Tag Archives: Tower Bells

Our Saviour Parish News, October, 2022


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218

October, 2022


Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As we celebrate the ninety-second anniversary of the dedication of this church we will rededicate the bells which were placed in the tower in 1934. Our guest preacher will be the Rev. Carl Kruelle, who grew up in this church and was ordained to the holy ministry in this place. Many people have contributed to the restoration of the bells. The project could finally be completed because of a very generous gift from Doug and Beth Skinner, a gift given in memory of Brian Lessor and his mother Gloria who were members of Immanuel Church in Alexandria, Virginia.

When King David had gathered together all the rich materials for the temple which would be built by his son Solomon, he prayed before all the people: “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from Thee, and of Thy own have we given Thee” (I Chronicles 29:14). These words powerfully remind us that everything we are, everything we have, finally belongs to God the Great Giver and of our obligation and privilege to give in return. Saint Paul exhorts the Christians in Corinth to be generous givers: “Each one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). It is sometimes said that we should “give till it hurts.” But Saint Paul is telling us to give until it feels good! “God loves a cheerful giver.” Do give some thought to your offering for the support of the Church’s work in this place. Ask yourself, does my offering truly reflect my gratitude for all God’s blessings as my Creator and my Redeemer, including the many blessings that are mine through His Church? Could I perhaps give more than I have been giving? Of course one must carefully consider one’s financial circumstances! Saint Paul instructs the Corinthians: each must give “according to what one has, not according to what one has not” (2 Corinthians 8:12).

And speaking of giving, do remember the Church’s organ fund. Checks for this purpose should be marked “organ fund.” And then there are the ALDI gift certificates that we give to needy families connected with the Waverly School at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Checks for this purpose should be marked “Gift Certificates.” And since giving involves more than financial contributions, let me also remind you that as a congregation we also support the GEDCO food pantry. There is a table with boxes just inside the door near the church office. It is all too easy to forget the many people who are so impoverished that they would go hungry were it not for the various agencies such as GEDCO that provide them with food at no cost. And finally there is our support for the Helping Up Mission which for so many years has helped men and is now also helping women get back on their feet and return to useful lives. There is also a box for the Helping Up Mission just inside the door near the office. Be sure to read Judy Volkman’s report on our free flea markets at the end of this newsletter. These free flea markets are yet another way in which we give.

The Fall Voters Meeting will be held after Divine Service on Sunday, October 16. Members of Our Saviour Church, eighteen years and older, are eligible to participate in the meeting.

On the last Sunday in October we celebrate the Festival of the Reformation, October 31 being the 505th anniversary of Dr. Luther’s posting of his 95 Theses—propositions for debate among theologians—which were a clarion call to repentance as can be seen in the very first thesis: “When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said ‘Repent,’ He meant that the whole life of Christians should be one repentance.” The reforming work of Dr. Luther and his associates can only be rightly understood when that work is seen as calling the Church and its members to repent: to turn away from everything in the teaching and life of the Church which obscured or even denied the Savior’s gift of pardon and peace to penitent sinners. And so we read in the 62nd thesis: “The true treasure of the Church is the most holy Gospel of the glory and grace of God.” It is by the Gospel of God’s grace in His Son, freely bestowed through His holy Word and Sacraments, that the Church lives. And so, every year at the Festival of the Reformation, we give thanks to God for the restoration of the Gospel to its rightful place and pray that the Holy Spirit will preserve this precious gift for all the Christian people. The Reformation began with Luther’s call to repentance and every anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation calls us to repent of all our own sins of ingratitude, indifference, and neglect of the Gospel in which is all our life and hope.

In the September Newsletter I said that we expected to announce the name of our new organist very soon, but we are still unable to do so. None of the applicants we interviewed has accepted our offer and so our search continues. We do have substitutes engaged for the whole month of October and are working on substitutes until a new organist is in place. We are discovering that the shortage of organists is all too real. Let us pray for God’s guidance and help.

