It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord,
                         to sing praise to your name, O Most High

                                                                        ~Psalm 92:1


Pastor’s Thoughts: 

      As you know, at the 19 May Congregational Meeting, we approved a new video/audio system for the nave. This will consist of a new soundboard, three new cameras for live streaming, etc., and a computer to run this equipment. Jason Repass, a member of Zion Lutheran in Waterville and an expert in the installation of such systems, will be handling this project for us. The soundboard will be the first piece to be installed, most likely in the middle of July. The entire system will take up to 12 months to complete, including installation and training.

We also discussed using a video monitor system in the nave so that words and images could be projected during worship. Because there were some questions about this, Jason will be joining us tomorrow night (11 June) to discuss his recommendation for potential monitor placement.

I am excited about the new soundboard and cameras. This will not only enhance our worship experience but also enable us to provide an online presence with superior audio and video quality. The cameras will allow for closer and better views from different positions, and the system will significantly improve the audio on the live stream.

 We know that there are members of our congregation who participate in worship this way, some on account of being homebound and others who are out of town or ill. Studies also show that a quality online presence is one way by which people looking for a congregation are drawn to learn more about a community of faith.

A video monitor system would be a valuable addition. While I understand that placing one or two video monitors in the front of our main worship space will alter its aesthetics, I am convinced that the enhanced accessibility and hospitality are well worth the change. This system will greatly benefit those with vision or hearing concerns, as words to scripture readings and hymns will be prominently displayed, fostering a more inclusive worship environment.

Throughout the history of the Christian Church, the way the Gospel has been proclaimed has evolved. The first disciples used their feet to evangelize, walking everywhere they could to spread the Good News. As the Church transitioned from homes into dedicated worship buildings, various tools were introduced to aid in hearing the Word and participating in worship: musical instruments, bulletins, hymnals, microphones, systems to add those with hearing loss, etc. These tools changed as technology advanced, but the message of the Gospel remained constant.

We find ourselves again in a time when the tools used for the proclamation of the Gospel have changed. Technology allows us to reach out and proclaim Jesus and his Good News in different ways. To my mind, using technology in this way is a gift, as it has the potential to reach others whom we might not otherwise reach, both through live-streamed worship and through improvements to the worship in our   building.

While this potential addition to our space does change the look of the chancel, it cannot and will not change the impact and the import of the Gospel. Nothing we could add to the worship space can diminish the power of the Cross or the wonderful grace of the reality to which it points.

As the pastor of Grace, I am committed to our Lutheran heritage. This is why we have a liturgy that is shaped the way it is, rooted in our inherited understanding of the shape of worship, with its central elements of Gathering, Word, Meal, and Sending. Our Lutheran heritage is the reason we observe the liturgical seasons (Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, etc.) with intention and why the Word is always proclaimed with our understanding of “justification by grace through faith” firmly in mind. It is why Holy Communion is celebrated regularly. Nothing about any part of the new audio/video system—including the potential use of a monitor system—will change the essential elements of who we are.

While I do take note of what other congregations do, I have no personal need to enhance Grace’s space to “keep up with” our siblings in faith. My interest is in what will enable us to ”Bless the World! Be God’s Grace!” as the people of God who have been called to be in mission and ministry here. I believe this system will do just that.

In Christ,

Pastor Brenda





5:30 PM – 8:00 PM


Each fun night will begin with a light supper together.

The ADULTS will attend a fun Bible Study with Pastor Brenda.

The KIDS will dive into exploring BREAKER ROCK BEACH – and learn about God’s rock-solid truth in a world of shifting sands.

Everyone will meet up again later in the evening for crafts,

games, music, and worship!

Our final night of VBS will be an outdoor ‘bonfire” where we will roast hotdogs, have s’mores, play games, and “sing around the campfire”!

Make sure you mark your calendars!

Keep watching for more updates and ways to register!

All are welcome to join in the fun!

Please join us – Sunday Fellowship Time

In Fellowship Hall

June 16 – Donuts for Dad

I could still use two more people to bring in a dozen donuts. If you can help, please e-mail Sue Wagner at or 419- 475-8972. 

June 23 – Mary Schneider and Cindy Wood  

June 30 – Pot Luck  Thanks!

The Readings for Sunday June 16, 2024

Ezekiel 17:22-24

Psalm 92:1-4, 12-15

2 Corinthians 5:6-10 [11-13] 14-17

Mark 4:26-34


Women’s Walk:

Women of Grace of all ages are invited to join together for a walk and fellowship on Saturday, 22 June, at 10:00 a.m. The location is TBD. A signup will be in the back of the nave this Sunday (16 June).



by Vicar Dave

Passing the buck. That’s something we humans have had a lot of practice with. The first buck passer after all was the first man. He tried to blame his actions on both his wife and on God for giving him the wife in the first place. Then the wife tried to blame the serpent. Neither one of them want to take responsibility for their actions because they knew that they were wrong.

People do it all the time. From little children when caught with their hand in the cookie jar, to adults trying to excuse poor performance at work. I’ve even heard people try to blame others for their criminal behavior. It seems we’ll find any excuse when things go wrong to blame anyone or anything other than our selves.

It’s kinda contradictory, however, that when we figure out what we’re responsible for and what we aren’t, it can be very freeing to accept the blame for our mistakes. Saying to yourself, “I did this” and “that’s my fault”, and trying to not make the same mistake again, can take away some of the guilty feelings that linger when you try to shift the blame to someone else.

It reminds me of the gift of forgiveness of sins offered by Jesus. We are told in 1 John 19 that “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”. When we confess our sins and repent of them, the weight off them is lifted from our shoulders by the gift of grace from Jesus to us all.


We hope this finds you in good health and high spirits. As members of Grace Luther League Youth Group, we are excited to share an incredible opportunity with you. This summer, we have the chance to attend the ELCA National Youth Gathering in New Orleans, and we need your support to make it happen!

What is the ELCA National Youth Gathering?

The ELCA National Youth Gathering is a life-changing event where thousands of    Lutheran youth from across the country come together to worship, learn, serve, and grow in faith. It is a chance for us to connect with other young Christians, engage in meaningful discussions, and experience the vibrant culture of New Orleans.

Why New Orleans?

New Orleans is a city rich in history, music, and resilience. By attending the gathering there, we will not only deepen our faith but also contribute to the ongoing recovery efforts after Hurricane Katrina. We will participate in service projects, explore the city’s unique culture, and build lasting memories.

How You Can Help

We are reaching out to our beloved family and friends to request your sponsorship. Your support will cover essential expenses, including:

  1. Registration Fees: Each participant needs to register for the event.
  2. Travel Costs: Flights, ground transportation, and accommodation.
  3. Meals and Incidentals: Nourishing our bodies and souls during the gathering.
  4. Service Project Supplies: Making a positive impact in New Orleans.

How to Contribute

We will appreciate your donation and sharing the experience with you :

  • Sending a check payable to Grace Luther League(address below) Attn: Debbie Fallon.
  • Venmo Debbie-Fallon-02

Our Commitment

We promise to represent our church and community with gratitude, respect, and enthusiasm. We will share our experiences through photos, videos, and personal testimonies at our Treats and Tea event on Sunday, August 11th at 4pm at Grace Lutheran Church, 4441 Monroe St, Toledo OH 43613. Everyone is invited! 

Contact Us

If you have any questions or would like more information, please feel free to reach out to Debbie Fallon at 419-344-2194, or Wendy McCall at 419-344-3196.

Thank you for being a part of our faith journey. Your generosity will impact not only our lives but also the lives of those we serve in New Orleans.

Contact Information: Grace Luther League, Grace Lutheran Church, 4441 Monroe St Toledo, OH 43613 Phone: (419) 474-6403   Website:



On June 1 Pastor Brenda, Brenda Holderman and I gathered with nearly 300 other local Lutherans for the NWO Synod Assembly. During the day we worshiped, broke bread, received reports and voted.

For those not familiar with the workings of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the ELCA runs as a democracy. Bishops within the ELCA do not have all encompassing powers.  All major decisions are made by a majority vote of representatives from each congregation in the NWO Synod. During the Assembly there were lots and lots of votes.

Many of us are used to votes where the top one vote getter is elected regardless of the percentage of votes received when there are more than two candidates for an elected position.  A quirky example of voting by majority (over 50%) is an election for delegates to ECLA assembly where six (6) votes were needed to elect three (3) delegates.

During the day Bishop Danial kept encouraging us by saying “together we can do hard things”. The last vote of the day was the hardest in terms of direct impact on Grace.  That vote was whether or not to pass the recommended salary guidance for Rostered Leaders (Ministers).  Over 90% of those in attendance voted in favor of the proposal. That 90% voted to approve despite knowing that acceptance will likely significantly increase payroll expenses on every congregation in the NWO Synod. The increases are the result of long overdue increase in base salaries. Additionally, the housing allowance paid to Pastors was amended to better reflect the actual housing costs in the area where each congregation is located. Each congregation is allowed to establish their own pay packages with their pastor. The    approved guidelines are intended to assure Pastors are fairly compensated for their work.  Following the guidelines also minimizes pay disparities between Pastors serving neighboring ELCA parishes.

I will be providing many more details on what the vote means in terms of financial impact to Grace and other Northwestern Ohio ELCA congregations in the coming weeks and months.  We will be challenged financially to maintain our Pastoral compensation in accordance with these guidelines. Yet be mindful the recommended changes to how pastors are compensated are not being forced upon us by our Bishop or some administrator within the ELCA.  A committee of church members from across the Synod came up with the recommendations and presented them to the Assembly. Those in attendance listened to the reasons why it was important, discussed it, and overwhelmingly voted to accept the proposal.

