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The Messiah Messenger > The December 2019 Messenger # 618
The December 2019 Messenger # 618

Dec 2, 2019

December 2019 Messenger

From the Pastor
Waiting for the Gift
   I remember a commercial on TV for Christmas shopping which suggested that if you shopped at a particular store, you'd be able to get great gifts for everybody, and all in one place. The ad ends with the shopper leaving the store triumphant, because he is “winning the holidays.”

   Are the holidays a competition, something you can win or lose? That sounds crazy. But maybe it feels that way sometimes. The Christmas season becomes a task for us to do, well or poorly. For others among us, dealing with loneliness or grief, Christmas is simply a season to survive.

   So, at church we take a deep breath and remember that Christmas is a gift. It’s God’s gift of a son to the world. It is the very presence of God entering our everyday life, to show us how to live and to give us hope.

To receive that gift, we need to slow ourselves down and get ready for it. That’s why we journey through the season of Advent. Advent has a lot to with waiting and getting ready. We can’t know the power of God’s gift of a son unless we are hungry for it and waiting for it. We can’t know how much the world needs God unless we stand with those who are most distressed, the ones who have been waiting on God a long time. We can’t know how much we ourselves need God unless we admit our deepest longings and pain. Advent offers us a chance to slow down and take a deep breath. In silence we wait for the gift that only God can give.

Faithfully, Pastor David

From Pastor Knutson’s December newsletter:
Thank you for your prayers and support and your participation in God’s mission locally and globally.
Yours faithfully,
Rev. Dr. Philip Knutson
ELCA Global Mission Regional Representative – Southern Africa
Johannesburg, November 18, 2019
My blog page address is: https://southernafricanconnections.wordpress.com/

Celebrating The Gift
ADVENT begins December 1st It is a season of waiting. It is a season of hope. Amid the demands of this busy season, we wait and hope for so much more than gifts under the tree.
We look forward to the celebration of the birth of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, and to his coming again in glory. During Advent, as we seek assurance of God’s continued presence in our lives, we are reminded of the words of Psalm 46:10,
“Be still, and know that I am God!”

The four candles of the Advent Wreath represent the four weeks of Advent. The outer candles represent the period of waiting for the birth of Christ. The weekly progression of the lighting of the candles symbolizes our preparation, prayer, reflection and our Hope and Expectation of Jesus’ birth. In the center sits a white candle that represents Christ. As a whole, these candles represent the coming of the Light of Christ into the world.

Each of the four candles has a meaning that we remember as we light them each Sunday:

      1st Week of Advent = HOPE
      2nd Week of Advent = PEACE
      3rd Week of Advent = JOY
      4th Week of Advent = LOVE
      Christmas = The CHRIST Candle
Christ is the Light of the World the light that shines in the darkness, the light that can never be overcome by the powers of this world. Christ is the Light of God that has come to us in Jesus.

HANGING OF THE GREENS: All are invited to help decorate the church for Advent and Christmas at Messiah's annual Hanging of the Greens on Saturday, December 7th from 4:00 - 7:00 pm. Come join this festive event.

CHILDREN SERVICE: The children of the Child Care Center will join us for worship on Sunday, December 15th. The children will be singing Christmas songs that they have learned in their music class. Please come and help welcome the CCC children & their families at this joyous worship service!

CCC Christmas Program: The annual Child Care Center Christmas programs will be December 17th, 18th, and 19th. Each program will begin at 4:00 pm and all members of Messiah are welcome to attend the program. It’s a wonderful experience!

Tuesday, December 24th at 10:15 p.m.
Candle Light Christmas Eve Service

Wednesday, December 25th 10:15 a.m.
Christmas Day Service

Sunday, December 29th at 10:15 a.m.
   Hymn Fest Worship Service

Music Ministry

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law… (Galatians 4:4)

Does anyone really know what time it is? So began one of Chicago Transit Authority’s great rock hits back in the late 1960s. On one hand, time is pretty easy to understand. Atomic clocks measure 24-hour days, hours, minutes, and seconds. Scientists minutely dissect seconds into nano-seconds. (A nano-second is defined as one-billionth of a second!!).

