Grace News March 8, 2022

Announcements

Music at Grace, Manor Winds, March 27 at 4PM

A Lancaster-based ensemble, Manor Winds comprises of five musicians who come together to rehearse in a historic farmhouse on Manor Street. Since their formation in the spring of 2016 they have given over 40 performances throughout the southeastern Pennsylvania region. At home in traditional and non-traditional settings, Manor Winds strives for professional performances of  both standard and modern wind quintet repertoire. Built upon friendships developed in the freelancing community, Matthew, Lauren, Christy, Anne, and Robin believe that quality chamber music should be readily available to the region’s diverse population. Manor Winds wishes to share their love of music and collaboration with their surrounding community and can be seen performing throughout southeastern PA.

I Go On Singing

Before Rosa Parks, before Martin Luther King, Jr., before Nelson Mandela…there was Paul Robeson. Robeson was a human being who stood head and shoulders above the rest. He was an all-American athlete, scholar, international recording artist and star of the stage and screen in his day. He was the most famous African American entertainer in the world… and his life was a courageous example of integrity and discipline in the service of human rights.

Friday, March 18, 2022, at Bright Side Baptist Church, 515 Hershey Avenue, Lanc., the Robeson story will be told in “I go On Singing,” a musical tribute to the life and times of the great Paul Robeson, performed by the internationally acclaimed baritone and peace ambassador, Anthony Brown. The show traces Robeson’s humble beginnings as a preacher’s son in Princeton, N.J. to his international celebrity as an advocate for peace and justice.

The multi-media event begins at 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at Eventbrite.com. Hope to see you there.

Christian Formation

A Pastoral Letter from the Rev. Dr. Dave Bushnell

How is it that a retreat developed by a United Church of Christ pastor in Lancaster might find the occasion to be offered at Grace Lutheran Church?  Most importantly, how can the Come Follow Me Retreat build upon and enrich the strong mission ministry of Grace Lutheran Church especially as the church seeks ways to continue addressing the “long emergency” of climate change?

About five years ago, my wife Anne had been infected with Lyme’s disease.  Since at the time of the infection the disease had never been diagnosed and treated, later symptoms especially problems with one of her knees required a minor surgery followed by rehab therapy.  It was not until Anne was tested for hearing loss that blood work indicated that Lyme’s disease was the likely cause.  In recent years Anne has tried several ways of getting her body to back into shape.  The most helpful exercise classes have been led by Kathryn Verkouw.  Through informal conversations, Anne shared with Kathryn that I had rewritten a retreat for congregational use, a retreat that has its own plan to “build up the body”, especially the Body of Christ, and offers church members multiple ways of caring for God’s creation.

I first developed the Come Follow Me Retreat as the product of my Doctor of Ministry program back 1986.  The focus of the original retreat was to incorporate new members into the life of the  congregation.   It offered a way for members to experience being the Body of Christ today.  I updated the materials used for the retreat during a summer sabbatical in 1995.  I have offered the retreat regularly in every congregation I have served. 

At the onset of the COVID pandemic, and recently retired, I began to learn as much as possible about the challenge of climate change.  My primary motivation has been our grandchildren and wanting to do everything possible to ensure that they, and future generations will have a sustainable future.   It was during the pandemic that I decided to rewrite the Come Follow Me Retreat with a new purpose…climate care. 

So let me introduce you to the Come Follow Me Retreat.  This will give you some understanding of what you could expect if you decide to attend the weekend retreat.

