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Newsletter Page Updated

The monthly newsletters are archived on our web site.  The most recent edition of the newsletter (April 2020) has been posted there for your viewing.

This is an important edition as it notes major updates due to the COVID19 health crisis.  Please take time to read the newsletter.  This month includes numerous resources for connecting with our faith and with one another during this time.

Here is the link to the Newsletter Archive Page.

You will see newsletters going back several years on this page.  Feel free to read about past events, in addition to the April 2020 events.

5th Sunday in Lent – March 29

'The_Raising_of_Lazarus',_tempera_and_gold_on_panel_by_Duccio_di_Buoninsegna,_1310–11,_Kimbell_Art_Museum
The Raising of Lazarus, by Duccio, 1310–11

Readings, Devotion, Prayers and Announcements for Sunday, March 29, 2020, for both MLLC and Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church

As we are not able to meet due to health and safety concerns, we are still finding ways to share and celebrate our faith together.

Below are the readings, prayers, and various announcements for this Sunday and this week.  The Sunday devotion is at the end of the page.

 

Remember Your Regular Offerings

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For both of our congregations, Waldeck and MLLC, please remember that our expenses continue even when we are unable to meet as usual.  Please make a point to give your offerings as you would on a typical week.  Here are some ideas of what to do:

For Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ledbetter:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church; 6915 Waldeck Church Lane; Ledbetter, TX 78946

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

For MLLC in Carmine:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – MLLC, P O BOX 362, Carmine, TX 78932-0362

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

– give offerings through the church web site:  mllccarmine.com/online-giving  This page has a link to our secure giving page.  Offerings can be made by bank draft, debit card, or credit card through this special web site.

 

The 5th Sunday in Lent

March 29, 2020

 

First Reading: Ezekiel 37:1-14

A reading from Ezekiel.

Ezekiel’s vision of the valley of dry bones is a promise that Israel as a nation, though dead in exile, will live again in their land through God’s life-giving spirit. Three times Israel is assured that through this vision they will know that “I am the Lord.”

1The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2He led me all around them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. 3He said to me, “Mortal, can these bones live?” I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” 4Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. 5Thus says the Lord God to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. 6I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the Lord.”
7So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. 8I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them. 9Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.” 10I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.
11Then he said to me, “Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.’ 12Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: I am going to open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people. 14I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken and will act, says the Lord.”

The word of the Lord.  Thanks be to God.

 

Psalm: Psalm 130

1Out | of the depths
I cry to | you, O Lord;
2O Lord, | hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my | supplication.
3If you were to keep watch | over sins,
O Lord, | who could stand?
4Yet with you | is forgiveness,
in order that you | may be feared. R
5I wait for you, O Lord; | my soul waits;
in your word | is my hope.
6My soul waits for the Lord more than those who keep watch | for the morning,
more than those who keep watch | for the morning.
7O Israel, wait for the Lord, for with the Lord there is | steadfast love;
with the Lord there is plen- | teous redemption.
8For the Lord shall | redeem Israel
from | all their sins. R

 

Second Reading: Romans 8:6-11

A reading from Romans.

For Paul, Christian spirituality entails living in the reality of the Holy Spirit. The driving force behind our actions and values is not our sinful desire for self-satisfaction but the very Spirit by which God raised Jesus from the dead and will also raise us from the dead.

6To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law—indeed it cannot, 8and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
9But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.

The word of the Lord.  Thanks be to God.

 

Gospel: John 11:1-45

The holy gospel according to John.   Glory to you, O Lord.

Jesus is moved to sorrow when his friend Lazarus falls ill and dies. Then, in a dramatic scene, he calls his friend out of the tomb and restores him to life.

1Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. 3So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, “Lord, he whom you love is ill.” 4But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” 5Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, 6after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.
7Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.” 8The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?” 9Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. 10But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them.” 11After saying this, he told them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.” 12The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.” 13Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. 14Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” 16Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”

17When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. 18Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, 19and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them about their brother. 20When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. 21Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.” 23Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” 25Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” 27She said to him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world.”

28When she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, “The Teacher is here and is calling for you.” 29And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. 30Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. 32When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” 33When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. 34He said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” 35Jesus began to weep. 36So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” 37But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”

38Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” 40Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” 41So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you for having heard me. 42I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.” 43When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

45Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.

The gospel of the Lord.  Praise to you, O Christ.

 

*Prayers of Intercession

A:  Let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, and for all people according to their needs.

A brief silence.

Merciful God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we praise you, for you are Lord of heaven and earth.  Receive our prayers and worship.   Lord, in your mercy,             Hear our prayer.

During this season of Lent help us to give of ourselves to you through self-examination and repentance, prayer and fasting, sacrificial giving and works of love.  Renew our faith during these forty days.   Lord, in your mercy,                  Hear our prayer.

Other petitions may be added here.

We pray for all who struggle in body, mind or spirit.  By your Spirit grant healing, strength and hope to all for whom we pray.  We lift in prayer…  and also those whom we now name aloud or in quiet prayer…  Lord, in your mercy,                     Hear our prayer.

Guide and protect all who serve the community in medicine and emergency services.  Help us to work together as neighbors for the health, safety, and well-being of all in our community.  Keep us steadfast in our care for the most vulnerable in this world. Lord, in your mercy,                     Hear our prayer.

You are the source of all mercy and consolation.  We lift in prayer all who grieve for deceased friends and loved ones (and we especially pray for the family and friends of…).  Lord, in your mercy,               Hear our prayer.

P:  Into your hands, O Lord, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen 

 

 

Announcements and Prayer Request list for Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ledbetter

Health and Well-being Prayer List:  Phillip Procell, Brian Shaffer, Sandra Gest, James Smith, Barbara Spence, April Weyand, Fritz Schoenst, Alicia McQuaig, Diana Garik Poentisch, Sally Beettner, Carrie Oltmann, Robin Hardin, Beverly Drescher

HOLY WEEK schedule:

– All these services are subject to change in the event that we must continue the suspension of services.  The Church Council will decide this in the next few days.

Palm Sunday weekend – April 4-5

6:00 p.m. on Saturday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

8:00 a.m. on Sunday               Worship at Waldeck

10:00 a.m. on Sunday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

 

Maundy Thursday – April 9

5:45 pm Worship at Waldeck

7:30 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Good Friday – April 10

7:00 pm Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

Saturday Easter Vigil with Holy Communion – April 11

7:00 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Easter Sunday – April 12

6:45 a.m. – Sunrise at Carmine Cemetery

8:00 a.m. – Worship at Waldeck

9:00 a.m. – Easter Brunch at Waldeck, followed by an egg hunt

Easter Reception in Parlor in Carmine – 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Festival Worship with Holy Communion in Carmine – 10:00 a.m.

