a group of the German speakers decided to form their own congregation. And so “Peace” Lutheran was formed! And so it is proof again that Jesus can make lemonade out of lemons!
“Faith , like light, should always be simple and unbending; while love, like warmth, should beam forth on every side, and bend to every necessity of our brethren.” - Martin Luther +++++++++++++++++++++
New in the office (for you to borrow!):
+ NEW RESOURCES FOR YOUR LISTENING PLEASURE! There are a number of new CDs that Pastor has purchased that you are encouraged to borrow and listen to - so that your knowledge and understanding of the Christian faith may be deepened. Topics range from the issues of “Is there Truth?” to Evolution and homosexuality, to abortion and the Bible! Take a look! Some are audio CDs (which can be played on a regular CD player - like in your car) and some are MP3 CDs (which might only be played on your computer.) ALSO HIGHLY RECOMMENDED is a DVD of Dr. Lamb and his 3 presentations he made last September on LIFE issues. Dr. Lamb is the Ex. Dir. of Lutherans for Life. ++++++++++++++++++
MERCIFUL STEWARDSHIP: + CHRIS JONES has joined the “Bread Team” of Kevin Woolverton and Pastor Bjornstad who take turns picking up the bread donations from Panera two nights a week! One donation goes to the Bread Basket Food Pantry and the Wednesday night donation is distributed from the Parsonage back sun porch on Thursdays for those in the community who are in need! Thanks Kevin and Chris!!!
The Baptism of Taylor Ann
On January 16th the daughter of Sandra and Mike Sheheen was baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit! It was a great day indeed, and we welcome little Taylor Ann into our congregation and look forward to seeing her nurtured in the faith and we pray that we will see her with all the saints in heaven one day! MARCH FOR LIFE IN WASHINGTON DC. Pastor Bjornstad followed up on “Life Sunday” (Jan. 16) with a (long) day trip to Washington DC and the March for Life which commemorates the 1973 Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court ruling... It was a great day that began with a church service at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Alexandria, VA with 170 people in attendance and the Dr. Rev. Lamb the preacher. It was a truly moving worship service with FABULOUS singing and preaching! It concluded even more beautifully with Holy Communion. There were Lutherans there coming all the way from Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa and Missouri to be there. After the worship we all had a wonderful breakfast and then made our way to the march and joined over 100,000 others from around the country. It was a very cold day standing on the Capitol Mall for several hours, but we pray and hope that what is engraved on the Supreme Court building that ALL are deserving EQUAL rights to life and liberty will come true.
A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell. - C.S. Lewis
WORSHIP LIFE AT PEACE LUTHERAN FOCUS ON GOD’S MERCY! EDUCATION HOUR: 9:15 WORSHIP: 10:30 AM 1Pet. 2:10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
IN PASTOR’S “KEEPER” INBOX: TRUE BLESSINGS SHARED BY MARILYN WRIGHT (RAINBOW) Hi, Pastor Kris! Just HAD to share the following with you!!! There's a queen/double air mattress taking up most of my tiny living room, with 3 lovely little girls in a row on it under an oldfashioned comforter. Glowing near the window for them is that lighted "Charlie Brown-ish" Christmas tree Edie gave me. (Yes, it's still up - I might change the stuff on it for EASTER, heh heh.) Just enough light for me, in my near-sightedness to be able to see to read.... Because, the youngest (3, Victoria) went looking for the box of "God books" which live in the living room under the (nonworking) TV, and Angelique wanted me to read a "God story" to them. Really. So, I read the little book with 2 parables about the Samaritan & also the "wayward" son. They wanted more! Alisha chose the story of Noah. Even I learned something, or was reminded of something very important that I'd forgot. I didn't remember God promising He would never again destroy the earth because of the unbelief or evil deeds of humans. I remembered the rainbow being a sign of the covenant, but I forgot what THAT was. According to the "God books"...anyway.... But, I digress. Reading about that promise, and about the rainbow reminded Angelique about how she got to see a rainbow on her BIRTHDAY once, in August a few years ago....and I reminded HER that it was ME who God allowed to point out & share that first rainbow with her! THEN, I got to share the similar story of how that same thing happened with my son, Terry as well as Genaia, when they each were around 6. First, it was Terry, whom I carried down the front steps into the yard to see that rainbow, since he was barefooted & sick - he had NEVER seen a rainbow! Then, later on, when we got Genaia, the same thing happened: SHE had never seen a rainbow, either - and God allowed ME to share her first one with her, and share about God (same age). Wow! Three of 'em! And - by the way, the "God books" are a box of books you sent me home with once from the CHAIN Center, for my grandkids. They stay here, and the kids are still drawn to them - and now Victoria heads for 'em & wants me to read them! Another by the way: Alisha, our almost 10 yr old, asked if she could say the prayer before we ate tonight. It was very special, just a sentence, not memorized, to the point & good! Then, after the stories, we said the Lord's prayer (Alisha has it down, the others, not so much)...and I was led to remind them about how Jesus was right there with us, "where 2 or 3 are gathered in my name, I am there with them"... Awesome! I even was led to take another couple of minutes to share the "how come" Jesus was with us at that moment - because of his death & resurrection & God sending the Holy Spirit to us after Jesus ascended to heaven... and now, we can speak His name & pray with Him & to Him and He's right there with us... Victoria was asleep, Angelique almost, and Alisha almost. Thank You Jesus for trusting me with this opportunity to share YOU with these precious children who DO want to know YOU more! May you be blessed by reading about MY blessing!
