I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart

~Psalm 111:1a


Sunday, January 28, one service only at 10:30 followed by a Congregational meeting which will then be followed by a potluck in Brenner Hall.


Pastor’s Thoughts:

This Sunday, 28 January, we as the people of God called Grace Lutheran Church will have a busy day! We will worship together at 10:30 a.m., have our January Congregational Meeting immediately following worship, and then enjoy the potluck.

I envision this day as centering on worship, mission, and fellowship. All three of these pieces are vital to who we are as Grace and who we hope to be in 2024 and beyond.

We will begin our time together with worship. It seems fitting to remind ourselves of how much God loves us, as well as our call to share that love with others. We will hear the Word, be fed in the Meal, and be encouraged to live as disciples every day.

And then, we will have conversation about how this looks from a practical standpoint at Grace. How will we give of our time and treasure to the mission of God through Grace? What will that mission look like? How will we be fed, taught, and encouraged through the activities that happen at Grace? How will we reach out beyond our doors?

Because of our love for God and our commitment to the work of Jesus at Grace, we ended 2023 strong, with the ability to dream a bit about where we are headed. Please be thinking and praying about what our future will look like, as well as your role in that future.

There is so much opportunity for a vibrant witness to Jesus Christ at Grace! Let’s focus on how we move forward with love, trust, hope, and faithfulness.

See you Sunday.

In Christ,

Pastor Brenda


Adult Class

The Wednesday evening and Sunday morning Adult Class is currently exploring the Gospel of Mark. All are welcome to join us at 5:15 p.m. on Wednesdays or 8:15 a.m. on Sundays (9:00 a.m. on 28 January).

When this class concludes, we will begin a class on Death and Dying. Stay tuned for the start date.


Prayer Breakfast 17 February:

Mark your calendar to join me at church on Saturday, 17 February 2024, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. for an opportunity to learn about the idea of rest and for some conversation about how to practice it.

Please sign up on the sheet in the back of the “big church” by 4 February. If we do not have at least six people, we will re-schedule for another time.  Please bring something to share for a light breakfast—fruit, muffins, etc. Juice and coffee will be provided. Bring a friend, and start the New Year off by learning about how resting on God’s presence can be a part of every single day in more ways than you can imagine!


Meditation on 1 Corinthians 8:1-13

By Vicar Dave

Corinth was a cosmopolitan city. There were Christians who lived there among    people of varying faiths. In fact, the Christians were the minority. Living in such a  society and maintaining your faith can be a tricky matter. You want to get along with your neighbors, but to do so you might be asked to do some things that you’re not entirely comfortable with. If you have business dealings with some of them, this might become even more of an issue. If your livelihood depends on satisfying these customers, you’d want to be careful to avoid anything that they might find insulting. Imagine being invited to a dinner party where the main course is something your faith says you shouldn’t have.

This was the situation that Paul was attempting to address in 1 Corinthians 8. A  controversy had arisen regarding the eating of meat that had been offered to idols. Apparently, some of the local Christians felt this was an offense to God. Others, knowing that the idols were false, felt that the meat being offered to them had no   affect because these idols weren’t really gods, Paul seems to say that they should follow their conscience, but should also respect the beliefs of those around them whose faith doesn’t lead the to the same conclusion. His concern was that if those who worry about it being an offense to eat this meat, see someone else doing it, they might feel compelled to eat but still feel bad about it. He didn’t want this practice to become a hinderance to anyone’s faith.

This made me think about some of the people in my family who are members of the Roman Catholic Church. As you know, at Grace and in the ELCA in general, we practice open communion. We believe that the Communion table belongs to Christ, and as such, it is open to all. My Catholic relatives have a different feeling about the subject. They believe that to receive the Eucharist at their church, you must be a practicing Catholic in good standing. Out of respect for their beliefs, when I worship at their churches, I decline to take Communion with them. When they have come to church with me, I’ve told them that they are welcome to receive the Eucharist, but if their conscience tells them that they shouldn’t, that’s OK too. The point being that I don’t want to harm them in their faith by putting them in a situation where they might feel that they are sinning.

Tolerance can be a difficult thing to practice, but if we want to live with our brothers and sisters of different faith traditions, it’s important that we respect them and their beliefs, whether they are of a different Christian tradition, or another faith entirely.


2023 Food Donations at Grace
(A Year End Report)

First of all, a huge thank you to everyone who has supported the Food for Toledo  program and Grace’s Blessing Box with food and water donations in 2023. I am pleased to report that a total of 4502 pounds of food was donated this year to support these two ministries.

The Food for Toledo program assists Aldersgate Methodist Church with their food pantry.  Grace is the only church that assists Aldersgate with this. Bi-monthly   Aldersgate hands out food to people that visit their food pantry.  Any food is accepted however basics such as cereal, jelly, pasta, pasta sauce, canned fruit and      vegetables, soup, canned meat, and juice are included in each bag distributed.

The Blessing Box was established in 2023 and provides visitors to the box with food, snacks, or water. It has been stocked at various times with canned pasta, canned stew, canned hash, canned meat, Slim Jims, fruit, packs of crackers, individual bars, water, plastic utensils, socks, coats, gloves and hats, small packs of Kleenex, etc.  The office has received phone calls thanking Grace for the food or snack that was taken from the box.

If anyone would have any questions regarding Grace’s food ministries, please contact Mary Schneider. Donations can be dropped off in the Giving Room, across from Room 3. Thank you again!


The Readings for Sunday January 28, 2024 

Deuteronomy 18:15-20

Psalm 111

1 Corinthians 8:1-13

Mark 1:21-28


Church Calendar

If you have a regularly scheduled meeting here at Grace, the calendar needs to be updated at the beginning of each year. Please turn in your schedule to be put on the official calendar to avoid conflicts.


Ash Wednesday

Mark your calendar now! Lent begins with Ash Wednesday on 14 February. Worship will be at noon and 7:00 p.m., and will include Holy Communion and the Imposition of Ashes for those who desire them.

Wednesday evenings in Lent—beginning 21 February—will feature Holden Evening prayer, as well as a series of dramatic dialogues between Jesus and Satan. Worship will be at 7:00 p.m.

There will also be worship at 11:00 a.m. each Wednesday, which will explore the role of lament in our lives. A light lunch will follow the worship service.


The deadline for turning in articles for the newsletter is 10:00 a.m. Monday morning OR when the newsletter is full. 8 pages is the maximum we can send in the mail.  Thank you!



This is the day the Lord has made.

Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

~Psalm 118:24