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WORSHIP SERVICES 10:30 am

March 28 – Palm Sunday
Service of the Word
Sermon: Pastor Ralph Carl Wushke

April 1 – Maundy Thursday
Jointly with Redeem Lutheran Church:
Online Supper: 6:30 pm
Holy Communion 7:30 pm
Download the service guide here:
https://redeemerlutheran.ca/

April 2 – Good Friday
Reading of the Passion of our Lord

April 4 – Easter
Holy Communion
Sermon: Pastor Ralph Carl Wushke

April 11 – Second Sunday of Easter
Service of the Word
Sermon: Michael Rehberg

April 18 – Third Sunday of Easter
Holy Communion
Sermon: Pastor Ralph Carl Wushke

April 25 – Fourth Sunday of Easter
Service of the Word
Sermon: David Berg

LINKS TO RECORDED WORSHIP SERVICES

If you want to check-out what our ZOOM services are like, recordings can be found on this page.

 

ZOOM WORSHIP

For the foreseeable future, First Lutheran will continue to offer ZOOM Sunday morning worship. While an online service is different than being there in-person, many people have found spiritual sustenance and community life in our online services. You are invited and welcome to join us.

 

Please call or email Pastor Ralph Carl if interested, and he will provide the ZOOM log-in information.

 

ONLINE HOLY COMMUNION

If you would like to participate in our online Holy Communion — first and third Sundays — you my wish to read Pastor Wushke’s discussion paper –  click here to read it .

FINANCIAL SUPPORT

During this time when it is impossible to meet in person and contribute in the offering plate, fixed expenses for our ministries continue, and we invite people to consider other ways of supporting First Lutheran Church financially at this time.  Thank you.

First Lutheran Church is following COVID 19 public health guidelines. As COVID 19 cases are on the rise in Ontario, and a survey of our congregation indicated that a majority prefers online worship during this time, we are postponing the resumption of in-person worship. When it happens in-person worship will comply with the guidelines of the Eastern Synod of the ELCIC.

The pandemic is both a material and spiritual challenge, as is any health crisis. We pray for those who have died, for the bereaved, for the caregivers, for researchers, for front-line workers and all who are affected by COVID 19 around the world.  If you are feeling isolated or lonely and would like to have a conversation with Pastor Ralph Carl Wushke, please use the contact information on the web site.

The Longest Lent

Now that we have been under various COVID-19 lockdowns for more than a year – last Sunday marked the anniversary of our first Zoom service – one analogy that comes to mind is Lent, often a season of voluntary restraint. In my childhood dances and weddings were not permitted during Lent, and often the first dance after Lent was a “midnight frolic”: doors opened at the town hall just before midnight Easter Sunday! Pandemic restrictions were unexpected, unwanted and have caused extreme hardship and tragic death. The difference between Lent and COVID-19 restrictions is that Lent has a predicable end point, an assured moment of celebration at the end. These COVID times feel more like the kind of generational experience of privation that accompanied the great wars of the last century: unwanted periods of unparalleled loss and death, accompanied by hardship and rationing. When the great wars ended there was dancing in the streets; the exuberance of the Roaring Twenties is legendary.

Psalm 30:11 says, “You have turned my mourning in dancing; you have taken off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.” (NRSV)

Easter 2021 will be a muted celebration, still over-shadowed by the race against COVID-19. At the same time, Easter is God’s promise to be with us through suffering and to give birth to hope and new beginnings. The timing of a post-COVID resurrection is as yet unknown, and it will come in bits and pieces. Different parts of society and the world will heal from grief and begin new life at different times. As an Easter people we are sustained by the promise of hope and resurrection, even as we are living through the longest Lent.

Pastor Ralph Carl Wushke

 

SPIRITUAL RESOURCES

Although we can’t worship in the church building let’s continue to hold one another in prayer and practice our faith in our other ways. 

The World Council of Churches Spirituality Team provides a short outline for morning prayer in a time of COVID19 which is updated daily. Scroll down on this page

The ELCIC Council of Bishops has shared this prayer from the Lutheran World Federation which we commend to you: Lutheran World Federation Prayers during COVID-19

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