Grace, Mercy and Peace to you, Welcome to Volume 2 Number 1 of this E-Newsletter.
Happy Epiphany! This for me is always one of the more exciting days in the Church year. Today is the day the wise guys show up! Sorry the 3 wise men or the Magi, if that is what you are more comfortable with. We don't really know how many of them there were, it doesn't really say in scripture, but we attributed to them are three gifts so we assume there were three. But these were folks from the east that saw this star and followed it. They could tell that this was a monumental moment and the arrive of this star was nothing ordinary.
The significance of this story, of this journey of the Magi is that they were following a light in the darkness. They noticed and saw that in the all encompassing darkness, in the suffocating darkness in the vast nothingness there was a single light shining. In the midst of all the darkness that was around them, they saw a single light and knew that it was different and so they followed it. Wishing, hoping, praying that when they arrive at the source of the light they would find something that would make sense of this world, have it all mean something. What they found was the Savior of the world, the light that no darkness can overcome.
Our story and our journey is not that unlike the Magi, we are still surrounded by darkness. We are still struggling with the challenges of life and the hardships of that darkness. We are people walking in darkness following the light of Christ. There are two parts to this, the following of the light and the being a light. We are called to follow Christ, the light in the darkness just like the Magi did all this years ago, and we are called to be that light to the world. The stars still shine reminding us of the light of the world. the light that no darkness can overcome. We are people following a star, we are still on that journey, but we are also lighting the way for those that are coming after. So be that light in the world.
If you are in the area and looking for an Epiphany celebration you can join us tonight at 6pm at St. Paul Lutheran for potluck and star following!
Prayer Requests: Betty J, Shirley P., Don T., Leah, Steven, Glen and Jill, Karen, Dorothy F, Pastor Janell, Rev. Maggie, Pastor Fred, Sherry S., Marlyn K., Clark, Jade, Jane, Don, St. Mark's Lutheran,St. Paul Lutheran, Danielle, Grayson, Elijah we pray for students and teachers everywhere, help us to remain troubled by everything that is troubling in the world, we pray for the church, the world, and all those in need.
*Kick off this Sunday! *Don't call it a comeback...ok call it a comeback because it is coming back! Sunday School that is. With the help of Theresa Davis we will be reigniting our Sunday School Program here at Holy Trinity. We will be beginning in January with a one Sunday a month focus on Christian Education. Our Church in Action Children's Program will be integrated with our Sunday Worship. So plan on joining us January 10th and every second Sunday (unless otherwise stated).
*Tonight! Epiphany Celebration...Following a Star. *Join us for potluck, fellowship, storytelling and Epiphany banner making for our communities. We will be gathering at St. Paul Lutheran for a Congregational and multi-generational event. The highlights being bible storytelling of the journey of the Magi and construction of banners for our congregations to reveal as an epiphany to our communities. Plan on joining us and if you can bring something to eat to share.
- The HTLC Winter Coat Drive is upon us. Throughout the month of January we will be collecting gently used coats for those in need this winter. Bring in those coats for collection and we will bring them to a clothing closet each week so they can get directly into the hands of those in need. We are up to 15 coats already!
*This Friday! *Discipleship 2016! Each month during 2016 we will be encountering new ways to engage our discipleship. Every month we will have a different focus as a congregation, and learn new ways to engage our faith. January will be a month to engage with a new type of worship. Join us as we travel to Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church on Friday January 8th for their Taize Worship Service at 7pm. Taize is an ecumenical community in France that has developed a method of prayer that combines music, prayer and silence. It is a beautiful service and something that cannot be related in words but needs to be experienced.
- If you are like me and do searching for things on the internet do I have a thing for you. I have gotten Holy Trinity set up with Goodsearch.com. It is an online search engine that is powered by yahoo and everytime you use it search engine it donates to a charity of your choice, in our situation that is Holy Trinity. So set that browser to good search and select Holy Trinity and get searching.
- We have been invited on the second Friday of every month to join for worship with the saints at Our Lady of Sorrows Church here in Woodstock. At 7pm on those Fridays they gather for a Taize Service. Taize is an ecumenical community in France that has developed a method of prayer that combines music, prayer and silence. It is a beautiful service and something that cannot be related in words but needs to be experienced. If you are looking for a new worship opportunity you should check it out.
- If you are feeling the need to travel in 2016 the Oregon Synod of the ELCA is sponsoring a trip to the Holy Land. The trip will be in May and all are welcome to go on the trip. If you are interested contact Pastor Andrew for more details.
- If you are feeling the itch to travel but the Holy Lands is not your cup of tea, maybe you are interested in cruising with other Lutherans to Alaska. My dear friend Ben Fredericks (member of my internship congregation Resurrection Lutheran) is organizing a cruise for Lutheran Congregations in May of 2016. The trip will be from May 14th to the 21st and will be a wonderful opportunity to see the sights and sounds of the Pacific NW and enjoy great fellowship with other Lutherans. Contact the church office for more info.
- Summer maybe ending but this is a great time of the year to start getting more active and enjoy the beautiful weather we are having. So join Pastor Andrew on Wednesday to walk around the neighborhood. We will be meeting at 2:30 at the church and set off for a stroll around the neighborhood.
- Holy Trinity's Little Library- Thanks to Keith our Little Library is now complete. In the coming weeks we will be preparing it to be hung on the fence outside for the community. However, it is currently empty, so help us fill it but leaving a recommendation of books to fill it with. We are looking for books that have had an impact on your faith life. So what book(s) have impacted your faith?
-There are many ways to connect and engage with Holy Trinity Lutheran.
Find us on Facebook: Holy Trinity Lutheran Church Portland
Spread the word on Yelp http://www.yelp.com/biz/holy-trinity-lutheran-church-portland
Join us for devotions on Instagram: HTLCPDX
Follow us on Twitter @HTLCPDX
If you are interested in my occasional musing on my blog you can find it here http://spoileralertimnotagoodwriter.blogspot.com
Keep an eye on our webpage www.htlcpdx.com for more updates as well.
Pastor Andrew's schedule for 1/11-15
Monday- on call if needed
Tuesday- at Church in the AM, Preaching group at noon, back at Church in the Afternoon
Wednesday- Around church all day
Thursday- Around church during the day.
Friday- On call if needed, sermon prep.
Blessings Pastor Andrew