Calendars measure days, months, and years. The calendar we use today had its origins more than 425 years ago. It’s called the Gregorian calendar which was named after Roman Catholicism’s Pope Gregory XIII. This calendar, introduced in October 1582, spaces leap years to make the average year 365.2425 days long, approximating the 365.2422-days determined by the Earth's revolution around the Sun.

This passage from Paul in Galatians refers to the coming of Jesus. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman. While we don’t usually talk about the “fullness” of time in everyday speech, Paul’s word for “time” refers to something quite different. Paul is not concerned about measured time. Rather, he chose a Greek word, kairos, which means a time of opportunity or a supreme moment when everything seems to come together and make sense. It’s like we might say, “our time has finally arrived” or “it’s about time” for this or that to happen.

Paul reminds us that God chose to enter into human life when the time was right and “full.” It’s a time when the world’s expectations of what was right and true and good would be turned inside out and upside down because of the birth of this one extraordinary person. Throughout Advent and Christmas, we sing about the one who has made sense of each one of our lives. “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among those whom he favors” (Luke 2:14). In the fullness of time, God’s favor has now come to rest on each one of us through Jesus, God’s Son. Merry Christmas!
Bill Decker, Music Coordinator

Assistance Ministry

On the Monday before Thanksgiving we were pleased to be able to serve a Thanksgiving meal to our Monday morning guests. They were very appreciative of the meal and many stayed for seconds. We served 19 guests. Thanks to Tim Blanks for roasting the turkey and to Henry Allemeier and his friend Luke for helping serve and welcoming all of our guests. It is wonderful to involve our youth in this outreach.

Once again, thanks for your continued donations to this ministry. We are trying to involve the community to partner with Messiah in obtaining donations of food and of course the Child Care Center continues to bring offerings of canned goods and staff has donated clothing and food. We have also been the recipient of leftover food from their Thanksgiving luncheon. What a blessing!

Carol Hrodey has obtained a Thrivent grant of $250 for Assistance Ministry. This will allow us to stock up on supplies so we can focus on providing nutritious foods. Thank you Carol! We’re also grateful to McKenna’s Bags for the donation of Personal Care Bags for our Assistance Ministry guests.

Please continue to pray for the guests we serve. They appreciate not only our meals and clothing and food but also the fact that Messiah has continued to provide this outreach.

With thanks, Connie Kaufman
Quits and Kits
As we wrap up another year, we look forward to next year when we complete more quilts, personal care and school kits for Lutheran World Relief Quilts & Kits Ministry. For more information go to https://lwr.org/quilts-and-kits. And we continue to be thankful for the many hands that helped produce this years quilts & kits!

Our next date for assembling quilts is December 8th following the worship service in the Friendship Place. Please join us – we always enjoy great fellowship!! No sewing experience necessary!!    
Trudi Handzel & Carol Hrodey

Christian Education
Due to scheduling difficulties of time and leaders, Sunday School is currently not in session. We’d certainly like to have SS or an equivalent program going again so if you would like to help, please consider donating your time. Perhaps a team approach? And it doesn’t need to be a parent of a SS student! There have been many wonderful SS teachers through the years at Messiah whose children have grown but find joy in teaching children about how much God loves them! Any ideas are welcome! If you are willing to help please contact the Executive Committee.

The confirmands meet with Pat Kovach with help from Debbie Sasak & Teresa Lippert at 9:00 a.m. Sundays in the Confirmation Room, off the choir loft! The topics being covered this year include “What is a Lutheran”, the Ten Commandments, the Small Catechism, Lord's Prayer, Apostle's Creed, and Jesus of Nazareth.
Adult Chat Room meets Sundays at 9:00 in the Friendship Place. Contact David Swanson for more information.

Child Care Center
There are a lot of fun activities coming up in the Child Care Center – besides the daily classroom activities! Here are some important dates to remember:

For more information on CCC Activities and Programs contact CCC Office at
847-825-3767 or see the website at www.messiahchildcare.com

Sunday, January 26th
Redeemer Lutheran Church
Aly Allemeier for more information.

