• ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
    ++ Seventh Sunday of Easter ++ Weekend of May 16th, 2021 ++

    The Blessing of Family

    According to recent CDC data, the U.S. birth rate feel 4% last year (https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-birth-rate-falls-lowest-point-more-century-n1266349), leaving the U.S. birth rate at its lowest on record.


    In a country that recently celebrated Mother's Day, we have increasingly less mothers! Experts have their guesses why, and we might have some guesses too. But rather than speculate on those here, I'd like instead to a few Bible passages on the blessings of children. Even though Mother's Day is not a Christian holiday, Christians are well-equipped to celebrate it.


    God is the one who gives the blessing of children, and therefore, motherhood, as he sees fit. Psalm 113:9 says, "He is the one who settles the barren woman in her home as a joyful mother of children. Praise the LORD." 1 Samuel 1:5 tells us, "The LORD had kept Hannah from having children," and then, in response to the prayer of Hannah and Eli the priest, "The LORD remembered her. So Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son." Indeed, far better than a large financial inheritance, "children are a heritage from the LORD. The fruit of the womb is a reward from him" (Psalm 127:3).


    When God leads children to obey their parents and learn from them, this brings such joy. "Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old... Your father and your mother will find joy, and she who gave birth to you will celebrate" (Proverbs 22:22, 25). When parents pass on their faith to their children, that joy is doubled. Paul wrote to Timothy, "I remember your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am convinced that it also lives in you (2 Timothy 1:5)."


    Children are an undeserved blessing from the Lord, just as being a father or mother is. The One who adopted us as his own children purely out of undeserved love, chooses to entrust these added blessings to us when it pleases him. As mothers and fathers and as members of a congregation who have been shown God's undeserved love, let's continue to cherish the blessing of children among us in the most important way: by working together as the people of God to bring them up the discipline and instruction of the Lord.


    As the Large Catechism says, "Children should be constantly urged and moved to honor God's name and to have it always upon their lips for everything that may happen to them or come to their notice [Ps 8:2; 34:1; Matt 21:16; Heb 13:15]."


    Children, too, need to come to know that they are sinners saved by grace, created to glorify God. Whether you have children of your own or not, continue to show the world the blessing of children by honoring God's design for marriage and family, and by praying for and supporting our school, teachers, our Pregnancy Care Center, and the mothers and fathers among us.


    Mother's Day prayer from "There's a Prayer for That," Northwestern Publishing House:


    Dear Lord, I thank you for the gift of life you granted me through my mother. I also thank you for the time and love she has given me during my life. Bless mothers everywhere with love, patience, understanding, and strength to carry out their special work. Lead children everywhere to be thankful for their mothers. Keep families everywhere faithful to your Word. I pray this for Jesus' sake. Amen.



    + Special Ascension Service this Thursday at 6:30+



    + General Announcments +


    -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30, with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

    -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.


    -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am can be found here. (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to prepare your heart for the hymns/readings (or find bulletin here)


    -- The Anniversary Bible Class continues between services on Sunday. It's easy to join this Bible Study at any time since each week is a standalone study on features in our sanctuary. Handouts can also be found online.


    -- Midweek Bible studies continue. The 10am Bible Study (AT SCHOOL!) will continue on Civil Government. The 7pm Bible Study (at school) will continue on selected chapters of Jeremiah. To join either study online, download the Zoom app, and go to meeting ID: 813 9931 8006, passcode: 011081. Or click: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81399318006?pwd=ZW5JR3BDL3d1RzNTZzNTZDlreEVrZz09


    -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.


    -- We're looking at a potential youth group get together next Friday, May 21st, at the school, involving pizza, a Bible study, and some outdoor games. Stay tuned!


    --In just over a month, on June 13, we will celebrate the centennial of the dedication of our church building with a special church service and a church picnic.


    We do ask that you RSVP by June 1 for the picnic, so that the committee can order the correct amount of food. There are sign-up sheets on the table in the church entryway and at the school. You can also call the office to let us know how many in your family will attend.


    God bless you as you serve him!


    +++

    1. ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
      ++ Special Anniversary Service: The Altar (Holy Communion) ++ Weekend of May 9th, 2021

      An interesting anniversary

      In a year of celebrating anniversaries, this past weekend we had one that we didn't talk about. It was our 1 year "worship-versary!" About one year ago, we resumed public worship after we decided to have a brief pause to get a handle on what we were facing. Our first services last May had around 30 on Saturday and 60 on Sunday.


      We thank God that since then he has allowed us to gather for worship with just over 15,000 people over the past year without incident (as far as we know). We thank God that he has given us the ability to livestream (and upgrade the livestream) in order to bring God's means of grace to those for whom gathering in church was not possible. We have considered, "how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching (Hebrews 10:24-25)." Because the Day is approaching, and because of the greatest risks we face--our sinful flesh, the world, and the prowling lion of the devil--we have followed Paul's encouragement to the body of Christ: "Be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:18-19).


      In areas where Christians can make different decisions and judgments, we have worked to "stop passing judgment on one another (Romans 14:13)," asking each Christian to consider their situation and conscience in the light of God's Word (Romans 14:22). We have said, "God bless you in your decision," as we have worked through the external "messyness" that may come when we remember that the "kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval" (Romans 14:17-18).


      In times of loss or grief, we have been comforted by the Gospel. In times of uncertainty, we have been blessed by the rock-solid certainty of God's Word. In times of sinfulness and selfishness, we have repented of our wicked hearts, and we have also been forgiven by God's grace and given new hearts filled with his selfless love. In the light of that grace, we have worked to "get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you" (Ephesians 4:31-32).


      Almost every Sunday, I pray before the service, "Well, Lord, there are a lot of people here to worship you. If it is your will, protect us from spreading any infection. And if not, then use sickness to discipline us and help us grow in faith and grow closer together as a church family. Either way, help us set aside all earthly worries for this next hour and be fed by the gospel today." As we have said since the beginning, God has never promised that you can't get physically sick at church, but so far, God has seen fit to answer that prayer (and yours!) by preserving us from spreading infection according to his incredible mercy and power. We thank and praise him!


      We move forward now as the body of Christ. Every one of us is a flawed sinner, yet we move forward forgiven and made holy in God's sight through Jesus. See each other that way even as we might differ in opinions over the next year as well. Remain united through your connection to the Vine! Above all, continue to trust in God, knowing that he is our shelter from everything that will truly harm us.


      Whether we have an outbreak of disease on Sunday, or whether we have another Sunday pass without incident, we know that we cannot be harmed. Whether we live or whether we die, we are safe through faith in the One who has delivered us from evil through his life, death, and resurrection. He holds our times in our hands, works all things for the good of those who love him, and will ultimately deliver us from this evil world to our heavenly home. Truly:


      Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High, will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

      I will say of the LORD, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'

      Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare and from the deadly pestilence.

      He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge;

      his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.


      You will not fear the terror of night,

      nor the arrow that flies by day,

      nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,

      nor the plague that destroys at midday...


      If you say, 'The LORD is my refuge,' and you make the Most High your dwelling,

      no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent.

      For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways..."


      (Psalm 91)



      + General Worship Details +


      -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30, with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

      -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.


      -- Thank you to the Anniversary Worship Committee for putting together the service for this weekend! --


      -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am can be found here. (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to prepare your heart for the hymns/readings (or find bulletin here)


      -- Service Protocol Adjustments: As we continue to work our way back to normal, the elders have decided to resume ushers handing out bulletins. The CDC suggests "each contact with a contaminated surface has a less than a 1 in 10,000 chance of causing an infection (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/more/science-and-research/surface-transmission.html)." This will encourage greeting each other (which is important! The Bible is all about greeting each other, even if we don't "greet each other with a holy kiss (2 Cor 13:12)" as was customary back then). Each service is a joyous family-of-faith reunion where we can let each other know that we are glad to be around our brothers and sisters in Christ!

      Also, if you've been wondering about the communion rails, one of our elders has acquired his hospital grade 24-hour disinfecting spray, which is more effective than the wipes (approved against any virus/bacteria you can imagine), doesn't ruin the finish, and works for 24 hours. So, we don't need to worry about spreading anything via touch as referenced above, but this is an easy and non-disruptive way to hopefully put any worry at ease so you can focus on what is important: Christ's body and blood, the medicine of immortality, which protects you against any harm far more effectively than even the best disinfecting spray ever could.

      The elders will continue reviewing back to normal changes as we move forward.


      -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


      -- The Anniversary Bible Class continues between services on Sunday. It's easy to join this Bible Study at any time since each week is a standalone study on features in our sanctuary. Handouts can also be found online.


      -- Midweek Bible studies continue. The 10am Bible Study (AT SCHOOL!) will continue on Civil Government. The 7pm Bible Study (at school) will continue on selected chapters of Jeremiah. To join either study online, download the Zoom app, and go to meeting ID: 813 9931 8006, passcode: 011081. Or click: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81399318006?pwd=ZW5JR3BDL3d1RzNTZzNTZDlreEVrZz09


      -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.


      + Funeral for George Schmidt+


      -- The funeral for our dear brother in Christ, George Schmidt, will be at St. Paul's on Thursday, May 6th, at 12:00pm. Visitation will be at the church from 10-12. Keep his family in your prayers!


      +++

      1. published a newsletter

        ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
        5th Sunday of Easter + Confirmation Sunday Weekend of May 2nd, 2021

        The worst year in human history

        I recently read an interesting article where a historian identified, in his opinion, the worst year to be alive (https://bigthink.com/politics-current-affairs/worst-year-in-human-history).


        He chose 536 AD. It had a volcanic eruption that spouted so much ash that it left much of the world in 18 months of darkness, night and day. The darkness brought cold and drought, leading to worldwide hunger and economic devastation. The next ten years would be rounded out with the black plague killing half the Roman Empire and the empire itself collapsing.


        What do you think? Every year since the fall into sin has featured the consequences of sin, including now. Truly, because of sin "all of creation is groaning with birth pains right up until the present time" (Romans 8:22). Is 536 the worst year in human history? Could you think of others filled with more consequences of sin?


        I can't point to a year, earthly speaking, that seems worse. But I could imagine one, that by God's grace, has never happened.


        The worst possible year in human history would be a year without hope.


        It could be filled with volcanic eruptions or cozy hot springs. It could be filled with sunlight or covered in darkness. It could be a year with hunger and devastation or plenty and prosperity. But if this year did not have hope, it would be the worst year of all.


        This Sunday, we celebrate that no matter how bad the world suffers from the consequences of sin, we have hope, because we are connected to Christ (I am the vine; you are the branches, says Jesus!). We will confirm young men and women as they confess this hope and promise to remain connected to it through faithful use of the means of grace. We will gather around those means of grace and be given a foretaste of the joys of heaven--our ultimate hope. "Not only creation, but also we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we eagerly await our adoption as sons, the redemption of the body" (Romans 8:23).


        Whether it's 526 or 2021 or whatever year in between, Christians have hope. Even when the "soil" of this world would cause a spiritual drought, through repentance and faith in his promises the Vine continues to cultivate us and grow the fruit of that hope in us. And so, among the changes and challenges of every year in a sinful world, we pray in our prayer of the day for this Sunday:


        "O God, you form the minds of your faithful people into a single will. Make us love what you command and desire what you promise, that among the many changes of this world, our hearts may ever yearn for the lasting joys of heaven; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever." Amen.



        + General Worship Details +


        -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30, with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between. Confirmation will be in the 10:30 service!

        -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.


        -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am can be found here. (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to prepare your heart for the hymns/readings (or find bulletin here)


        -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


        -- The Anniversary Bible Class continues between services on Sunday. It's easy to join this Bible Study at any time since each week is a standalone study on features in our sanctuary. Handouts can also be found online.


        -- Midweek Bible studies continue! The 10am Bible Study (at church) will continue on Civil Government. The 7pm Bible Study (at school) will continue on selected chapters of Jeremiah. To join either study online, download the Zoom app, and go to meeting ID: 813 9931 8006, passcode: 011081. Or click: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81399318006?pwd=ZW5JR3BDL3d1RzNTZzNTZDlreEVrZz09


        -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.



        God bless you as you serve Him!



        +++

        1. published a newsletter

          ReadSt. Paul's Update
          Funeral Announcement +Evelyn Lois Jeanette Ryder+

          Our dear sister in Christ, Evelyn Ryder, was called to her eternal home yesterday. Even as we mourn, we rejoice in the promises God made to Evelyn in her baptism, promises she firmly believed. Her body, sanctified by the Holy Spirit, now rests until the last day. Her soul, purchased by the blood of Christ, rejoices in the loving presence of her Father.


          The funeral will take place at St. Paul's this Saturday, April 24th, at noon, with visitation from 11-noon. All are welcome to gather around Christ's promises, receive comfort from God's Word, and to comfort the family.


          Visitation will also take place on Friday, April 23rd, from 2-8pm at Case Funeral Home in Saginaw, MI.


          The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

          He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:

          he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul:

          he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

          Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,

          I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;

          thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

          Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:

          thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

          Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:

          and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.


          Psalm 23

          1. published a newsletter

            ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
            4th Sunday of Easter - Good Shepherd Sunday Weekend of April 25th, 2021

            The Lord is my...

            How would you finish that sentence?


            The Lord is my...


            A book I have that rephrases the Psalms puts it this way:


            "The Lord is my constant companion."


            That's pretty good, I think. He is a constant companion. He is always there for us. But I think the original Psalm puts it a little better.


            Psalm 23, our Psalm for Good Shepherd Sunday, puts it this way: "The Lord is my shepherd."


            Better than any old companion, the Lord who guides us through life is our Shepherd. He does more than keep us company!


            His grace means that we shall not want. His rod and staff mean comfort. His words mean green pastures and quiet streams. His presence means that we pass through death unharmed. His guidance means we will dwell with him forevermore.


            Join us this weekend so you can finish the sentence with us: The Lord is... my Good Shepherd!



            + Arbor Day Thank you! +


            Last weekend's Arbor Day had over 30 volunteers to help beautify the school property and get some hard work done involving a big sand pile and a tunnel. Thank you!


            + Youth Group Outing +


            Last Friday's youth group outing was a lot of fun! We had 18 youths from 7th grade through high school, from several area churches. We talked about "Prayer Courage" and the courage that God gives through his promises and protection (Daniel 6), and we also had a great time eating pizza, bowling, and playing arcade games. Stay tuned for future get-togethers!


            + General Worship Details +


            -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

            -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.


            -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am can be found here. (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to prepare your heart for the hymns/readings (or find bulletin here)


            -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


            -- The Anniversary Bible Class continues between services on Sunday. It's easy to join this Bible Study at any time since each week is a standalone study on features in our sanctuary. Handouts can also be found online.


            -- Midweek Bible studies continue! The 10am Bible Study (at church) will continue on Civil Government. The 7pm Bible Study (at school) will continue on selected chapters of Jeremiah. To join either study online, download the Zoom app, and go to meeting ID: 813 9931 8006, passcode: 011081. Or click: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81399318006?pwd=ZW5JR3BDL3d1RzNTZzNTZDlreEVrZz09


            -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.



            God bless you as you serve Him!



            +++

            1. published a newsletter

              ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
              3rd Sunday of Easter Weekend of April 18th, 2021

              Remember!

              Humans are good at forgetting.


              God knows that. That's why in Deuteronomy 6 God tells the Israelites to place reminders everywhere about God and his Word, even on the doorposts of their houses. But in Isaiah 57:8, God sees that even the reminders have been shoved behind the doors instead, and so they had forgotten God. "Behind the door and doorpost you placed your memorial. Yes, you deserted me..."


              Forgetting God and his word is idolatry. And we are all guilty of it. Sure, I may not have bowed down to a golden calf, but any time God and his word are set behind the doorposts of my life and memory, I've essentially forgotten God as he truly is: my highest good.


              Humans are good at forgetting. But God is good at reminding.


              Through his word, God constantly reminds us that forgetting him means we are leaving behind the only one who can bring us good. God often uses trouble in this life to show us forgetfulness, and the little idols it brings into our lives, can never help us. God can even act like he has forgotten us, to show us how helpless we are when we forget him and focus on other things: "When you cry out for help, let your collections of idols deliver you. But the wind will blow them all away (Isaiah 57:13)."


              But when we are almost blown away with our little idols by the winds of forgetfulness, God also gives us constant reminders that he is a God who never forgets the weak, the helpless, yes, even the forgetful. He is the almighty God who deserves a perfect life lived for him as a memorial, and yet he is also the almighty God who stoops to forgive those who fail to memorialize him perfectly. "I dwell in a high and holy place, yet also with the one who is crushed and lowly in spirit, in order to revive the spirit of those who have been pushed down, and to revive the hearts of those who have been crushed (Isaiah 57:15)."


              A couple weeks ago we celebrated Holy Week & Easter. Don't forget the truths that were proclaimed! Write them down, put them on your doorposts, engrave them in your heart and soul and mind. Gather together with other Christians in worship to stave off the forgetfulness and be reminded by the Holy Spirit of the unforgettable truths that are the bedrock of your faith and life:


              Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again!



              + Thank you! +


              After a week break after Easter, I'll include in this email a huge THANK YOU to all who participated in Easter worship preparation, invitation, and worship. What blessings God showered on us as He served us with the gospel message and graciously received our praise and thanks!


              Another thank you to the fledgling men's group who helped prepare and serve the breakfast burritos--they were a hit! And thank you to those who donated over $250 for the youth group! The men's group is looking at more get-togethers in the near future (possibly involving more food...).


              + Youth Group this Friday+


              We'll have our first outing THIS FRIDAY at 5pm at Stardust Entertainment Center on Bay Road. We get to support a wonderful local business and enjoy Christian friendship and support which is so important right now.


              We'll begin in a reserved room with a short Bible study, and continue with games and fun until 7pm (all free--though parents can feel free to chip in $5 to defray costs, and of course you can take advantage and have a bowling date while you wait!).


              All who consider themselves "youth," 7th grade and up, are welcome! The precautions put in place at Stardust will be followed. Please let Pastor Buelow know if you plan to bring your child/you plan to attend so he can get a headcount (call/text: 412-0458, email: pastorbuelow@stpls.org).



              + General Worship Details +


              -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

              -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.


              -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am can be found here. (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to prepare your heart for the hymns/readings (or find bulletin here)


              -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


              -- The Anniversary Bible Class continues between services on Sunday with a focus on The Cross. It's easy to join this Bible Study at any time since each week is a standalone study on features in our sanctuary. Handouts can also be found online.


              -- Midweek Bible studies resume tomorrow! The 10am Bible Study (at church) will continue on Civil Government. The 7pm Bible Study (at school) will continue on selected chapters of Jeremiah. To join the 7pm Jeremiah study online, download the Zoom app, and go to meeting ID: 813 9931 8006, passcode: 011081. Or click: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81399318006?pwd=ZW5JR3BDL3d1RzNTZzNTZDlreEVrZz09


              -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.



              God bless you as you serve Him!



              +++

              1. published a newsletter

                ReadHoly Week Update
                Week of March 28th (Palm Sunday) to April 4th (Festival of Jesus' Resurrection)

                The Tomb is Empty... Really!

                One of the hymns in the new hymnal is called, "The Tomb is Empty." One of the reasons I enjoy the hymn is that the end of first phrase is always repeated. "The Tomb is Empty, is empty!" It's as if we need convincing. "No, really, the tomb is empty! It's empty!"


                We do need convincing, don't we? We're not so different from Jesus' followers on the first Easter. They, like us, lives in a world that seems to repeat over and over, "The tomb is coming, is coming! Death is scary, is scary!"


                So the disciples on that first Easter received multiple announcements in multiple ways to reveal the impossible: the tomb really was empty! Death lost, and Jesus won.


                This week, we have many ways to hear this message repeated and to rejoice in the message that gives us hope: Christ died for our sins, and Christ rose because we have been declared free from sin. Death has been swallowed up in victory! Through faith in Christ, we, too, will rise to everlasting life!


                Gather this week for the antidote to the hopeless drumbeat of messages of sin, death, the devil, and the world. Gather again and again, on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter, because--really--who can hear it repeated enough? Who can take for granted this opportunity we have to celebrate in this special way (which we didn't have last year!)? I can't wait, can't wait!


                The tomb is empty, is empty!

                Come and meet the risen Christ our Lord

                in whom we have, we have

                our victory,

                in whom is life restored.



                + Holy Week Worship +



                Maundy Thursday is 3:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30 (Livestream)


                Good Friday Service of Darkness is at 1:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30 (Livestream)


                Easter Sunrise at 7am (Livestreamed) is open to the congregation as well as school families. Since that service will be more crowded, please plan ahead to attend one of the other services if this would be more comfortable for you and your family.


                A completely different Easter Festival service with communion will be held at 9 & 10:30am. The 9am service will be mask-required. The 10:30 will be livestreamed. Since the celebration of the resurrection is the highest festival of the Christian Church year, we will celebrate in a special way that the risen Lord is among us and gives us his immortality in his Supper.


                Between Easter services there will be an Easter Breakfast at the school (8:15-9:45). The menu will be breakfast burritos. Men will assemble the burritos the day before and they will be available for "grab and go" in the main school hallway or for "grab and sit" in the Cafeteria if you're comfortable. Please contact Pastor Buelow or Ryan Busman if you're willing to help day before (10am) and/or day of. Two hopeful side-effects of the breakfast will be:

                1) Starting a St. Paul's men's group that gets together monthly for projects/fellowship/Bible study

                2) The freewill offering will be for restarting a St. Paul's/Saginaw area youth group.



                *** There's still time to invite friends, coworkers, and family. Pray that their eyes may be enlightened through the gospel to see true hope! ***




                +++

                1. published a newsletter

                  ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
                  Palm Sunday Weekend of March 28, 2021

                  "All Glory!"--or at least as much as we can bring

                  Our opening hymn on Sunday begins with the line, "All glory, laud (praise), and honor to you, Redeemer King." ALL glory, laud and honor. Wow. That's a lot of glory, laud and honor! And because our Redeemer King has redeemed us and rules us with his grace, I'm very excited to gather with all of you as we try to give him ALL the glory, laud, and honor we can this Sunday.


                  After the opening hymn, we will sing "The King of Glory Comes" in place of Psalm 24, asking God to open the gates before him--that is, to open our hearts--and let the King of glory enter in as he did on Jerusalem on Palm Sunday.


                  For the hymn of the day, we will sing, "Ride on, ride on in majesty," asking Jesus to continue his ride not just into Jerusalem that day, but to the cross to save us, and then to the right hand of God to rule for us.


                  Our third hymn continues the theme, singing, "All praise be yours," adding to the praise by paraphrasing Philippians 2:5-11, describing all the ways Jesus humbled himself to save us and so became the exalted Lord (we'll even allow ourselves to sing an Alleluia in a small preview of Easter, even though we normally don't during the more muted praise of Lent).


                  Finally, we'll close with "Hosanna, Loud Hosanna," trying to give the loudest praise yet by recapping the wondrous events of Palm Sunday and asking God to help us praise him not just in church, but with all our heart, life and voice now and forever.


                  Between the liturgy, the readings, the preaching and the hymns, that's ALL the glory, laud and honor we'll be able to fit in one short hour this Sunday. But the wonderful truth of Palm Sunday, and of Holy Week to follow, is that ALL glory, laud and honor belongs to Jesus eternally because of what he has done. What a privilege to join in the song!


                  "Hosanna in the highest!" That ancient song we sing,

                  For Christ is our Redeemer, The LORD of heav'n, our King.

                  Oh, may we ever praise him With heart and life and voice

                  And in his royal presence Eternally rejoice.


                  Prayer of the Day for Sunday:

                  We praise you, O God, for the great acts of love by which you redeemed us through your Son, Jesus Christ. As he was acclaimed by those who scattered their garments and branches of palm in his path, so may we always hail him as our King and follow him with perfect confidence; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.



                  + Holy Week Worship +


                  Easter Sunrise at 7am (Livestreamed) is open to the congregation as well as school families. Since that service will be more crowded, please plan ahead to attend one of the other services if this would be more comfortable for you and your family.


                  A completely different Easter Festival service with communion will be held at 9 & 10:30am. The 9am service will be mask-required. The 10:30 will be livestreamed. Since the celebration of the resurrection is the highest festival of the Christian Church year, we will celebrate in a special way that the risen Lord is among us and gives us his immortality in his Supper.


                  Between Easter services there will be an Easter Breakfast at the school (8:15-9:45). The menu will be breakfast burritos. Men will assemble the burritos the day before and they will be available for "grab and go" in the main school hallway or for "grab and sit" in the Cafeteria if you're comfortable. Please contact Pastor Buelow or Ryan Busman if you're willing to help day before and/or day of. Two hopeful side-effects of the breakfast will be:

                  1) Starting a St. Paul's men's group that gets together monthly for projects/fellowship/Bible study

                  2) The freewill offering will be for restarting a St. Paul's/Saginaw area youth group.


                  Maundy Thursday is 3:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30 (Livestream)


                  Good Friday Service of Darkness is at 1:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30 (Livestream)


                  *** Flyers with livestream information and a short explanation of the resurrection will be available on Sunday for sharing and inviting!***




                  + General Worship Details +


                  -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

                  -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.

                  -- Midweek Lent Worship is at 3:30 & 6:30 (both mask-optional), 6:30 livestreamed. This final week we welcome Pastor Scott Muske of St. John's, Zilwaukee, and St. Matthew's, Freeland, as our guest preacher under the theme: Hands of the Passion--Hands of Betrayal (Judas).


                  -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am and the Midweek 6:30pm services can be found here (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to get the hymns and readings ready (or find bulletin here)


                  -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


                  -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.



                  God bless you as you serve Him!


                  +++

                  1. ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
                    5th Sunday in Lent Weekend of March 21, 2021

                    Not Unto Us

                    Do you know what picture has the most "likes" on the website Instagram?


                    It used to be a picture of the celebrity Kylie Jenner, with a record 18 million likes. But someone didn't want her to have all the glory anymore, so they decided to post another picture as a challenge. They wanted to see if this picture could get more likes than any human on earth.


                    What was the picture of? An egg. And it smashed the record (without breaking the egg).


                    A simple egg is the most beloved picture on the internet today with 54,910,996 people "liking" it. Kylie Jenner was so unhappy with this humiliating defeat that she made a video of her cracking an egg. How humbling! Even the internet glory of the most famous person on Instagram paled in comparison to the internet glory of a lowly egg.


                    And guess who made the egg?


                    Our Psalm this week begins, "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us but to your name be the glory" (Psalm 115:1).


                    All the "likes" in the world, all the earthly glory any of us (or any egg) could ever have, pale in comparison to the glory of the LORD. His glory is so record-setting that he doesn't need the approval of a thumbs up on a screen to prove it. Instead, he proves his glory with something even better. "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us but to your name be the glory, because of your mercy, because of your truth."


                    Better than 54 million "likes," God is so glorious because of his mercy and truth! What could be more glorious than God's mercy to far more than 54 million people in Jesus? What is more glorious than the timeless truth of his word that will outlast every Instagram post by millenia?


                    And what could be better than turning, humbly, from our lowly glory, to praise God's glory seen in Christ that brings salvation and blessing to us?


                    "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but to your name be the glory."



                    Prayer of the Day for Sunday:

                    Eternal God and Father, help us to remember Jesus, who obeyed your will and bore the cross for our salvation that through his anguish, pain, and death we may receive forgiveness of sins and inherit eternal life; through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.



                    + Holy Week Worship +


                    At the meeting last week the Elders finalized the following details about Holy Week worship. There have been some changes.


                    Easter Sunrise at 7am (Livestreamed) is open to the congregation as well as school families. Since that service will be more crowded, please plan ahead to attend one of the other services if this would be more comfortable for you and your family.


                    A completely different Easter Festival service with communion will be held at 9 & 10:30am. The 9am service will be mask-required. The 10:30 will be livestreamed. Since the celebration of the resurrection is the highest festival of the Christian Church year, we will celebrate in a special way that the risen Lord is among us and gives us his immortality in his Supper.


