Blessings to all, I pray that all of you are healthy and comforted by Paul’s advice to us. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again; Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Over the last few days we have been inundated with so much Covid-19 information that it is difficult to know what people are thinking. Why the run on toilet paper? Why the hoarding? Why the dirty looks when someone coughs? This all seems kind of silly to me but then I guess we need to be sensitive to those who are fearful for good reason. Those with compromised immune systems and those who are more susceptible to infection. Then there are those who are shopping for the elderly neighbor so she will not have to go to a crowded store and those who are phoning the shut-ins to make sure they are OK. Those who are being positive and using such a time as this to encourage others to put their trust in the One who is in control. We can all use this as an opportunity to be a blessing to others especially those who are fearful. Most of all be thankful. Thankful we live in a country where we can get the food and supplies we need even if it is not exactly what we want. A country where we can drink clean water from the tap even if we can’t get Evian. A country that has a sanitation system and trash pick up. A country that has clean health care facilities available if we do get sick. Yes, the Corona Virus has now hit Haiti. Please pray for them, especially for Pastor Isaac, Pastor Thomas, our special friends Nora Leon, Lophane, Noel and their families. I want you all to know that we will be able to pay our 49 teachers through the end of the school year even though the schools are now closed. This will be a difficult time for the people of Haiti who live from day to day. There is no such thing as waiting in line at the local pharmacy. It is every man for himself.
In all situations be thankful.
Haitian Lutheran Mission Project
Ushers are needed for the Maundy Thursday, April 9, and Good Friday, April 10, 11:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. worship services. Ushers are also needed for the 6:30 Sunrise Service and the 9:00 Family Service on Easter Sunday, April 12. The ushering team of Randy Barthel will remain the same for the 11:00 Easter Festival Service.
Grace, peace and strength be to you during this critical time. We pray that you are well and caring for yourselves and others with the love of Jesus. Know that the Holy Spirit interprets even our “sighs” before the throne of grace so that we may have hope in our Lord, Romans 8: 15 ff. Know that a good resource for home devotions is found on page 4 of the Portals of Prayer. We hope that in the days ahead you will join us for live stream worship, see not below, or request a CD as noted, so that we worship the Lord, are strengthened by his promises and stay connected in Christ. We pray to the Lord that soon it will be safe to congregate together again at Christ Lutheran. If you have access, please also check our website and Facebook through this time. After much prayer and consultation of the Board of Elders, the decision has been made at this critical time to conduct services via live stream and Facebook only (no physical congregating at this time). The services will be live streamed on Thursday at 11:00 and Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and should be available on Facebook thereafter. Should you need a CD of the service for pick up at the church or to be mailed, please email the church office at email@example.com and copy to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Prayer at this critical time by people of faith, hope and love,
offered by Pastor Ray+
Heavenly Father, we are called anew in urgent prayer before you, together with loved ones in our homes or alone but really one with the whole Church by the Holy Spirit in the Community of Saints. Thank you, Lord, for the technology you have given so that we come together this way before you. We come in prayer: people of abiding “faith, hope and love,” I Cor. 13: 13.
Faith. Lord, drawn us near in trust worked by the Holy Spirit. There is much we do not know at this time, and it is frustrating. We know that sickness was not part of the “God saw that it was good”-world. But sin entered the world and so did sickness and death. We know that sickness is not part of your ultimate will, but we struggle with why you sometimes allow these pandemics over time. Truly, it is a struggle of faith. Draw us near in faith to you, the everlasting and merciful Lord. Assure us of your love grounded and alive in Jesus and the truth that nothing can separate us from your love in Christ Jesus,” Romans 8: 35-39. Draw us in humility, Lenten repentance and grace-filled faith.
Draw us near as people of hope. It is so easy caught up in Godless anxiety and despair. Remind us that you are God, Psalm 46: 10. Your gracious promises hold as anchor of the soul, Hebrews 6: 19. Help us to turn to you in prayer and lead others to you, maybe back to you. Bring people together with their loved ones in prayer again. Work, Lord, through the amazing immune system you have created, for we are “fearfully and wondrously made,” Psalm 139: 14. We pray, Lord, work through caring and brave doctors, scientists and health care workers to put down this evil virus. Renew us in hope and in peace. Remind us in hope that Jesus gives peace beyond anything the world can offer as we remember a favorite passage of sainted Pr. Ledogar: John 14: 25-27.
Finally, finally. The greatest of these is love. Help us love neighbors as we love ourselves. Call us to that Upper Room love: To love “as you have loved us,” John 15:12. So prompt us to the discipline of practicing healthy etiquette in care for self, and, hey, we are Christians, for others! If I am praying this and know that I am a hugger, help me to hold back in love. Help us to hold back from congregating physically at Christ Lutheran and beyond right now and from sharing gathered Holy Communion for now. Our hearts are heavy at this spiritual distancing, but we know love requires even that pause. In faith and love continue to inform our Board of Elders’ and pastors’ counsel regarding worship by live streaming and otherwise, and Lord guide our congregational leaders in evaluation of all activities that would gather here. In love help our first responders, utility worker, plumbers, grocery store workers and all other essential service providers like these: ____________________ to continue to serve others in real need. So move us in love that means no handshakes and even congregating worship for a time, but also to move in love when you call us to be there for one is urgent need. Give us that brave love in and for the world, Savior and Lord.
O Lord, hears us, faith, hope, love people alive by grace in you, the living God. Lord Jesus Christ you are “the same yesterday, today and forever,” Hebrews 13:8. In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
The OWLS will be celebrating 29 years of fellowship and service with an Anniversary Luncheon on Sunday, May 3, at Ashford House (7959 W. 159thStreet, Tinley Park). OWLS members and their guests may purchase tickets for $22 per person, due by April 19. Please see Diane Linkowski for tickets, 708-373-0518.
