Office Hours for Pastor Walker
Pastor Walker is available for appointments on Wednesdays. Please contact Thomas Dearchs to schedule an appointment.
Sabbath Time
Pastor Walker will be away and out of state from Saturday, February 20 through Saturday, February 27. Should you have a pastoral emergency, please feel free to contact her at 765.427.4618 and leave a message. She will return your call. You may also contact Thomas Dearchs at 765.210.8788.
Sermon and Prayers for February 28, 2021
The sermon and prayers for the Second Sunday in Lent, February 28, 2021, are provided by Indiana-Kentucky Synod staff member, Rev. Heather Apel, Assistant to the Bishop for Leadership. We thank the synod staff for providing this resource each week so that pastors and other leaders may enjoy some "sabbath" time.

Health Updates
Harriet Greenwald called this morning to let us know that Lou was released from the hospital yesterday and is continuing to recover from pneumonia at home. Your continued prayers are appreciated.

In addition, Emily Curry-Linder was discharged from the hospital on Tuesday and home healthcare, including physical therapy, has been set up and will come to her home.
Remembering the 500,000 Americans Lost to COVID-19
The US has now surpassed 500,000 deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic. A reminder that “Prayers for Times of Public Health Concern” are available at https://elca.org/publichealth for use in worship and personal devotion.

Let us pray.
Lord Christ, you came into the world as one of us, and suffered as we do. As we go through the trials of life, help us to realize that you are with us at all times and in all things; that we have no secrets from you; and that your loving grace enfolds us for eternity. In the security of your embrace we pray. (Evangelical Lutheran Worship, p. 84).
Severe Storms
In response to the devastating storms in the south that left millions without power and around 13 million Texans with water disruptions, Lutheran Disaster Response is accompanying local ELCA synods and social ministry organizations to provide long-term recovery. You can help this relief effort through prayer and by giving to LDR’s Severe Storms fund in which 100% of gifts will go to assisting those affected by the storms. Click the link below to contribute.
A Lenten Meditation
This meditation is provided by Washington National Cathedral.

The Rev. Patrick Keyser
 
Thursday, February 25, 2021

John 3:16-21
Jesus said, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned, but those who do not believe are condemned already because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”
Perhaps no other verse of Scripture is as widely known, both among those who practice the Christian faith and those who do not, as John 3:16. It was one of the first verses I was instructed to memorize as a child, and at this stage, I know the words so well that they fall off my tongue without much effort. The challenge for us is to not allow their familiarity to hide their extraordinary quality.
These words of Jesus are embedded in the nocturnal encounter between Jesus and Nicodemus, a great teacher of Israel who, in this instance, comes not to teach but to be taught. The exchange between the two reaches its peak with Jesus’ declaration, ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.’ This verse reveals to us the deep truth that God’s desire for us is life, abundant life Jesus tells us later in John’s gospel, and God’s way of being is love, a love that is costly and willing to give lavishly of itself. 
These are the sort of fundamentals of our faith that we must always keep before us, for the reality of our daily lived experience often seeks to tell us otherwise. Earlier this week our country marked the tragic milestone of 500,000 lives lost to COVID‐19. Such breathtaking loss stops us in our tracks. As Christians, we acknowledge and mourn the incalculable loss of this time in which we are living, but we also hold fast in hope to the truth that amid our grief and confusion God is working in love to bring forth life. 
Blessings,
Patrick+
Bless us, O God, in this holy season, in which our hearts seek your help and healing; and so purify us by your discipline that we may grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
(Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2006, p. 34) 
ELCA World Hunger's 40 Days of Giving
“Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your [creator] in heaven. So whenever you give alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your alms may be done in secret; and your [creator] who sees in secret will reward you”
(Matthew 6:1-4).
Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 6:1-6 and 16-21 is the starting point on the journey through Lent. In this excerpt from the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus admonishes his audience about public, showy displays of spirituality. Rather than take pleasure or pride in giving alms, we are to hide the deed even from ourselves. Rather than pray in public, we are to retire to private rooms. Rather than display the effects of our fasting, Jesus tells us, “Put oil on your head and wash your face” (6:17). In fact, each of Jesus’ directives seems to contradict the very notion of what we have come to call “being a public church.” The sermon of Jesus appears to favor private spirituality over public displays of faith. He seems to suggest that faith is best lived out in the quiet and private spaces of our hearts rather than in public.
However, reading the sermon in this way misses the fact that the Gospel of Matthew is a call to be this very public church, which will “make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). We might believe that the message of Lent is to practice private piety, yet Jesus focuses here not on the mere practices of faith but on the community of faith. In other words, Jesus is talking not about the what but about the who — who we are and who God is. Continue reading.
This season, we invite you to join us in reflection, prayer and action. Find ideas for each day in our devotional calendar, and use the weekly study as your guide. A short video to kick off a group discussion or inspire further reflection accompanies each study week. And in this weekly email, you’ll find an excerpt from the study or its accompanying story.
International Women's Day
Two weeks from today will be International Women’s Day! This is a wonderful time for your congregation to celebrate women leaders around the world while doubling your impact for the next generation.
The ELCA celebrates this day by uplifting the International Women Leaders (IWL) program. On the Sunday before International Women’s Day on Monday, March 8, your congregation can take an offering for IWL that will go twice as far. Thanks to generous IWL supporters, your congregation’s gifts will be matched dollar for dollar until we reach $50,000. Your support makes it possible for emerging women leaders from our companion churches to study at ELCA colleges and universities, ELCA seminaries, and other institutions around the world.