Christmas Charities
There are two “Giving Trees in the Narthex and Friendship Place. Perhaps you can help make someone’s Christmas and winter a little brighter?

Lutheran Social Services of Illinois:
Serving Illinois since 1867, LSSI is a statewide, not-for-profit social service agency of the three Illinois synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). LSSI is the largest social service provider in the state. The organization provides critical programs for the state’s most vulnerable residents, including the Family Intact Program.

The LSSI tree has tags with the first name of a child in need of a little cheer this Christmas. The tag also includes the child’s age and ideas for gifts up to $25. Please consider picking up gift
tag(s) and purchase a present for the child, wrap it and leave it under the tree in the narthex by Sunday, December 15th Moni Ryczek is coordinating the gift tags so questions
can be directed to her at 847-692-6972.

“Warming Tree”:
This intention of this tree found in the Friendship Place is to share the warmth of God’s love to people in need this winter in our area. We are collecting winter hats, scarves, gloves (not lightweight ones please) and socks. These items will be made available to our own guests from Assistance Ministry, as well as the Night Ministry and other local organizations who reach out to those in need.

Upcoming Events
During the month of December, Manna orders will be placed twice. The first round of orders are due in the CCC office by 9:00 am on Monday, December 2nd. The second round of orders are due in the CCC office by Monday, December 16th (which will be the last order before Christmas). Order forms can be found on the CCC table in the Narthex

Hanging of the Greens
There will be a change of schedule for Hanging of the Greens due to scheduling issues related to the Thanksgiving weekend. David Swanson will put up the Advent Wreath and Giving Trees on Thanksgiving – Thanks David! We’ll then have our Hanging of the Greens event on Saturday, December 7th from 4:00-7:00 to decorate the church. Please plan to come out for this festive event – its lots of fun and includes great fellowship! See details on Giving Trees on page 7.

Christmas Poinsettias
Keeping with tradition, we will be ordering red poinsettias to decorate the Sanctuary for Christmas. Each plant with a pot cover will cost $15.00. All orders are due to the office by Monday December 9th at 9:00 am and you will be able to take your plant home with you after the 10:15 am Christmas morning service.

Brotherhood Breakfast
The next meeting of the Brotherhood will be Saturday, December 14th. All Messiah men are invited to Jimmy’s on Rand Road in Des Plaines.

This Month in Worship
1st Reading      Psalm          2nd Reading          Gospel
December 1st Sunday in Advent
Isaiah 2:1-5      Psalm 122      Romans 13:11-14      Matthew 24:26-44

December 8th 2nd Sunday in Advent
Isaiah 11:1-10      Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19   Romans 15:4-13      Matthew 3:1-12

December 15th 3rd Sunday in Advent
Isaiah 35:1-10      Psalm 146:5-10   James 5:7-10         Matthew 11:2-11

December 22rd 4th Sunday in Advent
Isaiah 7:10-16      Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19   Romans 1:1-17         Matthew 1:18-25

December 24th Christmas Eve
Isaiah 9:2-7      Psalm 96      Titus 2:11-14         Luke 2:1-14 (15-20)

December 25th Christmas Day
Isiah 62:6-12      Psalm 97      Titus 3:4-7         Luke 2(1-7) 8-20

December 29th 4th Sunday in Advent
Isaiah 63:7-9      Psalm 148      Hebrews 2:10-18      Matthew 2:13-23
Worship Teams
         December 1   December 8   December 15   December 22   December 29
Acolytes      Hanna L    Kyle H      Nikolas R   TBD      TBD
Assisting Ministers   David S      Pat K      Karen B      Vikki H      Erik G
Readers      Marilynn D   Pat K      Janitha C   Vikki H      Larry R
Comm. Assts.      Teresa L    Laura H      Larry R      TBD      TBD
Ushers         TBD      TBD      TBD      TBD      TBD
Projection & Video   Jim H & Paul H    Jim H & Paul H   Jim H & Paul H   Jim H & Paul H   Jim H & Paul H
Altar Guild      Nancy H   Nancy H   Marilynn D   Cindy N      TBD
Counter      Jim H & Tim S   Jim H & Tim S   Jim H & Tim S   Jim H & Tim S   Jim H & Tim S