Lutheran Academy and Immanuel Preschool News + Teaching Position Open: Immanuel Lutheran Preschool, North Scranton, is hiring a teacher for Sept. 2011 at their Early Childhood Center. The position is for weekday mornings 8:30 am - 1 pm. Teacher requirements include a preschool or elementary education degree, eligibility for State of Pennsylvania certification, an active church worship life, and an interest in assisting in the development of family ministry programs. Resumes with references should be emailed to ILCPreschool@gmail.com. Please support The Lutheran Academy by using Pretty Good Portraits for all your photography needs. www.prettygoodportraits.org
+ ST. PATRICK’S DAY FLOAT is beginning to be prepared this month for the March 12th celebrations! We are ALWAYS thrilled with those who can help the night before (this year we have to blow up LOTS of balloons and attach them to the float. And we would LOVE for you also to join us IN the parade! We look forward to sharing a beautiful Gospel message with the parade watchers! +THANK YOU FOR PURCHASING THE PEACE CALENDARS! There are still a COUPLE of them left! Your support of the Academy is wonderful!
UPCOMING LWML CONVENTION! LWML Plays in Peoria – Check the Winter Lutheran Woman’s Quarterly for the latest registration information on the 34th Biennial LWML Convention being held in Peoria, Illinois, from June 23-26, 2011, under the theme “Being with Jesus – Living on the Edge.” Registration information is also available online at www.lwml.org. Registration opens on March 1st. Review the information about the Friday Lunch Gatherings as well as the special interest luncheons on Saturday. Bring your children, who will enjoy spending time at Camp BWJ (Being with Jesus). Start gathering those Gifts from the Heart and plan which of the servant events you want to lend a hand. There will even be a Cyber Cafe! Check out all the details at www.lwml.org.
PRETTY ZULU UPDATE: Our congregation is supporting the education of a beautiful South African woman named Pretty Zulu through monthly door offerings which pay for her tuition at Penn Foester (yes, here in Scranton!) in a secretarial program. Over a year ago she was referred to us by a missionary working there who had come and spoken to us MANY years ago. He had remembered what a nice congregation we were and asked if we could support Pretty. There has been a BEAUTIFUL response of love and care for her and we praise God for this opportunity to share our blessings! Pretty sent this email at the end of January: Dear Pastor and Congregation: Happy new year! How are you doing? We are fine, me and my family. I would like to thank you so much for the cards (Christmas & New year wishes) thank you to everybody. I am still studying very hard. You can write to her: Andile Zulu PO Box 45 Dirkiesdorp 2386 South Africa email@example.com
WO W! !! JE SU SR OC
Youth NEWs! ANNUAL LUTHER LEAGUE EAST CONVENTION! Coming up Presidents weekend! Mr. Mirarchi has been leading the group for several years now to this fun retreat at the YMCA Camp Bernie in New Jersey! We need to know you are coming YESTERDAY! Friends welcome! PRAISE GOD that Timothy Hackenberg took a week and joined our mission trip to New Orleans. Timothy is a Freshman in High School and loves to help out with these kinds of projects! He had an awesome time! +++++++++++++++++++++++
Council News! The council meeting on Feb. 2nd has been postponed until Feb. 9th due to weather conditions. Updates on a couple issues that have been discussed at our congregational meetings: - Peace Lutheran Endowment Fund: Chad Tyk reports that the necessary bylaws that would govern a new Endowment Fund has been passed through the LCEF advisors in St. Louis. They have a couple suggestions which might make them better. If begun, an endowment fund would bless the ministry of Peace for many generations to come! More details to come! - CHURCH VAN George Price reports that a 15 passenger van IS presently being inspected by Kelleher Auto and he hopes that it might turn out to be something that we might consider purchasing! (No purchase would be made without a congregational meeting and approval!)