The adult Bible Class continues to meet on Sunday at 9:45 AM. We have recently been studying the Seven Ecumenical Councils of the ancient Church in which the doctrines of the Holy Trinity and the Person of Christ were clearly confessed and errors that contradicted the truth were named and rejected. We are about to begin a study of the First Epistle of Saint Peter which was addressed to churches undergoing persecution in what was at that time northern Asia Minor, now known as Turkey. This Epistle is full of hope and joy in the crucified and risen Lord. Come join us! Our discussion is quite informal and questions are very welcome.

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. When I recently visited Maggie Doswell, she told me how much the cards she receives from our members mean to her. She 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. Quilla Downs is hoping to be with us some Sunday. Her new address is 1000 Brightseat Road, Apt.462, Landover, MD 20777.

As God fed the Israelites with manna during their forty-year sojourn in the wilderness, God feeds us in the holy Sacrament of His Son’s body and blood. The Holy Sacrament is food for our journey through this world to the heavenly fatherland. Because the Holy Communion is the Sacrament of the unity of the Church, it is normally received during the Divine Service in God’s House. But if you are not able to come to God’s House, it is the pastor’s duty to bring the Sacrament to you in your home or in the hospital. Do not hesitate to ask me to visit you and bring you Holy Communion. My phone number is (410) 554–9994, and my email is charlesmcclean42@gmail.com. And please do not hesitate to contact me if you need a ride to church.

No one can fail to realize that we are living in more than usually unsettled times. There come to mind the words of Psalm 46: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble … Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:1, 10), And in the words of the Epistle that was read in church on the last Sunday in September: “As we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). The need is truly staggering and, as Christians, each one of us must do what we can, not least continuing in fervent prayer for all who suffer in so many ways.

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

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean


Here is a summary of our Free Flea Markets: In September, 21 people visited us and 180 items were given out. Our total for the year of 2022 was 129 attendees and 913 items were distributed. As we look back over the 8 years that the Free Flea Market has been held, a total of 31 members assisted at the Flea Markets, totaling 310 hours. A total of 1323 people passed through our doors, receiving 9121 items. That’s pretty impressive for a small congregation. A job well done to share the bounty the Lord has given us! Many thanks to those who gave of their time and those who shared their bounty with us.
—Judy Volkman

Our Saviour Parish News, September, 2022


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Mark your calendar now! At long last we will be able to rededicate the bells which were placed in the church tower in 1934. This will take place on the first Sunday in October. This will also be a celebration of the 92nd anniversary of the dedication of the church and it will be Family Day. Lunch will follow Divine Service. So that we know how many to prepare for, please sign the sign-up sheet on the piano at church or call the church office ((410) 935–2553) no later than September 25. This will certainly be a happy occasion and I hope that many will attend. Our guest preacher will be the Rev. Carl Kruelle who grew up in Our Saviour Church and was ordained here.

Two of our members celebrated significant birthdays in August. On August 16 Robert Siperek celebrated his 90th birthday and on August 18 Frank Ford celebrated his 93rd birthday. We congratulate them both and pray for God’s richest blessings in the days to come.

On Sunday, September 4, Wayne West was confirmed. Jean West and Justin Ricci, having been confirmed some years ago, were formally received as members of our congregation. We pray that the Holy Spirit will guard and keep them in faithfulness to Christ and His church.

In last month’s newsletter Judy Volkman asked for volunteers to take over some of the responsibilities she has faithfully fulfilled for many years. At the end of this newsletter she gives us an update on responses to her request. Wayne and Jean West have agreed to take care of ordering the poinsettias at Christmas and the lilies at Easter and will see to it that items donated for the Helping Up Mission will be taken there. Bernie Knox has agreed to send the ALDI gift certificates to needy families at Thanksgiving and Christmas, but we still need someone to contact Waverly School to get the names of needy families. And we still need someone to take over the job of financial secretary and someone to deliver food to the GEDCO food pantry. Be sure to read Judy’s update.

Remember that our next free flea market will take place on Saturday, September 10, 9:00 AM–12:00 PM. This will be our last flea market until next spring. We always need volunteers. About 40 people came to the August flea market.