Christmas Services
         December 24      December 25
         10:15 pm      10:15 am
Acolytes      TBD         Ralphie L
Assisting Ministers   Tryg J         Diane B
Readers      Janitha         Larry R
Comm. Assts.      TBD         Teresa L
Ushers         TBD         TBD
Projection & Video   Jim H & Paul H      Jim H & Paul H
Altar Guild      Cindy N         Sue K
Counter      Jim H & Tim S      Jim H & Tm S

Flowers and Bulletins
      Flowers    Bulletins
December 1   Available   Available
December 8   Available   The Hauser Family in memory of George A Raica
December 15   Available   Available
December 22   Available   Available
Christmas   The altar will be decorated with the Poinsettia Garden – order yours today!
December 29   Available   Available

Church Busniess
EC Corner
The November EC meeting included review of December church schedule and fundraising opportunities including Giving Tuesday on Facebook & 31 Gifts. Additionally, EC focused on the Ministry Profile which has begun to be put online with the information from last Congregation Meeting. In looking ahead to 2020, EC discussed possible having a second inter-congregation event with other churches, prayer process, leadership openings & budget for 2020 and annual renewal of facility use agreements.

November Giving (Gen. Fund & MAP)
Wk1=$4604 Wk2=$1757 Wk3=$1251 Wk4=$613

November Attendance
Wk1=46   Wk3=40
Wk2=30   Wk4=34

Fundraising Opportunities

Facebook is matching $7 million in donations on a first come, first serve basis beginning at 8:00 am EST (7:00 am CST) on Tuesday, December 3rd. What a great opportunity to let your donation to Messiah double! Many nonprofits are hoping to take advantage of this great opportunity so it’s important to donate early!

Be the first to donate! Show your passion for Messiah Park Ridge by making the first donation – whether its $5 or $500. Every little bit helps and can help motivate your friends to support the cause. There will be a cap on matching donations of $100k per nonprofit and $20k per donor. If your donation gets matched, they'll let you know in January 2020. There are no fees charged to #messiahparkridge for these donations and you'll receive a receipt for your donation from Facebook by e-mail.

To donate go to Messiah’s Facebook page and look for the post on Giving Tuesday and follow the directions. Or use this link:
If you need help accessing the site, contact Paul Holzer or the church office.
Thank you for your support!!

ONE WEEK LEFT to get Christmas gifts through Messiah’s Thirty-One Gifts Fundraiser. Last day to order for Christmas is December 8th! This company is known especially for their great totes and storage solutions – plus they have a lot more! Messiah receives 25% of sales to help support our ministries! It’s a great source for Christmas shopping! Please shop through the following link www.mythirtyone.com/jennrusin and be sure to click Shop Now- "Messiah Lutheran Church-Park Ridge".
Thirty-One Gifts has created Thirty-One Gives, their charitable program that works to empower girls, women and families by helping them build the confidence and self-esteem needed to live a purposeful, thriving life. Since 2012, Thirty-One Gives has donated $100 million in product and cash to charitable organizations that share the Gives mission.

More Shopping Since we’re talking about Christmas shopping - remember to use AMAZON SMILE and GOODSHOP when shopping online. For AMAZON SMILE, go to the website and select Messiah Lutheran Church Park Ridge. For GOODSHOP go to goodsearch.com/goodshop and register, select Messiah and shop!! Goodshop can also be accessed on other social media sites and offers an app for your phone.

Birthday Present for Messiah
As we come to the end of Messiah’s 65th Birthday year, consider giving a “Birthday Present” in the form of a monetary donation to help pay off MAP!! It’s clear that Messiah has touched all of us in some special way – let’s all think about what Messiah has meant to us and our community over the last 65 years and consider honoring that with an extra donation for its birthday this year! Perhaps make the donation on Facebook on December 3 and stretch your donation even further!

Joyful November
We would like to thank Pastor Phyllis Kersten for filling in Sunday, October 27th while Pastor David was away. The Assistance Ministry team would also like to thank Subway on NW Highway and Greenwood, Lou Malnatti’s in Park Ridge, and Andrews Open Pit & Spirits for providing food this month for the Assistance Ministry guests. Without the help of these local businesses we would not be able to provide all that is needed on a weekly basis. Thank you! We are also very thankful that Rich Levy is home from the hospital and recovering comfortably from a recent surgery. Please continue to keep Rich in your prayers. Congregations and individuals who participated in the recent Niles/Park Ridge CROP Hunger Walk have raised nearly $39,000 this year! If you would like to donate, there is still time. Donations are being accepted at https://www.crophungerwalk.org/nilesil. Again, thanks to those who have already donated and thanks to those who participated in the Walk. We would like to thank Rev. Carl Anderson for filling in for Pastor David on Sunday, November 10th. The Assistance Ministry team would like to thank McKenna’s Bags, a local outreach organization, for a donation of personal care bags that will be given to the AM guests. These bags contain hand crocheted scarves, socks, hand warmers, and other cold weather items. Thrivent Financial has a grant program which helps fund groups of people that Thrivent calls Action Teams. An Action Team is a group of volunteers that see a need in their community and forms a team that works together to meet that need. The Assistant Ministry team has been given an Action Team grant for $250 to continue their work in the community of Park Ridge. Congratulations AM team! This is a much-deserved award for a hard-working team.

Prayer of the People
As of November 24th Worship Bulletin
Those who mourn:
Pastor Mark Larson and family as they mourn the passing of Mark’s mother, Willetta “Letti” Larson

Those who are ill, in recovery, or facing adversity:
The Dumerer Family The Hauser Family
The Family of Deborah Dietrich
Don & Mary Jane Kovach Trudi Handzel Jim Handzel
Bob Kallas Richard Levy Daniel Kovach Carol Hrodey
Maria Raicia (mother of Laura Hauser)
Sonja Snell, and Larry Morris (family of Bill and Cindy Decker)
Katie Brandon and Carol Rudy (friends of Dotty Burger)
Crystal, Marcello, & Mikayla (Rich & Helen Levy’s daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter)
Russell Sorensen (father of Cindy Norberg) Jessica Saul (daughter of Tim Saul)
The Maruccilli Family (Friends of the Lippert Family)
Jo?e (friend of Cookie Bonilla) Dan & Fran Lorenzo (friends of Debbie Dietrich)
Karen Heisler, Judy Swensen, Bonnie Bomhack, Sharon Pauley, Amanda Jensen, Ted Gradt,
Joanne May, The Tomennille Family (friends and family of the Jensen Family)
Ron, Carol, Lynne, Mary, Bruce, Terry DeSchepper (friends of David Swanson)
Ruth Perzentka, George, Gari, The Beierwaltes Family (family & friends of the Handzel Family)

Those who are homebound:
Arlene Baranowski Barb Loverme Dorothy Nagel Eva Thoren      

Those serving in the armed services and first responders:
(those known to us & all those who serve)
Brandon Ajyek Tim David Tyler Daye Jerred Engvall   Bobby Hanson
Jenni Hanson Mikey Hanson Andreas Johnson Claudine Ward Jason Koesler
Joey Rosequist Officer Matt McGannon    

Those attending college:
Rachel Daye Melissa Holzer Thomas Yager Phil Holzer    Nick Levy Novena Christal
Haley Lippert Dina Salemi Arden Sasak Adam Hauser Jake Saul Jessica Saul Christian Travis Ryan Hauser Kevin Kovach Trygve Jensen

Those who celebrate:
Larry Dumerer, 12/1 Melissa Holzer, 12/4 Rhonda Cady, 12/5 Dorothy Pollack, 12/6 Jennifer Hanson, 12/10 David Jensen 12/18 Bobby Hanson, 12/19
Neena Penumaka, 12/23 Andrew Travis, 12/24 Laura Olson 12/27, Marcella Larson, 12/28 Elaine Von Schwedler, 12/30 Laura Hauser, 12/31
No Anniversaries this month




1605 Vernon Avenue
Park Ridge, IL 60068
p 847.823.6984           f 847.823.6996