News Letter


G R A C EAmazingGrace!



D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7

“Seek, Welcome, And Serve All in Christ ”


As part of our Evening Prayer service on Wednesdays in Advent, we sing, “An angel went from God to a town called Nazareth to a woman whose name was Mary. The angel said to her, ‘Rejoice, O highly favored, for God is with you.’” Right along with Mary, Joseph, and the infant Jesus, angels have a very important place in the Christmas story. They are powerful figures in scripture, but centuries of art and popular culture have tamed them.

We see angels in three important places in the story of Christ’s birth. The first angel appears to Zechariah in the temple to tell him that his wife, Elizabeth, will have a son - who is John the Baptist (Luke 1:11). The Archangel Gabriel visits Mary to tell her that she will have a son, Jesus (Luke 1:26). Then, when Jesus is born, angels proclaim his birth to the shepherds nearby (Luke 2:10).

The angels’ actions in Luke’s gospel is right in line with angels’ primary purpose in scripture - to bring God’s messages to people. In fact, their name in Greek simply means messenger. In other circumstances, they come to the aid of humans or mete out punishment to enemies of God. Praising God is another of their functions (Ps 103:20), and as part of our communion liturgy, we join them when we sing, “Holy, Holy, Holy.”

Angels are spiritual beings. They are created by God, but not out of the same stuff as humans. Psalm 8 says humans were created “a little lower than the angels,” so it fits that they so often act as intermediaries between God and us. Angels and humans are entirely separate beings, and although it’s sometimes thought that people become angels when they die (or that they can if they’re good enough), there’s no evidence of that in scripture. We may join with the angels in praise around God’s throne (as in Revelation 7), but we remain human.

Since angels are spiritual beings, we don’t know what they look like, but artists have been depicting them as humans with wings and halos for centuries. Not only are they human, but they are the most beautiful humans the artist could imagine! Sort of the ideal person. In some cases they’ve been represented as cute, pudgy babies! These attractive angels seem unlikely since almost every time humans meet angels, the first thing the angels say is, “Don’t be afraid!” Scripture doesn’t provide detailed (or even consistent) descriptions of angels. Cherubim, one class of angels, are always described with wings, but they may have one, two, or four faces! Not all of the faces are human, either. The face may be that of cattle, a lion, or an eagle! (Ezek. 10:14) The seraphim (another class of angels) are described in Isaiah’s opening vision. They are described as having six wings, and one translation of their name is “fiery serpent”! Hardly cute!

Keep an eye out for the angels this Advent and Christmas. We’ll see many winged human figures, I’m sure. But also be aware of whoever or whatever may be bringing you a message from God, because that is an angel’s job.

Have a blessed Advent and Christmas,

Pr. Chris

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D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


The Green Corner

Sponsored by the Green Team

Green Your Holiday Meals (EarthShare)

Americans spend billions celebrating Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year's Eve. Wouldn’t you like that money to go back into your local economy? Here’s how you can buy locally, save some time, and give some love back to the environment during the holidays.

Grow and Bake from Scratch. Start an all-season garden in your yard. Produce like sweet potatoes, rhu- barb, and pumpkins are in season from late-fall to early-winter in most of the country. Check out these or- ganic pumpkin pie and rhubarb pie recipes. They're tasty, healthy and fun for the whole family to prep and bake.

Shop at a Winter Farmer's Market. The growing popularity of winter farmer's markets means that much of your holiday meal can be found locally and in season. Buying locally not only puts money back into your region’s economy, but it also reduces your carbon footprint because the food doesn't have as far to trav- el. Use the USDA's national farmer’s market directory to find a market near you. (*There is a farmer’s mar- ket in Worthington every Saturday morning throughout the year.)

Look at Labels. If you’re shopping at a regular grocery store, look for stickers and signage that tell you where your produce is from - and if it's organic - before you buy.

Decorate with Delight. Make garlands and wreaths from leftover construction paper, wild berries, fruits

and nuts. Craft homespun centerpieces from boughs and pinecones gathered in your yard. Brighten up doors and hallways with holiday greeting cards. Trade decorations with friends or family to reduce having to buy new products.

Cut Down on Waste. Opt for durable goods you can use season after season rather than throwaway plates, cups, flatware and napkins.

Get an Organic Turkey. Sadly, almost all turkeys in America are raised on factory farms under crowded conditions that involve overfeeding with the aim of producing larger birds, faster. By contrast, an organic turkey is one that is raised humanely without antibiotics. Check out LocalHarvest to find an organic turkey farm near you or consider purchasing a heritage breed.

Choose Green Spirits. A growing number of breweries and wineries are adhering to organic, environmentally-conscious practices and are working toward operating with 100% sustainable energy. Many parts of the country have local wineries that produce delicious, organic products each season. If local varieties aren't available to you, check out this green wine guide to help you make some tasty, healthy picks.

