Tuesday, February 21, 2017

"Half Way There"

Dear Members and Friends of Our Savior's Lutheran Church,
This coming Sunday is the Sunday of the Transfiguration. I always look forward to this Sunday as it serves as the bridge between the seasons of Epiphany and Lent. It helps with what can be a difficult transition for some - from celebrating the light of Christ in our lives to entering a time of intentional darkness and repentance. As Peter, James, and John ascended with Jesus up a high mountain, they realized the transition that also waited for them at the top. It's been said that once you reach the top of the mountain, you are only half way there. Upon reaching the top we must still come down. Coming down from the mountaintop is often the more difficult part than the ascending. This Sunday we will explore more about what it means to come down from the mountain and how it is that most of life is lived, not on the mountaintop, but in the valley.
I'm excited to share with you my own recent "mountaintop experience." After four years of study and writing, I successfully passed my oral defense of my doctoral dissertation yesterday at Bethel Seminary in St. Paul. I will graduate at the end of May with a Doctor of Ministry in Congregation and Family Care degree. I am thrilled, relieved, and thankful. My area of study focused broadly on discipleship and narrowed in on how apathy (spiritual apathy) can and does negatively affect evangelism efforts among individual Christians and entire communities of faith. The answer to spiritual apathy is engagement. The Church Board and I will be addressing six core concepts that came about from my research that prove to increase individual and congregational engagement. We will discuss these at our monthly Board meetings and will also offer a six-week adult forum on them after Lent. These conversations will then help shape a new plan and vision for OSLC throughout the remainder of 2017 and into 2018. I look forward to sharing more about these six core concepts and how they can help shape and prepare OSLC for even stronger mission and ministry.
Just as with Peter, James, and John, I know I must descend this mountain and put to work and into practice what I have learned and how Jesus has prepared me for ministry. The good news is that as Jesus accompanied them back down the mountain, he too, accompanies us. This is good, reassuring, and comforting news for us all.
Just a couple reminders - please remember our two upcoming congregational meetings regarding the proposed senior housing project on the radio station property and surrounding church property. On March 5 at 9:15 am you're invited to the second of two informational meetings regarding the project and updated conceptual designs of the project. On March 12 at 9:15 am you are invited and encouraged to attend the meeting for the purpose of voting on the sale of church property to Ecumen. Please contact me if you have any questions. we continue to pray that God's hand is guiding and leading this process as we are confident it has been since the beginning.
Please continue to keep in your prayers the family of June Wallin. June passed away last week and we celebrated her life on Sunday with family and friends.
Peace and blessings to you this week!
Pastor Dale
Worship & Music This Week

Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Worship at 5:30 pm

 Sermon by: Pastor Dale Stiles

  5:00 pm Dinner
Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Creamy Cole Slaw
and Baked French Fries 
  6:10 pm Faith Formation
7:00 pm Confirmation/Mentor Kick-off
7:00 pm Kingdom Choir
8:00 pm Liturgical Singers

Sunday, February 26, 2017

8:00 am Traditional Worship in the Sanctuary
9:15 am Adult Education
9:15 am Faith Formation
9:15 am Time for Parents  
10:30 am Blended Worship in the CLC

11:45 am Jr. High Evolve
5:00 pm Sr. High Activate
7:30 pm AA

Special Music at 8:00 am: JuBellate

Childcare available at all worship services

Announcement of Congregational Meetings     
Sunday, March 5, at 9:15 am -- Informational Meeting
The second informational meeting about the proposed senior housing project will be held on Sunday, March 5, at 9:15 am in the sanctuary. This meeting will be facilitated by representatives of Ecumen and Kaas Wilson Architects and will include updated examples of conceptual designs and plans for the project.

Sunday, March 12, at 9:15 am -- Congregational Vote
A formal meeting of our congregation for the purpose of voting on the sale of Our Savior's Lutheran Church property to Ecumen will be held on Sunday, March 12, at 9:15 am in the church sanctuary. All active and confirmed members of Our Savior's Lutheran Church are encouraged to attend.

Children, Youth & Family

First Communion Retreat    
At Our Savior's, we have empowered parents, as the primary nurturers of faith, to decide when their child is ready to receive instruction to receive Holy Communion.

