Salem Lutheran Church

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Palms to Passion

The great dichotomy Sunday is upon us: where we begin with Hosannas and celebration, and quickly move to the story of Christ’s passion and betrayal. Holy Week continues as we show Christ’s love by serving each other on Maundy Thursday, and contemplate His sacrifice with beautiful music in the Good Friday Tenebrae service.

I love the word dichotomy: it is a contrast between two things,…

The Forgiving Father

I was recently surprised to hear our scripture for this week, the beloved story of the prodigal son, described instead as the story of the forgiving father. How would you describe it? The story of the spoiled kid who wasted his inheritance? His father who continued to spoil him when he returned? His loyal brother who was taken for granted? We tend to err on the side of judgment: how we feel…

Snow Days and Community

Snow days used to be something my little family loved: kids put their pjs on backwards with a spoon under their pillow, did a snow dance, and said, “I hope you don’t wake me in the morning, giggle!!”. In the morning they woke up at the same time, of course, and were thrilled to go sledding and drink hot chocolate all day. We have lost count of how many snow days off of school we’ve…

Choose to Be a Blessing

This Sunday we’ll hear Jesus encourage those who are poor and hungry, telling them they will be blessed and satisfied. He then goes on to warn those who are rich and full, that they may not receive those comforts later. (Luke 6:20-26) It’s a great time to focus on love, humility, and compassion, don’t you think?

Before Jesus speaks, Luke writes about how power goes out of Him when…

Dive In!

I have started reading the Bible in the order suggested to complete it in a year — I’m behind already, of course! I thought the Psalm reading on the first day was a perfect way to begin: “God’s Word warns us of danger and directs us to hidden treasure. Otherwise how will we find our way? Or know when we play the fool? Clean the slate, God, so we can start the day fresh!” ( Read more | Comments (0) | Jan 23, 2019

What Gifts Will You See?

This Sunday, Jan. 6, the season of Epiphany begins with the Magi giving their precious gifts to Jesus. Did you know that many countries celebrate gifts from the Magi instead of Santa? Children in Latin America write letters to the Magi detailing their good behavior and asking for presents, while children in Spain leave straw in their shoes by the door for the Magi’s horses on Epiphany eve,…

You Make a Difference

One of the things I love about our current times is that people feel empowered to make a real difference for others. Generations ago, we relied on large organizations to help those in need, but now the power of one person’s idea can create a tidal wave of kindness and giving. This time of year, with the cold of winter and holiday generosity, we really start to focus on being champions of peace…

A Week of Giving

The dichotomy of Thanksgiving week makes me cringe, but also laugh with the irony: we are given the excuse to do nothing but cook, eat, and be with those we love as we give thanks Thursday, and then jump right into the Christmas shopping craze. I think it’s brilliant that Tuesday of next week is now called Giving Tuesday, to encourage us to give to those less fortunate before we spend all…

Comfort on All Saints Day

I have several dear friends who have lost loved ones in the last few weeks: two are grieving their mothers, and one is a widow at age 47. I scrambled to do what I could to console them, but words are hard to come by with such loss.

I tend to go from my own experience when trying to ease grief, and my greatest comfort when I lost my dad was the memories people shared of how he touched their…

What do you believe?

Our ninth graders at Salem have spent the last month or so writing their statements of faith. They will share them with us during services on Oct. 21, in preparation for their confirmation the following Sunday. One of these amazing kids happens to be mine, and she has invited me on her journey to discover what she believes, and how to put it into words.

Have you ever attempted to share…

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