Lenten Midweek Events

community |kəˈmyo͞onitē|
noun ( pl. communities )
2 a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals: the sense of community that organized religion can provide.
• [ in sing. ] a similarity or identity: writers who shared a community of interests.
  • joint ownership or liability: a commitment to the community of goods.

That definition sounds like us here at Our Savior – a group of people who enjoy spending time with one another sharing a common faith. We come together, not just because we want to spend time in worship; not just because we enjoy the excellent music at each service; not just because there is good preaching [usually :)]; not just because there are good Bible studies for all ages through the entire week. We come together because we are part of this community – we are invested into the people of Our Savior, just as they are invested into us. Our Savior is a place where community happens.

A couple of months ago, I was studying the account of creation in Genesis 1 and 2. In Genesis 1, every single day, as God brings the universe into existence and fills His creation, He declares things to be “good”. With one exception: Genesis 2:18. The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.” There was something not good in creation for a moment that has lasting effects in our world today: we were never created to be alone! We need other people in our lives – we need to be part of a community!

We are fast approaching the season of Lent. Lent has been a long standing part of the Christian community around the globe, a time of 40 days, excluding Sundays, where preparations are made to celebrate Easter. Tradition has long held that during the season of Lent, people would give up or restrain from certain activities or foods to remember the passion, the suffering of Jesus in the hours leading up to His death. As part of the season of Lent, the Church has also practiced the habit of mid-week services, to spend extra time remembering Jesus’ love for us that lead Him to the cross and preparing the celebrate the joy that is Easter in grandeur fashion.

This year, we are Our Savior are planning to make Lent a special time of community. We want you, all of you, to come be part of our community walk to the cross and empty tomb on Wednesday evenings. If you want to join the traditional practice of giving something up for Lent, consider giving up some of your isolation by being more involved in your community. Here’s what that will look like:

Beginning with Ash Wednesday on February 22nd and continuing each Wednesday evening through March, we invite you to come join us for a community meal which will be served from 6:00-6:30 pm. This will be in-place-of the meal preceding our regular Wednesday evening programs. Meals will be home-style cooking and served by confirmation small groups in the Great Room. About 6:20 there will be some entertainment involving the whole community who has gathered. At 6:30, our regular Wednesday evening programs (Confirmation, K.F.C. {Kids For Christ}, adult choir) will dismiss to their areas while those who have gathered for the meal can remain in the Great Room, carrying on conversations and building more community. At 7:15, we will all rejoin as a community in the sanctuary to worship our Lord and Savior as we draw closer to His passion and death under the theme of “See His Cross.” By 8:00 pm, we will wrap up our community time together and head home rejoicing at the things we have seen and experienced, together, as a community, as we remember the cost to our Lord for our salvation.

I have to say that as the staff has discussed these plans, we have been very excited about this Lenten journey. Our hearts’ desire is that you come to be a part of this community journey to the cross, to take part in the whole evening event. We have the most amazing church community, the most amazing church family. The gifts, talents, and personalities of the people who call Our Savior home is very special. This community is unlike anything else. We pray that you will come and be a part of this community as we remember our Lord Jesus’ passion and death for us.

I have to say personally, I am very excited about how the new year at Our Savior is beginning. As you read this newsletter, we will have begun our 40 Days in the Word spiritual growth campaign, which involves many small communities gathering around the Word of God in homes, at work, and other various places across Minot to enhance what our larger community is doing in worship. Beginning February 12th, Pastor Krueger will be gathering another community around the basis teaching of the Christian faith through the Foundations of Faith class. Now combine 40 Days in the Word with our Lenten emphasis on community with the Foundations of Faith class and I think you begin to see that something special, something amazing, something God-directed is happening here at Our Savior Lutheran Church. In the last 8 months, we have seen our community, both our church community and our civic community, come together in amazing ways. We will see this continuing in the months ahead as we look at the roll our community (OSLC) is playing to assist the rebuilding of our community (Minot and surrounding areas). Dear friends, God is doing something amazing here at OSLC that will impact our community and change lives for Jesus. My prayer is that you will come be a part of this community, to gather with us around the Word and around our Lord Jesus, that empowered and strengthened by Him, we will go out into the community to make a difference for Him.

Pastor Dan
1 John 3:16


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