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High School Youth Host Justice Lock-In

On March 9th and 10th, I participated in the LTF’s lock-in to learn about and discuss human trafficking. The thought of modern slavery and sex trafficking makes one’s blood boil, as trafficking is one of man’s more despicable acts towards some of the most innocent and vulnerable. How does someone end up being trafficked? What is it liked to be sold against your will? What can we do to prevent such a heinous act? Heartfelt questions reverberated through all the youth who attended over the weekend.

Some stats that the youth group would like to share: Human trafficking is a $150 billion criminal industry world wide, only trumped by drugs and guns. Slavery is illegal in every country, and yet there are over 45 million slaves today all around the globe. Human traffickers transport 600,000 to 800,000 people across America’s borders every year with 80% being women and children.

It’s easy to say that this problem only occurs outside of the United States, but there is a real problem in the U.S. and even here in Indiana. Ascent 121, an organization in Indianapolis that specializes in therapy for trafficking survivors, stated that they provide residential care for girls ages 12 to 18. But due to high demand for child sex, the not-for-profit has had to lower their age for treatments to age 10. Here! In Indiana! There is market for 10 year-old girls and boys! Boys are less likely to be trafficked, but are still exploited. We all know children - our sisters, daughters, or grandchildren - we would do anything to protect. The thought of someone paying for sex with them fills us with disgust and righteous indignation. So what can we do?

There are many ways to fight trafficking: raising awareness, pushing legislation, service to nonprofits, prayer, etc. For the youth group, this meant adding a little color to the lives at Ascent 121. The girls there are in a residential facility for 6 to 18 months receiving treatment. In an effort to lighten up their lives we sent them packages of coloring books, markers, pencils, as well as hand written cards from us all. On top of that, we created door decorations with flowers and lots of color. We hope that we can do something similar for different seasons or holiday events.

Restored Inc., another local non-profit that presented at our lock-in, is hosting a fundraiser 5K run/walk on April 7th. If you can join the youth and congregation that Saturday morning, your registration cost will support Restored Inc.’s work to find girls who have been trafficked, and help fund rescue operations to recover them from exploitation.

Additionally, the youth want to raise awareness here at Our Shepherd. We will be showing “Priceless,”  the movie that we watched during our lock-in, on Saturday March 24th in the gym immediately following worship. This movie is a powerful story about stepping up to stop trafficking and valuing the life and dignity of women. Please join us to learn more about trafficking in our country.

William Wilberforce once said, “You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.” After the lock-in, this quote echoed within me, as I think it did with many others. So, I pray to God that awareness is spread, justice is served, and that those exploited by trafficking will be filled with God’s Grace and Love. See you on Saturday, March 24th at 7:45 p.m. in the gym to raise awareness and on Saturday April 7th, for the 5K to help stop trafficking!

Posted by Conner Walts with

Weekly Announcements 03.16.18


March 18, 2018

Fifth Sunday in Lent

Silly disciples. They mistakenly thought that Christ came to exalt them. He did, but not in the way they thought. Jesus opened heaven’s doors by walking meekly on the earth. Never once did He use His divine power for His personal advantage. Self-serving was not His way. When we meekly accept God’s will, and walk by faith, others will be exalted by and we will be exalted by God.


TOWN HALL MEETING—Did you miss the Congregational Summit? Discussions will continue on Thursday, March 22 at 7 p.m. with Head Elder, Ken Mikeworth.

EASTER MORNING SUNDAY SCHOOL—A combined family class will be held in room 189 and one adult class will be offered in the sanctuary on Easter Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

MEN’S RETREAT—Dr. Biermann, the Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, will take up a number of practical topics including the roles and responsibilities of men and women in the home, the church, and the implications that these truths have for several social issues facing us today. The Camp Lakeview Men’s Retreat in Seymour, IN will be held on the weekend of Apr. 6-8. Register online via the link in the weekly email or at the Welcome Center.

LWML SPRING RALLY—Ladies, you are invited to attend the LWML West Zone Spring Rally at Christ Lutheran Church in Brownsburg on Sat., April 21 at 9:00 a.m. where there will be breakfast, a meeting, and a special showing of the LCMS produced film, “The First Rosa.” See Alice Farley for more details about the LWML and this event.

OSLS—Eli Lilly will present “Chemistry is a Blast” for our school on Tuesday, April 3 at 1:30 p.m.  Congregation members are invited to attend.


Bob Abernathy, Lori Boettcher, Jean Comer, Adler G., Henry F., Mary Kuch, Tee Lipsey, Arlen Levenhagen, Lynda Pruett, Buddy Ray, Vi Riczo, Al & Marian Schafer, Doreen Schneider, Norie Strakis,  John Widau, and Judy Woolsey. For all of our homebound members including Ann Thomas. For our active Armed Forces members: Andrew Pierson, Rex Rafferty, and Robert Ritter.


OSLS Open Enrollment, NOW

Town Hall Meeting, Mar. 22, 7 p.m.

Men’s Retreat, Apr. 6-8

Confirmation Retreat, Apr. 20-22

Confirmation, May 6, 10:30 a.m.


OLD TESTAMENT READING, Jeremiah 31:31-34

31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. 33 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

EPISTLE READING, Hebrews 5:1-10

1 For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness.Because of this he is obligated to offer sacrifice for his own sins just as he does for those of the people. And no one takes this honor for himself, but only when called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not exalt himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by him who said to him, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”; as he says also in another place, “You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.” In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, 10 being designated by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.

GOSPEL READING, Mark 10:32-45

32 And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And taking the twelve again, he began to tell them what was to happen to him,33 saying, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. 34 And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him. And after three days he will rise.” 35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” 36 And he said to them, “What do you want me to do for you?” 37 And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” 38 Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?” 39 And they said to him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized, 40 but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.” 41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be indignant at James and John. 42 And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 43 But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

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