Egg hunt in Carmine –11:30 a.m.

 

Announcements and Prayer Request list for Martin Luther Lutheran Church of Carmine

REMEMBER IN PRAYER: Angelica Colpetzer (upcoming surgery); Ruby Ivey (Nikki Pohl’s mother, health concerns); Ricky Eckert (brother of Ronnie Eckert, health concerns); Jeannie Johnson (grandmother of Matthew & Nick Colpetzer, Joshua Aranzolo, and Emily Ortiz, chronic pain); Eugene Muehlbrad (health concerns); J. C. Pohl (health concerns); Carol Carmean (thyroid surgery last Monday); Kalisa Pomykal (Paula Barrick’s sister, medical concerns); Jacquelyn Mercado (JoLynn Schoenbeg’s daughter, severe broken wrist); Elisabeth McDaniel (mother of R.W. Crawford, friend of Alvis Mueller, cancer); Kenny Lorenz (former member Robert Hinze’s relative, serious burns); Nancy Pietsch (former RT-C teacher, health concerns); Johnny Dunham (health concerns); LaVerne Krumrey (friend from Brenham, cancer); Joyce Kelley (friend, health concerns); Jack Walsh (friend of Wade Eilers, recurring melanoma); Bill Clarke (friend of Daryl & Susan Ray, stage 4 cancer); Robert Vaughn (at Texas Neurology, thankful for extended stay for rehab); Carrie Bozarth (friend of Sedalia Ullrich, cancer); Edna Mae Krivacka (friend of Ed and Carol, back home, health concerns)

 

Sympathy to the families of Eugene Muehlbrad; The Rev. August M. Hannemann (former MLLC pastor); Genie Fuhrman (Ruby Renck’s niece); Edna Krause (mother of former organist Susan Michael); Charles Rudy Weigelt (brother-in-law of Kay Schmidt, JoLynn Schoenberg, and Darrel & Vickie Neutzler); Ricky Ebner (friend from Ledbetter)

 

The Ongoing Prayer Concerns may be found in the monthly newsletter.

 

THIS WEEK at MLLC

Today              5:00 pm-AA Meeting (subject to change)

Tuesday          5:30 pm-Yoga class

March 29         5:00 pm-AA Meeting (subject to change)

THOSE SERVING WEDNESDAY

 

NEXT SATURDAY ASSISTING MINISTER

 

THOSE SERVING NEXT SUNDAY

 

CHURCH COUNCIL will meet this Tuesday, March 31 to see what the recommendation is from the CDC and Gulf Coast Synod Office, and then make a decision on future church services.

 

APRIL NEWSLETTER printing will be postponed until April 1, and then mailed after that.  This is to have up-to-date information on schedules.

LUTHERAN WORLD RELIEF SHIPMENT has been postponed until November.  It will not be taken on April 13.  Packing will still be on April 8 at 2 p.m., so those who would like to come may do so.  If you have any respiratory symptoms, or just wish to stay at home, please do so.

 

DATE CHANGE FOR CONFIRMATION The new date is Sunday, May 17.  This has been changed due to the MS150 Bike Ride which will come through Carmine on May 3.

2020 FLOWER CHART:  Three dates are open on the flower chart.  They are September 20 and November 1 & 22.

LENTEN MEALS are cancelled.

LENTEN SERVICES are cancelled.

SPECIAL LENTEN ENVELOPES this year are designated for Lutheran Disaster Response of the ELCA.  These envelopes are in the pews marked “Lenten Offering.”  The envelopes for Lent that you receive in the mail go to the general fund.  The other envelopes in the pews will go to the general fund or where noted.

EASTER EGG HUNT Monetary and candy donations would be appreciated for the egg hunt following worship on April 12.  Please bring them to the church by Palm Sunday, April 5.  They will be filled that day.  Goody bags will be provided for the treats, but children may bring their Easter baskets if they wish.  (This may be subject to change.)

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL will be at MLLC June 14-18, 2020 with the theme Rocky Railway.  See the codes on p. 2 of the March newsletter to register your child and volunteer.

Registration is also available at the church web site:  https://mllccarmine.com/vacation-bible-school-2020/

 

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL at Bethlehem Lutheran in Round Top will be June 1-4 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. with the theme “Anchored.”  There are registration forms in the narthex and church office.

CHURCH COUNCIL MEMBER A person is needed to serve as chairperson of the Outreach/Care Committee.  Please consider serving in this role.

THRIVENT CHOICE DOLLARS This Tuesday, March 31 is the deadline for members to call Thrivent Financial for Lutherans to direct your 2019 Choice Dollars.  Call 1-800-847-4836 between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Central Time and say “Thrivent Choice.”  Have your member ID ready.  Martin Luther Lutheran Church is a choice.

You may also go online to direct the Choice Dollars.  If you do not give them your choice, they will designate your money where they think best.  If you need help, contact Nancy Eilers.  Thanks to those who have directed their Choice Dollars to MLLC.

FIRST HOLY COMMUNION CLASSES  Are on hold until further notice.  Contact Pastor Tinker to sign up.

 

EASTER LILIES may be ordered through the church office.  The Nesting Company is offering 6” potted lilies with gold pot covers for $14.50.  Make the check payable to MLLC.  Deadline is April 5.   Let the office know and if it is in memory or honor of someone.  A form is in the March newsletter.

EASTER EGG HUNT sponsored by the Carmine Lions Club and (EDC) will not be held on Saturday, April 11 at the Carmine City Park.

HOLY WEEK schedule: The Church Council will meet on Tuesday to determine our plans for ending or continuing the suspension of services due to the COVID19 health crisis.

Palm Sunday-10:00 a.m. Worship with Palm Processional and

Blessing of Quilts for Lutheran World Relief

Maundy Thursday-7:30 pm Worship with First Holy Communion

Good Friday – 7:00 pm Worship

Saturday Easter Vigil with Holy Communion – 7:00 p.m.

Easter Sunday-6:45 a.m. – Sunrise at Carmine Cemetery

Sunday School – 9:00 a.m.

Easter Reception in Parlor – 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Festival Worship with Holy Communion-10:00 a.m.

Egg hunt-11:30 a.m.

 

(Subject to change.)

 

Devotion

By Pastor David J. Tinker

Martin Luther Lutheran Church – Carmine

Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church

29 March 2020   Lent 5/Cycle A RCL

Ezekiel 37:1-14           Psalm 130       Romans 8:6-11           John 11:1-45

“God Knows Who You Are”

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Ash Wednesday was about a month ago.  It is the beginning of our Lent Journey each year.  A significant part of that service each year is the imposition of Ashes.  This is when each person at worship that day is marked on his or her forehead with a cross of ashes.  The pastor says, “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

These ashes symbolize two realities for us.  One is that ashes are a sign of repentance and sorrow for one’s sin.  The second symbolic message of the Ashes is that we are mortal.

