Faith E-news    January 22, 2016  

Quick Notes and Reminders    

Please check the calendar for more information.

Food Pantry Item for January is juice in cans or plastic bottles

Faith Feast Menu - Wednesday , January 27, will feature chili with cornbread.

Office Volunteers' Lunch - We're meeting at Smoky D's in Des Moines for lunch on Wednesday, February 3, at 11:00 a.m. Please contact Kala at 225-8334 or if you plan to come. 
This Week's Ministry Blog
Fulfilled in Your Hearing    
Do we really want what Jesus is promising?
Imagine for just a moment, that the world has been completely transformed according to the words Jesus speaks in this passage. (take a moment if you need and read them)
Your turn on the TV, and see images of large crowds.
The poorest people, in the poorest places in the world.
Dancing, celebrating, smiling, tears streaming down faces.
Suddenly, those scenes are interrupted by a special report-not only have political prisoners around the world been released, but the doors of the prisons in this country are wide open, as well.
Changing the channel you now see glasses and contacts and white canes discarded on sidewalks. A reporter tries to interview a confused looking optician at the 1 hour eyeglass place-no comment.
Again, breaking news interrupts with footage of deserted sweatshops and empty farm fields and abandoned mines all over the world. The camera then cuts to store after store, shelves empty.
Flipping to the next channel, the screen fills with images of razor wire fences torn down, walls falling, crowds of cheering people clamoring over the rubble, armed guards stepping aside to let them pass.
Once more, a newsflash interrupts with reports of large crowds of students gathering, burning their loan paperwork in a large heap. In another city, another crowd gathers around an industrial shredder tossing in their medical bills, their mortgage notes, their credit card statements.
All the while, the ticker at the bottom of the screen reveals that the stock market is in free fall.
Today, this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.
This can't be what Jesus meant...or can it?
When the crowd at Nazareth first hears his words, they are full of excitement. All speak well of him. That is, until Jesus goes on in the following verses to flesh out what the fulfillment of these words looks like with a couple of stories:
Foreigners, pagans, enemies receiving God's favor. The Israelites get nothing.
This is not what the people of Nazareth expected when they heard: good news to the poor, release to the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, the oppressed go free, the year of the Lord's favor. The way these words are brought to life through Jesus, it's not what they had in mind. Now, it doesn't sound like good news to them at all. And so, the people of Nazareth try to push Jesus off a cliff.
The good news in Jesus may not be what we expected.
It may not sound particularly good for us, depending on who we are.
But if we can resist the temptation to push Jesus away, just maybe, we can find the patience to follow and see where he is heading with this.

Pastor Sarah 

Sunday School
On Sunday 24, Jake Bouma Director of Youth and Family Ministry, will share a Hypotherable--part hypothetical situation, part parable, all for the sake of engaging faith conversation.  

Lutheran Day on the Hill Wednesday, February 17
Sponsored by Lutheran Services in Iowa. 

Lutherans from all over the state will gather at the capitol to meet their legislators and share what we are concerned about for this upcoming legislative session. From clean water to human trafficking to welcome for refugees, there are many issues to which we can speak as people of faith.
To learn more about this event or to register, please check out

Can't make it, but still want to participate? Join in the letter writing campaign.  Download the letter writing kit here or stop in to St. Michael's Hall and check out the letter writing station. Participants from our congregation will deliver it in person!


Look at the progress we are making on the building! Make sure you try the new doors.

Intergenerational Sunday 

Be sure to come to St. Michael's Hall during the Sunday School Hour on January 31, for Camp Reunion Sunday. We welcome all ages from youngsters to retirees who have attended church camp. Enjoy s'mores bars and get acquainted with others who have attended Riverside or Lakeside Bible Camp. In addition, there will be a representative visiting from Riverside Bible Camp who will talk about all the programs the camp has to offer, no matter how old the camper! Parents, this is a great time to learn about opportunities for your children or whole family. Scholarships are available- see Rachel. In the camping spirit, our Sunday School kids will sing a camp song during the 10:30 worship.

2015 Contribution Statements  

The Finance Board will be distributing the 2015 contribution statements in the Commons on Saturday, January 23, from 4:45 to 6:15 p.m. and Sunday, January 24, from 9:00 to 10:30 a.m. Please look for us in front of the coat rack.

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper and Talent Show
On Tuesday, February 9, a freewill offering Pancake Supper will be served from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. with a talent show following from 6:00 to7:00 p.m. All ages are invited to sign up with their brief act (five minutes or less). Email Pastor Sarah or sign up on SignUp Genius. And what does Shrove mean? If you come we promise to tell you.

Grief Support Group    
The Grief Support Group will meet at the church this Sunday, January 24, from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. Pastor Randy Olson and Barbara Cavallin, Ph.D. are the facilitators. Anyone who has lost a loved one, a family member, a friend or someone important to them, is encouraged to come for this time of caring, sharing and prayer. It will be an informational as well as a support group. Please join us.

First Tuesday Women's Fellowship     
The First Tuesday Women's Fellowship will meet at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 2, at the home of Judy Akre, 9715 Lincoln Avenue, Clive. The study, Christian Citizenship 101, from Gather will continue with Session Two, "Servant-Shaped Soldiers," in the January/February 2016 issue. For more information, call Susan Petersen at 223-0646 or Stephanie Hoff at 278-4003.

Donut Hole Sponsorship for 2016

Sponsorship is now available for 2016. It is easy to honor a life event such as a special birthday, anniversary or baptism by sponsoring the donuts for a Sunday. Just go to SignUp Genius on the website or contact the church office. That is it! Donut holes are ordered through the church and picked up by who is responsible for coffee each week. Cost is $50 per week.

Mother & Son Dance   

Want to have some fun and raise money for camp scholarships? Buy your tickets now for the annual Mother and Son Dance! This event is open to the public and all mother and son couples are invited. Couples can be grandmas and grandsons, special neighbors, aunts and name it! Enjoy the sparkle and wonder of our winter season at this year's "Snow-Ball"!  Each mother (or special friend) will receive a silk rose from her date, dance to a super DJ, play party games, and enjoy yummy refreshments. Tickets are available online , in the church office and before each of the musical performances on February 6 and 7. Want to help with this event? Contact Rachel. 

Children and Family Ministry     


Holy Communion Retreat and Holy Communion for All Ages   

communion We will hold a learning retreat on Saturday, February 27, from 9:30-11:30 a.m., for anyone wishing to celebrate their first communion. Though many of our backgrounds suggest that first communion occurs in the 1st grade year, we encourage anyone who is ready to receive their first communion to do so. Many children start taking communion at a younger age, and there are older kids and adults who would like to celebrate this milestone in their faith as well. If you or your children would like to learn about communion, regardless of whether or not you or your child have received communion in worship, we invite you to this morning retreat. Breakfast will be served. Please let Kala in the office if you plan to attend.

Youth and Family Ministry     


Save the Date!
The 14th Annual Silent Auction & Spaghetti Lunch Youth Fundraiser is March 6

Mark your calendars and join us for our annual mission trip fundraising event for the 50+ youth and adults traveling to the Leech Lake Indian Reservation this July. We are excited to offer another Silent Auction & Spaghetti Lunch on Sunday, March 6, but we need your help! Part of what makes our auction so successful is the willingness of the congregation to donate items to be auctioned. We've had people donate woodwork, art, skilled labor, gift certificates, and so on. Prayerfully consider how your passions and gifts can bless our youth ministry by donating new or like-new items and/or services to the auction.

Forms are available on the youth bulletin board in the entryway and can be dropped off in the church office. All donations are due by Wednesday, February 24. Thank you for your continued support!