A Congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Illinois
Monthly news & updates
March 2021
The Prince(ess) returns

Dear Acacia Park party people,

To say I'm returning is an inaccuracy, but it's a catchy headline that I'm sure made some of you read the first few lines of this letter. If that's true, than I'm happy knowing that I was important enough to scroll down the email for (we're going for user engagement here people).

As someone who was born and raised by Acacia Park it isn't lost upon me that this is a cyclical moment in my life. Most of you reading this were around for when my mom was pregnant with me and some of you have probably met me in passing. Make no mistake, however, I do consider myself to be Acacia Park royalty. Whether it's my mother's position with the counsel or my Grandmother's status as legend, I seem to find myself just as involved in Norridge Institutions as the women before me.

My main goal while I'm here with you all is to give everything a nice facelift (a real classy one like whoever's doing Lynda Carter's). I'll try to be as prompt as I can be with Office Communications and I hope that, with feedback, we can all get the look and feel we want this church to have to itself and to guests.

Your Dearest,
James
From the Pastor's Desk . . .
Beloved,

At the beginning of Lent we heard God claim Jesus in his baptism and God called him, “my beloved.” During this season of the calendar year, we tend to feel a little more tired and run down. Our energy is lower which causes us to not feel as good emotionally. During these colder months when we are just longing for spring to fully kick in, it is good to have the reminder that we are beloved. 

When Ingrid, my oldest daughter, was baptized her Godmother made her a banner that had the passage from Isaiah in which God is reminding Israel that they are a loved community. God told the Israelites, “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.”

You are God’s and you are beloved. I feel the need to keep reminding people of that right now. In my other jobs, chaplain and therapist, I keep encountering people that feel they are at the end of their ropes. The heaviness of the past year is taking its toll. I am hearing a lot of hurt, anger, exhaustion, despair. It is normal for these emotions to heighten in us toward the end of winter, but this year the emotions feel more extreme. We are all just plain exhausted and we are not getting our souls refilled, and this is when people need faith.

We need to be reminded that someone calls us by name and claims us as their own. You belong to God. We need to feel like someone cares for us and our loneliness, our sorrow, our hurt. You are beloved.

If the rest of the winter is weighing on you and you feel you have nothing else to give, first, know that you are not alone. These feelings are heightened right now. And, also know that God is with you, God named and claimed you, God considers you beloved. (And, so do I). 

There are some numbers we have hanging around the church in case you feel the need to reach out to a professional. I will share them below. And, also remember, that I am a licensed therapist and I offer 3 sit downs with each of you and if you find that you have more to sort through I will give a referral. 

You have support around you, even if it doesn’t feel that way. This is part of our Lenten journey, to find our way back to God. May you use this season of Lent to hear God’s voice that is claiming you as Beloved.

God’s Peace,
Pastor Meagan

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-784-2433

Depression Hotline: 1-630-482-9696 (not 24 hours)
You may also mail your donation and/or your pledge form to:
Acacia Park Lutheran Church
4307 N Oriole Avenue
Norridge, IL 60706
Acacia Park Announcements
We're on Youtube! Check out our channel for future uploads of our virtual services.
Zoom Links for the Month
To join our Zoom Self-Guided Communion Worship and Fellowship meeting on Sunday mornings beginning at 9:15 am, click here

To dial in by your location (audio only):
  +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)

Meeting ID: 847 5963 2088
Passcode: 554322


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To join our Zoom Bible Study meeting on Tuesday, February 23rd from 7:00 to 8:30 pm, click here

To dial in by your location (audio only):
    +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)

Meeting ID: 816 2904 7347
Passcode: 330115
Prayer Requests
Please keep the following people in your prayers . . .
Bonnie Cousins
Katie Dupree
Linda Engler
Marion Engler
Frank Gondela
Dorothy Hauserman
Ruth Igoe
David & Ann Jones
Nancy & Bob Komada
Helen Lanners
Elsie Michelsen
Everly Ramirez
Nettie Richards
Ringelstein Family
Erv Siemers
Bonnie Wince
Sondra Wince
Shar and George Wyatt
. . . and essential workers, health care workers, police officers, correctional officers, and the more than 429,000 Americans lost to Covid-19.