If you think about what is happening it can be overwhelming.  Think back on any Ash Wednesday.  People of all ages are lined up and are reminded of their mortality.  The words said that day are reminding everybody of the undeniable truth about each person:  someday, each will die.

In the midst of this we are also reminded of a greater truth.  We remember that Jesus, being fully human, died as well.  Even more so, he died to save.  Jesus died to bring life.

Today we have a reading about death and life again.  The friends of Jesus, Mary and Martha, are concerned for their brother’s health.  Lazarus is ill, and is likely to die.  They know Jesus has the power to heal, so they send for him. Their message:  “Lord, he whom you love is ill.”  Upon hearing this, Jesus comments to his associates, “This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”  Jesus does nothing for two days.  Why?  Because he knows the ends of this story.  He knows about life and death.  He knows that life will prevail.  Jesus takes decisive action to lead us toward eternal life with him.

When Jesus does finally arrive he receives the message:  “Lazarus is dead.”  Jesus goes to his friends and he mourns with them.  Then Jesus and Mary talk about the Resurrection of the Dead.

Her response was that of life.  She said, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world.”  She pointed to the mission of Jesus by saying who he was.  He is the Son of the Living God who has come into the world so that we might have life with God, even though we face earthly death.

Now the life Jesus brings is much more than what happens to Lazarus.  He died, then Jesus revives him.  Lazarus was brought back to life, but he will also die again.  When it comes to what will soon happen to Jesus, it is different.  Jesus will die, just as we all do, but his resurrection is to eternal life.  He doesn’t face death again.  The resurrection we are promised by Jesus is one which is beyond both death and earthly life.  It is to a new and forever life with God.

As people who are followers of Jesus, who is the resurrection and the life, we are called to have a different perspective on life.  Life is both a now and a future reality.  For those who are baptized and have faith in Jesus, they have a life perspective.  Life is a wonderful reality on both sides of the grave.

Remember, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.  By Baptized we are joined to Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection.  By baptism, Jesus meets us in the one thing we all have in common – death – and leads us to life with him beyond death.  Death is the lowest part of life, but for those who belong to Jesus, death doesn’t stop our destiny.

Knowing this changes everything.  Knowing this gives us a new perspective.  This is an “Eternal Life” perspective.  We see that life is not just an effort to keep from dying.  Nor are we here to bide our time until we die.  Rather, when we understand that Jesus died so that we can have life, we are transformed into truly living people.  When and where those with an Eternal Life perspective gather it is a place of life.  When we gather as the Church, we are people in a place of life, wherever that may be.

In this place of life we get to treat others in a new way.  In this place of life we look to what God has to say about a person rather than what the broken world has to say.  God’s abundant grace and love are all about brining life and helping us have that life abundantly.  The broken and sinful world leads us to death.

In this life we can be people who are in the place of life or the place of death.  The invitation of Jesus in today’s Gospel Reading is that we be in that place of life.  This world can keep on reminding us of all that we have done wrong.  Sin and death and evil always enjoy more company.  In the place of death we are told again and again of all that we have done wrong.

Ash Wednesday reminds us of our mortality, but it doesn’t leave us there.  Ash Wednesday is always, always, pointing us toward the saving work of Jesus Christ.  That work of Jesus Christ is always about bringing us to that place of life with the Lord.  As we prepare for Holy Week let us look forward through the suffering and death of Jesus for our sin, and also onto the life he leads us toward in his rising from the dead.  With that, let us always remember that God knows who we are.

Let us pray – Gracious God, out of your love and mercy you breathed into dust the breath of life, creating us to serve you and our neighbors. Call forth our prayers and acts of kindness, and strengthen us to face our mortality with confidence in the mercy of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen

4th Sunday in Lent

Jesus Healing a blind man

 

Readings, Devotion, Prayers and Announcements for Sunday, March 22, 2020, for both MLLC and Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church

 

As we are not able to meet due to health and safety concerns, we are still finding ways to share and celebrate our faith together.

Below are the readings, prayers, and various announcements for this Sunday and this week.

For both of our congregations, Waldeck and MLLC, please remember that our expenses continue even when we are unable to meet as usual.  Please make a point to give your offerings as usual.  Here are some ideas of what to do:

For Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ledbetter:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church; 6915 Waldeck Church Lane; Ledbetter, TX 78946

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

For MLLC in Carmine:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – MLLC, P O BOX 362, Carmine, TX 78932-0362

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

– give offerings through the church web site:  mllccarmine.com/online-giving  This page has a link to our secure giving page.  Offerings can be made by bank draft, debit card, or credit card through this special web site.

 

The 4th Sunday in Lent

March 22, 2020

First Reading: 1 Samuel 16:1-13

R:  A reading from 1st Samuel the 16th chapter.

Samuel anointed David even though he was the eighth-oldest son of Jesse and did not match his brothers in height or other physical characteristics. With the anointing came endowment with the Spirit of the Lord, designating David as the Lord’s chosen successor to Saul.

And now the reading.

1The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.” 2Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ 3Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you.” 4Samuel did what the Lord commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, “Do you come peaceably?” 5He said, “Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.
6When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is now before the Lord.” 7But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” 8Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.” 9Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.” 10Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen any of these.” 11Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” 12He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; for this is the one.” 13Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.

The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.

 

Psalm: Psalm 23

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,

I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;

thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:

thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:

and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

KJV

 

Second Reading: Ephesians 5:8-14

R:  A reading from Ephesians, the 5th chapter.

Because we now live in the divine light which is Jesus Christ, we conduct our lives in ways that reflect the light of Christ, so that our activity is truly pleasing to God.

And now the reading.

8Once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light—9for the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true. 10Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord. 11Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12For it is shameful even to mention what such people do secretly; 13but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14for everything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,
“Sleeper, awake!
Rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”

The word of the Lord.  Thanks be to God.

 

*Gospel: John 9:1-41

P:  The holy gospel according to St. John, the 9th chapter.

Glory to you, O Lord.

Jesus heals a man born blind, provoking a hostile reaction that he regards as spiritual blindness to the things of God.

And now the reading.