Click the link above to donate or bring your check to church on Sunday, March 7!
Thank you for investing in the future of women leaders!
Returning to In-Person Worship!
Because of the decline in the COVID-19 positivity rate in Howard County, the CLC Congregation Council, at its February 16, 2021, meeting, has determined that all activities may resume on March 1, 2021, with "in-person" Sunday worship resuming on Sunday, March 7, 2021, at 9 a.m.! Social distancing and masks will be required. At this time, the holy eucharist will not be celebrated. For those not yet comfortable returning to "in-person" worship, the service will be recorded and made available on Sunday afternoon.

In addition, Lenten Midweek Services will be held on Wednesday evenings at 6 p.m. on March 3, 10, 17, and 24. For those not yet comfortable returning to "in-person" worship, the service will be recorded and made available on Wednesday afternoon.

The COVID-19 data in Howard County will continue to be monitored on a weekly basis. As long as the positivity rate is 10 percent or lower, the church will remain open and worship services will be held "in-person". The CLC Congregation Council has granted authority to Elaine Newman, Pastor Sharon Walker, and Thomas Dearchs to be in consultation regarding COVID-19 data in Howard County and determine whether or not building usage or "in-person" services may need to be suspended. An email will be sent out if a suspension is necessary.

Don't forget to wear your mask!

--Elaine Newman
CLC Council President
Created for Community: A Midweek Lenten Series
Overview
The invitation to Lent spoken on Ash Wednesday reminds us that we enter this season together “with the whole church”. It goes on to state that “we are created for communion with God, to love one another, and to live in harmony with creation.” Though many common Lenten practices rightly invite us to individual acts of “repentance, prayer and fasting, sacrificial giving and works of love,” Lent is also a time for deepening of community.

In the early church, the weeks before Easter were a time in which the whole community took responsibility for the training of catechumens. Not only were the catechumens enriched by this formation, but those already within the community were strengthened in their faith along with them.

Using readings from Mark’s gospel, this series invites the assembly to reflect on what it means to be in community with one another, with the world, with creation, and with God.

Midweek Lenten Services
The first Midweek Service will be on Wednesday, February 24, and will be available to be viewed online. The remaining services on March 3, 10, 17, and 24, will be available both in-person and online. The in-person service will take place at 6 p.m. in the Sanctuary. Please join us! The artwork below is by Linda Witte Henke.
Christ's Cupboard
To most CLC members, the virtual filling of Christ's Cupboard has not been successful. Ever so slowly the shelves have been filling by a few brave shoppers. I know of a woman who managed to get her car stuck in the circular drive near the front entrance after delivering goods to the pantry. AAA came to the rescue! A new opportunity awaits. Let's make March 7th peanut butter/bathroom toilet tissue Sunday as an additional celebration of the return to in-person worship. Those items represent two gaps in the filling of our shelves. I will then contact the pantry(ies) that count on us to supplement their mission of serving the Kokomo community. 
--Nancy Macaluso
The Season of Lent
The season of Lent is the 40 days (not including Sundays) from Ash Wednesday to the Saturday before Easter. In this time of personal reflection, we move toward the darkness of Good Friday through to the divine radiance of Easter.
Coronavirus Vaccine
The Indiana Department of Health has announced that Hoosiers age 60 and older can now begin scheduling appointments to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Appointments can be scheduled by visiting https://ourshot.in.gov. Those needing assistance with registration can call 211 or one of Indiana’s Area Agencies on Aging. A caregiver or loved one also may make an appointment on behalf of an eligible senior.
 