Who:  1st - 6th graders and a parent / guardian 
Date:  March 27 at 6 pm (eat before you come) 
What to bring:  Your Bible 
RSVP by:  March 19 ( click here to RSVP)

Sibling childcare will be available. Children will receive their First Communion in worship on Sunday, April 2 at 8:00 or 10:30 am or Wednesday, April 5 at 5:30 pm. Choose which worship service works best for your family.
Register for Vacation Bible School and Camp Wapo!   

Registration for Vacation Bible School and Camp Wapo are taking place now!
  • Register for VBS on July 31 - August 4, 2017
  • Register for Camp Wapo. OSLC dates for all week long Camp Wapo programs are June 25-30 this year. Seeds weekend is June 23-25. Camp Wapo will hold OSLC's reserved spots until March 15 at which time all camper spots will be filled on a first come first serve basis.
Music for Elementary Students!   
Exciting News! Natalie Larson will be singing with our Elementary students during Large Group twice a month! Hopefully our Elementary students will sing during the 10:30 service in the coming months. 
Faith Formation Station Leaders Needed!   
We are still in need of station leaders for March 26 and April 2 for Faith Formation! Please contact Darla Goble or go to the sign up genius to sign up! 
Club 56 Girls & Moms Spa Event!   
Girls Grades 5 & 6 and their moms are invited to attend a spa event held on February 25 from 3-5 pm at the church. We will be doing manicures, pedicures, getting mini chair massages and making bath salts to bring home. Feel free to invite a friend and their mom! Please RSVP to attend this event.

Ministry Opportunities!

Inspirational Yoga!   
We will begin a new 8 week session of Inspirational Yoga on Feb. 25th
through Apr. 15th, 2017 from 9:00 to 10:00 am. We usually meet in the Gathering Area but will need to relocate to the Children's Gathering Area or the Youth Room when necessary. Cost is $72.00, payable to Lyne Seppala at our first practice. All ages, guys, gals, no experience needed, come and bring a friend and a yoga mat. For questions or to sign up for the new session, contact Heidi Puckett.
Book of the Month Club!   
The Book of the Month Club will meet on Monday, February 27 at 1:00 pm to discuss "My Side of the Mountain." We will initially meet in the Family Room and then move our group to another location in the church.
Lenten Walking Devotional!   
Consider a walking devotional time for yourself this Lenten season.
The Health & Caring Ministry Committee has a devotional book and maps for both indoor and outdoor walking loops so you can give yourself the gift of physical exercise along with meditative time with God. The book, Walking to the Cross by Butch Odom is a 40-day devotional specifically designed for Lent. There are books and maps available in the Gathering Area for all to use here at the church (leave books when finished). Come and enjoy!
Lenten Soup Suppers!   
Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent starts March 1. Lenten Soup Suppers are a wonderful way to try a variety of soups. We will offer a 'Soup of the Day', in addition to offering the soups that congregants share.   The 'Soup of the Day' will be published in the weekly e-blast and Sunday bulletin.  Sign-up sheets to bring soups and/or desserts are posted in the Gathering Area.  Please consider signing up to bring your favorite soup!  Thank you!
Women's Overnight Retreat!   
Sweet Life Café -- The women's overnight retreat will be on April 28-29, 2017. This year we will be at the Koinonia Retreat Center up north in South Haven, MN. Sweet Life Café is the theme and it will provide an experience to slow down and savor time with God and each other. The cost will be $100/person for a double room and $120/person for a single room. Registration forms are on the women's bulletin board across from the church office.
Request for Prayers and Support
Everyday joys and sorrows...Once in a lifetime joys and sorrows. Your brothers and sisters at Our Savior's want to support you. Email or call our Pastor with any of your needs. Pastor Dale

Help Wanted!
Mission Jamaica Supply Donations

The Mission Jamaica Team going in March from Our Savior's is collecting supplies to bring to the West Haven Children's Home where they will be working. They are requesting that members donate items from the list posted in the Gathering Area. Items are needed by March 5 and can be placed in the marked box located in the Gathering Area. Thank you for your generosity in helping our partners in Jamaica to secure much needed supplies.

We have plenty of Service Opportunities!
Check it out at: Sign Up to Serve! 
Simply Giving

A more convenient way to give! In a few short minutes, you can make a one-time gift or set up a donation that will process automatically on a recurring basis. Recurring donations are convenient and provide our church with much needed consistent support throughout the year. To give online, visit our church's website and get set up! 
Stewardship is about love:
serving others through our time, talent, and treasure.