February 5, 2017

Post date: Feb 02, 2017 6:45:1 PM

Flowers for today are provided by Bob & Ida Malde in memory of our fathers George Mitchell and George Malde.

Lost and Found: Please see the table in the fellowship hall for any items you may have left at church: dishes, mugs, gloves, etc. Thank you!

Church Phone Directory Update: Do you have a new address, phone number, email address that you would like included or other changes? If so, please stop by the free-standing bulletin board in the Fellowship Hall to make the changes for our 2017 Directory. The annual publication isn’t just for members, but for members and friends of First Lutheran Church. If you don’t see your name and would like to be in the directory, please add your name to the list. Please put a check mark, next to your name to show that you have checked to make sure that your information is correct. Thank you!

If anyone is interested in helping at the Cold Weather Shelter, you can signup online at http://signup.com/go/JM7XYX, you will need to set up an account or login using Facebook.

Nursery Help Needed: Please consider signing up to occasionally help out in our nursery during the service if and when we have children up to age 4 who do not remain in the service. See the sign up next to the youth bulletin board in the fellowship hall and choose a Sunday. There are openings for Feb. 12, 19, and 26. Thanks!

Food Bank News: Danielle Koss reports that our food contributions to the FISH food bank have reached an all time low in recent months. She and her family have delivered food left in the box by the office door to FISH weekly for years. The food bank depends on our donations just as it does every other church as well as many other agencies and individuals. FISH gives food to many, many people in our community. Some of the foods we can bring are:

25- or 40- ounce cans of chili;

18- or 50- ounce cans of soup;

sliced carrots and other vegetables;

tuna; baked beans; beef stew;

peaches and pears; and pasta.

Let's fill up the FISH box every Sunday!

Thursday, February 9th 6p.m. at the Methodist Church: “A Service in Solidarity with the Sojourner” In light of recent executive orders around immigration and refugee policy, this is an opportunity to take a stand.

ELCA presiding bishop addresses President Trump’s refugee executive order CHICAGO (Jan. 30, 2017) – The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has issued a pastoral message addressing President Trump's executive order to restrict entry by refugees and visitors into the United States from seven predominately Muslim countries. Eaton's message follows.

January 30, 2017

Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. Yesterday, we heard these words in the Gospel reading from Matthew 5:1-12, the beginning of Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. In the Beatitudes, Jesus lays out a vision for life in God's realm, characterized by seeing those who are often most disregarded, including the meek, the mourning and the peacemaker, as bearers of God's blessing. Over the coming weeks, we will continue to hear this Gospel, including Jesus' call for his disciples to be carriers of God's light and hope and reconciliation to a world deeply in need of them.

In this spirit, earlier last week I communicated with the Trump administration asking that it not stop the U.S. refugee admissions program or stop resettlement from any country for any period of time. The Bible calls us to welcome the stranger and treat the sojourner as we would our own citizens. I agree with the importance of keeping our country secure as the administration stated in its executive order last Friday, but I am convinced that temporarily banning vulnerable refugees will not enhance our safety nor does it reflect our values as Christians. Instead, it will cause immediate harm by separating families, disrupting lives, and denying safety and hope to brothers and sisters who are already suffering.

Refugees being resettled in the United States have fled persecution because of their race, religion, nationality, political views and/or associations. They wait for years for the chance to go home. But sometimes, there is no home for them to go back to. We know from our partners at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS) that only 1 percent of all refugees are chosen for resettlement.

People of faith helped start and still sustain the refugee resettlement program in the United States following World War II. As Lutherans, many of our ancestors faced the pain of having to flee their homes and the joy of being welcomed in new communities across the United States. As we have done throughout history, millions of Lutherans across the country honor our shared biblical values as well as the best of our nation's traditions by offering refuge to those most in need. We are committed to continuing ministries of welcome that support and build communities around the country and stand firmly against any policies that result in scaling back the refugee resettlement program.

We must offer safety to people fleeing religious persecution regardless of their faith tradition. Christians and other religious minorities suffer persecution and rightly deserve protection, but including additional criteria based on religion could have discriminatory effects that would go against our nation's fundamental values related to freedom of religion. I invite ELCA congregations into learning, prayer and action on behalf of those who seek refuge on our shores. The ELCA "Social Message on Immigration," AMMPARO strategy and LIRS resources are good places to start. You can also make a donation to Lutheran Disaster Response. Those who have been part of resettling refugees or have their own immigration experience have important stories to share with their communities and testimony to make. I also encourage you to consider adding your voice by calling your members of Congress to share your support for refugees and using online advocacy opportunities through current alerts at ELCA Advocacy and LIRS.

In Matthew 25:35, Jesus said, "I was a stranger and you welcomed me." Our Lord not only commanded us to welcome the stranger, Jesus made it clear that when we welcome the stranger into our homes and our hearts – we welcome him.

God's peace,

The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton Presiding Bishop

Youth Activities

Today is Souper Bowl Sunday! Drop off your food and monetary donations for the FISH Food Bank in the soup pot as you leave service this morning! There are no losers in this game - we all win when we make sure our neighbors have enough to eat!

Wednesday, Feb. 8 - Family Fun Night!

Celebrate the Year of the Rooster with special guests and Suzanne's Chinese Recipe!

5th grade and younger - 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Family sing along 5:30 pm

Family dinner 5:45 to 6:30 pm

6th grade up and older - 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Next event: February 25 - Make/serve dinner for FISH Food bank! Meet at the church at 3 p.m.

Winter Musical approaches! We have at least one youth member singing and dancing! Be sure to watch the "Lazy Chaperone" February 23 - 25 or the first weekend in March!