Daybreak Dawnings

  From Pastor Marty

 

Dear Followers of Jesus:

The month of February, with Valentine’s Day in the middle of it, is often considered the month of love especially romantic love, as well as love of family and friends. Our Lord certainly isn’t opposed to this kind of love, but it falls far short of his total concept of love. So as you get your Valentine’s Cards ready, I also invite you to consider his words in Luke 6:27-38 27“But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. 29If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt…. 31Do to others as you would have them do to you. 32If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you?... 33If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you….35But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return…. 36Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. 37Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; 38give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”

Now here is a description of love that really challenges us.  Jesus, the Son of God, who has given his life for all of us, says: “Love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and you will be children of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked.  Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” Jesus’ words are an invitation to go way beyond Cupid’s arrow and to love the most unlikely people around us.


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     Joseph F. Girzone, a Roman Catholic priest, has written a novel entitled: “JOSHUA and the Children.” In this book Joshua, who is really Jesus, visits a village that is torn by violence, hatred, bigotry, ignorance, and intolerance.  Through his love for the children, he is able to get them to break down the old barriers that had long separated them. Near the end of the book he says to the children:  Little ones, you are truly blessed by God.  You have been chosen to do a special work for him.  The grown-ups have grown weary and tired of the heavy burden of solving life’s problems.  A new way has to begin.  You have been chosen by God to start on that way.  You can see what your love and your caring have already accomplished in the village.  You have been able to transform the whole community.  Where before there was hatred and suspicion and fear, now there is love and friendship and trust.  The secret is to love and never to take offense.  Always try to understand the tortured anguish that drives people to do the mean things they do, and it will not be hard to forgive.  Let your love conquer all obstacles and slowly your message will spread throughout the world.”   
  
     What an amazing summary of the words of our Lord in Luke 6. The world awaits a few ordinary people who will hear Jesus and believe. A few old ladies and men in Moscow or London, a family in Harrisburg or Arendstville, somebody running loose who doesn’t play by the world’s rules, but lives in the shadow of the cross, constrained, controlled by Christ’s love.

My friends, God wants us to be like him holy. Our behavior, the rules under which we work and live, are not devised on the basis of what I want or even what the other person wants, but rather on the basis of who God is.

So, as you come to worship Him, think about that.  At Communion look into that blood red cup, taste that broken body, remember the God who by his life and death showed us he is “kind to the ungrateful and the wicked” (like us!).  Then, eat and drink, taking His love into yourself, that you may be empowered to be a world-changing, revolutionary person, who knows the secret: love and never take offense. 

 

____________________________________________________________________________________

 


  

SUNDAY WORSHIP PLANNER

 FEBRUARY 2

Presentation of Our Lord

Service of Holy Communion

Children’s Message:  “Faith Focus”

Sermon:  “New Year’s Resolution To See Better in 2014”

 

FEBRUARY 9

Fifth Sunday after Epiphany

Service of the Word

Children’s Message:  “Be Who You Are”

Sermon:  “It Isn’t Easy Being Me”

 

FEBRUARY 16

Sixth Sunday after Epiphany

Service of Holy Communion

Children’s Message:  “Growing in the Faith”

Sermon:  “Cut It Out”

 

FEBRUARY 23

Seventh Sunday after Epiphany

Service of the Word

Rev. Timothy W. Sadler supply pastor



 

Join Us for a ‘Fun Night’ on March 2

Trinity’s annual “Fun Night” will be held Sunday, March 2! It always takes place the Sunday before Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of Lent. “Fun Night” is looked upon as Trinity’s “Mardi Gras”.

The evening begins with a potluck supper at 5:30in the Social Room. Bring a covered dish to share. Beverages and place settings are provided. Following the supper, we go to the Adult Sunday School Room for a spectacular variety show.

You … your talents … your inventions … your stories … Did I mention you? Yes, let your hair down and share in the Fun and Fellowship. All talents are being called upon! Contact Josie Pelc at 677-9448 with your renditions of fun! We look forward to seeing you at “Fun Night!”

