April 27, 2017
Acts 2:14a, 36-41
for Sunday, April 30
Acts 2:14a, 36-41
1 Peter 1:17-23
This Week's Reflection Comes From
Senior, Cornell University
Lutheran Campus Ministry in Ithaca
I recently moved from quiet upstate New York to the hustle and bustle of the D.C. area. But, 2017 will not be my first Easter in our nation's capital. When I studied "abroad" here in 2015, I dragged my visiting mother down to the Lincoln Memorial for a sunrise Easter service. As we watched the sunrise, the soft pinks, oranges, and yellows peaked from behind the Capitol and Washington Monument and spilled into the reflection pool. I was filled with a sense of calm, serenity, and renewal that I associate with Easter, albeit in a more dramatic setting.
Fast forward to 2017, I moved back to the D.C. area to put my degree in Policy Analysis to good use as a research assistant for a family and child-centric non-profit. This week's lessons struck me as both topical and timeless. The passages from today's readings that were particularly striking were the multiple comparisons between the material world of "perishable things like silver or gold" and the goal of "genuine mutual love, love one another deeply from the heart."
What makes something material and what makes something an action of genuine love? Is government providing health care services, food assistance, or housing subsidies focusing too much on material good or is it a societal desire to "distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need"? My work involves undertaking research about low-income American families and children. I have always thought working in this field was my way of fulfilling a small part of God's mission of loving thy neighbor and making the world a better place for all of God's children. I also volunteer at my county's office by filing taxes for the poor, homeless, and elderly and putting them in touch with community services. But, nowadays, my type of work and mission is being construed as "enabling the lazy" or "providing a handout." Often, the most vocal opponents of my personal expression of faith come from those who also are Christian.
Acts describes the period after Jesus's death as the "corrupt generation." Words like "corruption", "fake", and "post-truth" have worked their way into my daily interactions. It certainly seems to me that I also live in a corrupt generation. The headlines are dominated by scandals, war and chaos, how the wealth of the richest dwarfs that of everyone else, and new policy proposals will provide more benefits to the better off while stripping those who are most vulnerable like single mothers, the elderly, poor, or sick. Sometimes, it doesn't appear like we are any better at following Jesus and living God's word now than we were in the beginning.
The Easter message is one of rebirth and renewal in the face of overwhelming, bleak, and impossible odds. The weeks leading up to Easter Sunday are dictated by fear and misguided actions and beliefs by the disciples (Peter), regular people, and leaders. The world might not have changed a whole lot since the story happened and was first told; every year the Easter message is needed. I think that is why the story is so meaningful and so important. It describes our human failings and how we flounder, and lose sight of what is important. These themes are so timeless. Which is why the end message of forgiveness and grace remains all the more necessary. Even though human imperfection might still exist, the call to lead a life of service, forgiveness, and love perseveres.
© Copyright 2017 Upstate New York Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. All Rights Reserved.
14aPeter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed [the crowd], 36“Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
37Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” 38Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him.” 40And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added.
Names will remain of the Prayer List for a month - at which
time it will be taken off unless, or course, there is still a continued need
for our prayers and we’re asked to keep the name on.
***We are in need of Ushers for this Sunday, April 30th.
***The Worship & Music Committee will meet this Sunday, April 30th, at 10:45 am.
***Spring Work Day (outdoor) will be held at St. Timothy’s, Saturday, May 6th at 9:00 am. (Rain date May 13th)
***We are currently looking for 2 congregation members to represent St. Timothy at the annual Upstate NY Synod Assembly June 8-10 in Rochester. St. Timothy pays for your hotel stay and meal package. Representatives are responsible for their own travel. Call the church office at 386-7280 or contact Kristie Bloomquist, 487-2336 or kkbarn2@gmailcom.
***Stay connected with Pastor Ivy by calling the parsonage 386-1022, cell phone 904-0855 (calling or texting) or email email@example.com. We are excited that Pastor has been able to come to worship recently!
***Tomorrow, Friday, April 28th, 6:30-8:30, join Tree of Life for guided conversations concerning racial justice, listening to podcasts on this topic and refreshments. Held at Holy Trinity Campus, 825 Forest Ave., Jamestown. Call 716-969-3950 for more information.
***The Winged Ox Players present Least Resistance, an original play written & compiled by Richard Olson-Walter about Jamestown’s addiction epidemic and OUR recovery. At Willow Bay Theater, April 28/29 & May 5/6, 7:30 pm. Free admission (donations welcome). Information: www.leastresistance.org or 716-483-6405.
From www.leastresistance.org The Winged Ox Players is the theatre ministry of St. Luke's Episcopal Church. Its core aim is to act as an outreach program in the community; to address difficult issues through the medium of performance. Recent performances include Lucas Hnath's The Christians, and Thornton Wilder's American classic, Our Town.
Guided by Artistic Directors Steven M. Cobb and Deacon Pierce and performing twice a year, the Winged Ox Players continue to entertain and engage with the people of Jamestown, NY.
***Women of the ELCA Southwestern Conference 2017 Spring Assembly will be held this Saturday, April 29, 2017, 9:00-12:00, Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 20 North Phetteplace St., Falconer. Registration ($3), Breakfast, Business Meeting, Program. All women are invited, RSVP with Stephanie Buccola at 665-4221.
***The Southwestern Conference Spring Assembly is this Sunday, April 30, 3:00 pm at First Lutheran, Jamestown. Everyone is welcome to attend.
***Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy will host Dr. Courtney Wigdahl Perry of SUNY-Fredonia on Tuesday, May 2nd at 7:00 pm in St. Timothy’s Fellowship Hall for a public presentation on Chautauqua Lake Algae Blooms.
***The Caring & Sharing Ministry is still gathering items for Lutheran World Relief Personal Care Kits. All of the items for kits are needed at this time. Monetary donations are also requested for buying in bulk and shipping. When we package, each kit needs to contain the following:
• One light-weight bath towel, dark colors (20”x40” to 27”x52”).
• Two bath-size bars (4-5 oz.) of soap, in original wrapping.
• One adult-size toothbrush in original packaging.
• One sturdy comb (no picks or fine-toothed combs), remove packaging.
One metal nail clippers (attached file is optional), remove packaging.
***Save can tabs from aluminum cans and add them to the collection at the church to be taken to SYNOD assembly in June.
***Healthy Bones Exercise Class meets in the fellowship hall at St. Timothy’s on Mondays and Wednesdays at 9:00 am. This session runs through June 14.
▪ for our community of faith as we seek to do God’s work in the world.
▪ for those in our congregation and community who suffer silently with illness, financial burdens, and family obligation.
▪ for victims of violence and their families in all places.
▪ for Pastor Ivy Gauvin, Marilyn See, Gloria Gardner, Bob & Audrey Markwart, Al Lamb, Eleanor Burgeson Orman, Arden Johnson, Ralph Prieur, Todd Reel, Helen Cogliano, Joanne Aron, JoLynn Stearns, Scott Stearns, Zachary Frazier, Maj-Britt Traynor, Matt Isaacson, Sandra Kelderhouse and Thom Shagla.
▪ People serving in the military and their families, those caught up in violence and war who have no safe home in which to live.
▪ For all children, that the love of Christ may reach them through all of us who have resources to love, protect, pray and provide for them.