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Power Strong Enough

“I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control.” II Timothy 1:7 I’ve been thinking of this text this week as I’ve watched the events unfold in Baltimore. Last week I watched a video of Bishop Herz-Lane, our bishop, and religious leaders of other denominations and faith in Baltimore gather on church steps. They peacefully read a statement, and invited the Jewish, Muslim, and Christian communities to follow their worship services on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday with a gathering outside their doors in peaceful, prayerful solidarity with those seeking just

Comfort in Psalm

This coming Sunday is known as Good Shepherd Sunday. It is a day we sing hymns about God as Shepherd: The Lord’s My Shepherd; The King of Love My Shepherd Is; Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us. We hear texts about Jesus as the Good Shepherd and how the true shepherd does not desert his flock. And when we read the Psalm, we hear Psalm 23 – “The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want . . . .” I’ve been wondering: Why does this psalm hold such meaning for us? Rarely have I led a funeral service where Psalm 23 wasn’t one of the readings. Why is it so comforting? Most of us have never met a shepherd and yet this image resonates deeply. We are comforted by the Psalm; and yet, it contains these

We are changed

Change is hard for most people. One of our council members counsels us, “Don’t use the word change.” I lived long enough in Jersey City to begin to understand how change becomes anathema for people as the neighbors on our block changed so many times, I used to joke that I even had new drug dealers’ names to learn. And yet, Paul in I Corinthians 15 writes: “Listen, I will tell you a mystery! We will not all die, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.” This is the heart of Christianity: not just change but radical change – resurrection is a complete

What's Next?

So much good work and care went into the season of Lent and the celebrations of Easter! Thanks to choir, musicians, cleaners, flower arrangers, readers, passion players, egg stuffers, pancake makers, kitchen cleaners, brass polishers, bulletin preparers, and so many more! Even in the afterglow I have to admit, on this other side of Lent and the Three Days, it is difficult to keep the enthusiasm of Easter going! Just thinking about the 49 days in the Easter Season plus the Day of Pentecost that are ahead of us (the week of weeks) make me wonder how the energy will keep flowing. But, maybe these Easter celebrations are a bit like falling in love. The fireworks and excitement of new love inevit

Symbols of Life

I remember very few Easter dinners, probably because as a pastor I’m usually exhausted after four days of services, but there is one that stands out for me. One year our friends Dave and Laura from Brooklyn joined us for dinner and after we were finished eating, our sons took the numbered eggs they had found amidst their candied-filled eggs out of their Easter baskets. These eggs were filled with symbols of the Passion (Christ’s suffering in his last days) and came with a handout of Scripture readings. We divided the eggs among those gathered around the table and we opened the eggs in order reading the corresponding passage. After we had finished reading, Laura, who is an artist, took eac

St. Stephen's 

Lutheran Church

To Love, To Invite, To Serve

 

1301 N Broom Street Wilmington, DE 19806

302-652-7623  office@ststeph.org

As a Reconciling in Christ congregation of the ELCA, we believe that the gospel is God's gift to all people, shared unconditionally and without regard to race, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic or family status, age, physical or mental abilities, outward appearance, or religious affiliation. We seek to live the truth written in Ephesians that Christ breaks down the dividing walls between us and makes us one.

 

© 2020 St. Stephen's Lutheran Church. All rights reserved.

St. Stephen's Lutheran Church

1301 N Broom Street, Wilmington, DE 19806

302-652-7623 office@ststeph.org

 

We are a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and the Delaware-Maryland Synod.

 

 

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