Deacon’s Message (February 2017)
Grace and peace to you!
“Out of love and zeal for truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following theses will be publicly discussed at Wittenberg under the chairmanship of the reverend father, Martin Luther, Master of Arts and Sacred Theology and regularly appointed Lecturer on these subjects at that place. He requests that those who cannot be present to debate orally with us will do so by letter. In the Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.”
So begins “Ninety-Five Theses or Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences,” the document written by Martin Luther and nailed to the door of the Wittenberg church on October 31, 1517, with the intent of starting a discussion within the Church on certain (95!) theological issues with which Luther disagreed. This intent, perhaps to Luther’s surprise, soon went beyond discussion into action, leading to the reforming of the Church in ways that still impact us and our world in so many ways today.
October 31, 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.
To mark this historic anniversary, we will have opportunities over the next 10 months to explore the meaning of the Reformation – both historically and as it relates to our current reality – together, through conversation, study, and worship. This is much to say about this topic! For now, the key phrase to remember from the Reformation is this:
We are justified by grace alone through faith alone in Christ Jesus alone.
We will begin exploring the impact of the Reformation in Lent, with a 5-week series called “With Awe and Love: A Midweek Service Based on Luther’s Small Catechism”. Luther wrote the Small Catechism as a way for parents to teach their children the basic ideas of the faith within their own homes. It contains simple explanations of the Ten Commandments, The Apostle’s Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, and the Sacraments as well as morning and evening prayers and so much more. Each week during Lent, we will look at a different section.
As LCF has done in the past, these 5 midweek Lenten services will be held on Wednesday nights from 6 – 7:30 and each will begin with a simple supper. We invite everyone to join us.
Lenten devotional material will also be available for individual home use. “Free Indeed: Devotions for Lent 2017” offers daily readings from the Small Catechism, along with photos, quotes, and prayers which may be used for personal reflection.
Lent is a time in the church year when we are more intentional in engaging in the spiritual practices that bring us into a closer relationship with God. Consider using either of the tools listed above as ways to add the discipline of worship and reflection to your daily routine this Lent.
be well +,
Susan Lindberg Haley, Deacon