As the Lutheran Center is still under renovation, I have decided to create an activity for those looking for something new to facilitate discussion during Lent. The objective of this interactive activity is to help participants deepen their understanding and reflection on the Stations of the Cross.
This activity is a great way to engage participants in reflecting on the Stations of the Cross and encourages them to think deeply about the meaning behind each station. It can also be a good opportunity for participants to share their thoughts and perspectives with others in a safe and respectful environment.
If you try out this activity, shoot me an email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know how it went!
Looking for a fun way to incorporate March Madness into your Bible Study or Sunday school? Look no further!
Choose a chapter or verse from a different book of the Bible and fill out the bracket with which Books of the Bible you think would win the Popular Vote. Be sure to set a time to cast your votes before your next meeting. This is a great resource to facilitate discussions on different ways to read, interpret, and appreciate the books of the Bible!
Be sure to download this 2023 Bible Madness Bracket to start!
Check out these links for more inspiration on how others have done March Madness in the past!
Bold Women’s Day is observed annually by the Women of the ELCA (WELCA). The day celebrates all Lutheran women who have acted or are acting boldly on their faith in Jesus Christ. This year WELCA is observing Bold Women on Sunday, March 5.
Click here for free downloadable resources to help honor and celebrate bold women in your congregation and community.
How will you celebrate Bold Women's Day this year?
This week I wanted to share a reminder to breathe in God as we enter Lent.
There was a moment when Moses had the nerve to ask God what his name is. God was gracious enough to answer, and the name he gave is recorded in the original Hebrew as YHWH.
Over time we’ve arbitrarily added an “a” and an “e” in there to get YaHWeH, presumably because we have a preference for vowels.
But scholars and Rabi’s have noted that the letters YHWH represent breathing sounds, or aspirated consonants. When pronounced without intervening vowels, it actually sounds like breathing.
YH (inhale): WH (exhale).
So a baby’s first cry, his first breath, speaks the name of God.
A deep sigh calls His name – or a groan or gasp that is too heavy for mere words.
Even an atheist would speak His name, unaware that their very breathe is giving constant acknowledgment to God.
Likewise, a person leaves this earth with their last breath, when God’s name is no longer filing their lungs.
So when I can’t utter anything else, is my cry calling out His name?
Being alive means I speak His name constantly.
So, is it heard the loudest when I’m the quietest?
In sadness, we breathe heavy sighs.
In joy, our lungs feel almost like they will burst.
In fear we hold our breath and have to be told to breathe slowly to help us calm down.
When we’re about to do something hard, we take a deep breath to find our courage.
When I think about it, breathing is giving him praise. Even in the hardest moments!
This is so beautiful and fills me with emotion every time I grasp the thought. God chose to give himself a name that we can’t help but speak every moment we’re alive.
All of us, always, everywhere.
Waking, sleeping, breathing, with the name of God on our lips.
Written by Sandra Thurman Caporale from the Memorial Church of Christ in Houston.
The ELCA celebrates Black History Month every February to recognize and honor the history and contributions of Black Lutherans. This year, African Descent Ministries of the ELCA is celebrating with season two of Talks at the Desk, a video series that explores diverse expressions of the church.
Join them live on YouTube each Wednesday this month at 8:30 PM to hear youth, young adults, rostered leaders, elders, and friends of the community as they share their stories, achievements, and accomplishments in faith, justice, education, and service. If you can't join their live sessions, you can watch all their videos on the ELCA YouTube channel.
Additionally, the ELCA has committed to the work of dismantling racism through education, training, and advocacy. This work is done through partnerships with organizations such as the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia and the Black Clergy Caucus of the ELCA. It’s important to recognize the rich history of Black Lutherans in the ELCA and celebrate their lasting impact on our church and society.
Visit the African Descent Lutheran Association website, www.adlaelca.org, to learn more about our ELCA African Descent community and how to join this active, vital network and association.
Last week, I received a lovely email from the late Rev. Dr. Linwood Chamberlain's wife, Peggy. With her permission, I wanted to share a wonderful gift she had made for her children and grandchildren using Pastor Woody's robes and stoles.
