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Weekly Readings and Announcements 12.11.2020

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GIFTS SENT

December 13, 2020

When do we get to open presents?! Gift-giving is a long-standing tradition of the Christmas season. But our gifts pale in comparison to the abundance of gifts we’ve received from the Father. We praise Him for all He has given — nothing less than His own Son, Jesus — and we look forward to the fulfillment of His gifts to us when we live with Him in the new creation. 

Scripture readings

OLD TESTAMENT READING, Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

1The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified. They shall build up the ancient ruins; they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations.

 For I the Lord love justice; I hate robbery and wrong; I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them. Their offspring shall be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples; all who see them shall acknowledge them, that they are an offspring the Lord has blessed. 10 I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. 11 For as the earth brings forth its sprouts, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to sprout up before all the nations.

 

EPISTLE READING, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise prophecies, 21 but test everything; hold fast what is good. 22 Abstain from every form of evil. 23 Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.

 GOSPEL READING, John 1:6-8, 19-28

6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

 19 And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” 21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.” 22 So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”24 (Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.) 25 They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, 27 even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” 28 These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

IN OUR PRAYERS

Sarah Ardoin, Bill Barron, Hayden Byeon, Liz Dieckamp, Dale Floyd, JoAnne Harrison, Dorothy Levihn, Christine Mueller, Pastor Logan Scheiwe, Joe Sisk, and Tom Weaver. For all affected by COVID. For all who mourn especially the family of Orpha Harris. Thanksgiving for the Segovia family who were baptized this past week. For our active military, including Corey Cook, Jr., Dominick Greci, Katelyn Harvey, Lucas Peck, Dylan Pliska-Lyndoe and Rex Rafferty.

SHARE LIFE WITH OUR SHEPHERD

We are proud to announce one of our own members, Father Daniel Coffey, Indiana State Police Department Staff Chaplain, was presented with the John A. Price Award from the International Conference of Police Chaplains on November 20. This award is the highest recognition bestowed by this international professional organization. The full article may be found HERE.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

ANGELTREE—Please considering sharing Christ’s love to someone in need from our church, school, or community by adopting an angel. Each angel on the tree lists a gift to purchase, instructions for wrapping, and a return date.

POINSETTIA ORDERS—Order forms and envelopes are by the Luther Room. Poinsettias are $12 each. December 13 is the order deadline. Plants may be picked up after Christmas Day worship.

PRAYER GARDEN UPDATE—The prayer garden has a granite Luther seal at the center of the brick paver cross, given in memory of loved ones that have gone to be with our Savior.  Donations for the granite piece are from Kory & Cara Fay, Cheryll Forgue, Jeff & Sheilah Keefer, Kim May, Mark & Kim Meyerholtz, Alex & Karen Robertson, Daren & Rebecca Shoemaker, and Michael & Courtney Wilkerson. Thank you to all who contributed to the prayer garden with brick orders and perennials. 

SUNDAY SCHOOL—Families are invited to join us in-person and at-home on December 20 as we "Follow the Star" to celebrate Jesus' birth. The Christmas activities start at 9:30 in the school hall for those joining in-person on December 20. Families who wish to participate at home can register for materials by emailing DCE Joel Marquardt at   by December 15. There will be NO Sunday School on December 27.

THE CHURCH OFFICE —Will be closed beginning on Christmas Eve and will reopen on Monday, January 4,2021. In case of a pastoral emergency dial extension 225 to be connected to Pastor Matt.

WORSHIP SCHEDULE CHANGE—Due to Christmas Eve being on a Thursday, there has been a slight change to the worship schedule. There will not be midweek Advent services on Wednesday, December 23.  Please see our service times below.

OSLS—It is good to GIVE and RECEIVE! By giving a donation to the Lutheran Scholarship Granting Organization, you give the gift of  education that children right here at Our Shepherd Lutheran School benefit from. You also receive a 50% tax credit for the fiscal year of 2020! Please visit lutheransgo.org for directions on how to give the gift that will last a lifetime.

 

 Advent and Christmas Services