Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Marshfield, WI

August Newsletter

“All the king’s servants and the people of the king’s provinces know that if any man or woman goes to the king inside the inner court without being called, there is but one law—to be put to death, except the one to whom the king holds out the golden scepter so that he may live…” Esther 4:11

To come into the presence of a king, let alone THE King, is no small thing.  Esther’s point above is this, “Ask anyone who is alive, and they will tell you that you cannot just come into the King’s presence without being called by Him.  That is a death sentence to approach the king without his permission.”
You cannot do whatever you want in the presence of a king.  You cannot come when you want, you cannot leave when you want.  You cannot even talk without permission.  All is said and done at the pleasure of the King.  It is on His terms that everything is done.  That is what is meant when we say that Jesus Christ is Lord as well.  Everything is done by his pleasure.  Imagine something so rude as to walk away and leave before the King dismisses you or to interrupt when the King is speaking!  Even in our society, these thoughts make us cringe.
But Esther makes a good point above that I will flesh out: You have to be called to come.

No one can dare come, act, speak, or do anything without the consent and will of the King.  Hopefully by now you realize that I am speaking of God himself.  Thanks be to God though, as St. Peter makes point of in his first letter: “After you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”    

You have been called by Christ.  After all, You are baptized!  And your lives are based upon his good gifts and grace.  And just like how it was mentioned above, your lives are not your own anymore.  You live by the pleasure of your Good King who has been crucified for you, who bled for you, who died for you.  You have been purchased and bought by the blood of Christ.
When we worship, this theology of Lordship is enacted throughout the service.  When you see me bow when I approach or leave the altar, I am making reverence to the King who sits upon the altar.  When you come for service, it is because you have answered the Lord’s summons to come. (Do not be like those in our Lord’s parable in Luke 14 who made excuses to not come and were thus found not worthy to come to the feast!) When you approach the altar, it is done so because we have a gracious and loving Lord!  When you depart, it is because the Lord has given you his blessing.  Who can depart knowing your King’s approval!

So as a servant of Christ our King, hear this proclamation:

King Jesus has invited you into the life of His Church.  His service and wedding banquet is every Thursday at 6:30pm and every Sunday at 9:00am.  The King is also teaching us through his Word which is listed in the various decrees below.  The treasures to be gained by Christ’s good hand are vast and it is a summons that only a fool would ignore to his/her detriment!  So come one and come all!  You are being called by the Lord Jesus Christ through His Word!  More details below:
Fall Ministries
We have arrived at that time of the year where we reinvigorate ourselves into God’s Word.  This summer has been crazy and has flown by.  Many unexpected twists and opportunities for rest were had which I was thankful to God for.  Now is the time to make priorities into God’s Word.  The following are opportunities to be connected to Christ and to His People:  

 Services: Thursday 6:30pm & Sunday 9:00am.
Jesus comes to serve his people in the only way Christ can, by forgiving sins and making you righteous before God.  Jesus is preparing us for his arrival and service is how we join with all the Church before him.  Our service anticipates the last day.
Sunday School: Sundays at 10:15am (Following Service)
We are happy to offer Sunday School in-person again this year. It will follow immediately after service on Sunday mornings. If you haven’t registered your children (ages 3 – 8th grade), you can do so at or pick-up a paper copy in the Narthex. Rally Day will be September 12.

Chapel: Wednesday 9:00am
An opportunity to begin the day in God’s Word and in Prayer.  This service is adapted from one of the many orders of worship.  Communion will be offered once a month.
Bible Study:  Sunday 10:30a, Monday Men’s 7:30a, Wednesday 9:30a.
Opportunities to grow into God’s Word are presented during these times.  Sunday Mornings we will continue into reading the Bible in a year.  We gather to read the Bible, ask questions and provide outlets for answers and resources.  The Men will continue to meet on Monday morning as they dig into Hebrews.  Wednesday morning we will cover the book of Acts.  There is potential for a couple of more opportunities, so stay tuned for more.

Bell/Choir: First practice is on Tuesday September 7th.
It is our hope to be getting the choir and bells going again.  They will help in our services for Reformation, Thanksgiving and with the concert in December.  Both of the bells and the choir will be in need of a few members in order to be able to conduct themselves in our services.  So their return is based upon members joining.  Contact us in the office if you are interested in joining!
Evangelism Training:
Our Evangelism Board is planning an evangelism training.  The evangelism program is called, “Everyone His Witness” and was created over the last several years by our Synod.  I have worked with this program back during its development and it is a good program. We will first be running it with Council over the next few months. If you would like to get in on the discussion, you are welcome to come to the first twenty minutes of Council meetings (second Mondays at 7pm). After we have done it with council, we will hold an event (probably early next year) for the congregation as a whole. This event will connect you with the opportunity to learn how to reach out to family, friends, coworkers, and neighbors in a way that is natural and easy to do.  More information will come later this year.
Ministry Fair: Sunday, September 12th
The ministry fair will broadcast all the events that will be coming up as well as advertise ways that you can get involved.  Our Stewardship Board helps coordinate this Ministry Fair.  This happens on the same day as Rally Day.  Look around on this weekend as we prepare to dig into our fall ministries.

Confirmation will be getting started for both years on Wednesday, September 1st.  First year students need to call and sign up to meet with me in advance as we prepare them for what confirmation will be doing.  A letter was sent out last month to all eligible children, grades 5th-7th grade.  If you have not received one, or need it sent again, give me a call at the office.  Some of our elders will be filling in to teach the 1st year confirmation class.
Our giving has slowed down over the summer months (which is the usual pattern), but we are still in the black over $3000. While we are well short of being able to afford a second Pastor, we thank God that we haven’t had to worry about paying our bills.

In July our tithe allowed us to send $850 to both KFUO and Issues, etc, which are both Lutheran radio programs, as well as the usual offering of $2500 to the North WI District. In August, the first week went to the VBS mission project, Soles for Jesus. The remaining weeks will go to Adopt-a-Seminarian, which helps support future Pastors pay for their education. Once we adopt a student, we can expect to receive regular letters from them (and possibly a visit as well!)
At our voter’s meeting in July, we had a rather lively discussion concerning the Divine Service.  How they are conducted, the length, how they are built, etc.  The conversations will certainly be continuing, and I always love discussing it.  I live to discuss and point us on where we should go because we live in a time where Christians have lost what worship is and our attitude toward it shows what we truly believe concerning worship, God’s Salvation in Christ, and our calling as the Baptized.  Expect to hear more from me over the coming months as I seek to further explain, teach, and give the gifts that Christ wants for his beloved people.  Should you desire to learn more in the meantime, please reach out to me.
If you missed our recent services, or the announcement that was made in them the last couple of weeks or are not a part of the gossip train (God bless you), then this is a good spot to note that our beloved DCE, Tammy, will be on medical leave, which began on August 9th.  Keep her in your prayers as she seeks physical healing and relief and please reach out to her and comfort her with your prayers and your care.
Tammy made a list of things that need to be taken care of just over the next 4 months.  The document is 4 pages.  Right now, we need help in a few areas, Tammy does the work of 4 people and over the next few months that need will show.  The Bethlehem Walk is coming up in a few months and we need someone to help coordinate that event.  Also, the National Youth Gathering is going to happen next summer, and someone is needed to help coordinate that.
We need people to step up, so I implore you out of the love that we share in Christ to help fill in these roles.  If you are looking for a sign, here it is.  I simply cannot pick everything up, it will break me.  If some of these things do not have someone to help coordinate and run, they just simply will not happen for the fact that we lack the manpower.  We can do this and honestly I am excited to see the opportunity that this will give for those who step up and assist, it may open your eyes to the tasks that Tammy lovingly does.  
Children’s Messages:
After Rally Day, we will be bringing back the children’s messages.  They will be held at the beginning of the service, before we dig into the service itself.  It will be an opportunity to teach kids to keep their eyes peeled on certain things in the service as well as teach them what is going on.
I find myself thankful to God through Jesus Christ our Lord for all that he gives out of his mercy and grace. What a time for Christ’s Church to live and move, and what an opportunity he has given to us that he has called us to be His people.  I love it and I also love you.  My eyes are always on the goal that is Jesus Christ and that is what I want for you to have and to see and to hold in your own hands, the joy that I have when I place the body of Christ in your hands and pray for you as I wait to give the blessing is unparalleled and I live for it each week.
God’s peace to you all in Jesus Christ our Lord!  Amen
Pastor Andrew Belt    
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