Faith E-news    December 16, 2016  

Quick Notes and Reminders    

Please check the calendar for more information.

Faith Feast and Faith Night:
There will not be Faith Feast or Faith Night until Wednesday, January 4.

ood Pantry Items The items for December is Diapers, baby wipes, formula and baby food.

This Week's Blog
Gospel Greetings 

Romans 1:1-17

The very first words that Paul wrote in his letter to the congregation in Rome had a way of getting at the heart of the matter.

Paul got to the point in his salutations. They provided a connection with his audiences and set the stage for needed understanding. Matters of calling, gospel and Spirit came to the forefront in these first lines in the book of Romans. As he developed his letter he brought depth and clarity to the central things he first mentioned.

Hearing these words of greeting today, with Christmas around the corner, I can see better the gift of congregational life. While Paul felt "set apart for the gospel" he recognized and affirmed the ministry of the baptized, "called to belong to Jesus Christ." This is the kind of belonging that flows from grace and mercy. It is a fuller engagement in the work we are called to.

Notice that Paul mentioned both the birth of Jesus and the resurrection in the same sentence. It all adds to the mystery and wonder of the nativity. The event of Bethlehem set in motion a redeeming grace - God at work making all things new.

O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie!
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep the silent stars go by;
yet in thy dark street shineth the everlasting light.
The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight. (ELW 279)

The gospel Paul proclaimed reminds us of both the vulnerability and the grittiness of the good news of Christmas. Redeeming grace is close at hand. Our attention can be given over to the places and people and events where in faith we see God drawing near to set free and to make new.

Our attention can be given over to the opportunities before us to be gospel to others.

We find our way to worship in this season because as always we need the gospel. We need a presence and a promise that addresses our fears and lifts us to hope. We need the light - the radiant light - the everlasting light.

Pastor Randy

Adult Sunday School 
Faith Journeys, our Adult Sunday School, will not meet on Sunday, December 18, or on Sunday, December 25. Faith Journeys will start up again on Sunday, January 8, from
9:30-10:15 am in Messiah Hall, rooms 203 and 204, and will be facilitated by Dee Paddock. Please join us in January.

Guys' Night Out   

The Guys' Night Out group is going to Granite City in Clive
. They are meeting on Monday, December 19, at 7:00 p.m. Please let Dave Eppert (710-8558) or Tim Tessier (707-0880) know if you will be attending by sending a text. Hope to see you there!

Mosaic Gifts  
There are a few presents that still need to be returned. If you took a tag and have not returned the gift, please do so. Mosaic will be here on Monday to pick up the gifts.

Thank you everyone that took a tag and will be brightening someone's Christmas!  

Faith Book Club  

Faith Book Club will meet for dinner at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 20, at the Club Car Restaurant in West Des Moines. This month's book is
Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist. All are welcome! Please contact Sara Broadrick at or 515-528-6881 to let her know you are attending or to be added to the Faith Book Club email distribution list.

Year-End Contributions 
If you would like your year-end contributions to appear on your 2016 statement, please put your check dated 2016 in the offering plate by December 31; mail your check, making sure the envelope is postmarked on or before December 31; or bring your check to the church office prior to year-end. If you are planning to bring your check to the office, please note that the office will be closed on the following dates: Monday, December 26, Tuesday, December 27, and Friday, December 30. If you have questions, please call the church office.

Family Promise 
Faith Ministry will be hosting homeless families in the Gathering House the week of Christmas! Our guests will arrive on Christmas Day, December 25, and exit on Sunday, January 1. We will need your help, especially for evening and overnight hosts, and volunteers for setting up and taking down. Signup for Faith members will begin the weekend of December 3.

New this hosting event, volunteers signing up for evening or overnight hosting will be asked to sign a consent for a background check which will be done by Julie Crane. This is a new requirement by the Des Moines Area Family Promise Board. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Bob Shaw.

As a congregation, let us consider this opportunity to-be-as that of the inn keeper who found lodging for Mary and Joseph on the night of Jesus' birth.

Altar Flowers 

If you would like to give a bouquet for the altar, please sign up on Faith's website. You will find the link under Quick Links/Signup Genius. Altar flowers are $50 per bouquet.

Children and Family Ministry     


MLK Day Camp

We are hosting a day camp on Monday, January 16.  The camp is open to all kids age 4 (PreK) through 6th grade.  Counselors from Lutheran Lakeside Camp in Okoboji will be here to lead us in songs, crafts, games, and more!  This will be a sneak peek for those interested in attending Lutheran Lakeside during the summer.  The day camp at Faith is a fundraiser for CFM, the cost is $35 per camper and runs from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Please bring a sack lunch. If you are interested in helping, your child can come for free (contact Andrea). 

Youth and Family Ministry     


Ski Trip Registration

Ski Trip Registration is open for the 9-12 Grade Ski Trip to Welch Village on January 15-16! Trip details-including schedule, cost, and how to register-are available online at Contact Jake Bouma at if you have any questions.

Youth and Family Ministry Party

On Wednesday, December 21, 7:30-9:30 p.m., the mission trip reunion and SHYG white elephant/Christmas party for 10th-12th graders and the Leach Lake Mission Trip group will gather at the Waage's to view the video and share some Christmas spirit. Look for more information in the near future.

Youth Mission Trip Registration

Registration is now open for the 2017 mission trip to Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Tucson. Any Faith student currently in grades 9-12 is eligible to participate in the trip, which is scheduled for Saturday, June 10 - Sunday, June 18, 2017. The journey, a joint effort of the ELCA's Southeastern Iowa Synod and its partner synod the Grand Canyon Synod, will open our eyes to the opportunities that Christ sets before us as we serve and learn about the joys and challenges of the culture and the church's role in responding to issues like human trafficking, homelessness, and immigration/border issues. To register, go to