Throughout the area of ELCA Region 2, devastating fires are burning. New Mexico, Colorado, and California are facing the most challenging at this time, and pastors and ELCA church members are reaching out in prayer, support, and compassion, especially in Colorado and the Black Forest Fire.
We hold in prayer and compassion all who are affected by these fires and by all who are a presence of hope in the midst of the devastation.
Pastor Ron Roschke, Synod Minister for Shared Ministries, is the point-person in the RMS Office of the Bishop for matters related to the current wildfires in our Synod. He will be our liaison to Lutheran Disaster Response, Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains, and other partners. Please keep him informed of the impact of the fires on your communities, congregations and members. You can reach him at email@example.com
NOTE from DAVE at RAINBOW TRAIL LUTHERAN CAMP (6/12/13): Just wanted to let everyone that has heard about the fire near the Royal Gorge know that Rainbow Trail, and our staff and our campers are fine. Know that the fire is far away. Please pray for the families and workers at the Royal Gorge Park and for the families that live in that vicinity. Also pray for all the families in the Black Forest area, especially the members of Black Forest Lutheran, Bethel Lutheran, and Trinity Lutheran in Monument. Even though we aren’t very near either of these fires, we know a lot of people have been already been affected. We’ve been there. Prayers flying your way!! From Dave
Summer Blood Drive: During the summer there is a 20 per- cent decline in blood donations due to travel and warm weather plans. Bethany will host a drive on Sunday, June 23 from 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon in the Fellowship Hall. To make an appointment contact Bonfils at 303-363-2300 or register online at https://donors.bonfils.org using site code 0377. As a thank you for your time and commitment, all donors at our drive will receive a special tumbler cup to help you stay hydrated and cool all summer long. If you have questions, please contact Janet Mortinsen at 303-300-3317 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 24 – 28 – Vacation Bible School
TAKE A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE! Join our African Prayer Safari at Kingdom of the Son and learn about the Lord’s Prayer! Through the week’s adventures, children will discover that God Listens, God Provides, God Forgives, God Protects, and God Rules! We will have a great time with lively songs, hilarious skits, creative crafts, tasty snacks, exciting games, great Bible stories, and all the things that make VBS so much fun! Register HERE!
Celebration & Recognition of Joni Grundman: Joni’s ministry as Bethany’s Faith Formation Director of Family Ministry will be recognized at the 9:00am service and a reception will follow in Fellowship Hall from 10:00 – 10:30am. Even though Joni will be working on projects through the summer, we want to take this opportunity to formally thank her for her work at Bethany before her departure on September 1st. Come and help us celebrate her 15 years of ministry at Bethany!
The Situation: Tornadoes have ripped through Oklahoma, Kansas, Illinois, Iowa and Texas claiming many lives and damaging hundreds of homes. A two-mile-wide tornado ripped through Moore, Okla., claiming lives and leaving behind a devastating trail of destruction. Plaza Towers Elementary School stood right in the path of the storm’s 166-200 mph winds.
Many Oklahoma residents already were recovering from storms even before the tornado hit — hundreds of homes were damaged or destroyed as 28 tornadoes touched down throughout Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Illinois and Iowa. As strong winds and warm fronts continue to move across the nation, the threat for future tornado outbreaks is looming.
Our Response: Through Lutheran Disaster Response, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) is responding in areas affected by these tornadoes. Click HERE to help!
Ask a Pastor
The ELCA website, “Living Lutheran” has launched their “Ask a Pastor” forum, and Pastor Ron is one of the Pastors featured on the site! “Ask a pastor” is a place for you to obtain honest, thoughtful, pastoral answers to the questions you’ve been pondering.
Is there anything you’ve always wondered about your faith and what it means to be Lutheran? Or perhaps there’s a tough question you’ve been grappling with about your faith? Maybe you’re just curious about a passage of Scripture or a tradition of the church. Or do you have another question you’d like to ask of an ELCA pastor?
Check it out at: www.livinglutheran.com – second tab!
Be the Blessing – June Beacon Article by Pastor Ron
There are several Biblical touchstones that I go back to again and again. One is Micah 6:8
“He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?”
Another one is Matthew 5:16 “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”
June 2 was our “official day” to BE THE BLESSING. However, it was more than just a one day event. And of course, every day can be the day that you decided to BE THE BLESSING. In order to celebrate BE THE BLESSING it figures that one needs to acknowledge that one has been blessed. One of our new custodians at church by the name of Ali, whenever I ask him “how he is today?” The immediate response is, “I’m blessed, I’m blessed.” So, that is the beginning point as well as the ending point.
I want to share with you two wonderful quotes. The first is by Karen Armstrong who has written the book, Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life:“The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Compassion impels us to work tirelessly to alleviate the suffering of our fellow creatures, to dethrone ourselves from the centre of our world and put another there, and to honour the inviolable sanctity of every single human being, treating everybody, without exception, with absolute justice, equity and respect.” Charter for Compassion
The second quote is by Gary Nelson in his book, Borderland Churches-A Congregation’s Introduction to Missional Living. He states, “Undoubtedly, we are facing an ‘abar (crossover) time in the life of our church in North America. Numerous writings describe the times in which we find ourselves, but crossovers are experienced long before they are understood. Giving words to the experience is comforting, but the depth of the changes shaping us can never be captured in words…… “Crossing over” is rarely embraced willingly. It is, however, only in the crossing over that God’s new thing becomes possible.” (page 28-29)
The Spirit calls us, claims us, gathers us and sends us. During this holy season you will be hearing these words as we gather for Confession and Forgiveness:
The apostle Paul assures us:
“When we were dead in our trespasses,
God made us alive together with Christ,
nailing the record of our sins to the cross.”
Jesus says to you, + “Your sins are forgiven.”
Be at peace, and tell everyone
how much God has done for you.
Thank you for BEING THE BLESSING,