David Charvat



This is another Breath Prayer.  It is from the book Breath as Prayer by Jennifer Tucker

Breathe Deep and Know: You are perfectly and completely loved by God. There is nothing to fear. 

How confident are you in God’s constant and never-ending love for you? Do your feelings or circumstances ever cause you to doubt His love? Are you afraid that some situation or event could cause God to stop loving you?

We sometimes feel separated from God’s love because sin separates our heart from a close and intimate connection with Him. This can lead to doubting His love because we aren’t feeling His love the way we long to.

But love is so much more than a feeling. The love of God for us is a truth and a promise. Prayer allows us to reconnect with God and be reminded of these truths that He loves us and is with us, and that His love and His presence haven’t gone anywhere-no matter what our feelings may be saying. And when we are rooted and confident in His love, no Fear can shake it. His perfect love casts out fear

                                                                                            Please take a moment and read 1 John 4:18

For your Prayer Moment:

Inhale:   There is no fear

Exhale: in Your love.


Behind the scenes at Grace……by Gretchen

  1. It is with great sadness that we have to report that one of our long-term members of the Grace Menagerie has died. A very large squirrel was found in the grass on Monday and looked to have died from natural causes. Cathy and Pastor Brenda went out and said a final good-by and Rick Sharp was kind enough to take care of the squirrel. We can probably assume he lived a good life as he had a daily treat of peanuts.
  2. The battle is being lost in the geranium bed by the office. Chipmunk many and Connie none. We think his hole is here to stay. The great thing is that the geraniums are still beautiful – must be Connie’s “magic juice” and the extra chipmunk fertilizer???
  3. We also have at least 2 baby robins in the burning bush next to Gretchen’s Office – we just see beaks so far!
  4. OOPS a communication foo pau – we did not have a water leak!
  5. We are still experiencing some plumbing issues – ie slow running sinks. The plumber has been back working on the clogs so we should be free running soon!
  6. Don’t forget to keep an eye on the Community Bulletin Boards for interesting stuff!
  7. Don’t forget the HELP closet. This is a closet that has a supply of medical equipment ranging from canes to walkers to crutches to toilet seat risers and shower chairs! They can be loan or for permanent use. If you have a need let the office or Gretchen know (419-944-5166). We also accept and appreciate donations!
  8. Remember: Grace is not just the menagerie but the people carrying out God’s Mission!



Healthy People! Healthy Parish!


Summer stuff!

It is slowly warming up, so we are reaching for plastic water bottles and pop cans! What we do with them after we are done is oh so important! Where do yours end up? Hopefully, not on the side of the road or in your trash.

Did you know it takes up to 50-80 years for a plastic bottle to decompose and upwards of 200 plus years for tin cans! No wonder we can still find cans in dump sites.

Research is also being done on the effects of microplastics. These are small pieces of   plastics found in products such as bottled water. A research group from Columbia University found that on average a liter of bottled water contained 240,000 pieces -yikes.These are called nanoplastics which are extremely small – smaller than 1/125,000 of an inch. It is not known how much of the nano plastics the body retains. Research studies on the effects on the body are still new but there may be some correlation between microplastics (which are bigger than nanoplastics) in the blood and contributing to increased risk of heart problems. A researcher (C. Hine of the Cleveland Clinic) states that exposure to plastics in the body is not new. There are no regulations yet on micro and nano plastics but down the road expect to see some.

So, think about all the things we eat or drink from plastic bottles?? So, if you live where there is a municipal water system how about using tap water to fill a reusable water bottle? People in rural areas need to make sure their water has been checked for chemicals like pesticides and fertilizers before drinking.

So, what can you do to help with plastics??

Use washable water bottles and recycle your coffee cup. Word has it that Starbucks is filling your own clean coffee cup instead of using a foam or plastic cup . Does your favorite coffee shop do that?

Recycle plastic bags or better yet use washable grocery bags. Don’t forget to wash them  periodically as they can get pretty grimy and can also harbor bacteria.

Put your CLEAN plastic recycling containers from milk bottles to catsup bottles into recycling bins ! Washing the plastic containers not only helps with smells and bugs but also makes recycling cleaner.

The World Economic Forum states that of the 40 million tons of plastic waste the US generates only 5-6 % was recycled in 2021.

It is important for your health!



Red and YOU!

You or a family member or close friend require surgery – maybe it is an elective (planned) surgery or maybe it is an emergency! What if you or they need blood? We always want to know there is enough blood if needed.

Can you or your family or friends make sure that there is enough blood to go around???

How? Be a donor at the Interfaith Blood Drive Saturday June 29th from 8:00 am -2:00 pm!

You can sign up in the Red Cross Web Site or call Gretchen Hiatt 419-944-5166 and she will help make an appointment for you!

Help 3 people with your donation!



This is the day the Lord has made.

Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

~Psalm 118:24