2017 ‘Making Room for Jesus’ Family Advent Retreat

Christmas planning can quickly turn from fun to frustrating. Camp Mowana is excited to offer its annual escape from the Christmas chaos. This relaxing and renewing family retreat allows time to make crafts, hike the grounds, play games and spend time with others. During the weekend, families will stay in our beautiful Fleming Falls Retreat Center with hotel style accommodations and private bathrooms. Enjoy table games with new friends and family devotions around a warm fire. Start off the Advent season at camp and make new memories with your family.

December 1-3, 2017

7:00 pm on Friday – 12:00 noon on Sunday

Mowana: $157 per person (ages 10 and up); $79 for ages 3-9; Free for ages 2 and under

Maximum cost for a family is $630

Christmas Family

We are once again supporting a family for Christmas through ISS. This year we have 3 families with a total of 12 Children and 2 pets. There are tags by the bulletin board in the fellowship area for each child as well as those for the family meals. Please help provide for those in need during this holiday season. Gifts must be brought to the church by Sunday, December 10th.

A M A Z I N G G R A C ED E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 P A G E 3

Birthdays & Anniversaries

Craft Making

Sunday, December 3rd

Come and celebrate on December 3rd


4th - Conor Gall

4th - Dwayne & Nicole Smith

Come and help make Wreaths

to give away during our

5th - Tina Gall

caroling the next couple of

6th - Kollin Byrne

weeks. We have lots to make,

26th - Rosemary Grube

so we can use all the help we



can get, both kids and adults.


























































































































































Congregational Meeting






Sunday, December 3rd






We will be discussing


to everyone who donated towards the





Thanksgiving Families. With your




our current state of


generous giving, we were able to assist




affairs, voting on new


6 families for Thanksgiving this year.





























































Advent Activities

Craft Making - Sunday, December 3rd following services

Mid-Week Advent Soup Suppers on Wednesdays, December 6, 13, & 20 at 6:30pm

Mid-Week Advent Services on Wednesdays, December 6, 13, & 20 at 7:30pm

Caroling - Sunday, December 10th at 1:00pm - Heartland and Centerburg Pointe

Gift Exchange - Sunday, December 17th following services - Pizza Lunch

Caroling - Sunday, December 17th at 1:15pm - Centerburg Place

Christmas Eve Service - Sunday, December 24th at 7:30pm

Soup Kitchen

We will be providing dessert and serving lunch at the Salvation Army in Newark on Saturday, December 9th. Service time is 11:30am-12:30pm. If you would like to help serve, you will need to let Don Grube know and plan to be there by 11:15am.

If you would like to help provide Christmas Cookies for dessert, see Sandy Bell.

The Salvation Army of Newark is located at 250 East Main Street.

Come celebrate and bring in 2018 on Sunday, December 31st beginning at 6pm. Bring games to play and snacks to share. Beverages will be provided.

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D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Southern Ohio Synod Lay School of Theology


Lay School is a school for all who sit in the pew during Sunday morning worship - you, the ones next to you, the ones around you - as well as certified Lay Worship Leaders. The courses present an opportunity for you to enrich the fabric of your faith life; to gain more understanding of how God has been, and is still, at work in the lives of people of every age through his Word.

Courses are offered at two campuses, Chillicothe and Dayton, and meet one Saturday a month. Tuition Registration and workbook fee for the courses is $50.00 plus required books. Please note: Registration fee is non refundable after the first class session.

Lunch is prepared for participants – a freewill offering will be received for the meal.

Questions may be directed to the LST registrar, Nancy Hoffman by phone: 740.654.3602, or by e-mail: [put

Lay School in the subject line] or to Pr. Steve Kimpel, LST committee chair, by e-mail:

Calvary Lutheran, 74 W. Main St., Chillicothe, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The building is handicap accessible; Phone: 740.773.1044

Course: “From Survivn’ to Thrivin’” Dates: February 10; March 10; April 14; May 12, 2018

Course Description: In this course, we will explore how congregations can make the shift from survival mode to being an active, thriving com- munity of faith. We will be talking about reconnecting with God’s mission, rediscovering the congregation’s purpose in that mission, rerooting and re-engaging with our communities, and reclaiming evangelism in a Lutheran key.

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 901 E. Stroop Rd, Kettering, OH, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The building is handicap accessible; Phone: 937-298-0136

Course: “Reading the Gospels”

Dates: February 17; March 17; April 21; May 19, 2018

Course Description: How can we read the Gospels so that we can more faithfully live our lives in conformity to the Gospel of Jesus Christ? What are the methods and strategies for reading the Gospels so that we can understand them in their original context? What are the methods and strategies for the reading of the Gospels so that we can hear them speaking to us today in our world? These are the three questions which this course seeks to explore. The goal of this course is to equip and empower students to be knowledgeable readers and doers of the Gospel.




