Zion Lutheran Church Congregation

  • Excerpt from January, 2022 "The Mountain Top Messenger" newsletter...

    Happy New Year! Welcome to the year of our Lord 2022. Advent and Christmas have come and gone; I don't know about you but the whole holiday season seemed to just fly by...
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January 2022 "The Mountain Top Messenger" Newsletter
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Happy New Year! Welcome to the year of our Lord 2022. Advent and Christmas have come and gone; I don't know about you but the whole holiday season seemed to just fly by. While being a very crazy time of year for being a pastor, I also found it quite rewarding. I enjoyed our Advent theme based on John 1:1-18, The Word Became Flesh, and I also enjoyed how all of that tied together with our Christmas theme; the reminder that the cradle leads to the cross. I was also exceptionally please that so many of you partook in so many of the services. I wish you could see what it looks like from my vantage point when the lights go dark and we all sing Silent Night in candlelight, it is a truly moving experience.

So, now as we prepare for Epiphany and then move into the more relaxed time following Epiphany that gives us a moment to catch our breath and reflect. Reflect on all that our Lord has done for us and continues to do for us each and every day. On Wednesday January 5th we will be celebrating Epiphany (a day early). The day the Magi arrive to worship the Christ child and give him the gifts they have brought from afar. That service will be on Wednesday evening at 6:30. As we hear the babe receiving His gifts, we will be reminded of the far greater gift that He gives to us. Then as we move into the time after Epiphany we are going to do a sermon series based on the seven miracles of Jesus in the Gospel of John, we will look at one of the seven miracles on each of the seven Sundays of Epiphany. This series follows along after our series on John Chapter one from Advent. I believe you will find it enlightening as we dig deeply into Christ's 7 miracles. Remember how John begins his Gospel? "In the beginning ..." (John 1:1) John starts off as though he's writing a new creation story. And he is! The 7 days of creation correspond to Christ's 7 signs that illustrate the nature of God's new creation—where there is beauty, healing, abundance, resurrection and life! I am looking forward to it, I hope you are as well.

I would like to take a moment to thank everyone for all of their help this Advent and Christmas season; all of those who so beautifully decorated the church, those who did coloring pages for our advent calendar, the altar guild for their outstanding work keeping everything clean and fresh, all of the elders for their assistance, our organists and trumpet player, and anyone else I may have missed.

This is most certainly not an I or me operation, it takes the whole family and I cannot express enough gratitude for all of you and all that you have done. That also includes all of you who came to partake in worship as well as all of those who watched us online. I pray that it was a meaningful experience for all of you and helped bring you closure to your Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I also wanted to thank everyone for their cards and gifts, I unfortunately did not do well in getting out Christmas cards this year, for that I am sorry. But know that all of you are in my prayers always. Again thank you all God bless.

I really can't think of much else at the moment as we head into the New Year, a couple of things to look forward to; June and I will be attending the Best Practices Ministry Conference in Phoenix in February, Pastor Scot Holabeck will be covering for me the Sundays I am gone, and a reminder that Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, March 2, this year, I believe we will all be amazed at how quickly it will be upon us. I can't say it enough, thank you for all of your help and support and God Bless you all as we enter the New Year!

The Lord bless you and keep you, the Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you, the Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace.

Pastor Rick