These throw pillows have meaningful memories for Peggy and her family. By sharing with you all, Peggy and I hope these might inspire you to find new and creative ways to remember loved ones or a special occasion to be cherished for generations.
If you want to share more wonderful ideas, crafts, thoughts, or more. Please email me at email@example.com.
Bishop Craig Satterlee is the bishop of the North/West Lower Michigan Synod and the author of ten books and many articles. His newest book, My Burden Is Light: Making Room for Jesus In Preaching will be available to borrow upon re-opening of the Lutheran Center.
My Burden is Light is a must-read for all those seeking to grow in their Christian faith. The book is an inspirational guide to living a life of joy and hope, while still carrying the responsibility of being a faithful Christian. Bishop Satterlee draws upon his personal experience as a pastor and his scholarship as a theologian to provide a comprehensive and accessible guide to the central tenets of the Christian faith. My Burden is Light is an essential resource for anyone looking to deepen their understanding of the Bible and how it applies to their life today. It is filled with encouraging words of wisdom, stories, and biblical passages that will help readers find peace and hope amid life’s struggles. This will be a great new resource for anyone seeking to grow in their faith.
If you're interested in Bishop Satterlee's other books, be sure to check out his website: https://craigasatterlee.com/
Other reviews of his latest book can be found at this link: https://craigasatterlee.com/2023/01/08/resources-my-burden-is-light/
I would also recommend taking the time to review some of the articles he has written on preaching: https://craigasatterlee.com/preach/
If you would like to join the waitlist for My Burden is Light, please send me a quick email at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know!
I recently read How (Not) to Save the World: The Truth About Revealing God’s Love to the People Right Next to You by Hosanna Wong. I was deeply impressed by the powerful message of this book. It was a great reminder that when it comes to making a difference in the world, it often starts with those closest to us.
Wong's writing style is engaging and thought-provoking, and she draws on a variety of personal experiences to illustrate her points. She encourages readers to move outside of their comfort zones and challenge themselves to make a difference in their local communities in tangible ways. She also emphasizes the importance of setting boundaries and taking care of oneself so we can serve others.
Overall, I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to make a difference in the world, but who may feel overwhelmed and unsure where to start. Wong provides practical advice and guidance on how to take small steps and make a difference in the lives of those around us. This book will be available in the KRC once the Lutheran Center is re-opened. Email me at email@example.com to join the waitlist!
Who doesn’t love the dollar store? Or as my stepson now calls it “the dollar twenty-five store” (not that we let an extra quarter dissuade us). There are so many interesting things to find… craft items, tiny bags of chips, cleaning supplies, and so on! Pastor John Stevens, an ELCA pastor based in Oregon, has created the perfect resource for children’s sermons especially if you may be running low on ideas.
Ten years ago, he created a Children’s Sermon Blog that involves using one item purchased from Dollar Tree to create a message for kids using scriptures from both the Revised Common Lectionary and the Narrative Lectionary. Every week he posts a new children’s sermon to match the lectionary year for the upcoming Sunday. He provides what you will need to buy (or use), the scripture, the takeaway, and a short video of how to lead the sermon. And if you are even more crunched on time, he has prepared additional videos ready to stream right in church!
Not only is this a great resource for Children's Time but can also be used as a quick Sunday School lesson followed by discussion. So be sure to check out his website at https://dskidsermons.com/, follow him on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/dskidsermons, or go straight to YouTube to watch his videos @JohnStevensDSCS.
As you may know, the Lutheran Center and the KRC are currently under renovation meaning checking out some great resources is delayed until further notice. (Hopefully, not too much longer now)! This week I wanted to share a FREE resource written by the Rev. Dr. Dave Daubert. If you’re not familiar with him, he is an ELCA pastor in Illinois and a nationally known speaker, consultant, coach, and teacher.
His book The Incarnational Preacher: Proclaiming the Living Christ to Form a Living Faith is a free, downloadable e-book available through the ELCA website. This book is great for new and First Call pastors, lay pastors, or anyone looking for a fresh and missional perspective on preaching.
If you give this book a read, please let me know your thoughts on it! The KRC is always looking for feedback on resources that have been helpful and interesting and how we can continue to provide useful resources!