1As [Jesus] walked along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned; he was born blind so that God’s works might be revealed in him. 4We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming when no one can work. 5As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” 6When he had said this, he spat on the ground and made mud with the saliva and spread the mud on the man’s eyes, 7saying to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). Then he went and washed and came back able to see. 8The neighbors and those who had seen him before as a beggar began to ask, “Is this not the man who used to sit and beg?” 9Some were saying, “It is he.” Others were saying, “No, but it is someone like him.” He kept saying, “I am the man.” 10But they kept asking him, “Then how were your eyes opened?” 11He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and said to me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ Then I went and washed and received my sight.” 12They said to him, “Where is he?” He said, “I do not know.”
13They brought to the Pharisees the man who had formerly been blind. 14Now it was a sabbath day when Jesus made the mud and

opened his eyes. 15Then the Pharisees also began to ask him how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put mud on my eyes. Then I washed, and now I see.” 16Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not observe the sabbath.” But others said, “How can a man who is a sinner perform such signs?” And they were divided. 17So they said again to the blind man, “What do you say about him? It was your eyes he opened.” He said, “He is a prophet.”
18The Jews did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight until they called the parents of the man who had received his sight 19and asked them, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” 20His parents answered, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; 21but we do not know how it is that now he sees, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he is of age. He will speak for himself.” 22His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that anyone who confessed Jesus to be the Messiah would be put out of the synagogue. 23Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”
24So for the second time they called the man who had been blind, and they said to him, “Give glory to God! We know that this man is a sinner.” 25He answered, “I do not know whether he is a sinner. One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” 26They said to him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?” 27He answered them, “I have told you already, and you would not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become his disciples?” 28Then they reviled him, saying, “You are his disciple, but we are disciples of Moses. 29We know that God has spoken to Moses, but as for this man, we do not know where he comes from.” 30The man answered, “Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where he comes from, and yet he opened my eyes. 31We know that God does not listen to sinners, but he does listen to one who worships him and obeys his will. 32Never since the world began has it been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. 33If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.” 34They answered him, “You were born entirely in sins, and are you trying to teach us?” And they drove him out.
35Jesus heard that they had driven him out, and when he found him, he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” 36He answered,

“And who is he, sir? Tell me, so that I may believe in him.” 37Jesus said to him, “You have seen him, and the one speaking with you is he.” 38He said, “Lord, I believe.” And he worshiped him. 39Jesus said, “I came into this world for judgment so that those who do not see may see, and those who do see may become blind.” 40Some of the Pharisees near him heard this and said to him, “Surely we are not blind, are we?” 41Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would not have sin. But now that you say, ‘We see,’ your sin remains.”

The gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.

 

Devotion

By Pastor David Tinker

 

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We remember the great hymn of church:

Amazing grace, How sweet the sound

That saved a wretch like me.

I once was lost, but now I am found,

Was blind, but now I see.

Today’s Gospel reading is the story of Jesus’ encounter with a man who was born blind.  The story begins with a discussion between Jesus and his disciples about the man’s condition and the reasons for his difficulty.  The disciples ask Jesus, “Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

Jesus responds by challenging the entire premise of their question when he says, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned; he was born blind so that God’s works might be revealed in him.”  The disciples had falsely assumed that if someone had a disability or health problem that this was caused by the sin of that person or of his or her parents.

After Jesus teaches them about the true situation of the man, he proceeds to heal the man.   Because he can see now, his friends and neighbors don’t recognize him.  When they express doubt regarding his new ability to see he keeps saying, “I am the man,” yet few believe him.  They seem to not believe that a man born blind can now see.  Following this, some in authority begin challenging him regarding who performed the healing.  They were especially concerned that somebody apparently had broken a Sabbath regulation.  This leads to debate among them regarding whether or not Jesus was a sinner due to his act of healing on the Sabbath.  Eventually the man’s parents are questioned about the healing, but they defer the question back to their son.

The authorities corner the formerly blind man and begin the questioning.  They start by announcing that they know this man is a sinner, suggesting that they themselves are not sinners.  The discussion gets nowhere.  When the formerly blind man makes a good point, the authorities reject it because they assume that both the man and Jesus are unreliable due to their assumed sinfulness.

Soon after this the man comes to Jesus.  He confesses his faith in Jesus and begins to worship him.  Our Lord responds by saying, “I came into this world for judgment so that those who do not see may see, and those who do see may become blind.”

The authorities respond, “Surely we are not blind, are we?”

Jesus says, “If you were blind, you would not have sin.  But now that you say, “We see,” your sin remains.”

What Jesus was pointing out was an important truth.  He was stating that those who are focusing on the sin in others are those who are the most likely to be sinners themselves.  They are those who understand their own sinfulness the least.

Humanity really doesn’t understand or accept its broken nature.  The truth is that we have disregarded God’s love, guidance, and provision.  We have become what God calls sinners.  Long ago humanity had turned from God’s ways and turned toward thinking, doing and believing that which was contrary to God’s will for us.  Our own sinfulness blinds us to the truth of our condition.

The truth of this story is that today we are often the ones quick to see the sins of others, and are just as quick to overlook our own sins.  We are the ones who complain about individual sins of others, while ignoring the poor, the hungry, and persecuted, and those who suffer due to injustice or hate.  We have received the forgiveness of sin, but we have refused to repent – to turn away from sin and toward God’s better way.  We are often the sighted righteous ones who are, in fact, the blind sinners.

In 1 John 1:8, the apostle reminds us:  “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”  Today in the middle of Lent we are reminded of this truth:  We are sinners, this is true.  But I invite you to remember the even greater truth.  God loves us and forgives us and gives himself for us in Jesus Christ.  God’s love is always bigger than the sin in our lives.  God’s mercy for us blind sinners is what will help us see.

We are sinners, this is true.  Thanks be to God for Jesus, for without his love and forgiveness we could neither survive the wages of our sin, nor be able to see that we are sinners.  We are sinners, this is true.  Thanks be to God that we can receive God’s love and forgiveness.  We are sinners, this is true.  Even more so, God puts his love in our lives in ways that are right in front of us and plain to see.  God provides himself to us in the Holy Spirit, by God’s Word, and through the gifts of Baptism and Holy Communion so that we might live as his beloved of God.

The Holy Spirit of God enables us to understand God.  The Spirit calls us to the Good News of God’s love and forgiveness, and guides us into a relationship with God.

God’s Word tells us again and again that the mercy, grace, forgiveness and love of God are ever-present for us.  We read in Lamentations 3:22-23, “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

The Gift of Holy Baptism joins us to the saving work of Jesus Christ. Jesus’ death on the cross and rising from the dead have been given so that we might have life, and have it more abundantly.  By baptism we are enlightened so that we can see God’s Goodness.  We celebrate this weekend with all who remember their March Baptisms.

The Gift of Holy Communion continually reminds us that the love of God is for us.  Each time we receive this sacrament it announces to us that God cares deeply for each one of us.

