Salem Lutheran Church

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Give Yourself Away

As we gather this evening, we begin to bring our Lenten observance to an end, and we gather with Christians around the world to celebrate the Three Days of Jesus’ death and resurrection. At the core of this gathering is Jesus’ commandment to love one another and as we heard Jesus command, we aren’t to love like the world loves, but like Jesus loved. “Just as I have loved you, you…

Heavy Lifting

16When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. 2And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. 3They had been saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” 4When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which…

It's Time

Today we begin our final week of our Lenten journey. In the church we call this Holy Week and it begins today with Palm/Passion Sunday, which I always find to be a very odd day. Today we began our time of worship with a celebration. Like those faithful followers back in the first century, we shouted Hosanna and we celebrated Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Our Messiah arrived…

Growing in Faith

I have a pretty ecumenical background: I was baptized Presbyterian but grew up in military post chapels, where Protestant worship was led by pastors of a different denomination every year. Our family jokingly identified as “Episcomethobapterian” – so I’m pretty comfortable everywhere. I joined my best friend’s Methodist church in college and later spent almost 12 years as a worship…

Time to Die

So did the “Greeks” that wanted to see Jesus get to see him or not? That is a question I ask every time I read this story. All we know is that when Andrew and Philip told Jesus that these folks wanted to see him, Jesus gave a cryptic reply and then began speaking to the crowd, then he offered a prayer for others to hear and then God spoke and then Jesus spoke to the crowd again. We…

The Time Has Come

Believe it or not, there are only two weeks left in the season of Lent, which means Easter is right around the corner. This also means that there are huge changes for this faith community right around the corner, as well. As you know, because of budget issues, we will be eliminating the Director of Adult Ministries & Outreach position effective April 1. Now, as much as I hate to have Meghan…

Embrace the Cross

This verse is perhaps the most popular verse in the New Testament and it is considered by many as the best summary of Christianity as a whole. The verse became extremely popular in the 1970’s when Rollen Stewart, a self-proclaimed hippie with a rainbow afro wig, would dance around at NFL games holding up a sign that read, John 3:16. With sports being televised so much more and the growth…

Turning Toward

Dear Salem Family,

This will be my last letter to you as staff here at Salem. So, I thought I’d leave you with a challenge.

There are many changes that will be happening for Salem in the next couple of months. Change is scary. Change is hard. And turning toward what’s hard and scary and vulnerable is not usually our default choice. We often spend all kinds of time trying to avoid…

Spring Cleaning

Today, and for the next two weeks, we will be reading our Gospel text from the Gospel of John and not the Gospel of Mark. Now in John’s Gospel, things often happen in a slightly different order than in the other Gospels and our story today is one of those stories.

In the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke the story of Jesus entering the temple overturning the tables of the money…

​Tone Deaf

Over the past week I have been shocked by all of the negative social media posts aimed at the students from the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida. Many students chose to speak out against assault weapons and gun violence. They spoke their truths and shared an intimate portrait of a tragedy that no child should ever have to experience. One would think that we as a country…