1. Please join us as we worship virtually this week. A prerecorded worship will be available on our YouTube channel this Sunday by 8:00 a.m. Pastor Ioanwill be delivering a message based on Mark 1:4-11. Below is a devotion based on that Scripture.
Often people find themselves looking for something – anything – that might offer a word of hope. While Mark does not exactly say what the crowd was seeking when they came to John, to the reader it appears they went out expecting a sign of God’s rule and presence, a word to address the uncertainties of their lives. The crowds went into the wilderness seeking good news, hope, and God, and discovered that God was already there waiting for them, ready to redeem, transform, revitalize, and renew them – not least of all through the one God proclaimed “my Son, the Beloved” (v. 11).
At some point we all find ourselves in a “wilderness” seeking hope to which we can entrust our lives. The baptism of Jesus and our own baptisms assure us that our identity, purpose, and very lives are found in God claiming us as beloved. As we have been baptized into Christ Jesus, so we are baptized into his resurrection, and into life abundant. Alleluia!
2. Virtual Sunday Bible Study – We gather virtually through Zoom at 9:15 am. We discuss the Scripture passage that the sermon for that Sunday focused on. In the sermon you hear one particular interpretation. In Bible Study we will use questions to approach the passage in a discussion style. We welcome insights into Scripture passage that you’ve gleaned in you over the years and more immediate feelings and thoughts that came to you that day. All are welcome to join in the discussion or listen.
To access Zoom on Sundays at 9:15 a.m. click the link below and enter the required Meeting ID number and the Passcode. Or call by phone the below number and then follow the prompts to dial the required Meeting ID number and the Passcode number.
Zoom Sunday Bible Study Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89973259796?pwd=ODNtTTlCZjd2ZHNyUHNRS1oyV0hYQT09
Meeting ID: 899 7325 9796
Dial-In by Phone:
+1 312 626 6799
Meeting ID: 899 7325 9796
3. Virtual Sunday School – We miss having the joy of our kids at church and we know families are under strain with navigating a Covid world as well. We are offering kid-focused lessons to our Sunday prerecorded YouTube worship. Directly following our regular worship, you can stay tuned or call the kids over and have a short time for worship dedicated to our pre-school to early/middle elementary age kids.
4. Blood Drive Update – Even in the midst of a snowstorm and abbreviated hours, we still drew 25 pints of blood at our last Blood Drive on December 29! Our next one is Tuesday, January 26 from 2-7 pm. Please call 1-800-287-4903 to schedule your appointment!
5. Pool of Siloam – The needs are great this time of year. Please consider giving to this important ministry and remember that your financial gift is doubled!
6. Thank you to all those who help our Advent and Christmas Season come together. People volunteered to decorate, sing, help with Sunday School, make fires to keep us warm on Christmas Eve, reach out in love with cards, calls and caroling. Thank you all.
7. Pastor Ioan and Deb would like to express their heartfelt thanks for the congregation’s generous Christmas gift, which was put to good use taking Pastor’s mom to seeing the Christmas lights in Kansas City over New Year’s. Thank you for being loving and kind to Pastor’s family.
8. Confirmation class resumes on January 13th at 6:00 p.m. on Zoom.
Church office phone: 515-462-4270
Church office email: Office@stpaullutheranchurch.net
Pastor Ioan Ittu: 515-419-5224
Pastor Ioan email: Pastorioan@stpaullutheranchurch.net