Yesterday was “God’s Work. Our Hands.” Sunday, the ELCA’s annual day of service, so the Advent kids decided to do a little fall planting and clean-up. The two large planters of chrysanthemums now on the front porch were the result of their labors, and a generous donation of materials. After beautifying the church entrance, they turned their attention to picking up leaves and twigs on the front lawn in preparation for Fall Fest later this month.
As “God’s Work. Our Hands.” Sunday coincided with Advent’s first day of Sunday School, the kids’ annual Pancakes With Moses kick-off event became Ice Cream With Moses. And, everyone was invited! After church, a sizable portion of the congregation headed to Kimball Farm in Jaffrey for ice cream, socializing, and a good deal of running around among the trees (those in the bright yellow t-shirts at least).
An excerpt from Bishop James Hazelwood’s letter to the New England Synod of the ELCA on 15 December 2012:
There are no words available to me to adequately express the loss and sorrow I feel over this tragedy in Connecticut. It may be the season of Advent, but it feels like the morning after Good Friday, before anyone realized the word “Good” could be added.
Our hearts are broken for the parents, siblings, family, coworkers, first responders, ministers and residents surrounding the Newtown, Connecticut community. We pray, indeed. But, this morning my prayer is more deep sigh, than eloquent words.
Continue reading Bishop Hazelwood’s full letter.
Since its founding in 2004, Outreach has provided more than 207 million meals to children and others in need in the United States and abroad. The Union, Iowa-based non-profit does so by helping churches and other religious groups harness the power of their own people and communities (as demonstrated in the video link to the right). Lutheran churches across New England are doing their part by hosting meal-packaging events this summer, among them Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Kennebunk, Maine (2 June); Trinity Lutheran Church, Milford, Conn. (3 June); and Redeemer Lutheran Church, Lawrence, Mass. (24 June). The Outreach website maintains a full calendar of meal-packaging events and is currently reaching out to encourage even wider participation by ELCA congregations.