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January 16, 2020

Announcements Calls/Changes Coming Events
 

The latest news and views from CanadianLutheran.ca

HEADLINES

Just two weeks to comment on expansion of Medical Assistance in Dying legislation
Canadians have just two weeks to participate in a new online consultation while the federal government considers expansions to Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID). The consultation window will close January 27, 2020. READ MORE

LCC military chaplains at the 2019 Exercise Faithful Warrior: Lt.(N) David Jackson, Capt. D.J. Kim, Capt. Min Kim, and Capt. Sye Van Maanen
From November 18-22, 2019, four Lutheran Church–Canada (LCC) Military Chaplains participated in the 3rd Canadian Division Chaplain “Exercise Faithful Warrior” (Ex FW) event held at Canadian Forces Base Edmonton. While the event is similar to a pastors’ or church workers’ retreat, to a certain degree, it is designed for Military Chaplains for their continuing education and training, and aiding chaplains by ensuring they are equipped to effectively deal with current pastoral issues in the military setting.  READ MORE

LIFE SUNDAY 2020
 
A message from Rev. Richard Juritsch, President of Lutherans for Life–Canada:

January 19, 2020 is Sanctity of Life Sunday (also known as Life Sunday). Every year, on the second Sunday following Epiphany, Lutheran Church–Canada congregations prayerfully remember the many life issues that are so prevalent today, like abortion and euthanasia. Here are some suggested prayers that you may choose to use within your congregation:
 
Collect
Lord Jesus Christ, who by Your Incarnation revealed the sanctity of life from the womb to the tomb, grant Your protection to all children in the womb and to all vulnerable people tempted by, or in danger of, euthanasia; for those who have taken the life of an unborn child or sick or dying child or adult, send Your Holy Spirit to bring them to repentance through the Law and saving faith and forgiveness of all their sins through the Gospel; grant all ministers of Your church wisdom and compassion to care, in love, for those struggling with life issues and integrity to all who govern that they may enact laws to protect rather than kill, for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
 
Petition
By Your Incarnation, Lord Jesus Christ, You revealed the sanctity of life from the womb to the tomb.  Grant, we pray, Your protection to all children in the womb and to all vulnerable people tempted by, or in danger of, euthanasia.  For those who have taken the life of an unborn child or sick or dying child or adult, by the preaching of Your bring them to repentance through the Law and saving faith and forgiveness of all their sins through the Gospel.  Grant to all ministers of Your church wisdom and compassion to care in love for those struggling with life issues and to all servants of earthly governments, integrity and guidance, to enact and uphold laws to protect rather than kill. Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.
 
Bid
That all children in the womb and all vulnerable people tempted by, or in danger of, euthanasia, would be protected; that those who have taken the life of an unborn child or of a sick or dying child or adult, would come to know their guilt by the Law, but then the gracious forgiveness won for all sins by Christ on Calvary; that all ministers of the Church be granted wisdom and compassion to lovingly care for those struggling with life issues; that all servants of earthly governments enact and uphold laws to protect rather than kill, let us pray to the Lord. Lord have mercy.

Reminder to Canadian Lutherans:

The Department of Justice for the federal government has launched a survey on Tuesday (January 14, 2020) on changing the safeguards and requirements for Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) in keeping with a decision by a Quebec Superior Court Justice. Here is an opportunity for members of LCC congregations to voice what we believe from the teachings of Holy Scripture on the sanctity of life; and express our concerns against any lessening of the safeguards around MAiD. The survey is in three sections. The first two sections in the format of yes or no questions and multiple choice, with a brief space for comments; and the third section provides further opportunity for comments. 

The deadline for survey submissions is Monday, January 27, 2020. The survey is located at https://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/cons/ad-am/index.html.

Lutherans for Life–Canada has as its task the education of everyone, especially Lutherans, on the sanctity of life from conception to natural death. We encourage everyone to learn more about euthanasia and what God says concerning various life issues from our newsletters posted at http://lutheransforlife-canada.ca/. Issue specific information can be most readily obtained from our sister organization in the U.S.A. at https://www.lutheransforlife.org/
 
WHAT'S IN THE WORKS?
 
