From the Senior Pastor
The Gifts of Advent
A gift is given freely and offered in love. In the weeks before Christmas, we often race around finding just the right gifts for friends and family. The season of Advent is itself a gift—a time set apart to prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ. We give thanks for God’s gift to us in the baby of Bethlehem.
Our Advent midweek series, which began on November 30, highlights four aspects of Advent that become blessings and gifts in our lives: patience, speech and silence, hope, and family.
Week 1, November 30: The Gift of Patience
Waiting is hard. We eagerly anticipate the desires of our hearts and want them to come soon. We wait for the first day of school or the first snowfall. We wait to see a loved one or to hear a doctor’s news. Just as the farmer waits for crops or the fig tree waits for summer, we are reminded to be patient until the coming of the Lord.
In this first week of Advent, we engage the work of waiting at our Advent Fair, an intergenerational event, open to all, that brings focus to our anticipation through crafts and experiential learning, fellowship and food, and lots of fun. The festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. throughout the building.
Week 2, December 7: The Gifts of Speech and Silence
Encountering the angel of the Lord, Zechariah was struck speechless. His imposed silence became a time to reflect on the wonders of God. Like Zechariah, we are called at times to be silent and listen, at other times to shout with joy. Join us for a worship experience in the Sanctuary at 6:30 p.m. that will welcome silence and the stillness of the season while giving voice to our expectant joy.
Week 3, December 14: The Gift of Hope
Hope is a word on which our future rests. We cannot know what will come, but with faith we place our hope in Christ. Like Zechariah, we hope for the tender mercy of our God, light in the midst of darkness and death, and the knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of our sins. Worship this week will feature individual prayer for healing; join us in the Sanctuary at 6:30 p.m.
Week 4, December 21: The Gift of Family
The Gospel of Matthew begins with a family tree from Abraham to Jesus. Between the recitation of names, we also hear the story of God at work in our world from generation to generation. The Advent and Christmas seasons highlight the significance of family and friends in our lives. We witness Mary and Joseph, Elizabeth and Zechariah, and the shepherds together tending their flocks. As God’s children, we become part of the family tree, so we’ll gather as a family of faith at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary one last time before the big celebrations of Christmas.
This Advent season, give yourself and your family a gift by attending Advent Worship at OSL. Taking time in the midst of the busyness of the season to quiet yourself and worship the God who comes to be God with us will be a gift that will feed your soul.
Advent blessings to you all,
Pr. Randy Gehring
Christmas Worship at OSL
Spread the word! Tell your friends! Invite your neighbors! We celebrate once again the hope of the world coming to us in the Babe of Bethlehem.
December 24, 4:00 p.m. – Candlelight Worship, Celebrate Center
December 24, 4:00 p.m. – Candlelight Worship, Sanctuary
December 24, 5:30 p.m. – Candlelight Worship, Sanctuary
December 24, 10:00 p.m. – Candlelight Worship, Sanctuary
December 25, 10:00 a.m. – Christmas Day Worship Sanctuary
Note: The Christmas Eve TV broadcast will be shown at 9:00 p.m. this year, on KTTW (cable channel 9; channel 7.1).
October 22, 2016
Tescher Ray Hammrich, the son of Trevor Hammrich and Rachael Moe.
Mila Rose Baete, the daughter of Adam and Amy Baete.
October 30, 2016
Hudson Gene Chandler, the son of Adam and Laura Chandler.
November 13, 2016
Hunter Joseph Hohn, the son of Darin and Dina Hohn.
November 20, 2016
Nora Ann Novak, the daughter of James and Erin Novak.
November 26, 2016
Abigail Margaret and Anna Sophia Kriesel, the daughters of David and Amy Kriesel.
Lyla-Belle June Davenport, the daughter of Barry Davenport and Kristin Held.
November 27, 2016
Ayla Zee Nordin, the daughter of Micah and Channing Nordin.
Memorials and Honoraria
August, September, and October 2016
In Memory of Jacquelyn Howell
(Sister of Phyllis Howell)
In Memory of LuVerne Hall
In Memory of Larry Kracht
In Memory of Joan Ness
In Memory of Phil von Fischer
In Memory of Pr. Bruce Williams
In Memory of Enola Wullstein
Robert and Helen Doese
Jack and Cathy Gillespie
Dennis and Kristi Jons
Dan and Terri Smith
October 30, 2016
Telecasts are sponsored by Helen Madsen and family in loving memory of Lou Madsen, whose granddaughter Helene Madsen is being confirmed today.
November 20, 2016
Telecasts are sponsored by Margaret Novak in memory of Martin and Alma Reinecke and Harold and Arlen Guthmiller.
November 27, 2016
Telecasts are sponsored by Rosalie Ryan in memory of her brother, Don Seeklander, who worshiped with OSL via TV when he could not get to his own church.
Your Offering Makes a Difference
Your generosity is making a real difference in people’s lives through the mission and ministry of OSL. Thank you for your faithfulness in giving and your passionate commitment to God’s work through this congregation. Your continued generosity helps us reach our congregational goal of fully funding our ministry of connecting faith to everyday life.
Ministry Support through October 31, 2016
Pledged – $1,768,616
Received YTD – $1,541,057
Remaining – $227,559
Projected YTD – $1,545,169
Ahead/(Behind) – ($4,112)