October 22, 2020 (Week 32)
Peace be with you!
Several things to share this week sisters and brothers.
I want to offer a word of congratulations to our own Jennifer Barker on having been selected as a recipient of the “2020-2021 Fund for Leaders Scholarship.” Jennifer has embarked on a program of study leading to rostered ministry in the ELCA through Wartburg Seminary. Please keep her in your prayers as she navigates the responsibilities of family life and graduate study in the coming years. Congratulations Jennifer!
After our Stewardship/Day of Service “Drive-In” weekend, with its collections of gifts for Interfaith Community Services and the Third Avenue Charitable Organization, the church has received expressions of profound gratitude from both agencies. Thanks to one and all who brought food, items of personal hygiene, pet food, sleeping bags, can openers, etc., etc., as gifts seeking to serve folks who are our underprivileged neighbors. Your generosity is making a difference to God’s people in the world at a time when they need it most.
In that vein, please keep in mind our “PDF” or pastor’s discretionary fund. With the gifts we receive for that fund, we are able to provide critically needed help to people in our congregation, our community, and beyond, that may not otherwise be available to them. This has included help with everything from the very basics like food and shelter, to help with utility bills, medical bills, emergency travel, etc. We vet each case as carefully as we can to ensure the very best stewardship of your gifts. With it we have certainly changed, if not saved lives. Over the past few months, the needs have been profound and greater than normal, due in large measure to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. At this time, our reserves are depleting, so we humbly ask for your help once again. I wish I could say that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel for those who have most suffered, but sadly as yet, I cannot. For many, the troubles persist or worsen. Please do what you can to support God’s children in their time of need. And know that we are so very grateful for your kindness and generosity!
I am pleased to announce that this coming Wednesday will mark the beginning of our movement back to campus. At 5 pm on Wednesday the 28th, we will have the first of what will hopefully become a weekly event: a “Concert in the Courtyard”. This will be a brief time for worship and the enjoyment of music on campus, with as much fellowship as is permissible with COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Everyone is required to sign up ahead of time to attend. We will all be masked, and family groupings will remain social distant from one another, with no mingling permitted to or from our vehicles. Sounds a bit harsh, but such is life with COVID.... In any case, we anticipate a wonderful time of worship, music and fellowship (yes, fellowship) with these Wednesday “Concerts in the Courtyard.”
We are in the throes of planning our Christmas worship this year, and though it will be different....it will be cool! Plan to join us.
Please mark on your calendars: The memorial service for Pr. Jack Lindquist, my predecessor as Senior Pastor at ILC, will be aired on All Saints Sunday, and will be available on our website and on our app. Please stay tuned for further details as the day approaches.
As always, please know that we’re here for you. As time goes on in this pandemic, with its concomitant economic and lifestyle stressors, the impact on individuals and families continues to worsen. The staff and leadership of ILC is committed to ensuring that you have every bit as much pastoral care as you need, and that your worship and devotional life does not suffer. Please go to our website (www.godamong.us) or download the app for your smartphone, and access the worship services, devotions, bible studies, bible readings, small group meetings, etc., as much and as often as you can. And this, so that your faith life remains strong and vibrant in the face of the challenges these days present. But if you do have a need with which we can be helpful, we are here for you. Please call me (or Pr. Tim or Deacon Mindy). We are always delighted to serve wherever we can. It is important to us that all of you know, you are not alone!
Be well sisters and brothers. Stay safe! We are blessed, always!
In Christ’s service,
- Before worship, around 9 am, Darrell and Nancy Datte host our after worship coffee/donut fellowship time (BYOC/D) on Zoom, and look forward to welcoming everyone in our community. Please think about joining in and saying hi to your brothers and sisters. That gathering can be found here: