Tag Archives: All Saints

Our Saviour Parish News, November, 2022


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218

November, 2022

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

In the calendar of the Church Year the first day of November has from ancient times been kept as All Saints Day. Here at Our Saviour Church we keep this feast on the first Sunday in November. As is our custom, we will especially remember those who have been called to Christ’s nearer presence since the last All Saints Day: Joseph Silver, Philip Purviance, and the Rev. Gary Fisher, who was pastor of this Church from 1989 to 2006. In the Apostles Creed we confess our faith in “the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints.” The Church here on earth is but a very small part of the communion of saints, the whole Church in heaven and on earth. The word “saint” comes from the Latin word “sanctus” which means holy. All who have been baptized into Christ are saints in the sense that all our sin has been pardoned, washed away through the blood of Christ. And as we hear in the Epistle appointed for All Saints Day, the saints in heaven are those “who have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Revelation 7:14). And how comforting are the words which follow! “They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more…for the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their Shepherd and lead them to springs of living water and God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Revelation 7:16,17). In the celebration of the Holy Eucharist we join in the heavenly worship: “Therefore with angels and archangels and with all the company of heaven we laud and magnify Your glorious name…” Saint Paul says: “We look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen; for the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18).

We are clearly living in an age which has lost the awareness of these unseen realities in an appalling way. One symptom of that loss is the deplorable decline in church attendance. To be a Christian is not a solitary thing, it is to be a member of the communion of saints which here on earth gathers every Lord’s Day and on festivals to worship the living God and receive our risen Lord and Savior in the Holy Sacrament of His Body and Blood. To be a living member of Christ’s Church is not a matter of just having your name on a membership list! It is to share in the Church’s sacramental life and worship and mission. And when we—without a valid reason—absent ourselves from worship we not only harm ourselves, we also deprive our fellow Christians of the encouragement and support our presence gives.

We will again this year have a service of Vespers on Thanksgiving Eve. Now Thanksgiving Day is not—strictly speaking—a festival of the Church Year, but it is our national day of thanksgiving for God’s blessings to us as a nation. Being of a certain age, I remember the time when our churches were filled on Thanksgiving Day—but that was a very long time ago! What has changed? What are our priorities? What truly matters? I encourage you to think about these things.

Everyone who was in church on the first Sunday in October, when we kept the 92nd anniversary of the dedication of this church building and rededicated the newly restored bells in the tower, will no doubt agree that it was a very happy occasion. We were blessed by Pastor Carl Kruelle’s wonderful sermon. And it is always delightful to share a meal together. I want to thank everyone who contributed to this celebration.

We still have not found a permanent organist and our search continues. But we are very fortunate that Deborah Lewis has agreed to help us in the meantime. She is an accomplished church musician and we are very fortunate to have her with us. Pray for God’s guidance and help as we continue our search.

Food for the GEDCO food pantry continues to be an urgent need. Do remember to bring food items to the boxes just inside the door from the small parking lot north of the church. There is also a box for contributions for the Helping Up Mission. This Mission has helped so many men and now women to get back on their feet. It is a wonderful work of mercy.

We will again this Thanksgiving and at again at Christmas provide ALDI gift certificates for needy families connected with the Waverly School. Be sure to mark your checks “Gift Certificates.”

Let us continue to pray for all those for whom our prayers are desired: James Bauman, Louis Bell, Dana Carmichael, Lucille Carmichael, Maggie Doswell, Quilla Downs, Albert Ford, Frank Ford, Iris Ford, Yolanda Ford, Helen Gray, Queenie Hardaway, Gloria Jones, Althea Masterson, Mary Mokris, Julia Silver, Robert Siperek, Lawrence Smallwood, George Volkman, Dennis Watson, Gary Watson. Maggie Doswell is still at Cadia Healthcare, 4922 LaSalle Road, Hyattsville, MD 20782. Yolanda Ford remains at Future Care, 1046 North Point Road, Baltimore, MD 21224. Louis Bell remains at Autumn Lake HealthCare, 7 Sudbrook Road, Pikesville, MD 21208. Queenie Hardaway has for some time now been at Augsburg Village, 6825 Campfield Road, Baltimore, MD 21207

Our Sunday morning Bible Class has begun to study the First Letter of Saint Peter. It is a letter full of hope. The late Dr. Martin Franzmann, who for many years taught at our Synod’s Seminary in Saint Louis, has this to say about I Peter: “Anyone looking for a key book which will unlock for him the meaning of the whole New Testament would do well to give his days and nights to this letter.” Join us on Sunday morning at 9:45.

If you need a ride to church, please call me at (410) 554–9994 or email me at charlesmcclean42@gmail.com. If you want me to visit you or, if you are not able to come to Divine Service, bring you the Sacrament at home, please do not hesitate to ask. For those who are unable to attend church we continue to livestream our services at Our Saviour Baltimore Facebook.

The Lord’s People are at the Lord’s Own Service in the Lord’s House every Lord’s Day.

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean


Although May 2023 seems far away, we need to restock for the Free Flea Market. At the conclusion of this year’s Flea Market, items that did not “move” were given to Orphan Grain Train (clothing) and Savers (household items). As you go through items you would like to discard, consider donating them to us during the year. Please let me know if you will be making a donation; I can be reached at (443) 425–3437 or judyvolkman9961@gmail.com.

I had recently posted that there were jobs that needed to be filled. I am happy to say that most of them been spoken for! Jean and Wayne West have agreed to take on most of them. They will be handling the lily and poinsettia orders, contact with the Helping Up Mission, and the financial secretary position. Bernie Knox and Gabe Purviance will be handling the holiday baskets. So many thanks for those who stepped up to help. There is one more job that needs to be filled: that of taking canned goods to CARES, probably every other month. If you can help with this, it would be very much appreciated!

Four milk crates, filled with canned goods, were delivered to CARES on October 24. So now the cartons are empty and waiting to be refilled. Many thanks to those who contributed items and shared the bounty the Lord has given us.

—Judy Volkman

Our Saviour Parish News, November, 2019

in the City of Baltimore

November,  2019



Wednesday, November 27
“Come, ye thankful people, come”

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Since November 1 is All Saints Day we always keep the first Sunday in November in celebration of this festival of the Christian Year. It is a glorious festival in which we rejoice in the great reality of the communion of saints, that blessed company of all who are Christ’s both in paradise and on earth. We especially remember all those who have loved and served Him here on earth and who now rejoice in His nearer presence. We together with them look forward to that Last and Great Day when the risen Lord will appear in glory as Judge of the living and the dead and will raise from the dead the bodies of all who now rest in Him. According to the usage of the word in the New Testament all who are Christ’s are “saints,” that is “holy people” – holy not in ourselves but holy because in Baptism our sins have been forgiven and we have been clothed in the spotless robe of Jesus’ blood and righteousness. But from ancient times the word “saint” has especially been given to those in whom the light of Christ has shone more brightly: the virgin mother of our Lord and Savior, the holy patriarchs, prophets, apostles, martyrs, and confessors through all the ages. And all of us can think of those we’ve known whose lives were bright with faith and hope and love.

It is our custom especially to remember members of our congregation who have died since the last All Saints Day. This year we remember our dear sister in Christ, Ethlyn Gosnell, who fell asleep in the Lord on October 16 and was given Christian burial following the funeral service here in church on Friday, October 25. May she rest in peace and may the Light perpetual shine upon her. And may the risen Lord Himself comfort all who mourn her departure.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Germany this past month. It was delightful in every way – not least the German food and drink! Among other things I was able to see the city of Rastatt where one of my great-great-grandfathers had lived and the city of Bad Wildungen where one of my great-grandfathers had lived before coming to Baltimore. There I saw the church where Philip Nicolai served as pastor in the late 16th century. He is the author of what we Lutherans call “the King and Queen of Chorales”: “Wake, Awake, for Night is Flying” (LSB 516) and “O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright” (LSB 395). I visited Wittenberg and there saw the Castle Church of All Saints, the City Church of Saint Mary and Luther’s home; I attended Divine Service in the Chapel of the Old Latin School which now is an international center for faithful Lutheranism. I also visited the tomb of Saint Boniface (672-754) in Fulda. Because of his great missionary labors he has been called “the Apostle of Germany”; his name appears in the list of commemorations in our Synod’s present hymnal.

I think that we are all grateful for the new lighting in church. I for one had not realized how dim the lighting had become! Many of the bulbs had burned out but now they have been replaced with LED lights which will last a very long time.

The third Thursday in November is Thanksgiving Day. On Thanksgiving Eve there will be Divine Service at 7:30 P.M. I remember how when I was a boy the churches would be filled on Thanksgiving – and that was as it should be. But that has long ceased to be true. There are no doubt all kinds of reasons for this. But do we not need to consider our priorities? Is it too much to ask that we spend one hour in the House of God to join together in giving thanks for His blessings to us all?

The last Sunday in November is the Last Sunday of the present Church Year. The following Sunday, Advent Sunday, will be the beginning of the new Church Year. As one Church Year is ending and another about to begin we surely need to examine our lives in the light of the Word of God. In doing so we will surely come to see our many sins in thought and word and deed and our utter dependence on the mercy of God in His Son Jesus Christ our Savior. Let us then be diligent in the use of God’s Word and Sacraments in which He freely bestows forgiveness of our sins, life, and salvation. Ask yourself: If this were my last day on earth, how would I wish to live?

I ask your prayers for me; you are in mine.

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean

Works of Mercy

When I went to tally the results of the Free Flea markets this year, I was pleasantly surprised. 144 people attended and 1,165 items were distributed. And 12 volunteers assisted 32 times at these occasions. But even more impressive are the numbers for the 6 years we have been doing this outreach to the community. We touched the lives of 979 people and distributed 6,698 items. Wow!!!! That’s a lot of people and items that we gave from the bounty the Lord has given us! It couldn’t have been done without the helpful hands of the volunteers, who came out 264 times to assist. Quite impressive for a small congregation!

And that change that’s in your pocket? It all adds up. Bert Buchanan’s husband emptied his pockets every night in a jar for years. She recently shared these coins to be used to purchase items for the Helping Up Mission. The total came to $56.43. So every penny counts and is used to help others.

– Judy