 

 

Lent begins March 5 with Ash Wednesday Service

    The church season of Lent will begin on Ash Wednesday, March 5. The traditional service with Imposition of Ashes will be at 7:30 p.m. It will also be a service of Holy Communion.

    The midweek Lenten Soup Supper & Service will then begin on March 12 and end April 9 with a soup and bread supper in the Social Room at 5:30 p.m. each Wednesday, followed by a service at 6:20 p.m., using the Holden Evening Prayer. Everyone is invited to attend.

 

TLC Prayer Chain Now Organizing

Trinity is currently organizing an e-mail/phone prayer chain. If interested, please contact Sue Kuhn at 677-6723 or the church office at 677-8921 or office@trinityarendtsville.org with your name, e-mail address and/or phone number. Sue will put together a prayer chain list consisting of both e-mail and phone contacts to be used when a prayer need arises.

If anyone has a prayer concern, please contact Sue or any Outreach & Service Committee member. Sue will then send out the request for prayer.

 

Acolyte Volunteers Needed for Late Service

Acolyte volunteers are being sought. If your child is interested in serving as an acolyte for the 10:15 a.m. service, please contact Mindi Culp at 677-0719 or mkw2192@comcast.net to sign up or for more information.

  

 

Community Breakfast at St. Paul on Feb. 22

Everyone is invited to come to the Community Breakfast on Saturday, Feb. 22, at 7:30 a.m. at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, 25 Franklin St., Biglerville.

The Community Breakfast is held the last Saturday of each month. Chef Gary Wagner always cooks up a delicious meal, and an inspirational speaker provides insight into the Christian path.

To RSVP or to get more information, contact Tom Cline at 677-6676 or the St. Paul church office at 677-6365.

 

Upper Adams Prayer Breakfast on March 4

   Pastor Dale Williams, recently retired after many years serving the Lower Marsh Creek Presbyterian Church and also a former Navy Chaplain, will be guest speaker on Tuesday, March 4, at the Upper Adams Prayer Breakfast. All are invited to this event which is held the first Tuesday of each month at the Apple Bin Restaurant on Rt. 234 between Biglerville and Arendtsville. It commences at 7:45 a.m. with coffee and breakfast orders and continues at 8 with singing led by Jean Finfrock and accompanied by Barbara Frey on the keyboard. The visiting pastor then leads the gathering with his/her presentation and special prayer for many requested by the group. Breakfast follows and the multi-denominational fellowship is typically over about 9.

 

 

__________________________________________________________________

 

 

How can we be better and more generous stewards
of God's gifts?

Excerpted from “Generous Living: Finding Contentment through Giving” by Ron Blue

 

There are several reasons why we as Christians may not be properly supporting the Lord’s work with our financial and personal gifts and abilities. Even if we are spiritually mature and don’t have unresolved fiscal difficulties, lack of knowledge and planning can forestall our desire to contribute generously.

The Bible has much to say about the joy of giving. It is to each person’s eternal benefit to give generously while he or she has the chance. Scripture is very clear that there are eternal rewards associated with giving. Jesus talked about it in the Parable of the Talents. Paul wrote about it in 2 Corinthians 8 and 9. In Philippians 4:17 the apostle explained his reason for urging believers to give without reservation: “Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that abounds to your account.” We hear a great deal in the Christian community about the importance of financial planning but not so much about planned giving. Just as having a financial plan can help us free up more money for giving, so having a lifestyle strategy can help make generosity a reality in our lives. Following are five action steps to help identify and take advantage of the opportunities God sets before you:

*Examine your priorities. Do they reflect what God says has eternal value? Remember the high value He puts on people. As you consider what matters most to God, be sure to put those things and serving others at the top of your list.

*  Inventory your assets. List all your resources: your time, your talents, and your possessions. All of us have different gifts or abilities, and we’re supposed to share them with others. Just as financial resources must be managed carefully, so the assets of time and talents must be stewarded effectively if they are to be employed with maximum effect.