Howard County data will continue to be monitored as well as best practices for returning to in-person activities. Please continue to follow all safety protocols recommended by the CDC and local and state government. Wear your mask!
Bible Study
A reminder that a Bible Study is held on Wednesday afternoons from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. via Zoom. Please contact Pastor Walker if you would like to join the study. All are welcome!
Offering Envelopes for 2021 - Now Available!
Offering Envelopes for 2021 are available for pick-up and are located on the credenza in the Narthex. If you are unable to pick yours up at the church, please contact Thomas Dearchs for alternatives.
Virtual Fellowship Time
Please join us for "Virtual Fellowship Time" on Sunday, February 28 at 1:15 p.m. Bring your own coffee, juice, or beverage of choice and snacks! The Zoom Meeting ID is 7654274618. A password is not required. There is a waiting room and you will be let into the group by the host. Don't forget to join with audio when prompted. We look forward to seeing you on Sunday!
Stay Connected with CLC
Pastor Walker and Thomas Dearchs continue to provide opportunities, highlight resources, and best practices, share concerns, record the liturgies, and pray for one another during this pandemic.

Though responding to a pandemic has brought challenges and questions none of us has previously faced, we've worked to try and find creative solutions to some of these challenges.

  • Please be sure to "like" our Facebook page at https://facebook.com/clckokomo46902/.
  • Check out our website at www.christlutherankokomo.org. We are posting and updating the website frequently. The weekly worship videos are also available on the website. The CLC Weekly eNews is also available on the website.
  • The church office is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.
  • Our worship book, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, is being made available to our members during this pandemic time. If you need one, please contact Thomas Dearchs or stop by the church to pick up a copy. We kindly ask that you return it to the church when we once again worship "in-person."
  • Pastor Walker holds office hours at CLC on Wednesdays. Please contact Thomas Dearchs to schedule an appointment.
  • If you are unable to print worship bulletins or other items, please contact Thomas Dearchs and he can print them for you.
The Church Never Closed
We've never stopped loving people, or worshipping God, or serving our neighbors - The church never closed. We'll be thrilled to regather physically when we can do so in ways that seek the welfare of the city. But "re-opening" the church isn't a thing.

Please feel free to stop by the church (during office hours) if you are in need of a worship book, a church directory, or other items. In addition, feel free to drop off your pledge. You are always welcome and it would be great to see you! We are CHURCH TOGETHER!
ELCA Worship in the Home
In this time of worldwide crisis, congregations throughout this church are not able to gather for worship as the body of Christ. While we cannot be together in person, we can hear the word of God and hold each other in prayer. For those having access to the internet, a link to the ELCA resource for Worship in the Home is available for Sunday worship. In addition, there is a wonderful resource available from ELCA for Daily Prayer in the Home. There is also a link available for a sermon from staff of the I-K Synod. Please click on the buttons below.
Altar Flowers & Eternal Candle
The 2021 flower chart has arrived and is hanging in the Narthex. The flower cost will remain the same as last year - two vases for $36. Please sign-up today.
Building Use
As of March 1, groups may meet in the building. If you come to the church, please observe the precautions of using hand sanitizer, wearing a face covering, and keeping a social distance from one another. Please contact Thomas Dearchs to schedule building use. There is a required cleaning checklist that must be followed after each meeting.
Dates to Remember
Service of the Word
Sunday, February 28
Online only

Virtual Fellowship Time
Sunday, February 28 at 1:15 p.m.
Zoom Meeting

CLC Quilters
Tuesday, March 2 at 12 noon
David/Goliath Rooms

Red Cross Blood Drive
Tuesday, March 2
1:30 - 6 p.m.
Fellowship Hall

Midweek Lenten Service
Wednesday, March 3 at 6 p.m.
Online and in-person

Bible Study
Wednesdays at 2:30 p.m. via Zoom
Event Scheduling | Weekly eNews
There is a 2021 calendar located on the counter behind the desk in the Parish Office. Please list events, meetings, etc., on this calendar so that scheduling of events can take place and conflicts do not occur. You will notice a "red" checkmark beside the events to indicate that they have been transferred to Tom's calendar as well as the churchwide calendar. Thank you for your assistance.
CLC Weekly eNews
If you have articles or news items of interest, please send them to clcsecretary@outlook.com no later than 4 p.m. on Wednesdays. If you're not computer friendly, you may leave items in the box in the church office or call Thomas Dearchs. The Weekly eNews is distributed by email at approximately 4 p.m. each Thursday. Print copies are mailed to those who are without computer access.
Announcements from Christ the King Anglican
Coffee House Prayer Ministry
This ministry is suspended for now.
Men's Group
This meeting is suspended for now.
For CLC Weekly eNews or Sunday bulletin
announcements, contact Thomas Dearchs:
or call 765.453.6183