We give thanks in all this that God helps us to see our sin. Even more so, he enables us to see the great things he has done for us.  Let us go out today with renewed sight, knowing how good God has been to each of us.  In this, we revisit that great hymn:

Amazing grace, How sweet the sound

That saved a wretch like me.

I once was lost, but now I am found,

Was blind, but now I see.

Let us pray –   Almighty Lord, source of light and life and hope.  As broken and sinful people we receive your offer of forgiveness.  We pray that your Holy Spirit will enable us to understand what you have done for us.  We pray this in Jesus’ holy name.  Amen

 

*Prayers of Intercession

A:  Let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, and for all people according to their needs.

A brief silence.

Lord God Almighty, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we thank you for your abundant mercy.  Help us to listen to your Word and to respond to you with worship which is to the praise of your glory.  Lord, in your mercy,      Hear our prayer.

 

Guide and protect all medical professionals, as well as all who work in emergency services.  During this time of uncertainty and fear, help us all work together for the building up of health and safety for our community, nation, and world.   Lord, in your mercy,        Hear our prayer.

 

During this season of Lent help us to give of ourselves to you through self-examination and repentance, prayer and fasting, sacrificial giving and works of love.  Renew our faith during these forty days. Lord, in your mercy,  Hear our prayer.

 

Other petitions may be added here.

 

We lift in prayer the ministry Lutheran Disaster Response.  Help us to share the resources entrusted to us to care for the victims of disasters.  Lord, in your mercy,  Hear our prayer.

 

You comfort all who struggle in body, mind or spirit.  Bring healing, strength and hope to all for whom we pray.  We lift in prayer… , and also those whom we name aloud or in quiet prayer…   Lord, in your mercy,  Hear our prayer.

 

You are the source of all mercy and consolation.  We pray for all who mourn (especially the family and friends of…).  Lord, in your mercy,    Hear our prayer.

 

You call us to be your disciples.  Help us to be faithful in our daily time of prayer.  Stir us to greater joy in our ongoing and eternal relationship with you.  Lord, in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

 

P:  Into your hands, O Lord, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen 

 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND PRAYER REQUEST LIST FOR WALDECK EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH OF LEDBETTER

Phillip Procell, Brian Shaffer, Sandra Gest, James Smith, Barbara Spence, April Weyand, Fritz Schoenst, Alicia McQuaig, Diana Garik Poentisch, Sally Beettner, Carrie Oltmann, Robin Hardin, Beverly Drescher

 

 

HOLY WEEK schedule: – All these services are subject to change in the event that we must continue the suspension of services.

Palm Sunday weekend – April 4-5

6:00 p.m. on Saturday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

8:00 a.m. on Sunday               Worship at Waldeck

10:00 a.m. on Sunday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

 

Maundy Thursday – April 9   5:45 pm Worship at Waldeck

7:30 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Good Friday – April 10          7:00 pm Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

Saturday Easter Vigil with Holy Communion – April 11 – 7:00 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Easter Sunday – April 12

6:45 a.m. – Sunrise at Carmine Cemetery

8:00 a.m. – Worship at Waldeck

9:00 a.m. – Easter Brunch at Waldeck, followed by an egg hunt

Easter Reception in Parlor in Carmine – 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Festival Worship with Holy Communion in Carmine – 10:00 a.m.

Egg hunt in Carmine –11:30 a.m.

 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR MARTIN LUTHER LUTHERAN CHURCH OF CARMINE

 

REMEMBER IN PRAYERRicky Eckert (brother of Ronnie Eckert, health concerns); Jeannie Johnson (grandmother of Matthew & Nick Colpetzer, Joshua Aranzolo, and Emily Ortiz, chronic pain); Eugene Muehlbrad (health concerns); J. C. Pohl (health concerns); Carol Carmean (thyroid surgery last Monday); Kalisa Pomykal (Paula Barrick’s sister, medical concerns); Jacquelyn Mercado (JoLynn Schoenbeg’s daughter, severe broken wrist); Elisabeth McDaniel (mother of R.W. Crawford, friend of Alvis Mueller, cancer); Kenny Lorenz (former member Robert Hinze’s relative, serious burns); Nancy Pietsch (former RT-C teacher, health concerns); Johnny Dunham (health concerns); LaVerne Krumrey (friend from Brenham, cancer); Joyce Kelley (friend, health concerns); Jack Walsh (friend of Wade Eilers, recurring melanoma); Bill Clarke (friend of Daryl & Susan Ray, stage 4 cancer); Robert Vaughn (at Texas Neurology, thankful for extended stay for rehab); Carrie Bozarth (friend of Sedalia Ullrich, cancer); Edna Mae Krivacka (friend of Ed and Carol, back home, health concerns)

 

Sympathy to the families of Eugene Muehlbrad; The Rev. August M. Hannemann (former MLLC pastor); Genie Fuhrman (Ruby Renck’s niece); Edna Krause (mother of former organist Susan Michael); Charles Rudy Weigelt (brother-in-law of Kay Schmidt, JoLynn Schoenberg, and Darrel & Vickie Neutzler); Ricky Ebner (friend from Ledbetter)

 

The Ongoing Prayer Concerns may be found in the monthly newsletter.

THIS WEEK at MLLC

Today              5:00 pm-AA Meeting (subject to change)

Tuesday          5:30 pm-Yoga class

March 29         5:00 pm-AA Meeting (subject to change)

 

BAPTISM REMEMBRANCE  Those remembering their baptism during the month of March are Tiffani Brooks, Carol Carmean, Levi Carmean, Liam Diehl, Jill Eilers, Tess Eilers, Berrie Etzel, Floyd Etzel, Dianna Gerland, Thelma Hinze, Kyler Jacob, Seth Kelley, Randall Kohring, Linda Kovar, Autumn Lehmann, Brock Marburger, Michelle Marburger, Susie Markwardt, Linda Mattocks, Aaron Moore, Eugene Muehlbrad, Gaylon Mueller, Debby Peele, Carsyn Pratt, Michelle Pratt, Hannah Roemer, Dianne Sager, Brayden Scheffer, Colter Siptak, Wyatt Waak, Janette Weidemann, Reagan Williams, Gwen Woelfel, and Raylon Zwernemann

 

DATE CHANGE FOR CONFIRMATION The new date is Sunday, May 17.  This has been changed due to the MS150 Bike Ride which will come through Carmine on May 3.

2020 FLOWER CHART:  Four dates are open on the flower chart.  They are September 20 & 27 and November 1 & 22.

 

LENTEN MEALS AND SERVICES are cancelled.

 

SPECIAL LENTEN ENVELOPES this year are designated for Lutheran Disaster Response of the ELCA.  These envelopes are in the pews marked “Lenten Offering.”  The envelopes for Lent that you receive in the mail go to the general fund.  The other envelopes in the pews will go to the general fund or where noted.