Paul Techau and I have met with three applicants for the position of organist. We expect to be able to announce the name of our new organist very soon. We have substitute organists for every Sunday through October 9. This is vacation time and substitutes are in high demand, and there has for some years now been an unfortunate shortage of organists. We are very grateful to Elaine Schwab for helping us the last two Sundays in August. She will be with us again for the last two Sundays in September and on October 2. She and her husband, retired Pastor Guenter Schwab, are members of Immanuel Church where she sings in the choir and serves as substitute organist.

Please remember 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, Sean Fortune, Helen Gray, Queenie Hardaway, Gloria Jones, Althea Masterson, Julia Silver, Robert Siperek, Lawrence Smallwood, George Volkman, Dennis Watson, Gary Watson. Maggie Doswell 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 remains at Autumn Lake HealthCare, 7 Sudbrook Road, Pikesville, MD 21208. Queenie Hardaway has been living at the Augsburg Home for some time now: 6825 Campfield Road, Baltimore, MD 21207. Quilla Downs’s new address is 1000 Brightseat Road, Apt. 462, Landover, MD 20777.

I continue to bring Holy Communion to members who are unable to come to church. If you want me to visit or bring you the Sacrament, call me at (410) 554–9994 or email me at charles.mcclean42@gmail.com. If you are in need of transportation to church, please do not hesitate to contact me and I will be glad to make arrangements for that purpose.

The beating heart of the Church’s life is the Divine Service in which God comes to us in His grace and mercy through His holy Word and Sacrament and in which we offer to Him our praise and thanksgiving and prayer—our prayer for the whole Church and for the whole world. The Divine Service is among other things a pattern for our whole life as Christians: and so, just as in the Holy Liturgy we pray not only for ourselves but also for the whole Church and the whole world, so also should we pray every day! I often think that one of my favorite psalm verses is the ninth verse of the 145th psalm: “His tender mercy is over all that He has made.” In prayer we claim God’s mercy for “all that He has made.”

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean


Last month, a listing of positions was published in the newsletter and Jean and Wayne West have stepped up to take responsibility for the Flowers and the Helping Up Mission. Bernie Knox has volunteered to send the ALDI gift cards to the recipients of the holiday baskets. However, we still need someone to get in touch with the school to obtain the names of the recipients.

The financial secretary position is still open.

Not listed last month was the collection and delivery of food items to CARES, which takes place approximately every other month. This would include checking the donations and determining when a delivery needs to be made (usually 4 milk crates of items). They can be delivered to the CARES office on York Road Monday through Wednesday. If you can help with this task it would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks to Jean and Wayne for volunteering to take on these tasks. I now rest a little easier!

-Judy Volkman

Our Saviour Pariish News, November, 2021


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

November 1st is All Saints Day. We will keep this great festival of the Christian Year on the following Sunday. This festival brings to mind some words of Pastor Wilhelm Loehe (1808–1872) who for many years served as pastor in Neuendettelsau but whose labors proved to be a blessing far beyond that little Bavarian village. The Father Founder of our own Synod, Pastor Ferdinand Walther (1811–1887), once said that our own Synod owes more to Pastor Loehe than to any other human being. In his Three Books Concerning the Church Pastor Loehe has this to say: “We are born for fellowship. The Lord did not make the earth for one man nor heaven for one man. The divine fellowship is the Church of God, the communion of saints. In my pilgrimage through this dark vale I am not alone. The Church is an eternal fellowship here and hereafter.” On the feast of All Saints we celebrate and give thanks to God for this blessed reality, remembering especially all those who have loved and served Him in this world and now rest in His nearer presence. Here at Our Saviour it has long been the custom to remember especially fellow members of this congregation who have fallen asleep in the Lord since last All Saints Day. This year we remember our dear sister in Christ, Dorothy Bell, who entered eternal rest this past January. May the Light perpetual ever shine upon her.

On All Saints Sunday we will for the first time use the new white frontal—altar cloth—which now replaces the one that had been in use here since at least the 1940s. The old frontal had begun to fall apart and could not be repaired. The new frontal is like the old one decorated with blue and gold orphreys—decorative vertical panels of fabric—and with two pieces of embroidery from the old frontal: a decorative cross and what appear to be the letters I H S. These letters are actually the first three letters of the name of Jesus in the Greek language: iota, long e, sigma. The frontal has been made by Davis d’Ambly of Philadelphia. He is unquestionably one the finest ecclesiastical artists of the present day; examples of his work can be seen at his website: liturgicalartist.com.

This month of November will see the replacement of the mechanism which rings the eighteen bells in the church tower. Many people have contributed to this effort. We are now able to complete this project because of a very generous gift from Doug and Beth Skinner of Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, who are friends of Our Saviour Church. And we all owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Mary Techau who has done so much work to make this happen!

In the October newsletter I neglected to mention that the Church Council has decided to begin an organ fund. We are of course blessed with a fine Moeller organ which was built when this church was dedicated in 1930 and rebuilt in 1988. But like all organs it requires ongoing attention and care. There are some things that need to be done now and others that can be done when funds are available. If you wish to contribute to the organ fund, simply write a check to the church and mark it “organ fund.”

Family Day was certainly a happy occasion. We had the best attendance we’ve had since Family Day last year. On the same day we were able to welcome a mobile vaccination clinic of the Baltimore City Health Department which was also here on Sunday, October 24th. In making space available for this effort we have been able to help our neighbors in this difficult time.

Our Sunday morning Bible Class has finally finished its study of the Gospel according to Saint Mark and has begun to study the book of the prophet Micah. We meet at 9:45 AM. Questions are welcome. Come and join us!

It seems as if I have much the same thing to say every year as Thanksgiving Day comes around: When I was a boy, the churches were filled, but that was a very long time ago. Nowadays it seems as if most people feel no need to be present in God’s House at Thanksgiving. But is it really too much to expect that Christian people worship in God’s House on our national day of Thanksgiving? I suspect that question answers itself. “Come, Ye Thankful People, Come!” (Lutheran Service Book, hymn 892) Like all our evening services, Thanksgiving Eve Vespers is at 7:30 PM.

The last Sunday in November is Advent Sunday, which is the beginning of the Advent season and the beginning of the new Church Year. The word “Advent” means “Coming,” and during this season the Church has always considered the three-fold Coming of our Lord: His coming in lowliness at Bethlehem, His daily coming in His holy Word and Sacraments, His coming in glory at the Last Day to judge the living and the dead. It is of course no secret that for many years now the holy season of Advent has been eclipsed by the frenzied “holiday season” which knows nothing of the necessary spiritual preparation for the Christmas festival. As human beings, we are (among other things) creatures of habit. Church attendance is (among other things) also a habit. Everyone knows that bad habits have a life of their own whereas good habits require effort! If during this Church Year now drawing to its close you have been negligent in joining your fellow Christians for Divine Service on the Lord’s Day, I strongly recommend that you use the arrival of the new Church Year as an opportunity to recover the good habit of worship every Lord’s Day. Worship on the Lord’s Day is a happy privilege because every Lord’s Day is a celebration of Christ’s Resurrection in which is all our hope.

Remember in your prayers 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, Chris Mokris, Eric Phillips, Joseph and Julia Silver, Lawrence Smallwood, George Volkman, Dennis Watson, Gary Watson. Maggie Doswell continues to recover at Cedia Health Care Center, 4922 LaSalle Road, Hyattsville, MD 20782. During a recent visit she told me how much she appreciates the cards Our Saviour’s people have sent to her. Frank Ford’s daughter, Yolanda, continues to recover at Future Care, 1046 North Point Road, Baltimore, MD 21224. Louis Bell is now living at Autumn Lake Healthcare, 7 Sudbrook Lane, Pikesville, MD 21208.

We continue to livestream our services; we must thank Richard Brown for making this happen. Never hesitate to contact me via telephone (410) 554–9994 or email charlesmcclean42@gmail.com if you wish to receive the Sacrament at home or if you would like me to visit or just have a friendly chat. Please remember me in your prayers: you are in mine.

Pastor McClean


Although we are not having Free Flea markets over the colder months, we are still collecting items for next spring. We need both men’s and women’s summer clothes, jewelry, and household items. We did receive books and some other assorted items from Holy Cross Lutheran on Loch Raven Blvd. These were not sold at their Yard Sale on October 9 and they kindly donated them to us. Donations can be dropped off at the church.

—Judy Volkman

Our Saviour Parish News, August, 2021


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218
AUGUST, 2021

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

In last month’s newsletter I said that there was reason to believe that we would soon be able to do more for the restoration of the tower bells. Paul Techau informs me that this project can now be completed because of the generosity of some friends of Our Saviour Church, Doug and Beth Skinner of Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. They have donated the full amount for replacing the mechanism that rings the bells. This leaves the remaining monies in the Tower Bell Fund to cover other costs, such as the painting of the support beams (which has already been accomplished) and electrical work needed as part of the project. Doug and Beth were formerly members of Immanuel Church in Alexandria where I served before being called to Our Saviour. Doug and Beth’s only wish is that the new mechanism be dedicated to the memory of Gloria Lesser and her son Brian who were also long and faithful members of Immanuel. The McShane Bell Company, which made and installed the bells in 1934, will be doing the work. We give thanks for God’s generosity through these good friends!

Mary Techau informs me that, after a rather long Department of General Services meeting, a State Bond Bill in the amount of $40,000 has been approved to address the recurrent rain water problem in the undercroft of our church. After heavy rain in June we had to use a shop vac to remove 20 gallons of rainwater! So it is very good news that we can finally address this problem. We owe Mary a tremendous debt of gratitude for her untiring efforts to make this happen!

Judy Volkman reports that at our “Christmas in July” Free Flea Market we shared 183 items with 27 people. They also gathered over 150 items from our clothes. We now need new stock for household items, so check out your closets and cabinets and see what you can share. Judy reminds us that this is our outreach to share our bounty with our community. The next flea market is Saturday, August 14th, 9:00-12:00 Noon. As always, we need volunteers to greet and help our visitors.

Beginning on Sunday, August 1st, and continuing to the end of October, we will be using Divine Service I from the Lutheran Service Book. This is the familiar liturgy from the blue hymnal, Lutheran Worship. Although the musical setting is different, it is essentially the same as Divine Service III which we have been using for many months. Both liturgies are rooted in the Common Service of 1888 in which the historic Lutheran liturgy was provided in the English language. But Divine Service I includes some modest changes which were made in the second half of the last century. Most notable is the use of the hymn, “This is the Feast,” in place of the Gloria in excelsis, which begins with the “Christmas hymn of the angels”: “Glory be to God on high and on earth peace goodwill toward men” (Luke 2:14). “This is the Feast” consists of excerpts from the Book of Revelation (5:12-13; 19:5-9) and points to the Sacrament of the Altar as the anticipation of the heavenly feast, the “marriage supper of the Lamb.” As we sang on the last Sunday in July: “This Sacrament God gives us, binds us in unity, Joins earth with heaven beyond us, time with eternity” (Lutheran Service Book 639).

In the Calendar of the Lutheran Service Book August 15th is the Day of Saint Mary, Mother of our Lord; August 29th is the Martyrdom of Saint John the Baptist. Since these days occur on Sunday this year, we have the opportunity to celebrate these ancient festivals: one in commemoration of the Mother of our Lord, the other in commemoration of the Forerunner of our Lord. In keeping the festival of our Lord’s Mother we join in fulfilling her prophecy, “All generations shall call me blessed” (Luke 1:48). Our Lord Himself said of John the Baptist, “among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist” (Matthew 11:11). In keeping these festivals we are deeply conscious of the unity of the Church both in heaven and on earth.

Your continued prayers are asked for Maggie Doswell who remains at the Cadia Healthcare Center, 4922 LaSalle Road, Hyattsville, MD 20782; also for Frank Ford’s daughter Yolanda who remains at Future Care, 1046 North Point Road, Baltimore, MD 21224. We continue to pray for(Jake, add the list). If there are others you wish us to pray for, please let me know. I am always ready to bring the Holy Sacrament to those who are unable to come to church. Call me at (410)554-9994 or email me at charlesmcclean42@gmail.com.

It seems that new uncertainties and difficulties have arisen in connection with the COVID pandemic. Let us then pray that both our country’s leaders and all our citizens may act in wisdom with the common good at heart; and let us continue to pray for the doctors and nurses and all who care for the sick, and for the scientists who continue to search for a cure for this scourge. Nothing less is required by our Lord’s commandment, “You shall love your neighbor.” I continue to take comfort in these words: “The Lord is good to all: and His tender mercies are over all His works” (Psalm 145:9).

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean

Our Saviour Parish News, January, 2020


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218
JANARY, 2020

Monday, January 6

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Let me begin by thanking you for your Christmas greetings and gifts. It means a lot to be kindly remembered! Let me also thank everyone who helped decorate the church for Christmas. Many hands make light work, and as usual we completed this happy task in little more than an hour.

The first Monday of this month and of this new year is the bright Festival of the Epiphany of our Lord when the Church remembers and celebrates the coming off the wise to worship the infant Savior. The word Epiphany means appearing, revelation, showing forth. At Christmas God appears in the world as Man, at the Epiphany this Man appears as God. The coming of the wise men is both a fulfillment of prophecy and itself a prophecy of all nations coming to faith in the Lord Jesus as God and Savior of the world. At the Divine Service of the Epiphany we will sing familiar carols which speak of the visit of the magi: The First Nowell, What Child is This, and We Three Kings of Orient Are. Epiphany immediately follows the Twelve Days of Christmas and is a joyful conclusion of our Christmas celebration.

By now most of you will have heard that our organist, Marie Herrington, will be moving on to a new position after the first Sunday in January. We are truly sorry to see her go because she has contributed so much to our worship. Those of you who were in church on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day know just how true this is! We are all the beneficiaries of her faithful — and thoroughly competent – service. We have come to cherish Marie and we truly wish her well in all her endeavors. She may from time to time be with us to play the organ. We have engaged a substitute organist for most of the month of January; the Church Council and I are looking for someone to fill this position. Pray for God’s guidance and blessing on this endeavor.

Remember in your prayers Merton Masterson who mourns the death of his father. May the Light perpetual ever shine upon him and may the risen Lord comfort all who mourn his departure.

We continue to work on the project of restoring the mechanisms which play the bells in our church tower. We recently received a generous gift of a thousand dollars for this purpose. Do be on the lookout for individuals who might be interested in helping with this project. The playing of the bells before the Divine Service has been a lovely custom and the bells are in fact a witness to the presence of Christ’s church here in our neighborhood. The bells have been here since 1934, just four years after the dedication of this church building. We look forward to the day when they will ring out again! By the way this new year brings the 90th anniversary of the dedication of this church building.

I doubt that anyone will disagree with me when I say that we begin this new year in a deeply troubled world. For one thing, it seems that so much is unsettled! How then shall we live? What are we to make of all this? Well first we need to remember that “the world, the flesh, and the devil” are not only the clear teaching of Holy Scripture; they continue as a fearsome reality in this fallen world and will continue until the Lord Jesus comes again in glory to judge the living and the dead. And since that is so, we Christians are – as Saint Peter addresses the recipients of his first Letter – “sojourners and exiles” (I Peter 2: Il) in this world; as Saint Paul says, “our citizenship is in heaven and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus” (Philippians 3:20) and “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).

In a deeply troubled world this teaching most certainly doesn’t “solve all our problems” but it makes it possible for us to keep things in perspective: to do what we are able to do in addressing its problems, but also to remember that we are finally only on a journey through this world to that home which will be home indeed.

If you need a ride to church, please do not hesitate to contact me by telephone (410.554.9994) or email (charlesmcclean42 a, tnailecom). If I am not myself able to give you a ride, I will make every effort to see that you get one. And please do not hesitate to contact me if you should be sick or simply wish to talk. Among other things, that’s what pastors are for!

