VOLUME 2, ISSUE 4
4TH QUARTER 2003
|A Word from Pastor Preece||
The Third Last Week in the Church Year
November 7, A.D. 2003
Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus! As the Church Year comes to a close and a new one begins on the First Sunday of Advent, November 30, we are mindful of our Father’s Holy Business at Zion, which is to be done in every season of every year.
For the sake of the Gospel and through the medium of ecclesiastical textile arts, I am pleased to announce that the Parament Committee is moving forward under the able leadership of Mr. Bill Medley. New paraments for Advent should arrive mid-season. (John and Marjorie Hoffmeyer have substantially assisted in their procurement in honor of their 60th Wedding Anniversary. Thank you! Congratulations!) Other seasonal paraments and the possibilities of memorializing the same will be presented soon. The Gospel is not only to be heard but also seen ….often near the altar, the font, and the pulpit in the beautiful paraments or cloth coverings.
On the many mission business fronts, Zion together with Lutheran Inter-City Network Coalition (LINC) is actively supporting two new local church plants—one in downtown Dallas on South Lamar and one at the former Hope Lutheran Church, now New Hope, on Peavy Road. Further southeast, in Santiago de Cuba, the “roof is pitched” on the Lutheran church there, which our Zion Can-Do team began building last summer. In Nigeria, Mr. Luke and Mr. Gonez are enrolled in the seminary with full scholarship support received from Zion. In Mexico, Deacon Leon, financially assisted by us for training at the Hispanic Institute in San Antonio, serves at Todos Santos in Guadalajara. In Greece and Israel, parishioner Ms. Nicki Holotik labors evangelically with “Youth With A Mission” (YWAM). In China, Zion Praise Band/ Ensemble singer and supporter Mrs. Victoria Bridgeman is delivering Bibles. And back from India, I will soon begin the gathering of support from the parishes of North Texas, Area B, for Indian evangelist and literacy training. No doubt you too are on mission business with your Christian witness and service every day in every season. Thanks be to God. Press on. (Phillipians 3:14a) Through you, Zion is “out there” for Christ.
Confirmation classes began in August. Please pray for the 13 youth and 8 adults enrolled. They are learning about the Father’s business as Jesus did in the temple—He even taught the teachers! I learn from the confirmands too!
The 125th Anniversary Committee, chaired by Mr. John Hoffmeyer, is busily active, operating under the theme “Great Traditions—Great Future—125 years in Christ.” See the brief report on page 3 for fuller details. Busy! Busy! Busy – for Christ and church and community and “cosmos,” indeed the world, that more may believe in Jesus, our Savior and Lord.
In other church business, the Endowment Committee is meeting regularly and hopes to open the avenue for further future contributions in the first part of next year, Zion’s 125th Anniversary Year.
Lastly, we are grateful for the Lift Up Your Hearts Matching Gifts Campaign, which as of this writing is going well. A total of $7500 has been collected in the matching effort; $7500 more is needed for a total intake of $30,000 to support operational ministry and mission business at Zion.
Advent focuses upon the Christ who came, who comes and who will come again. As Christmas comes, may we remember His coming to be our Savior dear, born of the Blessed Virgin Mary. May we gather regularly to receive Him as He comes daily and weekly in Word and Sacrament. And may we anticipate that joyful last and final Day. Until then let us be about our Father’s Holy Business (see Luke 2:49 KJV) in this and every season.
A Blessed Advent be yours!
|A Devotional Message From Pastor Sparling|
Oh, Give Thanks to the Lord!“Oh, Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever.” Psalm 107:1
November already! Time for Thanksgiving—what a great custom! You might be familiar with a custom in some areas—I’ve seen it in e-mails, in various newsletters—in a church worship service based solely on the custom—all over—which is to observe the practice of placing at each place setting around the Thanksgiving table a small dish containing five kernels of corn. It is done to remember the Pilgrims—those people who landed on this continent’s east coast in 1620—those who went through a rough first winter. Many died, and all nearly starved. Their daily ration of corn, so the story goes, was five kernels per person. As a result a tradition was begun by the pilgrims to place five kernels of corn at each person’s place as they observed Thanksgiving Day—a reminder of leaner days and the suffering of many.
Five kernels of corn—five kernels of truth. As a Thanksgiving exercise, we might think together about five areas of life, and then think of something in that particular area which we can make a part of our Thanksgiving.
Kernel # 1: God. Christians know that God is love and that He sent His Son to be our Savior. But what characteristic of God do you need Him to display in your life to help you right now? Is it love, wisdom, power, forgiveness, guidance, joy? All of the above? Ask Him. He can be that for you. Thank Him in advance.
Kernel # 2: Family. Recall fond family memories, one from long ago and one from more recent experiences. From long ago (relatively speaking, I guess) I thank God for the time I met my wife, and for the gifts He has given us in two beautiful daughters. I give thanks for being able to watch them grow up, and for birthdays and every important milestone in their lives. I thank God for calling me to serve in a congregation filled with wonderful people, and for the work that we do together.
Kernel # 3: Friends. Remember a time when a friend said something or did something that you appreciated and helped to make your day. Thank God for good friends—and remember how thankful you are for friends when someone new moves in to the neighborhood or church and is looking for the same...