 

EASTER EGG HUNT Monetary and candy donations would be appreciated for the egg hunt following worship on April 12.  Please bring them to the church by Palm Sunday, April 5.  They will be filled that day.  Goody bags will be provided for the treats, but children may bring their Easter baskets if they wish.

(This may be subject to change.)

 

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL will be at MLLC June 14-18, 2020 with the theme Rocky Railway.  See the codes on p. 2 of the March newsletter to register your child and volunteer.

Registration is also available at the church web site:  https://mllccarmine.com/vacation-bible-school-2020/

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL at Bethlehem Lutheran in Round Top will be June 1-4 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. with the theme “Anchored.”  There are registration forms in the narthex and church office.

CHURCH COUNCIL MEMBER A person is needed to serve as chairperson of the Outreach/Care Committee.  Please consider serving in this role.

THRIVENT CHOICE DOLLARS March 31 is the deadline for members to call Thrivent Financial for Lutherans to direct your 2019 Choice Dollars.  Call 1-800-847-4836 between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Central Time and say “Thrivent Choice.”  Have your member ID ready.  Martin Luther Lutheran Church is a choice.

You may also go online to direct the Choice Dollars.  If you do not give them your choice, they will designate your money where they think best.  If you need help, contact Nancy Eilers.  Thanks to those who have directed their Choice Dollars to MLLC.

 

FIRST HOLY COMMUNION CLASSES will possibly be offered April 5 starting at 11:15 a.m. in the Mission and Ministry Building.  More information is in the March newsletter. Contact Pastor Tinker to sign up.  This may be subject to change due to the stay at home order and cancellation of gatherings at the church.

 

EASTER LILIES may be ordered through the church office.  The Nesting Company is offering 6” potted lilies with gold pot covers for $14.50.  Make the check payable to MLLC.  Deadline is April 5.   Let the office know and if it is in memory or honor of someone.  A form is in the March newsletter.

 

EASTER EGG HUNT sponsored by the Carmine Lions Club and (EDC) will not be held on Saturday, April 11 at the Carmine City Park.

 

HOLY WEEK schedule: – All these services are subject to change in the even that we must continue the suspension of services.

Palm Sunday weekend – April 4-5

6:00 p.m. on Saturday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

8:00 a.m. on Sunday               Worship at Waldeck

10:00 a.m. on Sunday             Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

 

Maundy Thursday – April 9   5:45 pm Worship at Waldeck

7:30 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Good Friday – April 10          7:00 pm Worship at Martin Luther in Carmine

Saturday Easter Vigil with Holy Communion – April 11 – 7:00 p.m. at Martin Luther in Carmine

Easter Sunday – April 12

6:45 a.m. – Sunrise at Carmine Cemetery

8:00 a.m. – Worship at Waldeck

9:00 a.m. – Easter Brunch at Waldeck, followed by an egg hunt

Easter Reception in Parlor in Carmine – 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Festival Worship with Holy Communion in Carmine – 10:00 a.m.

Egg hunt in Carmine –11:30 a.m.

 

Devotion and Readings March 19

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Daily Devotion and Scripture

During this time when our worship life is disrupted we will be publishing various devotions, prayers, readings, etc. for our use.  All are welcome to read and share these.

COVID19 Update Announcement – Click Link

 

Here are the suggested Daily Bible Readings for March 19

Matthew 21:23-27

23 When he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?” 24 Jesus said to them, “I will also ask you one question; if you tell me the answer, then I will also tell you by what authority I do these things. 25 Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin?” And they argued with one another, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 26 But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we are afraid of the crowd; for all regard John as a prophet.” 27 So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.

NRSV

1 Corinthians 2:12-16

12 Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit that is from God, so that we may understand the gifts bestowed on us by God. 13 And we speak of these things in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual things to those who are spiritual.
14 Those who are unspiritual do not receive the gifts of God’s Spirit, for they are foolishness to them, and they are unable to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. 15 Those who are spiritual discern all things, and they are themselves subject to no one else’s scrutiny.
16 “For who has known the mind of the Lord
so as to instruct him?”
But we have the mind of Christ.

NRSV

Psalms 45 & 46

Psalm 45

1 My heart overflows with a goodly theme;
I address my verses to the king;
my tongue is like the pen of a ready scribe.
2 You are the most handsome of men;
grace is poured upon your lips;
therefore God has blessed you forever.
3 Gird your sword on your thigh, O mighty one,
in your glory and majesty.
4 In your majesty ride on victoriously
for the cause of truth and to defend the right;
let your right hand teach you dread deeds.
5 Your arrows are sharp
in the heart of the king’s enemies;
the peoples fall under you.
6 Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever.
Your royal scepter is a scepter of equity;
7 you love righteousness and hate wickedness.
Therefore God, your God, has anointed you
with the oil of gladness beyond your companions;
8 your robes are all fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia.
From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad;
9 daughters of kings are among your ladies of honor;
at your right hand stands the queen in gold of Ophir.
10 Hear, O daughter, consider and incline your ear;
forget your people and your father’s house,
11 and the king will desire your beauty.
Since he is your lord, bow to him;
12 the people of Tyre will seek your favor with gifts,
the richest of the people 13 with all kinds of wealth.
The princess is decked in her chamber with gold-woven robes;
14 in many-colored robes she is led to the king;
behind her the virgins, her companions, follow.
15 With joy and gladness they are led along
as they enter the palace of the king.
16 In the place of ancestors you, O king, shall have sons;
you will make them princes in all the earth.
17 I will cause your name to be celebrated in all generations;
therefore the peoples will praise you forever and ever.

NRSV

Psalm 46

1 God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
3 though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult.

4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
5 God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved;
God will help it when the morning dawns.
6 The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
7 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.

8 Come, behold the works of the Lord;
see what desolations he has brought on the earth.
9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God!
I am exalted among the nations,
I am exalted in the earth.”
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.

NRSV

 

Jeremiah 45

1 The word that the prophet Jeremiah spoke to Baruch son of Neriah, when he wrote these words in a scroll at the dictation of Jeremiah, in the fourth year of King Jehoiakim son of Josiah of Judah: 2 Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, to you, O Baruch: 3 You said, “Woe is me! The Lord has added sorrow to my pain; I am weary with my groaning, and I find no rest.” 4 Thus you shall say to him, “Thus says the Lord: I am going to break down what I have built, and pluck up what I have planted—that is, the whole land. 5 And you, do you seek great things for yourself? Do not seek them; for I am going to bring disaster upon all flesh, says the Lord; but I will give you your life as a prize of war in every place to which you may go.”