Monica R


Carol Gall

Family of Kerry Mintier






Justin Pettit




Family of Louise Gerkins






Jim Gilbert

Richard Pitzer






Stan Popp




Amy Grube




Catherine Baker


Dennis Pyle Jr




Jeff Grube




Bree Cass


Dennis Pyle Sr




Mary Louise Hutson



John L

Laura Clevenger & Baby Paul

Connie Reynolds



Teresa Kramer




Jeanette Dial


Laura Webb

















Worship Assistants















Panna Flower

Deb Stewart

Debbie Chooljian

Sandy Bell


Don & Rosemary Grube



Sophie Dunlap

Deb Stewart

Dean Chooljian

Don Grube


Rosemary Grube




Don Grube

Panna Flower

Sophie Dunlap

Deb Stewart

Sandy Bell




Panna Flower

Rosemary Grube

Deb Stewart

Don Grube






Sandy Bell

Angie Martin

Becky Fichtelman

Julie Barnosky

Sandy Bell




Julie Barnosky

Don Grube

Sandy Bell

Sandy Bell


Deb Stewart




Deb Stewart

Panna Flower

Rosemary Grube

Rosemary Grube

Don Grube



Cup Bearers

Angie Martin

Becky Fichtelman

Rosemary Grube

Deb Stewart





Julie Barnosky

Julie Barnosky

Don Grube

Panna Flower





Don Grube

Panna Flower

Becky Fichtelman

Monica Dunlap

Rosemary Grube




Monica Dunlap

Rosemary Grube

Don Grube

Panna Flower

Becky Fichtelman




D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7

P A G E 5

For my church

For Martin Luther’s bravery

For the life of Frannie Kellogg

For the life of Angie Rapalyea

For spending time with Kollin

For the confirmands

For Angie Martin’s understanding

For the life of Janette Eddy

For the life of Kerry Mintier

For ISS & all they do for the community

For smiles that we can give to each other

Living in a Broken World

By Bishop Eaton

We will be celebrating the following baptisms in our weekly prayers this month:

5th - Sandy Bell 27th - Conor Gall

As I write this the Gulf Coast and Florida are starting the long recovery after hurricanes Harvey and Irma; Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are mostly without electricity and running low on water, food, medicine and gasoline after Hurricane Maria. All of us are reeling from the horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas. There are no words. We are stunned almost to the point of numbness.

We try to make sense out of the incomprehensible. It’s climate change. It’s not climate change. We need more stringent gun control. We need to protect the Second Amendment. The federal government doesn’t do enough. The ocal government doesn’t do enough. Soon we’re talking at each other, not to each other.

Natural disasters feel chaotic and capricious. The weather service has gotten pretty sophisticated in predicting paths of hurricanes but is not completely accurate. Tornadoes strike with little warning. Is this just the way of the natural world, or is God visiting judgment upon us? There is human involvement that can make natural disasters more damaging.

The youth group in the last parish I served went on a work-week each summer. We did cleanup and rebuilding after tornadoes, floods and hurricanes in partnership with Lutheran Disaster Response and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. I guarantee that it was the poor whose homes were in the floodplain, who did not have the resources to rebuild and had to depend on volunteer labor.

Evil perpetrated by human beings is a great mystery. How can a good and just God allow evil? Why would a man open fire on concertgoers, killing 59 and wounding more than 500? Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do good things happen to bad people? There have been various theodicies trying to make sense of this throughout human existence. I confess to you that I have no conclusive answer to these questions, except that we live in a broken world.

Paul wrote: “The creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now …” (Romans 8:21-22). Though God created the heavens and the earth and declared the creation good, this is no longer a perfect world.

Paul also wrote: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4-7).

Both of Paul’s assertions are true. We live in a broken world - natural and human made, marred by human sin - and we rejoice in the Lord who is near and guards us with God’s peace.

Bishop Terry Brandt of the Eastern North Dakota Synod reminded us of this truth and this tension in his sermon to the Conference of Bishops the morning after the Las Vegas shooting. And he reminded us that when Paul was doing all that rejoicing, he was doing it from prison, awaiting execution after already enduring beatings, shipwreck, hunger and thirst. I wouldn’t describe Paul as perky, but the joy he found in Jesus made him able to live in hope and believe in life even in the face of despair and death.

So, dear church, we pray and lament and trust and hope. We stake our lives on the belief that God’s life, hope and love are not platitudes, but the truth. We are moved to action and reconciliation. And when the next disaster or massacre happens, we do not lose hope because the Crucified One has been raised from the dead.

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D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7









Grace Lutheran Church








182 W. Houck St.








P.O. Box 876








Centerburg, OH 43011

Worship with Holy Communion





(740) 625-6341



& Children’s Church for all ages












10:30am every Sunday








































Making Room for Jesus Advent Retreat









@ Camp Mowana

































Advent Soup



Salvation Army






Supper 6:30pm









Advent Service
























Craft Making




































Gifts Due for



Advent Soup






the Christmas



Supper 6:30pm


















Advent Service










































Pointe 2:00pm




































Info Due



Outreach Mtg















Gift Exchange &









Pizza Party



Advent Soup









Supper 6:30pm






Caroling @



Advent Service















Place @ 1:15pm



























Christmas Eve









Service 7:30pm



























New Year’s Eve









Party 6pm