3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218
ASH WEDNESDAY, MARCH 2
DIVINE SERVICE 7:30 PM
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The beginning of this month brings the beginning of the holy season of Lent. On Ash Wednesday there will as usual be Divine Service with the imposition of ashes. The ashes are an expression of sorrow for sin and are a sign of our mortality: “You are dust and to dust you shall return” (Genesis 3:19).
Lenten Vespers will be held at 7:30 PM every Wednesday until Holy Week. This year the meditations will be based on the Passion of our Lord according to Saint Luke:
March 9 – Christ in Gethsemane
March 16 – Christ before Caiaphas
March 23 – Christ before Herod
March 30 – Christ before Pilate
April 6 – The Way to Calvary
We will as always use the Order of Vespers which is the Church’s liturgy for daily evening prayer. And we will pray the Litany, a prayer which comes to us from the ancient Church, and of which Dr. Luther said that it is “next to the holy Lord’s Prayer the very best that has come to earth.” It was in view of the looming threat to Europe of invasion by the Turks in the year 1529 that he translated the Litany into German and urged its use in churches. It has been said that in praying the Litany we can turn to the whole world, Christian and otherwise, and say, “This is how we pray, this is how we are taught to think of life and death, of God and man.” In a word, the Litany is one of the treasures of the Church. And how timely are its petitions: “From pestilence and famine, from war and bloodshed, good Lord, deliver us”!
We will be having our soup suppers on the last four Wednesdays in Lent: March 16, 23, 30, and April 6. At these suppers we always have an offering which is used to provide gifts for needy neighbors at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Daylight saving time begins on Sunday, March 13th. Be sure to put your clocks forward one hour.
Order envelopes for Easter Lilies are on the table in the back of the church. As with many items, the price has gone up to $15 for each plant. Remember to fill out the form to honor a loved one and return to Judy Volkman by April 10th, Palm Sunday.
Pastor Gary Fisher’s family recently informed me that they still intend to have a memorial service for him this spring. I am happy to be able to report that the work on the restoration of the bells is nearing completion. Be sure to read the Historic Preservation Update concerning the waterproofing of the undercroft at the end of this newsletter. The Church Council continues to address these problems.
Please continue to remember in prayer all those for whom our prayers are desired: James Bauman, Louis Bell, Dana Carmichael, Lucille Carmichael, Maggie Doswell, Albert Ford, Frank Ford, Iris Ford, Yolanda Ford, Sean Fortune, Helen Gray, Queenie Hardaway, Gloria Jones, Althea Masterson, Julia Silver, Lawrence Smallwood, Wally Techau, George Volkman, Dennis Watson, Gary Watson. During a recent visit with Maggie Doswell, she told me how grateful she is that members of Our Saviour keep in touch with her. She remains at Cadia HealthCare, 4922 LaSalle Road, Hyattsville, MD 20782. Yolanda Ford remains at Future Care, 1046 North Point Road, Baltimore, MD 21224. Louis Bell was recently hospitalized but has now returned to Autumn Lake HealthCare, 7 Sudbrook Road, Pikesville, MD 21208.
I continue to bring Holy Communion to members who are unable to come to church. If you want me to visit and bring you the Sacrament, never hesitate to call me at (410) 554–9994 or to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are in need of transportation to church, do not hesitate to contact me; I will be glad to make arrangements for that purpose.
We naturally pray for our families and friends and for our fellow members at Our Saviour. It goes without saying that we also continue to pray for those who govern our city, our state, our nation, and indeed all the nations of the world. It was Saint Paul who wrote, “I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (I Timothy 2:1,2). We of course do just that in the general prayer of the Church at every Divine Service, but we must be faithful intercessors also in our own personal prayers throughout the week. If you find yourself at a loss for words, not knowing what to pray for, you might consider a suggestion once given me by an older and wiser friend. She urged me in such circumstances to pray repeatedly, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done.”
Let us make good use of the Lenten season that now begins! God does not need Lent. We poor mortal sinners do.
HISTORIC PRESERVATION UPDATE
Waterproofing the undercroft: Rainwater in the undercroft has been a problem for many years; thus a French drain system was installed in the undercroft last week. During the installation the kitchen cabinets were removed; as they were too water damaged to be reinstalled, we are looking into installing new cabinets/countertops. The contractor has also given us quotes to replace the tile floor in the undercroft and paint the walls.
Our own Pastor McClean is turning 80 on March 26. In honor of this event, Our Saviour is having a celebration for him on March 27. We will have a guest preacher for Divine Service that day (11:00 AM), the Rev. Brian Westgate of Redeemer Church in Oakmont, PA. Pastor Westgate has served each year as the organist for the St. Mark’s Conference. We will also have a brunch immediately following the service. If you are able to attend, please either call the church office ((410) 235–9553) and leave a message or sign up on the sheet on the piano by March 15 so we can properly prepare for the amount of food that we will need.
—Paul Techau, Council President