Celebrating 101 Years 1918-2019
BEAUTIFUL FROM THE INSIDE OUT
I absolutely love looking at unique Christmas tree decorations. One of the most unique ornaments you will ever come across is those that have been hand painted on the inside. They have been painted entirely on the inside!
For centuries, the Chinese have perfected this "inside painting." Through a small opening in the ornament, the artist repeatedly inserts a miniature brush to paint the artwork. Of course, the process is painstaking and time consuming. It often takes several days just to paint one ornament, but the result is a beautiful, one-of-a-kind miniature masterpiece.
The result of inside painting is spectacular: the glass on the outside of the ball reflects the light beautifully. If held up against the light, the ornament can appear translucent, when hanging among the lights of a Christmas tree, the ornament simply sparkles.
But how is it done? First the inside of the ornament is acid washed for the paint to adhere to the glass. Then the artist creates the painting by inserting a miniature brush through the tiny hole at the top, and painting each minute detail in reverse, often solely by the sense of touch, as the opaque glass does not allow the artist to see the tip of the brush.
The process begins with an outline of the design, then painstakingly filling in the colors one by one in layers, starting with the top layer and finishing with the background. It takes several years of teaching for an artist to become good enough to paint quality works.
Let me share a few thoughts about the implications of being "Decorated From the Inside."
It takes quite an artist to make something beautiful from the inside out, and God is the master of that! Every one of us needs His beautifying touch, because of sin every one of us carries our share of ugly inside us. It’s true! And it keeps spilling out in our words, our attitude, how we treat other people, and it causes trouble. It causes hurt.
It's like there's this huge distance between the person I want to be and need to be and the person I really am. The battles are different for each of us, but we all battle our dark side; things that people close to me hate, things I hate, things God hates. The ugliness of self-centeredness, of our destructive anger and the scars we leave with it, and then the deceit, the passions, the addictions we can't seem to master; all those things I say and do that hurt people I love and often people who don't deserve it. We want to change. But we can't.
And we're frustrated by so many attempts we've made to be the right kind of person, to finally find some inner peace, to find a purpose that just gives every day some meaning. We look to religion to help us be what we need to be, but there's a problem. Religion basically tries to redecorate us from the outside and it keeps coming off! Jesus said of some very religious people in His day, "On the outside you appear to people as righteous, but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness." (Matthew 23:28)
But we are not without hope, the Bible has some liberating good news. It is found in 2 Corinthians 5:17, and it's great Christmas news. "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
The Bible tells us that Jesus does what no religion could ever do. Kind of like those Chinese artists, He beautifies us on the inside so we're genuinely and permanently changed.
All of the ugly stuff and the dark stuff in our heart is summed up in one Bible word-sin; which is rebellion against God and His laws. When we try to be the god of our own life, it doesn’t work. That's why Jesus came. Our only hope of sin's power being beaten was for God Himself to conquer it, which He did when Jesus paid the debt for our sins on the cross. Then when He conquered death on Easter Morning, He proved the debt was paid.
This makeover miracle in our soul begins from the moment we are, as that verse said, "in Christ." Not just around Christ, but I mean really belonging to Him.
In our Baptism – God makes us his own. Through His Word and Sacrament – He grows us as His child, and we are transformed by the Holy Spirit from the inside out.
God’s peace and blessings as we celebrate the coming of our Savior!
In Christ’s Service,
Pastor Terry Grzybowski
No membership changes during November
Parish Planning Council (PPC) Meeting
Thursday, October 24, 2019--as approved by PPC members on November 21, 2019.
Present: Paul B., Clark J., Chuck L., Jeanette E., Karena L., Marcia E., Stacey A., Jean C., George V., Pastor G., Val J., Monie D..
Meeting was called to order at approximately 7:05pm by President Paul B.
Opening: Devotion read by George V; Pastor will attend meeting after confirmation dinner. Theme for today: Take Time — Control.
Secretary’s Report: Marcia E presented report. Minor correction made to the September 19th Draft PPC Minutes. It should also be noted that October 25 and 26 were both listed for confirmation dinner; those were the dates given during the September meeting and should be left as such in the minutes for that meeting even though the date was later changed to tonight. Chuck L moved to approve as corrected, Jeanette E seconded; approved.
Treasurer’s Report: Jean C presented the Balance Sheet as of October 23, 2019, and the Profit and Loss Budget vs. Actual for January 1 through October 23, 2019. Marcia E moved to approve, Jeanette E seconded; approved.
Elders: George V provided report.
Stewardship: Report given by Jeanette E and Stacey A.
Trustees: Clark J provided updates.
Youth: Val J provided report.
Preschool: Pastor G shared that two students have been added to classes. The Preschool went on a pumpkin patch trip; different pumpkin patch this year, as previous one closed. The Thanksgiving Meal will be the Monday before Thanksgiving, November 25.
Education: Pastor G reported that Danielle (absent due to illness) was providing Children’s messages on Sundays. Sunday School youth will be work on preparing for the Christmas program in November and December. This year’s Christmas program is “The Meaning of Christmas.” It tells a story of a child who is confused about what’s so important about a little baby, and throughout the program, the story of Christmas is explained so that the child can understand why Jesus coming into the world was so important. The Christmas program will be at the 10:30am Service on Sunday, December 15. Danielle has also been involved with Feed My Starving Children, LWML Bible Study, Confirmation, Young Life, and HS Bible Study.
Parish Planning Council (PPC) Meeting Con't
Next Meeting: Thursday, November 21, 2019, at 7:00pm.
Closing: Pastor led us in The Lord’s Prayer.
Adjournment: Motion made to adjourn meeting by Marcia, seconded by Karena; meeting adjourned at approximately 9:30pm this evening.
Respectfully submitted by,
Marcia Engvall, Parish Planning Council (PPC) Secretary
Sunday, December 8, 2019 at 9:30 am
In the Education Wing (by the kitchen)
Electronic Giving is Good for You and Emmanuel
Electronic gifts are fast and secure, allowing your contributions to support the mission and work of Emmanuel.
If you would like to give electronically, visit our website
UPCOMING SPECIAL WORSHIP SERVICES
Advent Worship Services
Wednesday, December 4, 11, 18 @ 7:00 PM
Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship Services
Monday, December 24 @ 4:00, 7:00, 11:15 PM
Christmas Day Worship Service @ 9:00 AM
With Heartfelt Thanks
This is an effort to let our church family know that what they have done individually and as groups has not gone unnoticed.
Guiding Hands Preschool
December is a month of much joy with Christmas stories, activities, and lots of family celebrations. The gift God gave to use on that first Christmas day is the reason we celebrate Christmas and we share that gift of love with others.
In sharing that gift the children will be participating in the Preschool Christmas program on Sunday, December 8 at our 10:30 worship service.
As we celebrate Christmas we will end the month of December with a birthday party for Jesus!
Our annual Christmas Bake sale will be held on Friday, Dec. 6 at the 1st National Bank on Main St. from 9-1 and on Sunday, Dec. 8 before and after our worship services.
The funds raised are used for supplies for the Preschool. We purchase art supplies, items for learning activities and repair or replacement of other things. It all helps in planting the seed of faith within each little child and their families.
All donations of baked goods may be brought to the church by Thursday, Dec. 5. The baked goods need to be packaged and labeled for allergy ingredients. They do not need to be priced; it will be a free will donation sale.
Any donation of baked goods or volunteers during the sale will be greatly appreciated!
May God Bless,
Christmas cards will be available for purchase in the front entryway of the church.
The money raised will be used for Christian Missions throughout the world.
Please make checks payable to LWML and place them in the wooden box on the card counter in the Fellowship area.
STOP, LOOK, & LISTEN
When I am with children, I often tell them to "Stop! Look! Listen!" It usually means they need to be attentive and what I will tell or explain to them will be important. Do you think God is telling us to "Stop, Look, and Listen!"? Let’s try it during this season of Advent. I'd like to share an article by Pastor Mark Schumm of Oneida, WI from the Lutheran Indian Ministries Advent Devotions 2019.
The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!" John 1:29
Railroad crossings used to be marked with an "X". Across the cross bars were written three words: Stop, Look, Listen. Perhaps, the sign makers thought this warning would help travelers to more safely navigate the highways and avoid the dangers of oncoming freight trains.
Advent is a season that can function like those old train crossing signs. We are invited to stop, look, and listen.
In a world filled with busyness and confusion, we are invited to stop. Advent can be a time to slow down. While Lent is seen as a season of self-denial, Advent also can serve as an opportunity to omit some of our busyness and focus on what is truly important. Consider declining invitations to gatherings that don't strenghten your preparation for Christmas. Perhaps this is the year to shorten your Christmas card list or to give homemade gifts.
Advent invites us to look. In the midst of Christmas tree lights and crowded shopping malls, God asks us to look and give thanks to God for His interruption in our world. The first Advent of Christ is the reason for celebrating Christmas. The second coming of Christ is what we, as believers, look forward to with great hope. Until He comes again, we see that God continues to come to us through the power of His Spirit in Word and Sacrament to strengthen our faith.
Finally, we can listen. God is speaking to us in the pages of Holy Scripture. His heartfelt desire is that we would know Him as Savior and grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ. Advent can become a time of increased devotion as we reflect again on the Biblical story of God's love.
John the Baptizer invited his disciples to behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Advent is our invitation to behold. To stop, look, and listen to the story again. Reflect on the grace of God in the cradle and cross of Christ. Let us pause and see with new eyes and hear with new awareness the love of God for you and me.
Pray: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we thank and praise you for this season of preparation! As our world is filled with even more confusion and busyness, help us to focus on what is truly important. Empower us to stop, look, and listen and remember with joy the gift of Jesus in our lives. Amen.
YOU make a difference!
Thanks to all who ordered Pies from the LWML!
We raised $300 !
This will better help us to support Open Doors for Youth and other projects close to our hearts.
PASTIES SALE UPDATE
What an awesome fundraiser!! The totals are in and our profits were $3,520 and we made over 700 pasties, all in 3 days. We had pre-sales for 629, the rest sold out within that week. All in all I think it went pretty well. To be able to make that many and still be done by 11 am on Saturday says a lot about the team we had working. It was really fun on pick-up day to hear all the stories about why people ordered. These Pasties brought back fond memories for many and a few people begged us to make this a regular event. A great shout out to one of our sister congregations in letting us use their kitchen. Thank you “Lord of Glory” for allowing us to prepare and bake our pasties there. A special thanks to Paul B. for all the equipment he lent us and his know how. Also special thanks to Wendy B. and Betty J. for making all the gluten-free pasties. Finally thanks to all of you that bought, sold, prepared and packaged the pasties. Thank you for bringing your family and friends. Many hands made light work. You guys are awesome!! Thank you Emmanuel Lutheran for all the continued support that you give us. On behalf of Emmanuel Lutheran Youth Mission Group, we thank you that you value what we are trying to accomplish with all the fundraisers we do throughout the year.
5th Annual Ground Hog Feast With Friends
It will be here before you know it! Order your tickets starting at the end of December.
Due to Groundhog's day actually being on Super Bowl Sunday, we will have the Feast the night before.
Save the date: Saturday, February 1, 2020! Watch for the posters and more information.
We will not meet as a group during December. Our next meeting is Sunday, January 12, 2020, after church. Bring a lunch for yourself. Coffee and tea is available.
The big project we are starting is taking apart donated wedding gowns (we can use bridesmaid gowns, too) to repurpose into angel burial outfits for stillborn and born-too-soon babies. We can use a few plastic container totes for storage of the materials if anyone would like to donate them for us. Contact Lou for sizes needed. We have scissors available, but you may bring your own. Cutting mats are available to protect the tables.
Our goal in doing this project is to provide a small measure of comfort to grieving families during a time of great loss by giving them an outfit so they don’t have to try to shop for something at this time.
Any suggestions for mission projects for our group to consider are always welcome!
If you would like to be a part of Tilted Halos Sewing Sisters please contact Lou S.
CHRISTMAS BAKE SALE
Friday, Dec. 6th 9 - 1pm
Guiding Hands Preschool
19th Annual Sale
Located in the lobby at
1st National Bank, Main St, Elk River
Donations of baked goods are greatly appreciated. They may be brought to the church by Thursday, December 5th.
Updates from your Intern!
I’m so happy that I’ve been able to spend these months with you. They’ve been such a great experience for me and only solidified what I feel is my calling to go into ministry full-time.
Every Sunday in November, we gathered the Sunday school children together between services to practice the Christmas program. It took them a while, but they’re finally starting to do very well on both the music and their lines, and I’m looking forward to a great program with them. Their performance will be on December 15 at the 10:30 A.M. service, and I’m hoping you can all come and see what a great job they’re doing!
I’m looking forward to continuing to work with you and your children!
LUTHERAN WOMENS MISSIONARY LEAGUE
All Women Are Invited!
LWML provides a monthly gathering and fellowship opportunity for women. Each month we'll examine topics provided by LWML which address issues relevant to women of today.
Need to feel refreshed and strengthened in your faith?
Then come to one of our meetings. We would love to see you there!