+ WORSHIP LIVE STREAMING OVER THE INTERNET... We are again streaming the worship service live over the internet. If you cannot join us in person because of sickness or weather, please join us at the Peace website’s “Media” page. + Ladies Guild Meeting is regularly scheduled for the first Thursday of the month at 6:30! Please note that the Feb. meeting will be held on Thursday, Feb. 9th at 6:30! ALL women of the congregation are welcome to help plan many works of mercy for the upcoming year. Praise God for our devoted women! + COMPUTER REPAIR SERVICES. Robert Herie would like to offer his computer repair and software assistance to those who are having trouble. His rates are VERY reasonable and he will do a very good job. Call 344-2347. + THE MEN’S BREAKFAST: We will be meeting Saturday, Feb. 26, 9 am at Panera Bread in Dickson City! All men are invited! + TRYING TO THINK OF A GOOD FAMILY VACATION NEXT SUMMER? THINK CAMP PIONEER! Pastor Bjornstad and family have been invited to be sort of host family for the camp Family Camp the week of July 17th. We would LOVE to have whole bunches of Peace family along with us! Plan for it! Going to the www.yourpeace.org website you will find a registration form with further information! + PLEASE DO NOT PARK ON MAIN AVE on Sunday morning (unless you are sure it is designated!) The police have been out ticketing on Sunday morning. Please use the parking lot, and if you need to be close to the church, please don’t hesitate to park in either of the driveways! + PEACE PRAYER CHAIN: We haven't advertised it in forever, but did you know that Peace has a prayer chain? YES it does! And if you love to pray you are encouraged to join it by calling Edith Korban at 289-4479. If you or someone is in NEED of prayer, you can call Edith at the same number and that prayer will be shared down the list of prayer warriors! + PLEASE PRAY: Praise God for the quick and seemingly cancer free recovery of Bruce Cizik! Also praise God that Mark Keonig received a very good doctors report and is back at work after his kidney transplant! Prayers still coveted for Mark Herie as he struggles with staying healthy with difficult dialysis treatments. + YOUNG MOTHER’S GROUP! There has been a request by a couple young mothers for a support group for Christian mothers. Mary Durkin and Amy Betts very excited to take your phone calls and get this new blessing off the ground.
MARRIAGE WORKSHOP COMING FEBRUARY 18-19 here at Peace! Set aside Friday evening and Saturday morning to renew your marriage, seeking out what a Godly and Beautiful marriage can be. Our workshop leader is Christine Erickson, Licensed Christian Counselor! CHILD CARE INCLUDED IN THE FREE PRICE! OPEN TO THE PUBLIC! Bring your friends! Matt. 19:6 â€œSo they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.â€?
NEW Sunday Morning Bible Study beginning Jan. 16 at 9:30 am: Christianity and the Competition DVD with Dr. Paul Maier The world horizon is littered with
competing religions and philosophies. Which has it right? In our multicultural age, should we insist on the TRUTH of Christianity? Dr. Maier looks at sacred sources (Biblical documents that are reliable and essentially unchanged over time) and secular sources. A look at Eastern religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Confusianism, Shinto, Tao, Judaism, Baha'i, Islam, etc.) and also Western religions (Jehovah Witnesses, Mormons, Scientology, etc.) in comparison to Christianity.
JESUS SAYS IN MATTHEW 5: 43"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
MISSIONS PAGE!!!! NEW ORLEANS TEAM WAS FABULOUS! THEY ALL CAME BACK VERY EXCITED TO SHARE WITH YOU THEIR STORIES OF MERCY! They will share them at worship on Feb. 6th. Please see the church web site for more of them as they get posted!
NEW MOSCOW MISSION MINISTRY PROPOSED AT MEETING! On Saturday, Feb. 5th, a group of area pastors and lay people met in Moscow at a meeting organized by the NEPA Lutheran Mission Partnership. It was truly a wonderful meeting blessed by God with a new vision of a mission outpost in Moscow. They considered two mission proposals, but the Moscow mission was the one that God led us to focus on. We have announced a new VERY IMPORTANT meeting for all congregational leaders and for those who live in the Moscow area who would be at all interested in supporting this new endeavor of the Lord. Of course this would affect all our Scranton parishes and even the Mt. Pocono church! This it to be a cooperative endeavor of all our circuit!
PLEASE ATTEND: IMMANUEL LUTHERAN CHURCH, SAT. MARCH 5TH AT 10:30 AM!
ALASKA VBS MISSION!!!! IF YOU ARE AT ALL INTERESTED IN THE POSSIBILITY OF GOING TO ALASKA THIS SUMMER, PLEASE SPEAK WITH PASTOR RIGHT AWAY! We had a great conference call this past Sunday and things are MOVING towards an end of June/Early July trip! Sharing the grace and glory of God is a most precious thing! And to see Alaska along the way is glorious!
Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 1 John 4: 11
BRING A FRIEND TO FRIENDSHIP SUNDAY! Sunday, Feb. 13th! It is one of the severest tests of friendship to tell your friend his faults. So to love a man that you cannot bear to see a stain upon him, and to speak painful truth through loving words, that is friendship. - Henry Ward Beecher Dyson and Tolkien were the immediate causes of my conversion. Is any pleasure on earth as great as a circle of Christian friends by a good fire? - C.S. Lewis Every man should keep a fair-sized cemetary in which to bury the faults of his friends. - Henry Ward Beecher A true friend is the gift of God, and he only who made hearts can unite them. - Robert South
Peace Lutheran Church Apostolic Mission Congregation 2506 N. Main Ave. Scranton, PA 18508
To whom the Lord Loves: