Thou hast raised our human nature
On the clouds to God’s right hand;
There we sit in heavenly places,
There with Thee in glory stand.
Jesus reigns, adored by angels;
Man with God is on the throne.
Mighty Lord, in Thine ascension
We by faith behold our own.
– Christopher Wordsworth (1807-1885) The Lutheran Hymnal 218, stanza 5
Ascension Day Divine Service, 7:30 PM
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The celebration of the festivals of the Church Year is no arduous duty but rather a blessing and privilege for us Christians who in celebrating these festivals continually trace the loving purpose of God for our salvation. Thursday, May 5th, is Ascension Day. In Christopher Wordsworth’s great hymn for this festival we see with wonderful clarity the meaning of Jesus’ ascension: “Mighty Lord, in Thine ascension we by faith behold our own.” And in times as uncertain as these, it is a great comfort to know that, having ascended into heaven, Christ— not only as true God but also as our still human Brother who knows all our weakness— rules all things for the good of His believing children.
Just ten days later we celebrate the Feast of Pentecost which, together with Christmas and Easter, is one of the three great festivals of the Christian Year. On the ﬁrst Pentecost the risen Lord sent down the Holy Spirit as He had promised upon the disciples in Jerusalem. God the Holy Spirit continues to come and, through the Gospel and Sacraments, creates saving faith in the hearts of human beings; then and now He brings Christ to us and us to Christ. As Dr. Luther says in his Large Catechism:
We could never recognize [God] the Father’s favor and grace were it not for the Lord Christ, who is a mirror of the Father’s heart. Apart from Him we see nothing but an angry and terrible Judge. But neither could we know anything of Christ, had it not been revealed by the Holy Spirit.
Alleluia! The Spirit of the Lord filleth the world: O come, let us worship Him!
Christian education does not end with Confirmation but continues throughout our lives as Christians. Every Sunday morning at 9:45 AM we study the appointed readings from Holy Scripture for that day in the Church Year. The number of people attending this class has lately increased. Do come and join us! The format is quite informal, questions and discussion are very much encouraged!
Every Sunday we remember at the altar those whose names are listed in the bulletin. Do take that list home with you and pray for those whose names are listed. I should mention that Queenie Hardaway recently moved to the Augsburg Home. Remember her especially in your prayers as she begins this new chapter in her life.
The Saint Mark’s Conference on April 25-26 was a delightful occasion. The focus of the Conference was the confessional, sacramental, and liturgical life of our dear Lutheran Church, the Church of the Augsburg Confession. I must thank all the members of Our Saviour who helped to make this possible: James Gray for preparing the sacramental vessels and clothing the altar in the correct color of the day; Don Weber for serving as organist on Saint Mark’s Day; Helen Gray, Kathy Gray, Esther Shelton, and Bernie Knox who prepared Monday’s lunch; Paul and Mary Techau who took charge of the social hour following Monday Vespers and helped in other ways; William Hawkins and Ron Lang who were present on both days and always eager to be of help. Visitors were impressed with the reverent service of our faithful acolytes Jamera Breshay-Hawkins and Kai Hawkins. Vicar Trent is ever helpful. I must also thank the women of the Saint Monica Guild of Redeemer Church, Irvington, who prepared and served Tuesday’s lunch. I hope I have not forgotten to thank someone, but if I have, I beg your pardon! Audio from the St. Mark’s Conference is available here.
We have now had the joy of celebrating Easter Day and the bright Easter season. Now we look forward to celebrating the Ascension of our Lord (Thursday, May 5th) and the great Feast of Pentecost.
God is eager to bestow His gifts of forgiveness, life, and salvation in every Divine Service. Are we similarly eager to receive those gifts and thank and praise Him for His astonishing love?
Affectionately in our Lord and with my prayers,
Things to come…
Free Flea Market – Saturday, May 14th
The ﬁrst Free Flea Market of the year will be held on Saturday, May 14th, in the rear parking lot of the church. Donations and helpers are needed. Clothing, especially children’s and women’s, household items, games, toys are needed. Also needed are Volunteers to help set up and man the tables that morning. Be here by 8:30 AM. It runs from 9 AM until noon. Each visitor receives ﬁve tickets which they can redeem for any item This is our outreach to the community to share the giﬁs that God has so freely given us. Flyers will be distributed to the neighborhood and a table will be marmed at the iConnections gathering of GEDCO at the site of the old Stadium on May 7th. Join us for a fun day and share your faith with others.
– Judy Volkman
Voters Meeting – following Divine Service on Pentecost, Sunday May, 15th
Spring Clean-Up Day – Saturday, May 21st, 9:00 AM until noon.
Call Anthony Baylor (4l0.486.5199) for more information.