Salem Lutheran Church

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Invited to be Happy

“Blessed are the poor in spirit… blessed are those who mourn…” Most of us know these words well. We call this passage the Beatitudes, and they are words attributed to Jesus as he gave his Sermon on the Mount in the Gospel of Matthew. But to be honest, I often struggle with them because I don’t see how one who is mourning, for example, feels blessed.

The word we translate here…

​We are Blessed

I absolutely love "The Message: the Bible in Contemporary Language" by Eugene Peterson. If there’s ever a scripture you have trouble understanding, try reading it in "The Message" — it’s more conversational and relevant to our world today. We’ll be reading the Beatitudes this Sunday from Matthew, and I’d like to give you both translations of my favorites:

Matthew 5:3 “Blessed…

Invited To Be Free

Today is Reformation Sunday, and aside from being the day we celebrate the Affirmation of Baptism, or Confirmation as we so often call it, for seven of our young adults, it is also a very special historical moment not just for Lutherans, but I would argue for all Christians, throughout the world. This year, we commemorate the 500th anniversary of Luther’s October 31, 1517 posting of the…

Time to Seek Reform

This past Sunday, October 22, our 2017 confirmands offered their statements of faith. It is one of my favorite Sundays here because I am always moved by the sincerity and honesty of our young folks as they share where they are in their faith journey, and the struggles and joys they have experienced so far in their lives. The other thing that is powerful for me about these statements is to…

What the World Needs Now…

Dear Salem Family,

A passage from a book I’m reading currently got me thinking. One chapter is called No Strings Attached. Jen Hatmaker writes, “I was scared, first and foremost of God…I was also scared to love people. What if they were wrong? Wrong about what you ask? Oh, just anything. Wrong living, wrong ideas, wrong faith, wrong crowd. If I loved someone ‘wrong,’ then I…

Invited to Gather & Change

Now isn’t this a cheery text! I mean, just when you think things are looking good the whole premise of the parable seems to take a turn for the worse with those final two verses, when the king says, “ 'Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:13-14). This…

Understanding Beyond Belief

Sports are such a big part of our culture in this country at all levels from youth leagues to professional. I have to admit I am a huge sports fan and own gear from my favorite college and professional sports teams that I proudly wear. Recently I went to an NHL game at the Sprint Center to watch my Minnesota Wild hockey team beat the St. Louis Blues. I love live sports and it was so much fun to…

​Produce the fruit

I made apple crisp today, and it hardly made a dent in the bag of apples my kids picked at a local orchard this weekend. The cider donuts and slushies are long gone, but what to do with all of the apples? As a kid I remember climbing what seemed to be very tall trees, and sitting up there chomping away on sweet, juicy apples — I’m sure we brought mountains of them home, and mom probably canned…

Invited to Gather: To Live by His Authority

Do you remember that sitcom on the late '80s, Who’s the Boss? ? It was about a widower and former baseball player who had to give up his baseball career because of injury, so he decides to become a housekeeper for a high-powered divorced businesswoman. We had come a long way in the '80s, but the premise that a man would be a stay-at-home dad and housekeeper while a woman would…

Blessed to be a Blessing

Last Friday, September 22, the season of fall officially began at approximately 3:10 PM. Just as fall began last week, so did Sunday School for children, teens, and adults. Our Wednesday night program, Oasis, also began last week. Choir has started back up, and our Pantry Pack program seems to be busier than ever. In addition, our facility planning has picked up and, with the direction of…

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