                    Between Easter services there will be an Easter Breakfast at the school (8:15-9:45). The menu will be breakfast burritos. Men will assemble the burritos the day before and they will be available for "grab and go" in the main school hallway or for "grab and sit" in the Cafeteria if you're comfortable. Please contact Pastor Buelow or Ryan Busman if you're willing to help day before and/or day of. Two hopeful side-effects of the breakfast will be:

                    1) Starting a St. Paul's men's group that gets together monthly for projects/fellowship/Bible study

                    2) The freewill offering will be for restarting a St. Paul's/Saginaw area youth group.


                    Maundy Thursday is 3:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30


                    Good Friday Service of Darkness is at 1:30 (Mask-required) & 6:30




                    + General Worship Details +


                    -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

                    -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.

                    -- Midweek Lent Worship is at 3:30 & 6:30 (both mask-optional), 6:30 livestreamed. This week we welcome Pastor Patrick Ernst of St. John's, Frankenmuth, as our guest preacher under the theme: Hands of the Passion--Hands of Repentance (Tax Collector).


                    -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am and the Midweek 6:30pm services can be found here (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to get the hymns and readings ready (or find bulletin here)


                    -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


                    -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.



                    God bless you as you serve Him!


                    +++

                    1. published a newsletter

                      ReadSt. Paul's Weekly Update
                      Special Anniversary Service 4th Sunday in Lent Weekend of March 14, 2021

                      Why I Am a Lutheran

                      I have a book that's called, "Why I Am a Lutheran," but you don't even need to read the book to find out why because the subtitle already gives the answer. Before I give it away, I'll give a hint--look at the picture of the stained glass windows above.


                      They are the windows from the front of St. Paul's sanctuary. Notice what window is in the center of the five windows, and really at the center of the whole building. You might not recognize it because it is behind the altar, but that is the one that gives the answer to Why I Am a Lutheran. It has the cross of our Savior on it, and above it, if you can see it, is the slain-but-victorious lamb from Revelation 5, who is worthy to open the seven seals on the scroll of salvation history. And don't worry--we didn't put the altar in front of that window to cover up the cross, because in the middle of our altar is a statue of Jesus, beneath him is a golden cross, and on the altar beneath Christ comes to us in his flesh and blood.


                      So why am I a Lutheran? Why are you a Lutheran? The subtitle of the book is spot on. It could really be the subtitle of our church: Jesus at the Center. Jesus is the center of the Bible & the center of salvation history. And by his grace, he is the center of our church (even our windows!) and your faith.


                      Prayer of the Day for Sunday:

                      Almighty God, we confess that we deserve to be punished for our evil deeds. But we ask you graciously to cleans us from all sin and to comfort from all sin and to comfort us with your salvation; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

                      Amen.



                      Worship & Bible Class


                      --We welcome the Michigan Lutheran Seminary Concert Choir for our upcoming Sunday services! Our special commemoration for the anniversary of the building focuses on the stained glass windows and Christian Education. How fitting, then, to welcome singers from one of our called-worker training schools! We will also have a presentation by Pastor/Admissions Counselor Ross Chartrand between services. You might learn something new about the school down the road!


                      -- Sunday Worship is at 8:00am and 10:30 (mask-optional), with Bible Class and Sunday School in-between.

                      -- Monday night worship (mask-required) is at 6:30pm.

                      -- Midweek Lent Worship is at 3:30 & 6:30 (both mask-optional), 6:30 livestreamed. This week we welcome Pastor Patrick Ernst of St. John's, Frankenmuth, as our guest preacher under the theme: Hands of the Passion--Hands of Repentance (Tax Collector).


                      -- The livestream of Sunday 8:00am and the Midweek 6:30pm services can be found here (Sunday Bible study livestream can be found there as well). See worship preparation below to get the hymns and readings ready (or find bulletin here)


                      -- Private communion always available by appointment. Don't let anything separate you from God's means of grace! Call the office or call/email Pastor Naumann (412-0232); Pastor Buelow (412-0458)


                      -- Check the latest bulletin & the calendar for up to date announcements.


                      -- Keep in your prayers:

                      Mrs. Janna Needham, who is holding the call to serve as part-time 2nd grade teacher here at St. Paul's;

                      Mr. Sam Korth, who received a call to serve as 5th grade homeroom teacher (departmentalized upgrades), music coordinator, and adult choir director at St. Stephen’s in Beaver Dam, WI.


                      God bless you as you serve Him!


                      +++