Wishing you a truly happy new new, I am

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean

Works of Mercy

Thanks to your generous donations of food items, 5 crates of food were delivered to CARES. They were running low on items and we had a good stock, so we were able to assist them at a crucial time. Now we need to restock for them!

As you return to the normal day to day routine, remember that we need items for the Free Flea Market. We need to completely restock with new items in order to keep up the interest in our outreach. Clothing for warmer weather is most appropriate for us. We don’t get many requests for children’s items. Household items, books, games, etc. are also welcome. Please make sure the items are clean and gently used. Donations can be left in the room downstairs, across from the Multi-Purpose room. Thank you for your continued support. We will start up again in May.



Our Saviour Parish News, December, 2019


3301 The Alameda
Baltimore, MD 21218


First Sunday after Christmas Day – Divine Service, 11:00 A.M.
New Year’s Eve – Divine Service, 7:30 P.M.
Second Sunday after Christmas Day – Divine Service, 11:00 A.M.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

In the Divine Service of Christmas Eve we always hear the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The people that walked in darkness have seen a great Light.” That great Light is Mary’s Child whose name is “Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” That is the wonder of Christmas: that out of love for you and for me and for every human being God’s eternal Son took upon Himself our flesh in the womb of the lowly virgin Mary and was born in Bethlehem to save us. I love these words of Martin Luther’s Christmas hymn, “From Heaven Above to Earth I Come”:

These are the tokens ye shall mark:
The swaddling clothes and manger dark;
There ye shall find the Infant laid
By whom the heavens and earth were made.

It is easy to sympathize with some words of that learned and devout 17th century Christian, Blaise Pascal -mathematician, physicist, inventor and theologian – who, contemplating the unimaginable vastness of the universe, once said, “The eternal silence of these infinite spaces frightens me.” But that silence was broken when God appeared in the flesh to be our Savior. He is the bright Light which dispels all the darkness.

The first of December is the First Sunday in Advent, the beginning of the new Church Year, and the beginning of the season in which we prepare for the Christmas celebration. Advent is a time of quiet reflection and anticipation as we contemplate the three-fold Coming of Christ: His coming in humility as Mary’s Child, His constant coming to us in His holy Word and Sacraments, His coming again in glory at the Last Day as Judge of the living and the dead. Advent is not so much a season of celebration as it is a season of expectation. It is a season for self-examination in the light of God’s Word. Examine yourself in the light the Ten Commandments or our Lord’s Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) or Saint Paul’s words about “the works of the flesh” and “the fruit of the Spirit”(Galatians 5:19-23). Although the Lutheran Church does not require the use of private confession and absolution, the fifth chief part of the Catechism – The Office of the Keys and Confession -makes plain that we are encouraged to use this means of grace. If you wish to come to confession, you need only make an appointment to do so.

It is time to order the poinsettias for Christmas for the people you wish to honor or remember. They are still $10 per plant (no increase in price). Please get your order to Judy Volkman by December 22, or earlier if possible. Envelopes for your order are in the rear of the church. Make checks out to Our Saviour Lutheran.

On Sunday, December 8th, there will be a potluck lunch after Divine Service. Merton Masterson will be deep-frying a turkey and the rest of us are asked to bring side dishes. There is a sign-up sheet on the piano. I have been asked to show pictures of my recent trip to Germany and I will do so after lunch.

On Sunday, December 15th, the Rev. Lucas Witt will be installed at 4:00 P.M. as associate/missionary pastor of Immanuel Church at Loch Raven and Belvedere. It is expected that his missionary work will aid not only Immanuel Church but also the other Baltimore congregations of our Synod.

On Sunday, December 22nd, the Fourth Sunday in Advent, the church will be decorated for Christmas following Divine Service. “Many hands make light work!”

In addition to Divine Service on Christmas Eve we will also have Divine Service on Christmas morning at 10 o’clock. It is hoped that this will meet a real need for those who do not drive after dark. This is of course another opportunity to join in celebrating the Day of Christ’s birth.

