by John Matkin on November 06, 2020
January 15, 2021
Dear Family and Friends,
Join us for a season of thanksgiving this month. On our way to Thanksgiving Day, we’ll spend three weeks in worship thanking our gracious, giving God. During each worship service in this series, we will have the opportunity to hear about gratitude from one of our members. It may be difficult, in the midst of this pandemic, to embrace this particular attitude. Yet, our faith heritage gives us plenty of examples of thanksgiving occurring during very difficult times. The psalmist experiences God’s goodness in the presence of his enemies; Jesus gives thanks over just five loaves of bread while facing the daunting task of feeding 5,000; Paul rejoices in prison.
Our series title, Now Thank We All Our God, recalls a story of gratitude in the midst of adversity. It’s the title of a hymn written by Martin Rincart in 1636 during the disastrous Thirty Years’ War,1618-48. Rincart was a Lutheran minister in the walled city of Eilenburg, Saxony, During the war, armies overran it three times. The city often experienced overcrowding, resulting in deadly pestilence and famine. During the height of a severe plague in 1637, Rinkart was the only surviving pastor in Eilenburg, conducting as many as 50 funerals in a day. He performed more than 4,000 funerals in that year, including that of his wife.
For the next three weeks, we will be worshiping in our old sanctuary space, as our current sanctuary undergoes renovation and re-lighting. We’ve moved the Cross and Baptismal Font, and set up a Lord’s Table. We’ve moved musical instruments and equipment to the new/old worship space. We’ve unplugged cameras and computers and rewired the whole livestreaming and worship visuals ministries. We’ve brought in a new soundboard and new speakers. We’ve moved all of our pandemic protocol check-in materials down the hallway, too.
We are ready to worship - now, let us all thank our God!