Greetings from the Communications Director - As promised, here are some updates on communications-related efforts and resources in the making:
 
1. Communications Guidelines & Tips - We will be creating a document to share LCC branding material and communication strategies that can be implemented and used by members LCC congregations. The goal is to encourage consistent and reliable communication both within our Synod and our congregations.
Date: TBD
 
2. Who do I talk to about... ? - We will be establishing a "Meet the Team" style resource to ensure that all contact information for LCC team members is up-to-date and accessible.
Date: TBD
 
3. Wait, we have an Instagram? - Yes, LCC is on Instagram! If you aren't currently following LCC on social media, now is a good time to start! We are working to ensure that LCC-related news and resources are adapted for our various social media platforms (For example, you likely don't want to read a full news story in an Instagram caption... But, it might be helpful to see a photo that highlights the focus of the story, along with a caption that provides key details and direction as to where the full story can be accessed!) You can find us on Instagram: Here.

More on what's in the works next week!

Your sister in Christ,
Alex Steinke
MISSION PRAYERS
 
Remember Lutheran Church–Canada's mission and ministry partners in prayer each week. Consider including the picture and biography of each missionary in your bulletins the same week you name them during General Prayers.
 
This week, we remember Rev. Edmundo Retana Jimenéz, of the Iglesia Luterana Sínodo de Nicaragua (Lutheran Church Synod of Nicaragua). Pastor Retana serves as a missionary in Cartago, Costa Rica.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, since Your Son has saved the world through His holy, innocent, bitter sufferings and death and sent forth His forth His Church to proclaim the Good News of this salvation to the ends of the earth, we pray that you would sustain Rev. Edmundo Retana Jimenéz in Cartago, Costa Rica by Your Spirit and bless his labours for the sake of the Gospel; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

CALLS / CHANGES

  • Rev. Eric Moffett - Currently serving Foothills Lutheran (Calgary, Alberta)
    Considering a call to Zion Lutheran/Vanderhoof Lutheran (Prince George/Vanderhoof, B.C.)

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You don’t have to wait for the InfoDigest e-mail. News is posted regularly at www.canadianlutheran.ca.

ANNOUNCEMENTS


National: Epiphany - Lutheran Church–Canada has released a series of bulletin inserts for the season of Epiphany. The inserts are available in English and French in both letter and legal format. Download the 2020 Epiphany inserts HERE.

National: 2020 January Annual - The 2020 January Annual has been sent out. To request a copy, please contact Iris Barta at officemanager@lutheranchurch.ca.

National: Moving Assistance Fund - A reminder that the initial deadline for LCC's new Synod-Wide Moving Assistance Fund is February 28, 2020. The MAF assists congregations in paying moving expenses when calling rostered church workers. For more information, and to apply, click HERE.

National: Statistics for 2019 - The new Annual Statistic Information Form has been sent out to congregations. The collection of this data keeps current the information found in the LCC Annual and provides a snapshot of activities across the Synod. Congregations are reminded that statistical information for 2019 will be due March 31, 2020. Direct any questions to Marlene Mohr mmohr@lutheranchurch.ca or call 204-895-3433 ext 224.

East: A 2019 baker's dozen (12 + 1) - In the 12th month (December) 24, 2019, the 12th new LCC member was received at Église de l'Ascension, Montreal. There were 2 baptism; 6 transfers; 4 professions of faith. The 13th, a communicant member, was added from within the baptized memberships. News has come of another family joining in early 2020! Thanks be to God!

West: Bethel Lutheran Church seeks Youth Ministry Assistant - Bethel Lutheran Church (Sherwood Park, AB) is currently looking for a Youth Ministry Assistant to serve in a part-time contracted position (8 - 10 hours a week). The Youth Ministry Assistant will work closely with Michael Gillingham, Bethel's Director of Youth Ministry, and will provide support in their work with young people in grades 7 - 12. Applicants should be committed Lutheran Christians with a heart for young people. Coursework in youth ministry and prior experience would be an asset. Applicants should be able to endorse Bethel's summary of beliefs found at: https://www.bethelchurch.com/a-pastor-s-message). Applicants should also possess a valid driver's licence and be willing to submit a Police Record Check if hired for the position. Submission deadline is January 29, 2020. For more information or to apply, please contact: Michael Gillingham at: mgilingham@bethelchurch.com

East: YouTube Hymn Project, With One Voice - A commonly-known, broad-based hymnody is yet to be established for the francophone LCC faithful. While the hymns are certainly easily accessible in LCC's Liturgie et cantiques luthériens (LCL), many melodies remain unknown to many members. To familiarize worshippers with the tunes, a list matching the LCL hymns with YouTube videos is being prepared by several volunteers and will be posted on the LCC French-language website (See: egliselutherienne.org). For an example of this work, see: Nous t'amenons cet enfant LCL 495 - YouTube.

