Nativity Lutheran Church

1300 Collingwood Road

Alexandria, VA 22308


The Rev. Brent H. Thalacker, Pastor

People of Nativity, Ministers

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January 23, 2019
Third Sunday After Epiphany
9:30 am

The glory of the Lord is revealed in the reading of scripture. People stand at attention. People weep. People prostrate themselves in prayer. The unity of the church is another reflection of the glory of God. Most gloriously, the promises of God are fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ. Gather round. Listen up. Glimpse the glory of God.
Stewardship 2019 Update
"... you have blessed us with these gifts: our selves, our time, and our possessions. Use us, and what we have gathered ..." Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Setting One, Offering Prayer
We continue to be blessed with resources that we are able to share with others and whether those are financial gifts or gifts of ourselves we give thanks for your gifts to the church in general and Nativity Lutheran in particular. As of last Sunday, January 20th we have received 18 estimates of financial gifts for the 2019 calendar year. Those intentions currently total over $111,600, thanks be to God! For comparison we had 21 estimates last year and we have roughly 30 families we see on a fairly regular basis. In terms of dollars the estimates for 2019 represent over a 7% increase over estimates from those who also submitted estimates in 2018. Again thank you for your faith and support to our mission in the Mount Vernon area.
As we start to discern our way ahead in the coming years, our gifts provide the necessary resources for us to thrive in our community and become the leading voice of fellow Lutherans in our area. We will continue to receive estimates of giving until January 31st when we will provide a finally tally on the 2019 Stewardship drive. Additional forms are available in the Narthex, the church office, or by emailing the church office.Your 2019 offering envelopes are also available for pick up on Sunday. And as always we will be happy to receive updates to your giving intentions throughout the year.  

Joe Mattis, Stewardship Chair
Sunday's Givers
This Sunday we thank the Amanda & Billy Pope for providing celebration of Abbey's 13th birthday...and Bob Marj Kehler for candle lighting to the glory of God. Rest assured we will also appreciate Suzanne & Jordan McKillop for a providing a delicious fellowship hour following worship! 
Flowers, Candles and Fellowship
Sign up sheets for 2019 Fellowship, flowers and candles are also now available...make plans to grab your Sunday of choice!  There are February open dates for all three...recognition appears in each Connect and thanks are conferred in person each Sunday morning.
Nativity Book Club
On Sunday, February 10, 2019, at noon, Nativity's Book Club will meet with a discussion of the book "Master and Commander (Vol. Book 1)" the first in the series of of 'Aubrey/Maturin' novels by Patrick O'Brian.  The venue will be announced in the near future.  We will be meeting at the home of Tess and Joe Mattis.  Please come and join us.  We always have a great time and invite everyone regardless of whether they have the time to read the book beforehand.  Snacks and drink will be provided.  Also, after the discussion, we will be watching the 2003 movie 'Master and Commander:  The Far Side of the World,' the movie based on the 10th novel in the same series for those interested. 

Dear Nativity:
This week Nativity donated 80 pounds of food to the UCM Food Pantry.  The donation included a wide variety of canned goods, baby food, and breakfast cereal.
Many thanks to all who made this contribution possible.
Also included were a dozen children's books. The UCM appreciates gently used books to share with UCM families.
The UCM Food Pantry is open Monday thru Friday and the last Saturday of the month.   Also UCM is open to help all furloughed workers!

If there are any questions please call 703- 768-7106.
Robert Wales

The Last Word...
We're a month into our year long look at This Week in I thought I'd share a couple of observations on the endeavor so far. Initially I thought it would be "easy pickins"... I anticipated no problem in finding a person or event on any given week that would effortlessly provide fodder for any number of reflections. I've found out it isn't that I've been humbled in two respects. I've come to feel it's maybe unfair to draw superficial conclusions on any event in light of the fact that many historians and scholars have dedicated their entire professional life to scores of these occasions. I'm hindered because I possess neither the time nor inclination to drill down deep into most of these entries. In addition a lot of them aren't exactly uplifting, it often seems the more troubling the episode the more likely you'll find it on this week's list...monumental battles in world wars were won or lost; palace chicanery abounding, whether it's Caligula killed, Idi Amin taking power, Henry VIII shedding wives, or a certain president lying to avoid impeachment; and two sets of astronauts, Apollo 1 and Challenger, losing their lives. Let's just say I don't relish immersing myself in such misery. But once in a while, an entry appears that "saves the date." So I'll keep on going, one week at a time, celebrate my find for this one and worry about the next when I get there!

On January 24th, 1972, Shoichi Yokoi was discovered on the island of Guam after he had spent 28 years hiding out in the jungle...a Japanese soldier who did not know World War II had long ended! Well, to be accurate he stated he became aware of the end of the war in about 1954...but he was too ashamed of his situation to admit defeat and return dishonored. In truth he was fortunate when he was "captured" by two adventurous local fishermen...Japanese stragglers often were murdered by locals after the war who despised them for the atrocities committed by the occupying army. It seems he waited long enough...and was lucky they were young enough not to remember!

Is this a story of the strength of the human spirit...or a sad episode of another "casualty" of war? Is it your story? Maybe you're within that first decade...when you lack the imagination to ask the simple question "I wonder if things have changed and I'm not aware of it?" Maybe you're now settled, become comfortable or too embarrassed to admit that circumstances have altered and you have not kept pace.

Whatever the case, Shoichi shows us that it's not too late to get "captured" by the present or surrender the past and move along to a fulfilling life...he died at 82 with his family and new friends at his side, fully forgiven by the Emperor, not the judgment he so long dreaded.   Ours is a God who asks us not to be stuck in yesterday's battles...especially when they are no longer contested and isolation is our only outcome. And One who expects that we will not live in tomorrow's fears. Jesus invites you into this day, fully aware of his forgiveness, and offers a life of peace and community among a family and new friends who are eager to welcome you home. Maybe not today...but try us next Sunday!

See you next week in His Story,

Pastor Brent,
January 27, 2019
Lector:  Billy Pope
Communion AssistantBilly Pope
Ushers:  Joe Gattuso
CountersBob Wales & Council Member
Down the Road
Tuesday, January 29th:
Pastor attends Potomac Conference meeting at Faith Lutheran.

Saturday, February 9th:  Men's breakfast Mama's Kitchen 8:30.  

Monday, February 18th:  President's Day office closed.

Wednesday, March 6th:  Ash Wednesday Holy Communion 7:00 pm.

Marianne on Vacation February 1st thru February 9th.


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STAR Mission Statement

SEEK to grow in God's Word

TELL the story of Jesus' love & forgiveness

ACT as God's Hands in the world

REACH OUT to welcome all

The Rev. Brent H. Thalacker,

Carrie Brutscher, Music Director and Council Secretary

Bob Kehler, Council President

Brian Bauman, Vice President

Debbie Bowers, Treasurer

Joe Mattis, Stewardship

Sandi Kottman, Council Member (at large)

Marianne Wendel, Administrative Assistant
Weekly Calendar
January 27 thru
February 2, 2019
9:30 am
Holy Communion
and  Fellowship
following worship
  11:30 am   COI Service
2:00 pm Cristo te Llama
7:30 pm AA Meeting

1:00 pm  AA Meeting
7:00 pm  Cristo te Llama

9:00 am Music Together
1:00 pm  AA Meeting
2:30 pm Teen Yoga

11:00 am-4:00 pm 
Pastor Brent and Marianne in office.
7:00 pm  Zenergy Yoga
6:00 pm Energetic Yoga
7:00 pm COI Band Rehearsal

9:00 am Music Together 

9:00 am Music Together  
4:00 pm  Cristo te Llama