* Ask the right questions. If you are asked to give your time, skills or resources to a cause, ask the right questions before responding. Instead of wondering, “Is it convenient for me?” or “What do I get out of it?” consider whether or not God would want you to use your resources His resources in this way.

*  Eliminate expectations. When you give, do it without expecting anything in return. Sacrificial giving costs the giver something, and you may not be rewarded immediately for your generosity.

*  Give your schedule to God. Give your appointments and plans to God first thing each day. Ask Him to show you how He wants you to use your time, talents, and resources, and give Him permission to interrupt your agenda.

     All Christians need to know that they can enrich their lives by developing a lifestyle of generosity. It won’t happen overnight, but the more you give of yourself, the better you will feel — and the more joyful and fulfilled you will be.

 

______________________________________________________________________________



          Dinner Anyone? …

Join Trinity’s Dinner Group

 

     Would you enjoy … Eating good food? … Meeting new friends? … Or reconnecting with old ones?

     Why not join a Trinity Lutheran Church Dinner Group ‒ enjoy fellowship over good food in the homes of new friends and old. You will be matched with a group of six to eight people (couples or singles), to meet in one another's homes. The host provides the entreé, while the other participants provide the side dishes and desserts.

     If you know someone who is not a member of Trinity, but would enjoy the fellowship of our dinner groups ‒ please include them. All are welcome.

     If you have any questions or would like to participate in the Dinner Group, please contact Maria Levenstein at 677-4656 or the church office at 677-8921 or office@trinityarendtsville.org by Sunday, Feb. 23.

 

____________________________________________________________________________

         

  

 

  

  

 

*Quote from Richard that was used in the newsletter:

 

DOING GOOD

~ for others ~

 

*   *   *   *

 

“Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.”

 

Quote by John Wesley, circa 1780

One of the founders of the Methodist Movement

   

______________________________________________________________________________

 



ARM ‘Zumbathon’ Fundraiser on April 12

   We are excited to invite you to participate in the Adams Rescue Mission’s 2nd annual Zumbathon fundraiser! This event will be held on April 12 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at The Intersection Church, 1980 Baltimore Pike, Gettysburg. The cost to participate is $20 if you
pre-register, or $25 at the door.

   The Zumbathon will feature three hours of Zumba, instructed by local guest Zumba instructors, free snacks, and water. Each participant will receive a ‘blessing bag’ filled with coupons and goodies. Participants who raise a minimum of $100 for the Mission will receive a free event t-shirt; and for those who raise over $500, there will be special additional prizes.

   For more details or to pre-register, go to the ‘Events’ page at www.adamsrescuemission.org or call Heidi at the Adams Rescue Mission at 717-334-7502.

  

____________________________________________________________________________

 

              The Art of Presence 

                    An excerpt from a New York Times article by David Brooks



   Tragedy has twice visited the Woodiwiss family. In 2008, Anna Woodiwiss, 27, was working for a service organization in Afghanistan. She went horseback riding and was thrown, dying from her injuries. In 2013, her sister Catherine, 26, was biking to work in Washington. She was hit by a car and her face was severely smashed. She has endured a series of operations. For a time, she breathed and ate through a tube, unable to speak. The recovery is slow. The victims of trauma, she writes, experience days “when you feel like a quivering, cowardly shell of yourself, when despair yawns as a terrible chasm, when fear paralyzes any chance for pleasure. This is just a fight that has to be won, over and over and over again.” Her mother, Mary, talks about the deep grief a parent feels when they have lost a child and seen another badly injured. But suffering is a teacher. And, among other things, the Woodiwisses drew a few lessons, which at least apply to their own experience, about how those of us outside the zone of trauma might better communicate with those inside the zone. There are no uniformly right responses, but their collective wisdom is quite useful:

   *Do be there. Some people think that those who experience trauma need space to sort things through. Assume the opposite. Most people need presence. The Woodiwisses say they were awed after each tragedy by the number of people, many mere acquaintances, who showed up and offered love. They were also disoriented by a number of close friends who simply weren’t there, who were afraid or too busy. Anna and Catherine’s father, Ashley, says he could detect no pattern to help predict who would step up and provide the ministry of presence and who would fumble. Neither age, experience nor personal belief correlated with sensitivity and love.

