OUR SAVIOUR LUTHERAN CHURCH
in the City of Baltimore
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I think that everyone who attended last Sunday afternoon’s service of Epiphany Lessons and Carols will agree that it was a wonderful occasion. John Igoe, who has often served as substitute organist here, sent me an email saying, “I had the opportunity to attend Sunday’s service, and it was just beautiful. Four voices in the choir filled the church with prayer, and we in the congregation did our part! This was the first time I’ve heard the organ from the nave and it really sounds fine.” I thoroughly agree! And so I wish to thank everyone who contributed to this fine occasion. Paul Techau took leadership in making this happen, arranging to have as guest organist Matthew Machemer who is organist and choirmaster at our Synod’s Fort Wayne Seminary. Merton Masterson warmly welcomed the worshipers. Jamera Hawkins served as acolyte, Gabe Purviance and Eugene James served as ushers. Paul Techau and Marie Herrington, together with David Sexton and Lisa Parente, who are students at the Peabody Conservatory, formed the choir. As John Igoe wrote, “Four voices in the choir filled the church with prayer.” I also wish to thank Mary Techau, Bernie Knox, and Scott Jones who prepared the delightful reception which followed the service.
Yes, we do have a very fine organ and in Marie we have a very fine organist. But the mechanism for playing the bells in the tower has been broken for several months. We need to raise money to have this fixed. If you wish to contribute, simply mark your check “Tower Bell Fund.” We are fortunate to have these wonderful bells which both enrich our worship and are also a witness to the community around our Church.
There are just two more Sundays in this season of Epiphany when we celebrate the appearing of the Lord Jesus in the flesh as God and Savior of the world. The Last Sunday after Epiphany is kept as the Feast of the Transfiguration. In the transfiguration our Lord revealed the glory that is His with the Father from all eternity; it is in a real sense the greatest epiphany in Christ’s earthly life.
The Last Sunday after Epiphany marks the end of the Christmas Cycle of the Church Year: Advent, Christmas, Epiphany. The following Sunday marks the beginning of the Easter Cycle: Lent, Easter, Ascension, Pentecost. Three Sundays with curious names prepare for Lent itself: Septuagesima, Sexagesima, Quinquagesima. These Latin names mark the nearness of Easter: seventy, sixty, fifty days. Already on these pre-Lenten Sundays the word Alleluia is omitted from our worship. On the Last Sunday after Epiphany we have a kind of “farewell to Alleluia” – until Easter Day – singing the 11th century hymn, “Alleluia Song of Gladness”:
Alleluia cannot always be our song while here below;
Alleluia, our transgressions make us for a while forego;
For the solemn time is coming when our tears for sin must flow.
Lent itself begins on Wednesday, March 6th. We will as usual have our Wednesday Lenten Vespers preceded by soup suppers. This year Mary Techau will be in charge of coordinating all this.
On Wednesday, February the Church Council will meet with our City Councilwoman, Mary Pat Clark, and with Shane Bryan, the president of the Ednor Gardens – Lakeside Association. They will present to the Council ways in which our buildings might be used to meet needs in our community.
Let us continue in prayer for one another. Pray also for peace and tranquility here in this city, in our country and throughout the world!
VOTERS MEETING – FEBRUARY 3 AFTER DIVINE SERVICE
THE BELLS OF OUR SAVIOUR
You may have noticed that our lovely tower bells have not played recently. We have attempted to have the bells repaired, but the mechanism is 60 years old and is in need of a complete renovation. McShane, the company that installed our bells, has given us an estimate of about $20,000 to do the work. We are continuing to research approaches for the renovation, but in preparation, we have begun a special fund for the repairs in order to return the cherished bells to working order for decades to come. Please mark your donation for “Tower Bells.”
– Mary Techau