April Epistle

The Epistle

Newsletter of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church of Random Lake, WI ELCA

705 Grand Avenue, Random Lake, WI   53075

Volume XLVII, #4, April, 2024

Church Phone: (920) 994-4043                                      Pastor Elizabeth Jaeger (920) 331-0874  

Website:  www.stpaulsrandomlake.com                           Email: jandejaeger2@gmail.com                                

Email:   stpaulsrandomlakewi@gmail.com

Pastor’s Article

       Soon it will be Holy Week: the time when we revisit the final days of the life of Christ.  When I was young, I never wanted to miss one of the services from Palm Sunday to Easter morning. It felt important and special to experience the story of Jesus that way every year through hearing those familiar stories.

We begin with Palm Sunday where Jesus makes his entry into Jerusalem on a donkey and the crowds wave palm branches and throw their cloaks on the ground to welcome him. In recent years, Jesus’ triumphant entry flows into the reading of the entire Passion story, the account of the suffering and death of Jesus. Many churches, including St. Paul’s include a dramatic reading with church members and the congregation taking part.

There’s a part of me that wonders if the motivation behind including the Passion story along with Palm Sunday is for the folks who are too busy to attend all the Holy Week services in between. But the people who skip from Sunday to Sunday, miss out on two of the most powerful, meaningful services of the church year.

On Maundy Thursday, we celebrate when Jesus gathered with his disciples for a final meal before he dies and imbues it with new meaning. He takes the bread and the wine of the Passover meal and tells his followers: “This is my Body. This is my Blood. Given and shed for you.” This is the origin story of Holy Communion where we see how the gift of forgiveness and new life come to us through these common elements. On this Maundy Thursday we will continue our Lenten series of “Silent Witnesses” with the cup that held the blood of Christ giving us a new perspective on this meal. Even though we have the opportunity to receive the Lord’s Supper twice a month throughout the year, receiving it on this special day, during this special week is especially significant.

My personal favorite service of the entire church year is the Good Friday service. Typically in my experience, Good Friday worship has taken the form of Tenebrae, a service that moves from light to darkness as we hear the account of Jesus’ crucifixion and snuff out candles until we leave the church in silence in darkness as Jesus dies on the cross. This year we join our neighbors at St. John’s UCC with Pastor Laura Hawkins leading us in a joint service reflecting on the crucifixion. I strongly encourage all of us to take the time on the day Jesus offered his life for us to gather for worship and reflect on and give thanks for His great sacrifice—the greatest gift ever given.

Finally, the deep sorrow of Good Friday erupts in the joy of Easter. “He is Risen. He is Risen indeed.” Along with Mary Magdalene, the other women, the disciples AND the “Silent Witness”: the stone we participate in the miracle of Jesus’ Resurrection from the dead! We gather year after year on Easter Sunday to discover anew the hope that Jesus shares with all the world. See you in church as we hear the good news and go forth to share it with others.

Pastor Elizabeth

ST PAUL’S HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE

Please join us for Holy Week services:

Thursday, March 28th   6:00 PM  Maundy Thursday Supper

                                         6:30 PM  Maundy Thursday Service

Friday, March 29th         6:30 PM  Good Friday Service with St. John’s UCC, held at St. John’s

Sunday, March 31st      9:00 AM  Easter Sunday Service

The Epistle article deadline for May, 2024 is Monday, April 22nd at Noon.

Sunday Bulletin article deadline is every Monday at Noon.

FROM YOUR PARISH NURSE – Nancy Eberhardt

Dear Friends of St. Paul’s Lutheran,

May the resurrected Christ make his victory known in your life.  This month, we celebrate the new life bought for us by Jesus’ passion, and we also recognize World Heath Day.  Today there seems to be no lack of information related to health or any other topic.  The challenge before us now seems to be how to judge the information and how to decide what to do with it.  We can trust in the Lord to help us discern”….I will give you a wise and discerning heart” 1 Kings 3:12.  It is estimated that 30% of adults rely on the internet for meeting their religious needs and this is expected to grow in the future.

Our Health and the Internet

There is a great amount of health information available on the internet, but some of it is incomplete, misleading or inaccurate.  One can find information on health and wellness and specific diseases, find out more about health organizations and resources, talk with others with similar concerns and /or participate in on-line support groups and see and /or purchase health related products.  A word of caution is needed: Publication on the world wide web is not proof that the information is reliable or valid.  The following questions can serve as guidelines for judging the quality of health information on the internet.

Judging a Web Site for Health Content

What is the main purpose of the web site?  Is it to provide accurate information and resources or is it to sell a product?

  • What are the credentials of the authors?  Are they recognized experts?
  • Are there references for their claims? If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
  • When was the last time the site was updated?
  • Are there ways to contact the authors for more information?
  • Do they off any on-line support groups moderated by professionals?
  • Do they increase your ability to use health care resources or replace your current health care provider?  Do they keep your information confidential?

If you have any health related concerns, please contact me.  I would be happy to share resources I have.  May the Lord of all Life and Wisdom richly dwell in your home and family.  “Long life to you!  Good health to you and your household! And good health to all that is yours” 1 Samuel 25:6.

PS Sorry I did not do an article last month. I took 10 days off for a personal vacation.  Hope this article is helpful to many of you.

Prayers from the people for the people.

We pray especially for…

Joanne Hafemann, John Knuth (Lorna’s cousin), Barb Torrison, Hope Wulff (Lorna’s daughter-in-law), Don Brock, Romy Ayer (Beth Manian’s daughter), Pat Peterson (Audrey’s cousin),  Dwight Jaeger (John’s uncle), Darrell Wilke, Candace Snider, Audrey Crowell

Jim Engel, John Wulff, Alba Torrison, Tim Torrison

those on our prayer list and those we name in our hearts.

We pray for all serving in the military, especially:

Derek Kumrow  

THANK YOU to Art Schoenemann for fixing the cabinet in the office. We so appreciate your handyman skills!

SPECIAL THANKS to John Wulff for crafting the spear we needed for our Wednesday Lenten service. The detail, ingenuity, craftsmanship, and authenticity that went into it really added to our worship. We will be able to use it for many years to come. Thanks so much!

THANKS to Pastor Elizabeth for suggesting the Silent Witness series that was used during the Ecumenical Lenten services. They were so well written and performed. You could really get a sense of the object and the role it played, and see yourself there as well.

COPIES OF THE SERMON will now be available for anyone having a hard time hearing. Check the back table on your way to a pew, or check with Sandi. They will also still be available after service as well. 

HOLY COMMUNION will be celebrated on the first Sunday and third Sundays of the month.  Wafers and wine are in disposable cups.

SERMON NOTES If you have missed a Sunday and would like to have a copy of the current or previous sermon, see Sandi Wulff.

READER SIGNUP Please consider signing up to read the lessons. There are copies next to the sign up sheet for you to review before that day. It’s nice to hear different people spread the Good News!