Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! This is a great comfort in these days of turmoil and uncertainty, affliction and fear. It is what Christians have been given and what the rest of the world does not yet know. So, take heart! The sun still rose in the east. God is still the Almighty Maker of heaven and earth and of all things visible and invisible. Jesus the Christ still came to earth and was born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, died and was buried. And on the third day He rose from the dead, ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty. He is our Savior and Redeemer! And through Him all things were made and by Him all things are sustained. That means you and me.
In this period of time in which we are advised, for the safety of the body of Christ the Church, that we should not gather in numbers greater than 10, there are still many things we can do and are being done:
- The church is not closed. There may be shorter office hours, but probably not noticeable to you. If you have a need, call!
- Services will continue to be conducted and video of them placed on the Redeemer website.
- Greater contact will be made to all of you through phone calls and emails. Please be part of that by starting your own prayer chains and prayer groups.
- Begin worship as a family at home, in the living room or around the table. Use your Lenten devotionals, Portals of Prayer, or Luther’s Small Catechism.
- Small groups of 10 or less can continue to gather at church, but remember to use good judgment and if you are at risk, or have symptoms of the cold, stay home.
- Communion can be still be administered, one family at a time, at our church or in your home. Please call for a schedule.
- Don’t forget that the church still needs resources to serve people in time of need and to keep these activities going. So please, keep your offerings coming by mail or drop them off at the church
James 5:13-16 – Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
1. Redeemer Website: https://redeemer-lutheran.net/
a. Video services: https://redeemer-lutheran.net/video-services/
2. 1517.org (for articles, podcasts, and devotions): https://www.1517.org/
3. Treasury of Daily Prayer: https://www.amazon.com/Treasury-Daily-Prayer-Concordia-Publishing/dp/0758615140/
4. Book of Concord: https://www.bookofconcord.org/
5. Higher Things: https://higherthings.org/
May the peace that passes all understanding guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus!
James Toma, Pastor
Redeemer Lutheran Church
16351 Springdale Street
Huntington Beach, CA 92649
714-846-6330 (office), 714-676-6190 (cell)