First Reading: Genesis 12:1-4a The blessing of God upon Abram Psalm: Psalm 121 It is the LORD who watches over you. (Ps. 121:5) Second Reading: Romans 4:1-5, 13-17 The promise to those who share Abraham's faith Gospel: John 3:1-17 The mission of Christ: to save the world Liturgical Color: Purple
First Reading: 2 Samuel 7:4, 8-16 The LORD will make a house for David, an everlasting kingdom Psalm: Psalm 89:1-29 Your steadfast love, O LORD, is established forever. (Ps. 89:2) Second Reading: Romans 4:13-18 The descendants of Abraham inherit not through the law, but through faith Gospel: Matthew 1:16, 18-21, 24a An angel tells Joseph that Mary's child will be the Savior Liturgical Color: White
Gregory the Great, Bishop of Rome, died 604 Wednesday, March 12
Born into wealth and power, Gregory was for a time the chief administrator of the city of Rome. Giving this up for a life in the church, he was elected pope in 590. He influenced public worship through the establishment of a lectionary and prayers to correlate with the readings. Gregorian chant is named in his honor.
Patrick, bishop, missionary to Ireland, died 461 Monday, March 17
A native of Britain, Patrick was kidnapped by pirates at age sixteen and sold into slavery in Ireland. After a few years, he escaped, returned home, and entered the ministry. Returning to Ireland, he successfully served as a bishop and missionary there.
Welcome to Midland Lutheran Church, a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Please join us each Sunday morning at 9:15 a.m. for Christian Education followed by our Worship / Holy Communion Service at 10:30 a.m.
Almighty and ever-living God, you hate nothing you have made, and you forgive the sins of all who are penitent. Create in us new and honest hearts, so that, truly repenting of our sins, we may receive from you, the God of all mercy, full pardon and forgiveness through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
[Jesus said to the disciples,] "Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your Father in heaven." (Matthew 6:1-6 , Matthew 6:16-21 )
Just three days ago, we were on top of a mountain. With Peter, James, John. We'd seen Moses and Jesus and Elijah, standing there, talking together. Then, we were swallowed up by the cloud. We heard the voice. And, we fell on our faces. Overcome. Afraid. When we looked, again, there was no one. "No one... except Jesus himself... alone..."
Now, seventy-two hours later, it's as if none of that, even, happened. We look. But this time, we're surrounded... buried... by the duty... and the responsibility... and the obligation... and the reward... Now, it's all about giving alms and saying prayers and fasting and storing up treasure. We call it discipline. But there's none of the grace. None of the mercy. None of the love. We look. But Jesus is nowhere to be seen.
Maybe, before we get too far... before we become too involved... maybe, even if just for a moment... we need to go back up the mountain and remember. Remember how the voice sounded... how the dirt felt... how the dust tasted... Remember, most of all, opening our eyes and seeing only Jesus! No one! Except Jesus himself! Alone! Yes, we remember we are dust. But, even, more, we remember - with the dust - we are marked with the cross of Christ... again... forever...