May 2014
Church Press Newsletter
One Set Free

For May we'll send you one set of the Burgundy Vinyl Holder, the Burgundy Attendance Pad, and a matching Welcome To Our Worship Pen, #505F, free. We'll pay the shipping. Click the burgundy holder above for details on these materials. Or, you may ask for the Blue Set #509F. Limit one sample of either color for a congregation for May. Email us which set you want, your Church name and address, and your name.

Doing Our Best

"If we do only what we are inclined to do, some of us would never do anything. There are some people who are totally unemployable in the spiritual realm. They are spiritually feeble and weak, and they refuse to do anything unless they are supernaturally inspired. The proof that our relationship is right with God is that we do our best whether we feel inspired or not." - Oswald Chambers, Our Utmost for His Highest

The Auschwitz Escape 

An excellent book for late night reading by Joel C. Rosenberg. Joel is a fantastic author. Based on the true story of events he uses fictionalized characters in many instances while using real-life people to punctuate the horrors that occurred. Jean-Luc Leclerc is a Protestant pastor and Jacob Weisz, a 17 year old Jewish boy are unbelievable. How could the Germans do what they did? How? What about the horrible suffering of the Jews in this death camp? Pastor Ginkel highly recommends it.

To go to Amazon click the book above. Hard copy retail:  $26.99. $17.07 from Prime. Kindle price is $9.45. 
Servant of All

Jesus demonstrated servant leadership by taking off His robe, picking up a towel, and washing His disciples' feet.

If I had been there that night, I would have been embarrassed beyond words the moment I saw Him do it. I would have been embarrassed and humiliated because I had not been willing to do the dirty task of foot-washing. Yet Jesus demonstrated that He who was to be the greatest among His followers would be servant of all (Attitude, page 30, by Hans Finzel).

A Little Humor

Two men were discussing their religious backgrounds, each one bragging and interested in out-doing the other. Finally, one said, "I'll bet you ten dollars that you can't even recite the Lord's Prayer." Said the other, "It's a bet," and began, "Now I lay me down to sleep..." The first man interrupted, "Here's your ten. I didn't think you could do it!"

For Pastor's Eyes  Only

When You Lose a Loved One. Written by Charles L. Allen with Poems by Helen Steiner Rice. An excellent gift to someone who is grieving. New. $9.99. 112 pages. Free (including shipping) to the first pastor who emails us.

For Church Secretary's
Eyes Only

Amazing Grace by Eric Metaxas, a truly gifted writer. The true story of the British Abolitionist William Wilberforce in 1807. A powerful history lesson that had a huge impact on slavery. New. Hard cover. 320 pages. Retails for $23.99. Free (including shipping) to the first secretary (or office administrator) who emails us.

Good Church Website

We like the informative website for Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church (LCMS), Livonia, MI, Rev. Dean Davenport, lead pastor. Excellent layout. Covers all the activities and programs of the Church. Click Christ Our Savior. for some good ideas.

Holy Week Orders of Service

Ascension Lutheran Church (LCMS), Littleton, CO, does an excellent job creating orders of service that are thorough and easy to follow including large print for the visually impaired. You can run off hard copies for the services on Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter. File them away for ideas for next year. Click Ascension, then go to Resources, and then Worship Bulletins.

Mother's Day

In your Mother's Day sermon appeal to the unchurched who are present. Be honest that one of the greatest pains in a mother's heart is when her child does not know Jesus. To be apart in life is hard, but to contemplate an eternity without those you love is a pain impossible to express.

Acknowledging this is not easy to say (which is why you're saying it for Mom), and it's not comfortable to talk about on this happy day. But love is honest about the consequences of a life lived apart from God. - Outreach March/April 2013, p. 116

P.S. Encourage staff, ushers and the congregation to be genuinely welcoming. It makes a big difference.

Hospital Visit

When making a hospital visit, take along two copies of Portals of Prayer, one for the person you are visiting and the other for the room mate. We hope you also have a devotion. If not, consider this excellent text as a starter: Romans 8:35-39. Read one verse at a time and explain its implications. Close with prayer.