   *Don’t compare, ever. Don’t say, “I understand what it’s like to lose a child.” Even if a comparison seems germane, don’t make it. Each trauma should be respected in its uniqueness. Each story should be heard attentively as its own thing. “From the inside,” Catherine writes, comparisons “sting as clueless, careless, or just plain false.”

   *Do bring soup. The non-verbal expressions of love are as healing as eloquence. When Mary was living with Catherine during her recovery, some young friend noticed she didn’t have a bathmat. He went to Target and got a bathmat. Mary says she will never forget that.

   *Do not say “you’ll get over it.”  “There is no such thing as ‘getting over it,’ ” Catherine writes, “A major disruption leaves a new normal in its wake. There is no ‘back to the old me.’ ”

   *Do be a builder. The Woodiwisses distinguish between firefighters and builders. Firefighters drop everything and arrive at the moment of crisis. Builders are there for years and years, walking alongside as the victims live in the world. Very few people are capable of performing both roles.

    *Don’t say it’s all for the best or try to make sense out of what has happened. Catherine and her parents speak with astonishing gentleness and quiet thoughtfulness, but it’s pretty obvious that these tragedies have stripped away their tolerance for pretense and unrooted optimism. Ashley also warned against those who would over interpret, and try to make sense of the inexplicable.

   Even devout Christians, as the Woodiwisses are, should worry about taking theology beyond its limits. Theology is a grounding in ultimate hope, not a formula book to explain away each individual event.

   I believe what these experiences call for is a sort of passive activism. We have a tendency, especially in an achievement-oriented culture, to want to solve problems and repair brokenness, to propose, plan, fix, interpret, explain and solve. But what seems to be needed here is the art of presence — to perform tasks without trying to control or alter the situation. Allow nature to take its course. Grant the sufferers the dignity of their own process. Let them define meaning. Sit simply through moments of pain and uncomfortable darkness. Be practical, mundane, simple and direct.

   Ashley and Mary went to Afghanistan a few months after Anna’s death. They remember that as a time out of time. They wept together with Afghan villagers and felt touched by grace. “That period changed me and opened my imagination,” Ashley recalls. “This thing called presence and love is more available than I had thought. It is more ready to be let loose than I ever imagined.”

____________________________________________________________________________

 


  Update:  “Call Committee In Action!” 


   Your Call Committee has been hard at work since the beginning of the New Year, working through the steps outlined by the ELCA to call a new pastor. The committee’s principal job is to fill out a Ministry Site Profile (MSP). The MSP document, when complete, is how the synod helps choose potential candidates to send our way, and how potential candidates decide whether we’re worth a second look or not. It is, in essence, an encyclopedic definition of who we are at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Arendtsville, PA – the good, the bad, and the ugly!

   Through nominations and our church council members, the Call Committee chosen to put the MSP together includes: John Menges (chair), Ellie Vranich (secretary), Susan Bailey (council representative), Ron Ebbert (long-standing member of TLC), Anne Myers (newer member of TLC), and KC Goshorn (youth representative). So far, the committee has worked well together, and the range of ages and perspective has led to really good conversation about our congregation, who we are, and who we would like to become under the leadership of a new pastor. However, we are only six voices representing our entire church body (which, according to our membership list with the synod, totals over 360 members!). We want to be sure we are accurately representing our church as a whole. So, if you have questions, concerns, or opinions related to finding the perfect pastor for our parish, now is the time to speak up! Any of the committee members will be more than happy to chat with you and will bring your thoughts and concerns forward at a future committee meeting. It is our hope to finish the MSP and have it submitted not later than the beginning of March, however, so now really is the time to speak up!

   Some of the questions on the MSP that we have to answer include topics like: recent trends in our congregation, goals to which we’re committed, things about which our congregation is really excited, what our purpose is, what our gifts are, our top three mission priorities, and characteristics we feel are most important in a new leader.