East: French accent on the What About ...? series -  A partnership between The Lutheran Hour - Canada and LCC French ministries is producing a French version of the What About articles concerning the Small Catechism. The translation is using the new Small Catechism text from Église évangélique luthérienne - France, in Liturgie et cantiques luthériens (LCL), as well as hymns from LCL. Some of these texts have been written especially for the LCC hymnal, including the winning Baptismal hymn in LCC's REFO 500 French hymn contest.

East: St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Port Colborne, Ontario, has sold their church building and parsonage. They will continue to receive our Lord's grace and mercy through Word and Sacrament at another location beginning Ash Wednesday. The final service and rite of Disposition of a Church Building will be Sunday February 23rd at 3:00 p.m., at 200 Erie St. in Port Colborne ON. Light refreshments will be served following the service. Everyone is invited.

Many items are available from St. Peter's as a donation to churches and service organizations, and for a small fee to individuals according to CRA rules. Items include: Stained glass windows 18" visible width and heights from 74.5" to 148", chairs and tables of various styles and sizes, AV equipment of various kinds and filmstrips, hundreds of bible pictures in a 1960s style and others, framed pictures of Last Supper and others, children's choir gowns, pianos, TLH and LW hymnals, Hymnal Supplement '98, bibles, and more. Please email stpeterslutheranchurch@cogeco.net for details and pictures.
 

COMING EVENTS

  • NATIONAL - Ongoing
    Lutheran Foundation Canada, Christian Estate Planning - Call 877-711-4438 to book a free seminar at your congregation. Visit: lutheranfoundation.ca/seminars-and-webinars/
  • EASTJanuary 24-26, 2020
    EDLYA RETREAT - The East District Lutheran Young Adults (Edlya) will hold their next retreat on January 24 - 26, 2020, at Christ Our King (Mississauga, ON). For more information and to register, please visit: http://edlya.ca/
  • CENTRAL - February 20-21, 2020
    Higher Things Retreat - Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Regina will host a Higher Things Retreat entitled "Watching With Wisdom, Knowledge, and Understanding" from February 20-21, 2020. Rev. Ted Giese will lead participants through a study of film from a Christian perspective. With the God-given wisdom found in the Bible, the Small Catechism, and the Confessions, anyone can gain knowledge and understanding when learning how to approach what they are viewing on the screens that surround us every day. Download an information packet here. Cost is $45USD/$60CAD per person. Register online here, or contact Rev. Ted Giese at (306) 543-9744/mountolive@sasktel.net or Tana McKenna at (888) 482-6630/retreats@higherthings.org.
  • EAST - February 23, 2020
    St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Port Colborne, Ontario,
     has sold their church building and parsonage. The final service and rite of Disposition of a Church Building will be Sunday February 23rd at 3:00 p.m., at 200 Erie St. in Port Colborne ON. Light refreshments will be served following the service. Everyone is invited.
  • WEST - February 23, 2020
    125th Anniversary Service & proceeding Heritage Potluck 
    - St. Matthew Lutheran Church (Stony Plain, AB) celebrates their 125th Anniversary on February 23, 2020, with a worship service at 10:30 am followed by a Heritage Potluck at SML Christian Academy gymnasium. All are welcome to join!
  • NATIONAL - February 28, 2020
    Moving Assistance Fund: A reminder that the initial deadline for LCC's new Synod-Wide Moving Assistance Fund is February 28, 2020. The MAF assists congregations in paying moving expenses when calling rostered church workers. For more information, and to apply, click HERE.
  • EAST - February 28-29, 2020
    MEN'S RETREAT 
    - Holy Cross (Guelph, ON) will hold its annual Men's Retreat Weekend February 28-29, 2020 at the Guelph Bible Conference Centre. Registration is open to all men, including those who are not members of Holy Cross. Registration deadline is February 23, 2020. For more information and the registration form, visit: http://www.holycrosskitchener.org/mens-retreat
  • WEST - March 4-6, 2020
    SABBATH 2020 Conference 
    - Sabbath 2020, a conference for deacons, non-rostered workers, and others who serve in similar ways, will be held March 4-6, 2020, at Concordia Lutheran Seminary in Edmonton, Alberta. Our theme for 2020 is Vocation and the Future of Church Work with Rev. Curtis Boehm as our main speaker. The conference fee is $150 for in-person (includes program and meals) and $30 for online participation. A very important business meeting will be held March 6, 2020 to discuss the future of our conference. If you are part of the Sabbath community, please plan to attend the online business meeting even if you can't attend the conference. Registration deadline is February 1, 2020. Register here: https://forms.gle/WShad8vnyfR7gf1r9. Please contact Jenn Frim at jfrim@concordiasem.ab.ca for more details.
  • WEST - April 24-26, 2020
    LWMLC Spring Retreat 
    - The LWMLC Parkland Zone's Spring Retreat "Unquenchable Joy" will be held on April 24-26, 2020, at the 4H Centre, Westerose in Alberta, ON, with guest speaker, Grace Fox. For more information, visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/2595148507220295/?active_tab=about
  • WEST - July 2-5, 2020
    IMPACT Youth Gathering
    - The IMPACT Youth Gathering registration package is now available for download. All LCC youth and leaders are invited for a weekend of community, growth, and equipping centered on Christ from July 2-5, 2020, at Pines Bible Camp in Grand Forks, B.C. For more information, visit: www.impactyg.ca
  • EAST - July 26-31, 2020
    Lutheran Catechetic Family Camp 
    - Taking place July 26-31, 2020 at Camp Pioneer (Angola, NY), this event can be described as a confirmation camp for all ages! It will include liturgical worship, solid preaching, and lots of outdoor and indoor activities. Registration is open to families, singles and couples of all ages. This year the theme is “Life in Christ” and the teaching will be led by attending pastors and seminary professors (CLTS), as well as Lutherans in Africa (LST). To register, visit: www.pioneercamp.org  (Select Summer Camps/Family Camp). Contact info@pioneercamp.org with any questions.