Welcome! Please come in. We invite you to hear the music and read the words to one of our most loved hymns, Beautiful Savior, performed by the Oasis Chorale with video by SE Samonte. It's prefaced with Scripture. Go full screen. Hope you can take a moment to join in singing praise to the Savior.
Beautiful Saviour (Fairest Lord Jesus)
Beautiful Saviour (Fairest Lord Jesus)

Does Anyone Care About Me?
By Pastor Don Ginkel

If you go to a meeting or a church service or a party and no one, absolutely no one welcomes you or says hi, I bet that you feel like the "fifth wheel on a Volkswagon." I'm sure this has happened to you. You feel as if you want to leave or as if you've got some disease. It seems that many folks in the church and out of it are not all that friendly today. Here is some encouragement for you:

  • Proverbs 12:25, "Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up."
  • 1 Peter 4:9, "Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling"
  • Galatians 5:14, "For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"   

"Does anyone care about me?" Does anyone really care about all the individuals that will cross your path today and the people you will meet at worship next Sunday? Jesus cares a lot - and so should you - every day and in every way!  


Little things that count: Smile. Be approachable. Make eye contact. Master friendly conversation. Ask simple questions. Compliment others. Use people's names. Make an effort to talk to new people. Befriend people. Make a decision to like people you meet. Always be polite. Offer compliments. You be the first one to say hello and introduce yourself.   


A big thing that really counts: "This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His One and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us" (1John 4:9-12).


P.S. Consider including this article in your bulletin or newsletter. 


Successful Sermons Ask for Change
By Lori Carrell, p. 71, May/June issue of Rev!

In lower-impact sermons, a majority of preaching time is spent on explanation, sermons that are more informative than transformative. In addition listeners' responses indicate that what's being explained is already known to them. If listeners already agree with sermon content, how can they be expected to change? Successful sermons move believers to action. Rather than merely motivating a desire to be different (for example, "Yes, I'd like to be more forgiving"), sermons with lasting impact developed practical implementation of ideas, proclaiming the power and grace of God to enable that spiritual growth. Whether the action plan is illustrated through stories or specific steps, a call to change is most likely to be successful when "how to" ideas are included.

5 Things I've Learned as a Young Pastor in a Small Church
By Jonny Craig, Rick Warren's Ministry Toolbox, February 22, 2014

I'm a young pastor. Like a lot of young pastors, I had stars in my eyes as I entered the ministry. My church will explode with growth. My book (that I've never written) will be a bestseller. I'll be a regular on the conference circuit. These are common dreams for young pastors and I'm no exception.

As nice as dreams are, they don't always match up with reality, and the reality is that I'm one of those churches under 500 people. A great church. A healthy church. A Christ-centered church that I love deeply. A small church.

So I want to share some lessons that I've learned about being a young pastor in a small church. These aren't necessarily lessons that are specific to being young, but from my experience, it's we younger pastors who need a reality check. Reality is good, and here are 5 things I've learned that have helped me love the reality God has placed me in. [read more
Stack of Stuff

May St. Paul's passion for people be ours today. Romans 9:1-3, Living New Testament: "Oh, Israel, my people! Oh, my Jewish brothers! How I long for you to come to Christ. My heart is heavy within me and I grieve bitterly day and night because of you. Christ knows and the Holy Spirit knows that it is no mere pretense when I say that I would be willing to be forever damned if that would save you." To help reach people who are heavy on your heart please consider using the booklet, What On Earth Are You Here For? described in the last article of this Newsletter.

Young son:
"Is it true, Dad - I heard that in some parts of Africa a man doesn't know his wife until he marries her?" Dad: "That happins in every country son."

"The Great Deceiver"
by Rev. Michael Newman. It's a four-session Bible study on Satan. Excellent presentation. Click Deceiver for more information.

Something more important
for most first time visitors is not doctrine, but the friendliness of your church. Pastor, at the end of the service, encourage everyone to shake hands with someone and share first names. When shaking hands with someone be sure to say their name.

More than 80 percent of abortion-minded women chose life after seeing their baby on ultrasound. Let's keep this in mind when doing our counseling.

Last month hundreds of you read the article, "The Five 'R's to Remembering Names of Everybody You Meet." Here is a simple 5 point system that makes it easy to remember names. If you did not read it, click Five R's and run off a hard copy. It's important to remember names.