NRSV

 

Devotion

By Pastor David J. Tinker,

Pastor of Martin Luther Lutheran Church of Carmine, TX and Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church of Carmine

Right now we are in a challenging and difficult time. Nearly everything which we do has been disrupted by our common fight against the spread of the virus noted at COVID19.  Our common activities, such as school, church, work, meals out, doctor visits, funerals, weddings, recreation, and more, have been cancelled, changed, and disrupted.

Psalm 46, verses 1-3 reminds us of the truth of God which we have experienced and lived, and which God offers to all who would believe in Jesus Christ.  The Psalmist writes, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult.”

To better understand this psalm, let us look to two contexts for this psalm.  We look first to the Old Testament Context.  The Old Testament Context of Psalm 46 is that of the people of Israel, around 1000 to 750 BC.  This is the time of the Kings and of Jerusalem being the center of religious and political life for the people.  The Israelites struggled against three enemies:  foreign powers, the power of the sea, and their struggle with the temptation to worship false idols.  Each of these brought chaos, division and loss to the people.

To care for them, God gave them this psalm as a source of encouragement in the midst of their fears and enemies.  His love and care, and the people’s worship and thanksgiving, were central to his presence in that place.  The Lord’s love for his people would not falter or sway.  When all else was falling apart and changing, God’s merciful goodness and grace were always present for the people.

As followers of Jesus we are reminded that Jesus, God the Son, has given himself for the world for the forgiveness of our sin.  Through his being raised from the dead, Jesus leads us beyond death to a new life founded on his goodness and love.  That love of God is offered to us in our context today.  We also face our own struggles.  Life has its ups and downs. We have all these new struggles with COVID19.  Into this we are reminded of a truth which is greater than our present struggles.  We have a hope which is more powerful than all the changes and challenges of our time.  We have the truth which was already there for us 3000 years ago.  We have what the psalmist tells us:  “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult.”

This also reminds us of a wonderfully assuring passage in Hebrews, chapter 13, verse 8, where the author states:  “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”  We know that despite all the changes and challenges of life that our Lord Jesus Christ will always love us and be with us.  He has been there all along, and will be with us now and forever.

We are reminded in 1 Peter 5:7 that Jesus is there for us in the midst of all the challenges of life.  Peter tells us, “Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.”  We can cast all of our struggles and changes on him, and he will carry our burden.  We can cast all our broken and troubled lives on him, because he gave himself for us on the cross.  Because he has given all for us, because we can cast all of our changes and challenges on him, we can live with sure and certain hope.

Looking beyond our current struggles with COVID19, it seems more than some of us can bear.  Into this struggle our God gives us a sure and certain vision for the future.  We read in Revelation chapter 21 the following:

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

“See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them; they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them; 4 he will wipe every tear from their eyes.

Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away.”

 

Prayer:

Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we praise you for your steadfast love for us.  During this time of health crisis help us to trust in you.  Guide us in our work together to reduce the spread of this disease.  Give strength and courage to emergency services personnel and medical workers.  Help us to see the greater future we have in you.  We pray this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

COVID 19 Carona Virus Update

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Important Notice about COVID 19

The Church Council of MLLC has made the decision to suspend worship services and other church activities from now (March 18, 2020) through at least April 3, 2020.  This is due to the significant, worldwide health crisis of the COVID 19 Pandemic.  The council did not take this decision lightly, as this is a new and dramatic step for the congregation.  They consulted with area congregations, our Gulf Coast Synod, as well as government health officials.  We will send out updates as these become available.

Please read the notice here:  Click Link

The Daily Bible Readings through April 3 are here:  Click Link

The church staff and leadership are still here for you in these trying times.  We will have devotional items and other items available through this web site.

Preparing for the 12 Days of Christmas

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by Pastor David Tinker
Martin Luther Lutheran Church
Carmine, Texas

When are the 12 Days of Christmas?

The 12 Days of Christmas are the days of the Christmas Season. These are the days between the Nativity of our Lord (December 25) and the Epiphany of our Lord (January 6). There are 2 traditions of counting these 12 Days of Christmas. One tradition is that the 12 Days of Christmas start on Christmas Day, and conclude on “Twelfth Night”, which is January 5. The second tradition is that the 12 Days of Christmas begin on December 26, and run through January 6. “Twelfth Night” would then be January 6. Despite the promotions and activity of our culture, the Christian “Christmas Season” begins on Christmas Day, rather than during the time leading up to Christmas.

Celebrating the 12 Days of Christmas

Here are some ways to mark the 12 Days of Christmas in your home and daily life.
— Daily read something in the Bible about the birth and youth of Jesus. Look especially in Matthew chapters 1-2, and Luke chapter 2.
— For fun with your family sing the popular song, “The Twelve Days of Christmas” — “on the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me..” Maybe do only the total number of days which have passed. Only on January 5 or 6, depending on how you count these days, would you sing all twelve verses. Another option would be to play a recording of someone singing this popular song.
— Tell others about the 12 Days of Christmas, such as in conversation, letters, e-mail, or on social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
— Use 12 candles to count off the days during a meal or at devotions. One more candle is lit each day until all are lit on January 5th or 6th.
— Keep your Christmas tree up until at least January 6.
— Send your Christmas cards during this time, and possibly note the 12 Days of Christmas in your letter to family and friends.
— Attend worship at Martin Luther Lutheran Church in Carmine on the two weekends which always occur in the 12 Days of Christmas. These will be on December 28 & 29 and January 4 & 5 for this season (2019-2020). Some folks pull back from worship during this time and miss out on a joyful time of the year at church.
— Schedule Christmas Parties during this time. You will be less stressed and it will give your friends another chance to get together for joyful fellowship.

Special Days during the 12 Days of Christmas

*December 26 – The Feast of St. Stephen, Deacon and Martyr. Read about his ministry in Acts chapters 6 and 7
*December 27 – The Feast of St. John, Apostle and Evangelist. Read one of the books connected to his ministry, such as the Gospel of John, the three letters of John, and Revelation.
*December 28 – Remembrance of the Holy Innocents of Bethlehem, Martyrs. Read about these victims of tyranny in Matthew chapter 2, especially verses 16-18.
*December 31 – New Year’s Eve – a chance to reflect on God’s grace for you during this past year.
*January 1 – The Name of Jesus. On this day we remember Jesus’ 8th day. Read about this in Luke 2:21. This is when his name was announced in a public way.
*The Epiphany of our Lord – January 6
‘The People who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness — on them light has shined.’ — Isaiah 9:2

The Epiphany of our Lord is mostly known as the celebration of the arrival of the Magi for their visit to bring their gifts of Jesus. It is much more. When we celebrate the Epiphany we are celebrating the spreading of the Good News of Jesus Christ. The Epiphany reminds us about the growing glory of God in the Son of God/Son of Man, Jesus Christ. Epiphany is the manifestation, or showing, of Jesus to the world. The Magi were non-Jewish foreigners who came to worship Jesus, and are thus representatives of those who would eventually benefit from the birth, ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus. This visit, from Matthew chapter 2, foreshadows the mission which Jesus grants to his followers. In the Great Commission in Matthew 28:16-20, our Lord commands us to make disciples of all nations, not just of the Jews.