   Below is the contact information for the committee members. Thanks for your support and input!

John Menges: jkmenges@comcast.net, 717-677-4243
Ellie Vranich: evranich@comcast.net, 717-677-4431
Susan Bailey: susan.bailey@hnoins.com, 717-457-0162
Ron Ebbert: ron_ebbert@hotmail.com, 717-677-6038
Anne Myers: myersact@gmail.com, 717-352-4136
KC Goshorn: peepergrl2@yahoo.com, 717-334-6067

 

 


Update: 2014 Annual Congregation Meeting

 

   The annual Trinity congregation meeting was held after the late service on January 26. Thirty-four church members were in attendance. The main order of business included the review of our updated church constitution, review of our 2013 Annual Report, and discussion of plans and programs needing increased attention at Trinity in 2014.

   Table discussions were held on the topics of Property, Worship & Music, Outreach & Service, Youth Ministry, Stewardship & Finance, and Mutual Ministry.

   The revised 2013-2014 church constitution, the 2013 committee and financial reports, as well as the 2013 congregation meeting minutes were unanimously approved by the meeting attendees.

   Our many congregational members who regularly serve in worship service roles, and as council members, committee members, offering counters, staff members, Sunday School teachers, and in other supporting church roles were recognized for their dedicated efforts on the part of our faith community. At present, the 2014 Call Committee is hard at work developing the materials and actions needed to successfully pursue a permanent pastor for our Arendtsville Lutheran church.

   With the election of our Trinity church officers, assignment of council duties, and paid staff positions approved at the reorganization meeting held on January 15, we are ready to face the many challenges which lie ahead. Great decisions and thoughtful solutions will require our focus and the full participation of our members in our church ministries as we move forward through 2014 .

 

Richard C. Bachman

Congregation Council President


 

 

 

Bible Study/Prayer Group Offering led by Pastor Marty

Using “The Workbook On Becoming Alive in Christ”

By Maxie Dunnam

 

8 Group Meetings - Sunday Evenings – 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Beginning Sunday, February 23rd & Concluding Sunday, April 13th!

The New Testament understanding of Christian living as persons being “alive in Christ” is often ignored and therefore not a daily experience for many followers.  This workbook helps users experience the indwelling Christ as the shaping power of their lives.  “What Christ has been and done for us, we are to be and do for others.”  This happens through spiritual formation – a process of learning to say yes to Christ every day in every way.  Spiritual formation requires discipline and practiced effort to recognize, to cultivate an awareness of, and to give expression to the indwelling Christ.  If you would like to experience the indwelling Christ more often in your daily life and are willing to discipline yourself, than this workbook is for you.  Each participant will have his/her own workbook and be asked to give 20 to 30 minutes each day to learn about and appropriate ideas and disciplines for spiritual formation.  Workbooks will be handed out at the first meeting on Sunday, February 23rd.  In each day’s section of the workbook you will read about the discipline (which will be based on scripture), spend time reflecting and recording, and then be asked to apply the learning during your day.  On day 7 of each week (Sunday) you will gather with your fellow participants to share and discuss what you’ve learned and experienced.  Suggestions for the group meeting are printed at the end of each week, so that you’ll know how to prepare and what to expect. The purpose of this adventure is experiential and experimental, but not argumentative.  If you can make a seven week commitment (attending all 8 group meetings except when an emergency arises), then join in this pilgrimage to becoming more alive in Christ.  Please fill in the registration form below and submit to the church office by February 16th.

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Registration for the Workbook On Becoming Alive in Christ

Name:___________________________________  Phone No. _______________

E-mail: ______________________________________

 

Please return to the church office by February 16, 2014

 

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Community Notes

  

Donations and Volunteers Needed

   


Adams Rescue Mission is accepting donations of clothing and household items, as well as recycling and electronic waste.
Donations have decreased causing a direct effect on ARM’s ability to provide community programs. Volunteers are also needed to sort clothing.
   For more details, go to: www.adamsrescuemission.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 





 



 

 
 
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