Judy Volkman recently received an award for Lifetime Achievement from the Baltimore County Commission on Disabilities. She has been a member of the Commission for forty-two years, has served as chair of various committees, and one term as Chair of the full Commission. Judy is amazed at the progress that has been made in the disability community but says there is still more to be done. She believes that “the Lord has made sure I was in the right place at the right time.” And so congratulations are in order!

Our former Vicar, Trent Demarest and his wife Maritza, are now the proud parents of Robert Martin who was born last Friday evening. He has three older brothers: John, Thomas, and Charles. Trent is now Headmaster of Trinity Lutheran School in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Congratulations and God bless the whole Demarest family.

Included in this newsletter is an article about the bells of Our Saviour. The author, Pastor Carl Kruelle,, grew up at Our Saviour and was ordained here. The article is yet more evidence of what a treasure we have in these bells. Our task now is to raise the funds to restore the mechanism which plays them.

If you need a ride to church, do not hesitate to call me at 410.554.9994 or email me at charlesmcclean42@gmail.com. I will make every effort to see that you have a ride.

Let us continue to hold one another in prayer. I wish you a blessed Advent, a genuine preparation for the birthday of the Savior.

Affectionately in our Lord,

Pastor McClean

Works of Mercy

This Thanksgiving, we have continued to honor our commitment to some of our neighbors at Waverly Elementary/Middle School. As usual, our church family responded to our call for help by making monetary donations which enabled us to purchase 10 Gift Cards from Aldi’s Supermarket totaling $250. The families picked up their cards from the school’s social worker on Monday, November 25. The time frame gave the families sufficient time to shop for a few extra holiday items for their Thanksgiving feast. Now that Thanksgiving deliveries are done, we will be collecting donations for our Christmas food gift cards. Monetary donations will be collected from Sunday, November 24, through Sunday, December 22; a separate check may be placed in the collection plate with the designate “Christmas Gift Cards” in the memo line. If cash is given, an extra envelope with your name and donation number might be placed in the donation plate. Many thanks to our church family for the outpouring of generosity and caring for the needs of our brothers and sisters in our community.
– Quilla Downs

The Message of the Bells

It was a nice spring day in Govans, 1943. The forsythia were in full bloom. It was Wartime—we had no car or phone. | was having cramps in my stomach. Mom, being a nurse, took, my temperature. It was high. She rushed me down the block to the streetcar on York Rd. I continued having cramps all the way to the transfer point at Greenmont and Preston. Getting off the streetcar at the center doors was easy. It looked a long way to the ground and I was half-dizzy. I vomited all over the steps getting down to street level (wondering how people on the streetcar were going to survive the smell of my mess; | could leave, but they couldn’t) to catch the trackless trolley to St. Joseph Hospital on Caroline St. Once in the operating room, the anesthetist told me “Breathe into this balloon and count to 10.” I remember the scent of the ether but never made it to 10 — maybe 5 or 6, and I was out.

After waking up in the ward, I was told I had an emergency appendectomy (appendicitis). The next night my Pastor came to visit, the Rev. A. J. Stiemke. He placed his calming hand on my forehead, prayed, spoke the Lord’s Prayer and Benediction.

The next morning was Palm Sunday and time for discharge. Uncle Fred arrived along with my parents to drive me home in his Hudson Terraplane. The route we traveled took me right past The Church of Our Saviour along the Alameda Boulevard. It was just before the 11:00a.m. Service. And | was thankful we had to stop for the red light, because I got to hear the bells resounding with “O Savior, Precious Savior’, “Crown Him with Many Crowns”, “All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name”, “Beautiful Savior’. As the light changed to green and we headed for home, I could still hear the bells trailing off in the distance. One of the high points of my life!

At the various churches where I have served, I always scheduled one or more of these hymns for Palm Sunday congregational signing.

Over years I have often wondered how many people were healed, helped, or redirected by the message of the bells.

Carl H. Kruelle. Jr.

October 27, 2019