She lay in the hospital bed, her hair as white as the pillowcase on which her head rested; her body, tiny and frail. We followed as the aide wheeled the bed down the corridor to the room where the surgeon waited; the scalpel ready. Just before they took her away, they paused to allow her husband, frail himself, to give her one last kiss before they put her blissfully to sleep. I turned a discreet head, but couldn’t help but be touched by the scene. Cane in one hand, he smoothed her snowy hair with the other, kissing her tenderly. “I love you.” she said. “ I love you, too.” he replied. They wheeled her through. The doors shut. He stood looking after her for a long moment before he allowed us to lead him away to the waiting room where we would all drink coffee and chatter about anything we could think of, while sneaking looks at the clock, wondering how the surgery was going. I thought about their relationship. I thought about how deep the ties between them had grown in 60 years of marriage. How they were like two old trees whose roots had grown so closely together over the years that you could no longer tell where one ended and the other began. There was a deep inseparability about them that you could feel. Even though she was asleep in another room, his heart was entwined with hers, and I knew that no matter what the outcome of the surgery, nothing, not even death, could separate them.
I think that is how God loves us – with that same, deep inseparability.
At our baptisms, we are marked with the cross of Christ forever. The promise to be with us always is sealed by the Holy Spirit, and, from then on, like the roots of two, old trees, God’s heart is so entwined with ours that nothing can separate us. Not even death.
What a comfort that is as we sit in the waiting room of life, watching the clock and feeling the tug on our heart strings until Jesus returns, so we can go home, together, hand in hand.
The blessings of Lent be with you this season, Pastor Barb <><
For I am convinced that neither death nor life…nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Each year, the Zion Lutheran Youth Organization (LYO) and thousands of youth across the nation collect donations for local charities on a day that most in our country spend money on the Super Bowl football game. Our youth are collecting money through Sunday, February 3rd to donate to the Manna House food pantry. The LYO will be leading the 11:00 service that Sunday. This is always a special treat for our congregation, so please help spread the word, and ask everyone to bring a few extra dollars for the soup pot! Scout Sunday is also February 3rd. We will give special recognition to those who participate in our scouting program here at Zion.
There is nothing better than the smell of fresh baked bread! This Lenten season, every Sunday evening at 5:30, we will fill the sanctuary with the aroma of bread right out of the oven! We will listen to a message based on a theme, like hospitality, generosity, sufficiency, and trust. A different bread represents each theme each week. After the worship, we will gather for a simple finger food meal, and will eat the bread prepared for that week’s theme. The weekly titles are:
Ash Wednesday: Journey Bread – Granary Bread
Lent 1: Welcome Bread – Sweet Oatmeal Bread
Lent 2: Unleavened Bread – Sour Dough Bread
Lent 3: Daily Bread – Sweet White Bread
Lent 4: More Than Bread – Cinnamon Raisin Bread
Lent 5: Abundant Bread – Honey Barley Bread
Maunday Thursday: Betrayer’s Bread – Pumpernickle Bread
Come and join us for a Lenten series that feeds your hunger and your soul!
The offering will go towards the ELCA Malaria Campaign to buy
Did you know that Mardi Gras is also known as the Carnival Season and refers to the events of Carnival celebrations beginning on or after Epiphany and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday? Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday and refers to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season. It’s a time to celebrate and be thankful for our many blessings before we enter the season of Lent and reflect on what God has done for us.
Please make plans to join us for our Mardi Gras Pancake Supper on Sunday, February 10th at 5:00pm. Come indulge and enjoy some warm fluffy pancakes with your choice of sweet toppings. Come and enjoy a time of celebration and fellowship with your church family! WELCA is hosting this event. Please bring a donation to help offset the cost of the meal. Donations that exceed meal costs will be designated for the ELCA Malaria Campaign.
The following members were elected during our annual meeting last week:
Congregational Vice President – Charlie Heidt
Congregational Secretary – Sherri Pittman
Jason Hall, Ruth Phillips, Tricia Parrish, David Harris, Elliott Foss, Gloria Sheppard, Ronald Hutcheson, Louise Sebastian, Trey Davis, Charlie Heidt, Dana Lee Smith, Brett Vandenhouten.
Sunday School Superintendent – Amber Hall
Assistant Sunday School Superintendent – Amy Young
Sunday School Secretary – Cheryl Pannal
Sunday School Treasurer – Joy Hutcheson
2013 Conference and Synod Assembly Delegates – Ronald and Joy Hutcheson
2014 Conference and Synod Assembly Delegates – John and Ruth Phillips
Annual Congregational Meeting is scheduled for
Sunday, January 13th, 2013 in the Zion Fellowship Hall.
Registration is at 4:00 p.m. and the meeting starts at 4:30.
Please register at the door and get a voting sticker at this time.
♦ The Agenda for this meeting will be finalized at the Sunday,
January 6th, Council Meeting.
♦ Voting members (all members of legal age who have communed
or made a contribution of record during the current or preceding
year) of the congregation are encouraged to attend.
♦ Elections will include Congregation Council, Congregation
Officers, Sunday School Officers and Representatives to Synod
Assembly and Conference. The complete Book of Reports will
be distributed at the meeting.
♦ Please bring finger foods for our fellowship meal following the
♦ Childcare will be provided.
♦ A Note From Pastor Barb: The Annual Meeting is an
important day in the life of Zion. Your prayerful input and vote
do make a difference! We in leadership positions look to the
Lord and YOU for the direction Zion is to take in the coming
year. Thank you for serving God with your prayers and