Christ Lutheran Church will provide a live stream of the 9:30 service on the Christ Lutheran Church Facebook page;
This opportunity for “remote worship” will be provided as an option during the current COVID-19 health emergency for those who choose not to physically attend Sunday worhip services.
We would like to remind you that you can take advantage of our new “Mobile” giving service through Give+.
Instructions on how to use this service can be found here:
Any giving through this service, or through the acces to Give+ from our web page will be posted to your annual ontributions account.
Easter lilies and a variety of spring flowers will adorn the chancel on Easter Sunday, April 12. The cost of each plant is $12.00. If you would like to purchase a plant to decorate the chancel, a sign up and payment envelopes are available on the narthex table. PLEASE SIGN YOUR NAME ON THE LIST WHEN YOU ORDER! Please return payment envelopes via the offering basket or the Church Office front desk. Deadline to order is Sunday, April 5. Donors are welcome to take their plant(s) home after the 11:00 Easter service. Plants left after a week will be discarded.
We regret to inform you that, due to unforeseen circumstances, the MotherDaughter Banquet / Children’s Musical is being cancelled for this year (Thursday, May 21).
Hey kids (5th Grade and older)! Sign up to play in the Easter Family Service Youth Orchestra, Sunday, April 12, at 9:00 a.m. There will be one practice on Saturday, April 11, at 10:00. Please sign up on the bulletin board by the gym.
HOLY SMOKERS Due to the large number of smokers and would-be smokers we’ve been
blessed with, information on multiple start dates will be given next weekend. If you have
questions, contact Pastor Johnson at 309-531-4868 or an email at email@example.com.
SEDER Christ Passover-Seder worship has been postponed to next year. Regular Maundy Thursday worship with Holy Communion will be at both 11:00 and 7:00.
Each month we gather many canned goods for Loaves and Fishes. Let’s start this year with a hefty goal, more than 500 lbs! Beginning January 26, let us dig a bit deeper and make a huge donation of non-perishable food items (no glass please). This is a great way to get your family involved in helping those in need.
CLEWS REGISTRATION FOR 2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR Members of Christ Lutheran Church may register for the THREE AND FOUR YEAR OLD PRESCHOOL PROGRAM starting NOW! Being a Christ Lutheran member, your child will have first choice of class times and days. Registration packets are available in the CLEWS office or the Church Office. As soon as your application and registration fee are received, you will be contacted. Open Registration begins on Sunday, January 26, so take advantage of this early opportunity to enroll your child before all classes fill up! Call Patti Bareither at 708-448-2614 if you have any questions, or contact the CLEWS office directly at 708-349-0171. Open Houses: January 26, 10:30 to 1:00, and January 28, 5:00 to 7:00
CLEWS REGISTRATION FOR 2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR Registration packets are available
in the CLEWS office or the Church Office. If you have any questions, contact the CLEWS office
directly at 708-349-0171.
EASY, SECURE GIVING DURING OUR STEWARDSHIP DRIVE During our stewardship drive, we ask that you consider making a one-time donation or set up a recurring payment using our eGiving methods. It only takes a few seconds to make a weekly offering, give during our stewardship drive. Thank you for your generosity and support as we move toward this season of gratitude. Visit christlutheranorland.com and click our “Make Donation” button, or download the “GivePlus” mobile app.
LWML MITES Thank you for your continued support of the vital mission work of the LWML by gathering your pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters! Our goal is $1,000 again this year. Please return your mite boxes to the designated purple box in the narthex and help us reach our goal! We appreciate your generosity!
Our children’s music ministry is in need of more registered members! Please help us continue these wonderful programs. We are in need of kids for our JR. CHIMERS (Grades 2-8), CHERUB CHOIR (Grades K-4), and our YOUTH CHOIR (Grades 5-8). For more information, contact Sandra Knopp by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or in the Church Office
MOMMY/DADDY & ME continues this Friday, September 20, from 9:30 to 11:30. The group meets downstairs in the classrooms. Sign-up forms are still available on the narthex table.
Join the LCMS in participating in the 2019-2021 LCMS National Offering. All gifts received go directly to the mission of the LCMS to make known the good news of Jesus Christ, joy incarnate, to the world. A flyer is available on the narthex and gym tables if you would like more information, and includes a convenient mailing envelope if you would like to make a donation.
Veterans please join your fellow veterans in Posting Colors for special occasions at church. No experience is necessary. Training will be half an hour before the service. Proper attire will be a VFW or American Legion uniform or black slacks, white shirt and military hat/cap. There is a sign-up sheet on the table in the narthex. Questions, contact Jim Baillie at 708-460-6028 or email@example.com.
LOAVES AND FISHES During the month of January we collected 501 POUNDS of food. This month’s donations were given to St. Stephen Lutheran Church in Midlothian.
► BUST THE BOX!!!! Each month we gather many canned goods for Loaves and Fishes. Let’s start this year with a hefty goal, more than 500 lbs! During the month of February, let’s dig a bit deeper and make a huge donation of non-perishable food items (no glass please). This is a great way to get your family involved in helping those in need.
Our children’s music ministry is in desperate need of more registered members! Please help us continue this wonderful program. We are in need of: JR. CHIMERS: Grades 2-8. Practices begin Tuesday, September 12, in the sanctuary, 5:00 to 6:00. CHERUB CHOIR: Grades K-4. Practices begin Wednesday, September 13, in the music room, 5:00 to 5:45. YOUTH CHOIR: Grades 5-8. Practices begin Wednesday, September 13, in the music room, 6:00 to 6:45. For more information, contact Sandra Knopp in the Church Office.