PRAYERS

Rev. Robert Bauer (Cross of Christ Lutheran Church of the Deaf, Edmonton) is currently in Good Samaritan Nursing Home, where he is very ill and may be approaching death. Please keep him in prayer.

LECTIONARY SUMMARY FROM THE LCMS

3-year and 1-year Series available HERE.


Second Sunday after the Epiphany

God Reveals His Glory in Christ and His Cross

The Lord, the Redeemer of Israel, calls forth his Holy One (Is. 49:7), Jesus, the Christ, from the womb of His mother (Is. 49:1). The incarnate Son of God is revealed as the Savior, not only for Israel but also as a light for the nations, whose salvation reaches to the end of the earth (Is. 49:6). John came baptizing with water (John 1:31) to reveal Jesus as the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29), and who glorifies His God and Father by His atoning sacrifice upon the cross. When Jesus was baptized in the waters of the Jordan, the Holy Spirit descended from heaven like a dove and remained on him (John 1:32). By our Baptism, we are anointed by the same Spirit, adopted by God the Father, and called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 1:9). Therefore, we are not lacking in any gift, but we can trust Him who promises to sustain us to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 1:7–8).


Repent and Believe

 
“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ ” - Matthew 3:1-2
 
John prepared the way for Jesus by preaching repentance. Then, when Jesus’ ministry was complete and He was raised from the dead, He sent out His disciples to preach “repentance and the forgiveness of sins.” Our position today is the same as it was in John’s day. We never outgrow the need for repentance – examining our lives, turning away from our sins, and turning toward Jesus in faith to receive His forgiveness and strength for a renewed life of godliness.
 
Like John, our church prepares the way for people to receive forgiveness and the life-giving body and blood of Christ. Each week, all across our synod and around the world in locations Lutheran Church-Canada operates, pastors deliver Word and Sacrament ministry. This life-giving message may seem out of vogue in our post-modern world, but we know how important it is and how necessary it is to deliver.

Supporting your church through charitable gifts ensures this message continues to be shared. To learn how you can develop a charitable gift either in life or in death, please speak with a Foundation representative or visit our website at www.lutheranfoundation.ca 

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Lutheran Church-Canada · 3074 Portage Avenue · Winnipeg, Manitoba R3K 0Y2 · Canada