Monday, October 31, 2005

Reformation Day!


On October 31, 1517 Martin Luther posted his 95 thesis on the church door in Wittenberg Germany. This event sent shockwaves not only through the church but through the very fabric of society. The reforms were widespread and lasting. Today we celebrate the Festival of the Reformation, and we focus on our parish theme...On the Road Again...the Journey in Jesus. Prior to the Reformation the Church of Rome taught that it was human work and effort that moved one down the road to life eternal. Through the power of the Holy Spirit at work in the Word of God, the Reformation of the church put the Gospel "On the Road Again." Once more the truth was proclaimed that the journey to everlasting life is one made ONLY in Jesus. We are saved by Grace alone, through Faith alone, for the sake of Christ Alone. To God Alone be the Glory.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Prepare for Worship

Worship is more than just an hour on Sunday. We worship God all week long. Sunday morning (or night or Monday) is the highpoint of the week. It is a time for us to bring praise to a Living, powerful, gracious God. During this time God speaks to us through His word and comes to us in Baptism and Holy Communion. Each of us should spend some time preparing for this time. Think of it like practice. Most teams spend some time in practice before the big game. Our big game will be in heaven, but we experience a foretaste of the feast to come each Sunday. So to get ready I challenge you to read the scriptures ahead of time. Read the text for the sermon and start thinking about the words that you will hear. How can you do this? I'm glad you asked. I will be posting the readings for the coming week as well as the sermon theme and text here on this blog. It will take some time to get in the habit, but preparation will help make Sundays the best day of the week. So... let's get started.

For this week:
Old Testament Lesson: Jeremiah 31:31-34
Psalm: 46
New Testament Lesson: Romans 3:21-28
Gospel: John 8:31-36

Sermon Title: "On the Road Again...the Journey in Jesus...Road Hog"
Text: Luke 15:11-32- "The Prodigal Son"

Take some time to read these passages, pray and reflect on them so you will be ready for worship on Sunday.

You can read them on line at www.biblegateway.com.

May God bless you as you study His word.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Parish Theme-October



“While he was still a long way down the road, His father saw him and was filled with compassion.” Luke 15:11-32

Have you ever paced the floors awaiting the sound of the car door? Have you ever found yourself looking out the front window every few minutes wondering when “they” were going to arrive? Waiting for a loved one to return from the daily journeys of work or school, or the life changing journeys of a military deployment or that first relocation away from the family can be painful. The father of the prodigal son knew what it was to pace and to peek, to wait and to worry.
The word prodigal has several meanings. One of its synonyms is wasteful another excessive. Both are true of the boy in our story. “He squandered his money on parties and prostitutes and playthings.” (Lk. 15:13) In one sentence he proves to be both wasteful and excessive. There was nothing he didn’t try and there was nothing left when he was finished. Yet, his father yearned for his return and awaited his arrival.
How did he know he was coming home? He didn’t know. He merely hoped he was. The Father of humanity does the father in the story one better. He not only longs for His children to make it home, he goes out to get them. In His Son, He walks down the road away from His home. In His Son, He walks up the road of Calvary where for sins of excess and waste He suffers and dies.

This month the Parable of the Prodigal is the text for our Parish Theme, “On the Road Again. . .the Journey in Jesus.” We too are called to be “on the look out” for lost and wandering brothers and sisters, sons and daughters that the too might receive a Father’s welcome.

-Pastor Kritzer

Sunday, October 09, 2005

What is Anchor?


Anchor is a new group that has started at Bethany that seeks to reach out to those in college, those just out of college, engaged couples, newlyweds, and other young adults or those young at heart. Why such a broad category? Anchor does not want to pidgenhole any one based on age. Anchor was established to create a network of people, committed to Jesus Christ and bringing His message to the world. Anchor does this by creating events and gatherings that are non-threatening and can be used as outreach as well as inreach. These events and gatherings bring Christians who are connected to Christ together with those who may not know who Jesus is. If you would like to be part of Anchor, contact Vicar Seth at smoorman@bethanylutheran.org.

"We have this hope as a anchor for the soul, firm and secure." Hebrews 6:19


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