"Serve the Lord with Gladness” Psalm 100:2
TOGETHER WE MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
Lutheran Women’s Mission League
All ladies are invited to the
Annual LWML Potluck
on Monday, December 9, 2019 at 5:30 PM
Please bring a dish to share, cookies for the
nursing home/shut-in friends, and your mite box.
We will also reveal our Secret Pals.
Come have some fun!
“Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him have no lack!
The young lions suffer want and hunger, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.” Psalm 34: 8-10 (ESV
Afternoon Group: Guardian Angels Nursing Home Thursday, December 5th at 1 PM
Evening Group: Monday, January 6th at 6:30 PM – Lou is hosting
News from the Stew-----
Stewardship Sunday was November 24. If you haven’t received a “Ministries Opportunities” booklet, please pick one up at the church. There is an abundance of information and ways that you can contribute your time and talents to Emmanuel. There are a couple lines (spaces) for you to make notes of ways in which you can contribute your gifts to Emmanuel. Please make note of your interests and jot down the name, telephone number, and what you enjoy doing. Whether it be helping in the office, working with children, outside work in the summertime (flowers, landscape care), building maintenance, custodian duties, cooking and baking, singing in the choir, greeters—any talents you would be willing to share are a wonderful way to meet and greet other members and become part of Emmanuel’s church family. We don’t know who you are if you won’t give one of us a call!
Just a reminder for when someone purchases an item for Emmanuel; please help the treasurer (Jean Crosby) by giving her the invoice- noting the nature of the purchase (and the budget item number if you have it), so Jean can attribute the purchase to the correct budget item.
Another item is regarding “Gifts in Kind.” Advent season is approaching and many members contribute food for the Advent suppers. If you would like to claim your food donations or other contributions (not envelope offerings) to the church and receive documentation for your tax records, please obtain a “Gifts in Kind” worksheet from the church office. “Gifts in Kind” do require a receipt as proof of purchase. Place it in the Offering tray to receive your offering credit.
Help Our Offering Counters
Counters have an important and detailed job; using offering envelopes speeds up the process. Please use your 2019 offering envelopes until the end of the year. Checks from a member without his/her envelope number requires the counter to look up a member’s envelope number so that the contributions can be recorded to give credit for his/her contribution. If you have not received a packet of “offering envelopes,” please contact a stewardship board member or Robin at the church office.
The 2020 offering envelopes will be placed in your mailboxes towards the end of December. Please continue to use your 2019 envelopes until the end of the year.
Emmanuel is beginning “online giving.” If you prefer to donate without the bother of writing a check, please check Emmanuel’s website (email@example.com). If you need assistance in setting up online giving, contact Karena Lapolice. She will be more than willing to help you.
Advent begins our fall season of SPECIAL OFFERINGS.
Our “Special Offerings” that we contribute to chosen charities continue to make a difference in many peoples’ lives. The following charities will be receiving your generous donations for your Advent (3), Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day contributions.
12-04-19 … Advent . . Faith In Action ministries is a non-profit organization that, for more than 40 years, has been helping change lives by using the Power of Christ and the Word of God.
12-11-19 Advent . . . Guardian Angels Hospice is a special way of caring for people who are in the final stages of life. The goal of hospice is to provide emotional, physical, and spiritual support to the individual and their family. Hospice care can be provided in a person’s home or at a care center.
12-18-19 Advent …. . Lutheran Bible Translators There are more than 6900 different languages spoken in the world. More than 4500 of these languages (66 per cent) have no portion of Scripture translated. LBT translates the Bible and other religious materials into the people’s language; train & support missionaries to carry out the work in the language of the people; and train & support literacy specialists who teach people to read and share the Bible in their own language.
12-24-19 Christmas Eve*. Lutheran Braille Workers is one of the largest providers of Christian Braille and specialized Large Print in the world. LBW partners with Lutheran Blind Mission (LBM) which has the Lutheran Library for the Blind, the largest Christian lending library in the world.
*A portion of the Christmas Eve offering goes to the special offering, the balance goes into the general fund.
12-25-19 Christmas Day …LCMS World Relief & Human Care …..
LCMS WR-HC is a ministry of hope, sharing Christ’s mercy with people in need worldwide. In recent years, the agency formed relationships with international partners and awards grants to domestic and international partners for projects that benefit communities in need. Some projects are Lutheran Malaria Initiative and Project Clean Water (providing safe drinking water).
12/3 Rob B.
12/18 Jon R.
12/24 Adam S.
12/25 Mary R.
12/26 Bea J.