More than ever, the world needs Christ. So live out His love and reflect His Light--be like a candle in the darkness, for His sake.
A Congregation is a family. Gathering together to hear God's Word, celebrate the Sacraments, study and learn, work and play together--that is the larger backdrop to our "family of faith." We share each others joy, we help to carry each other's sorrow and burdens. In each, together, we see our loving God at work.
Generations of families have gathered at Friedensaal sin 1752, before the founding of our nation, our congregation has existed in this beautiful and peaceful place in Seven Valleys. God has given us a rich history of faith and life which we claim with thanksgiving. we have a future which we entrust to God, eager to see how the Holy Spirit will direct us. In these present days, we try to be faithful to Christ's command: to love one another as God has first loved us, and our neighbor as ourselves.
Whether you are worshiping with us for the first time or have deep family roots at Friedensaal, may God continue to bless us and use us for His Gospel's proclamation! In all things, may God be glorified.
Pastor Margareta M. Breden
DECEMBER 2015 Message
In the crib, Jesus radiates what the world needs so much today--gentleness, tenderness, light and hope.
Gentleness- as the answer to all violence.
Tenderness- as the answer to the lack of goodness, benevolence and love of our brothers and sisters.
Light- as the answer to the shadows that darken the present time.
Hope- as the answer to those who feel abandoned or who find no meaning in their lives.
(Little Sister Magdeleine of Jesus)
Dear Members and Friends,
With the ever-increasing speed that our calendar pages flip over, and change of nature's seasons that the month bring, we find ourselves once again--in the season of Advent. Once again, Advent invites us into an intentional time of waiting and hopeful expectation.
Paradoxically, we decline that invitation! In this season that has been co-opted by the myriad of many "to do" lists, we say, "Sorry. No time. Maybe next year." We find ourselves sliding into a month-long December celebration of Christmas, rather than a month preparing for Christ!*
Now, don't get me wrong. I too am making my gift shopping list. My plastic tubs of decorations have been brought up from the basement. And other "to do lists" find their way onto my desks in the parsonage and in the office. Yes, I too am finding myself slowly caught up in the excitement and joy of it all!
We are not called to be "joy-less" Christians. Like the children's song, we do have the "joy, joy, joy, joy down in our hearts!" It is the deeper joy of knowing that Christ is called "Emmanuel," which means God-with-us! His presence transcends all things. And this assurance gives us joy even in the midst of all that seems utterly, inevitably, joyless and without hope.
Know this- Jesus Christ is the Light in any darkness. No darkness of this temporary and broken world can overcome his Light. His presence is the answer to all the suffering in this hurtful, sinful world.
So, then, why be downcast, people of God? More than ever, the world needs Christ. So live out His love and reflect His Light--be like a candle in the darkness, for His sake.
Prepare your hearts for the celebration of Christmas--the Incarnation of Christ, Word-made-flesh, God-with-us, Bringer of our salvation, Light of the world!
(And, also hang your Christmas lights, find gifts for those you love, decorate your home and trim your tree. Spread the little joys of the season!)
All the while remembering the true gift you have been given, Jesus Christ! He is not confined to any season of the year nor any one page on the calendar!
Come worship Him in Advent. Hear His Word of life. feast at His table. For Love has come down! Grace upon grace, cup overflowing! O, Come let us worship and adore Him!
Have a blessed Advent.
*Sundays and Season. Year C 2016. Augsburg Fortress Press, 2015