Kernel # 4: Material Things. The Bible says, “But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that” (1 Timothy 6:8). That is not to suggest that these are all we need—our modern living requires so much more. But it does suggest that we focus our lives on the basics and be happy with them, and not imagine that life consists of the abundance of things we possess. Think how God has met your needs and thank Him and, in thanksgiving to Him, think of how you can share your abundance with those in need.
Kernel # 5: Experiences. Recall one of the happiest times of your life. Think also of a tough experience that God has turned into a blessing. Thank God for good times and for challenging times. Throughout all He would make us grow.
You know, there is a kernel (pun intended) of truth in the thought that Thanksgiving Day helps us see the good side of life. It helps us see beyond things—whatever these things might be, whether good or not so good—maybe it even helps us to lose that taskmaster calendar for a time—if just a day—to “...give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever.” Hey, enjoy that day—and give thanks!
About all we can say, I hope, is “Amen!”
I AM, a Servant in Christ
Pastor Patrick Sparling
|Honoring Zion's Young At Heart!|
|Zion’s most senior member,
Florence Jacob Hoeh, has been blessed in many ways in her long, fruitful 95 years. Born in Chesterfield, Missouri (St. Louis County), she has been a devout Lutheran all her life and active in many church activities. Her father-in-law was Rev. Charles E. Hoeh, pastor of St. Paul's, Des Peres, Mo., for over 25 years. Her grandfather was a charter member of St. Johns, Ellisville, Mo., where she was baptized, confirmed, married and attended regularly. In her youth, a Sunday outing was a trip to church in a horse drawn sleigh or a surrey.
The secret to her long productive and happy life seems to be in her strong belief in God, in which her mother played an important role, as well as her feeling that one is never too old to start new things. Even today she is constantly looking for new projects to start, and to share with others.
Florence has lived at Presbyterian Village North for 5 1/2 years, where she presently has some of her paintings on exhibit.
Florence remembers her mother's words as they walked hand in hand in their garden, "God will always be with you and love and take care of you wherever you are." These words have guided her through her long life.
|Zion's LWML Societies Host Zone LWML Rally|
|The LWML Daylighters and The LWML
Moonlighters were hosts to six other Dallas area LWML societies, on
Saturday, September 27 at Zion Lutheran Church. The theme for the day was
“Lutheran Braille Workers -- The Vision”. Following an opening devotion, the
fifty attendees learned much from Mrs. Peggy Turnipseed from Walburg, Texas,
the guest speaker. Mrs. Turnipseed is currently the President of the Board
of Directors of Lutheran Braille Workers, and is a recent past president of
the Texas District LWML.
Mrs. Turnipseed’s presentation included a video about Lutheran Braille Workers, and fun exercises in understanding the Braille system. The attendees then divided into groups and had a tour of Zion’s wonderful Braille Work Center, getting to see how a Braille book is printed and bound. Doris Rotermund, Deanie Parker, and Lou Strucely worked diligently to get this part of the program to run so smoothly, with the help of Elsie Allmon, Rosemary Francis, Lucy McClendon, Don Wagner, Janice Brightwell, Charline Keller, and Paul Strucely. It was the first time for many folks to learn about the ministry of Lutheran Braille Workers and see how the Braille books are done across the U.S. A business meeting followed the luncheon, and the day closed with a devotion led by SHINE, a singing group from Lutheran High School, directed by Zion member Gil Abbott. Rally Host Chairmen were Catherine Burkhard and Bernice Launius.
|Brief Report on 125th Anniversary Committee Action|
|Zion Lutheran Congregation of Dallas will
observe its 125th Anniversary on Sunday,
October 17, 2004. An anniversary committee has been appointed to
develop programs to celebrate this historic event, and in its first meeting
on September 15, the following facets of the programs were discussed and
sub-committees selected. Please find below a summary of action to date:
Members of the 125th Anniversary Committee are: President Jack Harris, John Hoffmeyer, chairman, Pastor Robert Preece, Rosemary Francis, Mary Lou Schminke, Oran Schrank, and Marvin Stelzer.
|Wanted: Christmas Carolers!|
|Zion will have an evangelistic outing to
visit 12 Oaks East Retirement Village. Pastor Symmank will give a sermon
that will be followed by singing Christmas carols and witnessing to the
elderly. All members of Zion are invited to come. We will meet at the church
parking lot at 2:30 p.m. and leave at 2:45 p.m. to 12 Oaks.
Saturday, Dec. 6th, 3-4:00p.m.
12 Oaks East Retirement Village
3305 Dilido Rd., Dallas, TX 75228
Please contact Christine Lambe (at firstname.lastname@example.org) or Bill Morrison (email@example.com) for more information.
Submissions for this newsletter
The deadline for the 1st Quarter edition of The Messenger is January 4, 2004. Electronic submissions are preferred (please copy both Lianne and Terry), or you may hand any hard copy articles to Rosemary in the church office by the end of December.
The Messenger is published by Zion's Ministry of Involvement
Zion Staff Service Anniversaries (Total of Service in the Synod)
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