If your congregation cannot afford a full-time youth pastor, hire one part-time (maybe share one with another congregation). Can't afford that? Start with an energetic volunteer. If you have an excellent youth ministry, your church is more likely to grow.

Do something different at your church. Have a Sunday evening Gospel Hymn Festival from 6:00 to 7:00 in your Fellowship Hall and use every special instrument you can starting with the piano. Include hymn requests. Follow it with light refreshments. Provide childcare for infants up to age 3. Your people will love it.

When someone says, "After all, we're all going to the same place," a good response is, "I hope not!" Then explain.

This is only for the eyes of pastors who are have to vacuum the carpet on Saturdays with an old vacuum cleaner. "That was my predicament earlier this year so I can feel your pain. I had to vacuum with an old, old Hoover, perhaps it was the first one they ever produced. One Saturday I put my foot down. 'I refuse to vacuum any longer with that ancient machine. My decision is final!' In less than an hour my wife, Nadine, went to Consumer Report and found the No. 1 rated vacuum cleaner - A Kenmore Elite. Retails for $279.99, but she found it on sale and three days later it arrived. Wow! Dual headlights, turn signals, the works. Guys - there are times when we must stand up for our rights. This is one them. Or, if you are kind of a "soft guy" who doesn't like to make waves, give her a hint what you'd like for Father's Day. Hope you can have the Kenmore Elite experience." - DFG

"Engaging the Aging" is a timely newsletter for congregations serving older adults. Email for a free subscription to the print edition or go to to be placed on their email list. For more info contact Rev. Walter Schoedel (LCMS) at 314-446-2393.

4 Characteristics of Leaders Who Last
by Rick Warren, Rick Warren's Toolbox, May 2014

If everything rises or falls on leadership, then the quickest way for the opposition to halt any project is to neutralize the leadership. When Satan wants to cripple a church, he takes on the leadership. And this is not just about the pastor and paid staff, but the church leadership's - the lay leadership. If you want to be a leader, some people are not going to like you, and they're going to attack you. Some people are going to try to make you fail. Here are four characteristics of leaders who last long enough to accomplish big things in spite of the challenges. [read more]

Send this Note to Your People by Letter or Email

Next Sunday is Mother's Day, and we will mark it with befitting emphasis at our worship services. There are a lot of frustrations around for all mothers now days. Patricia Rushford put it ever so nicely -

God gives me hope in hopeless situations,
And helps me see the rainbow
On the other side of rain.
He heals the thorn-infested wounds
That I might smell the roses.
He gives me tears to wash away the pain;
Oh, but then . . . then . . .
He gives me joy so I can laugh again.

Our Mother's Day Services should help everyone look at life afresh. We'll build on God's promises such as: "Weeping may remain for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning" (Psalm 30:5).

Please invite a mother or a young woman who will be a mother some day to join you for these special services. You can do someone like that a big favor by taking time for this. May this be a most meaningful Mother's Day for you - and for the one you bring.
What I Learned in the Fire
By Doug Resler, Leadership Journey, April 15, 2014

In the summer of 2009, I found myself staring professional death in the face. I was done with ministry - out! I'd spent the previous year getting hammered by the other leaders in the church. Church planting is hard enough without having to fight the very people you thought had your back. When I confronted a member of the board who had spent six months sabotaging my relationship with the rest of the board, he threatened me physically. That's how bad things had gotten. I was exhausted. My wife was depressed. It was the lowest point in my life.

Three months earlier, my wife had uttered the words no pastor wants to hear. "I am miserable being married to you. It's either me or the ministry. You need to decide which is more important." [read more]


This 63 page mini-book is from the first three chapters of The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. Excellent for those who don't know - both in the church and out of it. Very inexpensive - $1.45 each. It answers life's three biggest questions:  


The Question of Existence: 

Why am I alive?

The Question of Significance:

Does my life matter?

The Question of Purpose:

What on earth am I here for?


Very inexpensive - $1.45 each. 25 mini-books for $24.99. Provide a copy for each worshiper to give to a friend. Insert a church business card in each booklet. This is a great outreach tool. To order click Purpose Driven Life.  


During May we'll give you one free copy with every order you place. Just email us and ask us to include the free booklet. 


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