Celebrating the Epiphany of our Lord

— Attend worship on the weekend of January 4 & 5, 2020, a either the Saturday, 6:00 p.m. or the Sunday, 10:00 a.m. as we celebrate the Epiphany of our Lord at Martin Luther Lutheran Church in Carmine.
— Read the story of the Magi in Matthew, which is told throughout chapter 2.
— Pray for Christian missionaries as they spread the Gospel to the ends of the earth.
— Pray for the Church around the world.
— Host an Epiphany Party.
— Give generously to people in need. Remember, as Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)
— Sing “We Three Kings” and/or “The First Noel”
— Attend worship on all or most every weekend in the season after the Epiphany.

Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh

The gifts of the Magi to Jesus point us to who Jesus really is:

*The Magi offer Gold, a possession of kings.
*The Magi offer Frankincense, used in ritual and prayer to indicate the presence of God
*The Magi offer myrrh, an oil used at the time of death as well as for anointing priests.

By their gifts, the wise men reveal the identity of this child:

*the king before whom nations will bow down
*the anointed high priest of God
*and the suffering servant who will die for the ones he has come to serve

Advent 2019 Series

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Celebrating Advent 2019

The Advent Wednesday Service Series this year is:  Advent and Christmas According to St. Luke.

This series will look through three major scenes in the Gospel Book of Luke to tell us more about what God is doing and how we can respond in faith.

The services are a joint event for the four churches of Crossroads Shared Lutheran Ministries:  Waldeck Evangelical – Ledbetter, Bethlehem – Round Top, St. Paul – Shelby, and MLLC.  Both Pastor John David Nedbalek and Pastor David Tinker will share leadership at the services.

The 3 Wednesday services will be on December 4, 11, and 18.  A fellowship meal will be at 6 p.m.; and worship at 7:00 p.m.  All events will take place in the fellowship hall at Martin Luther Lutheran Church.

Here are the themes of each week:

December 4:  Annunciation – the visit of the Angel Gabriel to Mary

December 11:  Birth – the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem

December 18:  Response – the shepherds praise the newborn Messiah

We look forward to seeing you at worship on this three weeks.

Thanksgiving Eve Service 2019

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Worship on Thanksgiving Eve 2019

We invite you to gather with God’s people for worship this week.  Our annual Thanksgiving Eve worship service will be at MLLC on Wednesday, November 27, 2019, at 7:00 p.m.

This will be a joint event with our primary partner church, Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church, and our Crossroads Shared Lutheran Ministries partner churches – St. Paul in Shelby and Bethlehem in Round Top.  All four congregations will be together in one location for this special event.

Plan now to participate in this delightful time of giving thanks to God.  We look forward to seeing you there.

Thanksgiving Table

Turkey and Dressing Dinner

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Annual Turkey and Dressing Dinner

Tickets are available now for the Annual Turkey and Dressing Dinner.  This is an annual fundraiser for the Women of the ELCA of MLLC.  You are encouraged to get your tickets before Sunday, November 10. That way you can be sure to get a ticket.  Tickets are $10/each, and may be purchased through the people and locations noted in the flier above. There may be some tickets available at the door, but it is best to plan ahead.

In the event that you can’t get to the noted locations when open, know that you can call the church office – 979-278-3388 – and request that tickets be reserved in your name.  Then you can pay for the tickets when you arrive.

 

Thankoffering Sunday

Also on November 10 we will celebrate our annual Thankoffering Sunday.  This is our annual celebration of women in ministry and our partnership with the Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (WELCA).  This will take place on Sunday, November 10 at our 10 a.m. worship service.  Our guest presenters will be the Hilltop Ramblers from Greenvine Emmanuel Lutheran Church (Burton, TX).

Here is a brief history of Thankoffering Sunday:

As we collect the Thankoffering today, we share in a tradition dating back to the 1800s, when Christian women formed “mite” or “cent” societies to fund mission. When others in the church said there was not enough money to carry out these projects, the women believed otherwise. In cent societies, each woman collected offerings at home. They would gather as we do today to worship and combine their offerings and offer them up with thanks and praise, dedicating the funds to mission. When Women of the ELCA was formed more than 25 years ago, we committed to continue this tradition of giving in gratitude for blessings. Each year, in thousands of congregations, Thankofferings are collected and sent to support the life-changing ministries of Women of the ELCA. Together, we do more than we could ever do apart. In gratitude for all God has given to us, and with hope for all that is to come, we celebrate Thankoffering.

 

 

 

 

Seafarers Boxes for Christmas 2019

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Loving Our Seafaring Neighbors

Every year at this time we gather items to pack and give to seafarers at the Port of Houston.  We have done this for several years in a row, and we have great joy in doing it.  Last year we packed 84 boxes.  This year our goal is 100 boxes.

The packing and wrapping of these boxes will be on Monday, November 25, at 6:00 p.m.  All are invited to help with this joyful time of service.  This even is sponsored by the Men in Mission of MLLC.

For this year, please gather items such as these for the men on the ships – you can buy things throughout the time leading up to the packing day, and drop these off at any time.   These need to be brought to the church no later than 6:00 p.m. on Monday, November 25, 2019.  If you can’t get the items to the church by that time, please donate them for the 2020 project.

There is a large blue storage bin for this purpose in the room directly across from the church office.  Here is the list:
We do not need boxes, for we have received sufficient plastic shoe boxes donated for this project

Address books
Band-aids (fabric)
Baseball caps
2020 Calendars
Comb
Dental Floss
Antiperspirant/deodorant
Disposable razors
Flashlight and batteries
Kleenex – small packs
Lip balm
Lotion
Nail clippers
Gold Bond cream
Gold Bond powder
Hot Chocolate (individual serving size)
Needles and thread
Q-tips
Shaving cream
Soap
Shampoo
Toothbrush
Toothpaste
Gum and hard candy
Key chains
Pocket-sized notebooks
Mechanical pencils
Pens
Playing cards
Microwave popcorn (individual packages)
Socks
Sudoku books
Texas souvenirs
T-shirts
USB flash drives
Word search books

 

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