Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. ~Philippians 2:9-11
No Sunday School class on Easter Sunday, April 4.
This is to allow all of the group (children and teacher) to attend
the Easter worship service on April 4.
Holy Week Worship Opportunities
Our journey to Easter begins with a Maundy Thursday worship service at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 1. This worship service will include Holy Communion and the stripping of the altar. Members are needed to help with the stripping of the altar so if you are able to help, please call Mary Schneider at 419.262.0730. Our second service of the week will be held on Good Friday, April 2 at 12 noon. Good Friday is a time for quiet reflection on the events leading up to Easter and prayer. And finally, our last service of Holy Week, is our Easter celebration. Please join us at either 9:30 a.m. or 11:30 a.m. for this joyous celebration. The 9:30 service will be broadcast to the parking lot. Uplifting music will be offered, Holy Communion will be celebrated, and the story of Jesus’s resurrection will be retold! At the 11:30 service the song, “You Are Mighty”, will be offered by our Praise Team. This song is offered at the 11:30 service twice a year and Easter is one of the days it is played. COVID guidelines will be followed at both services. Masks will be required of all those attending services in the sanctuary or the chapel and social distancing will be enforced. Though this is an inconvenience and we are not used to celebrating in this manner, let’s not let this stop Grace in the celebration of our Lord’s resurrection.
~Submitted by Grace Peterson I learned some interesting things about squirrels as I read my magazine, Birds and Blooms. The little critters have always got into my bird feeders, but the article I read says to put food for the squirrels away from the bird feeders. I got some ears of corn, and put them over in the middle of my yard. It is working very well. The four-legged critters are having a field day, and staying away from the feeders. Plus, I get to watch their antics! They climb the tree, and jump down on the pole with the corn. So funny! As we all know, squirrels are rodents, so their teeth keep growing, unless they chew things to keep the teeth filed down. Another thing I learned from my magazine is that when we feed these animals, we should give them hard things to bite, such as nuts in their shells, like walnuts. All this time, I’ve been blaming the squirrels for eating all that bird food. I was wrong. Yes, boys and girls, we have a rat problem! I’m going to take all the bird food away for a few days, and then hopefully, the rats will take the bait, if you know what I mean. Who knew rats could climb a half inch metal pole?
THE GOLDEN RULE…
states that we should treat other people as we would like to be treated. We also should treat other people as THEY would like to be treated. That means that we need to take others self-identity into account. Self-identity is how you define yourself and is unique to each one. God allows us to make such a choice and no one can tell you who you are. Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Cambridge recently revealed that she was uncomfortable with certain remarks by the Royals about her ethnicity. She identifies as bi-racial. Some people have criticized her feelings because she isn’t “black” enough to feel any prejudice. Who are they to judge? She alone knows who she is and what she has experienced. Jesus gave us the Golden Rule as a guideline of how WE should act not as a means to tell other people how to act. It is necessary for Christians to allow people to be themselves and to encourage them to be so. Only God has the power to change us and He will decide how we change. ~Submitted by Jeanne Harmon
Breakfast Boxes for our Personal Needs Families
There is still time to donate toward the Breakfast Boxes that will be given to our Personal Needs Families. As of March 15, 17 breakfast boxes have been sponsored. What a tremendous response to our families. And there is still time to sponsor or partially sponsor a box. Donations will be accepted through March 28 and any amount is welcome. Each box costs $20 and includes eggs, milk, bread, sausage, pancake mix, syrup, peanut butter, preserves, and orange juice. The first distribution will be on Tuesday, March 30, and we will continue to distribute boxes on Tuesdays until we run out! What started out as a special opportunity for Holy Week will continue into April!
Food for Toledo Update
Eighty seven pounds of food has been donated to the Food for Toledo program from March 2 – March 15. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who has donated items for the hungry in our neighborhoods. The items especially needed at this time are the usual requests – peanut butter, jelly, cereal, instant rice, and sugar-free drink mix. I am still available on Monday mornings from 9 a.m. – 12 noon to accept donations. Items can also be dropped off in the tote outside of the church office. If you would have any questions, please feel free to call me, Mary Schneider, at 419.262.0730.
What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? (Vincent Van Gogh)
The only way to receive abundantly is to give abundantly (Peter Megargee Brown)
Real joy comes not from ease or riches or from praise, but from doing something worthwhile (Sir Wilfred Grenfell)
Behind the scenes at Grace….
- Our Grace menagerie has definitely come out of hibernation or the “slow movement” of winter. The squirrels are all over the place running around the parking lot and trees. The chipmunk sits perched waiting for its brunch in the morning around the office and is then off and running! The blackbirds are calling, and we saw one perched on the cross above the roof calling wildly. The good thing is no mole sightings yet!
- Thanks To Michael Holewinski our pews and under pews have had a wonderful spring cleaning! They look great!
- We were devoid of paper and plastic bags on parish grounds this last week thanks to Connie Thomas and her trash pickup! It looks wonderful!
- With the warm weather and rain, we are supposed to get this week it looks like the daffodils in the garden are going to start blooming!
- Our sanctuary was graced with wonderful uplifting music this last Sunday by Jim Bischoff who was covering for Debby. We even tried some new music which was great!
- As you shop don’t forget the Monday Food Collection – thanks to Mary Schneider for continuing to collect on Mondays. There are still individuals and families who are in need. There are still people who have lost their jobs due to Covid and are living in crisis mode trying to pay bills and feed themselves and families.
- Remember: Grace is not the building but the people of Grace!