  • Why a weekend retreat?  It takes time to develop deeper relationships in any Christian community.  It takes time to live into being the Body of Christ.  A fifteen hour retreat involving a Friday evening, all day Saturday, with lunch and a closing session on Sunday may seem like a long time.  The truth is, it is a long time, but a great deal is accomplished in that time spent together.  The design of the retreat really does keep things moving…from talks to smaller sharing groups, all kinds of video presentations along the way, songs to be sung, and fellowship around some meals. 
  • Grace Lutheran Church is already involved in several important climate care projects and networks.  Other congregations can and do look to your congregation as a model for climate action.  The Come Follow Me Retreat will offer a way to make your good work even better by encouraging more members to become involved.  Climate care needs to be more than “a program of the church”.  It needs everybody on board!  It needs the Body of Christ gathered at Grace Church to go out into the community and make a difference. 
  • How will we experience being the Body of Christ on the retreat?  First, we will listen for Christ’s call to follow him.  Then, throughout the weekend, we will listen for what Christ may be saying to us especially in the parables that he shared with those first followers.  We will break bread together remembering that Christ is with us at the table.   The heart of the retreat is the small group sharing times.  These are not times to discuss religion but times to discuss real life concerns.  For example, one question for a sharing session is “Can you think of something you value (even love) that is vanishing as a result of climate change?”
  • As the retreat continues through the weekend we will explore the many ways that people can make a difference as we explore Christian practices that help us express Christ’s ongoing incarnational ministry. Finally, as we look to the challenge of climate care for the future we may be sure (as the theme song of the retreat suggests)… “Roads may get dirty and seas may get rough, You may get weary, the road may get tough, But I  (Christ) will be there and I am enough, Put all your trust in me.” Christ will be with us in this crazy world we live in.  And if we get lost along the way Christ will be there to recall us back to the journey, back to the Body of Christ. 

I have promised any pastor who offers the Come Follow Me Retreat that I will come to the first retreat and help.  I look forward to co-leading the Come Follow Me Retreat with Pastor Steve.

I hope to meet you on the retreat.
Dave Bushnell

Lenten Walking Group

This week our journey focuses on the spiritual habit of Prayer.  Matthew 6:7-13 and Philippians 4:6

Consider these question on prayer…

  • Is the Lord’s Prayer something you recite from memory or does it have meaning for you?
  • What are you regularly praying for?
  • Why do we tend to put our priorities before God’s when we pray?
  • How can we better align our priorities with God’s priorities?
  • What are you most reluctant to pray?  Why?
  • What temptations do you struggle with?
  • Who is helping you with these battles and how are they helping?

If you try to structure your life around God but do not take the time to talk with Him, it will be impossible to keep your life focused on God.
The Lenten season is the perfect time to lengthen our daily conversation with God.  Make it your goal to spend more time in prayer this week. Invite a friend and join us at 2:00 PM on Sunday, March 13, 2022 at the pavilion in Buchanan Park as we continue our series on making room for the things that matter – Five Spiritual Habits for Lent and Life.
To confirm your participation please call or text Philip Supeck at 717.725.3429. 

Adult Sunday School 

Sundays in Lent at 9:00 a.m. in Nolt Auditorium

Pastor Steve will use the Lenten Sunday School hour to conduct a new and updated version of his “Discovery Class” – Surprises and Insights from Scripture, Tradition, and Lutheranism and our Ministry at Grace. Pastor Steve will use the Lenten Sunday School hour to conduct a new and updated version of his “Discovery Class” – Surprises and Insights from Scripture, Tradition, and Lutheranism and our Ministry at Grace. 

With Pastor Steve’s guidance, participants will deepen their knowledge of the Bible, the long tradition of Christian faith, our “home-turf” Lutheran Confessions, and understand how all these undergird our ministry priorities at Grace Church and in the neighborhood. 

March 13, 2022 (2ndSunday in Lent, Year C)

Psalm 27:1 –The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

As the news media, ad execs, and politicians know well, fear is the great motivator of people, but a negative one. Trusting in God’s power and providence, steward/disciples tap into a better source of motivation.

Creation Care

We are still collecting caps for the Earth Savers Club at Central York High School. If you would like to help—drop off your clean/label free caps to the church office! Thank you for helping to protect our planet!

Choosing kindness when things are unpredictable can help buffer the challenges we face navigating the unknown. It can also help us stay the course when change is just around the corner. Read more here

Our Grace Family