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MISSION STATEMENT OF FIRST LUTHERAN CHURCH
TELL THE STORY
VISION STATEMENT OF FIRST LUTHERAN CHURCH
We, the people of First Lutheran Church will "Put Christ First" in all that we do. We will
The Joys of Summer
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
I have three weddings on my calendar in 2013 - all of them in June. Two of them are First Lutheran Church (Jade Gustavsen and Adam Blakey; Alyssa Philips and Jonathan Medler). A third is at a gathering in Springfield (Clarissa Hubbard and Richard Warren; Richard is the son of S.A.M. Jeff Storm who has occasionally filled in for me during summer months past). Weddings are some of the most joyous occasions we have, and I certainly look forward to these celebrations.
But there is more to celebrate this June, and it starts with all of us at our congregational picnic and gathering on the first Sunday of June, June 2. We will have an opportunity for fellowship and reflection together on the immeasurable value of worship for us all. Furthermore, we will have the blessing of the presence of our forthcoming Intern, Laurie Helms, her husband Jeff, and their children - Megan, Jacob, and Madison. Please welcome them with love and friendship!
The following weekend brings another celebration. At the Synod Assembly of the Central Southern Illinois Synod, our own Marty Brilley will be commissioned and recognized as a Synodically Authorized Minister. This comes after three years of successful study and deepening of his understanding of theology and the church and practical training in worship, pastoral care, and preaching. Congratulations, Marty! Marty will further bless us with his preaching and presiding over the last two Sundays of the month while Karen and I are visiting my parents and relatives in Maine.
We also celebrate the improvements to our property which come with the installation of a new air conditioning unit and adjustments to our parking lot. Many thanks to Ken Broeking, Jim Summers, and Chuck Ahlenius in seeing these projects to their completion!
There are, of course, some challenges on the horizon for us as a congregation and as a community. One of the events I am working on with other clergy is the preparation for a Ministerial Summit to take place later in the month of June to address the challenges of poverty and homelessness in our community. Pray for God’s presence and love for all who need blessing among us!
Nonetheless, at the heart of all our celebrations is the Lord of our lives who is present with us even and especially in the face of challenges. He who has taken us through death into life and who sends the Spirit to breathe fresh life into our beings gives us the grace to sail in the season of Pentecost and throughout the year with his love.
Peace and, most especially, Joy!