Answer to last week’s quiz question: Human blood contains metal atoms (these are very small) of iron, chromium, manganese, zinc, lead and copper. And yes, we have 0.2 mg. of gold in our blood. So, we are really worth our weight in gold! Blood types: There are 4 major types which are determined by the presence or absence of something called an antigen on the red blood cell and these are A and B. So, to make it even a little more confusing we add a protein called the Rh Factor which can be present or not. So now we have A +, A-, B+,B- , O+, O-, and then combine AB to make AB+ and AB- : Phew we now have 8 possible types of blood! Did you know that one unit of blood has the potential to save 3 lives! One out of every 10 people that enter the hospital will need blood! You can donate a unit of blood every 56 days (8 weeks) and if you start at age 17 and stop at 79 you will have given 46.5 gallons! Wow! We have an artificial heart but so far no artificial blood so we need people to donate “real” blood. Please think about reaching out and helping others in need of blood. The blood drive at Grace will be Friday April 23 from 1-6 PM in Brenner Hall. Donors do not need to be members of Grace – so friends, neighbors, other family members and even grandkids, nieces or nephews over the age of 16.
Red Stuff Quiz:
What is the type that is needed for emergency transfusions? Mosquitoes were also found to “love people” with this blood type! It would take 1,200,000 mosquitoes all working together to drain a person’s entire blood supply. (Pastor Abts said this could be accomplished in 3 days during the height of mosquito season in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan!) What is the only part of our body where there is no blood supply? Answers next week. You may schedule your donation directly on the Red Cross web site or call/email Gretchen 419-944-5166 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Drink before you eat – that is water! People who have just 2% dehydration may have a decrease in memory and can also make your memory “fuzzy”. As we grow more “seasoned”, people are more sensitive to dehydration. The brain is not real great on separating hunger from thirst. So many times, we walk around over- stuffed when we are actually dehydrated. So, drink a big glass of water before each meal and make sure you drink water and non -caffeinated beverages during the day. The typical rule of thumb is 8 glasses of water a day.
Gretchen will be posting information related to changes in Covid precautions as they are issued by the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention), Lucas County/State of Ohio and the ELCA. These will be located on the Community Bulletin Board across from the office. The Church Council and Gretchen will be reviewing the information as it is released to determine how we can make changes to return to normal activities while keeping the staff, parish members and visitors safe. Watch for updates in the Newsletter and Community Bulletin Board.
Current Update as of 3/9/21 from the CDC
Have you been fully vaccinated?
People are considered fully vaccinated:
- 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series like the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine
- 2 weeks after a single dose vaccine, like the Johnson /Johnson
If it has been less then 2 weeks after your shot or you still need a second shot you are NOT fully protected.
If you have been fully vaccinated:
- You can gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask.
- You can gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household without masks, unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from Covid. (Increased risk would be someone receiving chemotherapy whose immune system is decreased and would possibly become very ill if they had Covid, someone with severe heart or lung trouble)
- If you have been around someone who has Covid -19, you do not need to stay away from others or get tested unless you have symptoms.
- However if you live in a group setting (ie. Group home-like Sunshine) and around someone with Covid-19 ,you should stay away from others for 14 days and get tested even if you do not have symptoms.
What has not changed
For now, if you’ve been fully vaccinated:
- You should still take steps to protect yourself and others in many situations, like wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated areas. Take these precautions whenever you are:
- in public
- gathering with unvaccinated people from more than one other household
- visiting with an unvaccinated person who is at increased risk of severe illness or death from Covid-19 or lives with a person at increased risk.
- You should avoid medium or large sized gatherings
- You should still watch out for symptoms of Covid-19, especially if you have been around someone who is sick. If you have symptoms of Covid-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others.
What Got Left Out of the Sermon – an occasional piece
~By Pastor Howard (Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Sometimes it seems as if the pastor’s aim is to drone on as long as he possibly can. Does he really cut things out, to keep sermons from getting too long? He does. And, since you can’t hit “Fast Forward” during a sermon, something that was left out of the sermon for March 21, the 5th Sunday in Lent is printed below, and you can skip right over it.) From the Gospel for the Day: “Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” The crowd standing there heard it and said that it was thunder. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.” (John 20.28b-29) Something miraculous had just happened. The voice, of course, was the voice of God. No one who heard it, though, other than Jesus, thought it was God’s voice. Some figured out that it was a natural phenomenon: it was thunder. Others decided it wasn’t natural, but that it came from a supernatural being who wasn’t God. Do we do anything like that? When something miraculous happens, do we figure out ways to deny it? From time to time, I’ll cut myself, or scrape off some skin, or have a needle that’s been in my arm for a while pulled out. (See the notice about the April 23 Blood Drive elsewhere in this issue.) A little blood emerges, and then it stops, and I don’t bleed to death. I might call that a miracle, if I thought I could get away with it. I’ve been taught, though, that there’s nothing miraculous about it: it’s what normally happens. Exposed to air, platelets just naturally send out tiny fibers that grab each other and form a clot. It’s what they do. Okay. But who invented platelets? This week we celebrate The Annunciation, when Gabriel the angel told Mary that she would become pregnant by the Holy Spirit, with no help from a man. Many of us dismiss that miracle, too, since it’s something that never happens. So, if something happens routinely, it’s not God’s doing If something happens once in human history, we don’t think God did that, either. Can God do anything and be recognized as the One who did it? What do you think?
“To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world.” — Karl Barth
“Grace must find expression in life, otherwise it is not grace.” — Karl Barth
This is the day the Lord has made.
Let us rejoice and be glad in it!