Wednesday, July 27, 2016

August brings changes...

August -- winds of change!

We welcome Rev. Laura Wind, the new Duke Lutheran Campus Minister. Pastor Laura has been slowly getting settled in before the students arrive in mid-August. She will be dividing time at Duke, at Grace House where there is a Campus Ministry lounge as well as at St. Paul's and Grace Lutheran. Pastor Laura is hoping to involve many people in supporting this important ministry in several different ways:

  • praying for our incoming and returning students
  • praying for the larger Duke community
  • welcoming students as they come to worship
  • signing up to provide meals on worship nights
  • providing holiday bags/baskets for students
You may email her at Duke@stpaulsdurham.org.


On July 31, we say goodbye to Vicar Joseph O'Donnell as he has completed his year of internship at St. Paul's.  He has been packing up to prepare for his move back to the midwest.

On August 15, we say hello to Vicar Susan Holland as she begins her year of internship. Sue has spent the past year splitting time between living in Cary and completing her Lutheran studies as part of a Master of Sacred Theology degree at Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia, SC. Prior to that, she attended Duke Divinity School in Durham where she earned a Master of Divinity degree. Her studies and interests are focused on pastoral care and social justice issues.  Sue is married and has two teenage boys.

Starting August 1, Christopher McDonald will be in the sanctuary and invites anyone to join him in Morning Prayer. Times and days are 7:30 to 8:00 am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. You are welcome to join in or simply pray alongside in silence.

The Education committee is looking for leaders to help in the rotational Sunday School classes for children. The stories are presented over a 3-4 week period through crafts, cooking, puppetry, video -- and other ways as the leaders prefer. If you have a talent you can share with the story presentation, please contact Pastor Anderson or Betty Hinshaw.

Wednesday night suppers continue on the first and third Wednesdays of the month at 6:00 pm. The one on August 3 will be a Salad Days Pot-Luck! We invite any and all to come to the meal and if possible, bring along a salad to share -- the type of salad is your choice. Can be anything, such as: pasta, green, potato, tuna, chicken, fruit, jell-O, bean, Greek, taco, ambrosia, Caesar, chef, Cole slaw, egg, macaroni, ham, rice, Waldorf, or wedge -- We supply bread and desserts. Come join us!

Summer Adult Conversations continue through August on Sundays at 9:45-10:45 am, currently they are delving deeper into the lessons and readings from worship each week. The group is led by Sharon Schulze.

Worship continues on Sundays at 8:30 and 11:00 am. We have been using a setting based on the German Mass by Franz Schubert. On August 7, we will begin using Setting Three booklets from the Evangelical Lutheran Worship book. Sunday School begins its new year on Rally Day, September 11 with the traditional breakfast at 9:30 am. Classes return on September 18 at 9:45-10:45 am for all ages.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

After Easter

During the Sundays between now and Pentecost, we will be introducing and singing new parts of the Franz Schubert mass into our current liturgy/setting. This will lead up to Pentecost Sunday (May 15) when we'll be completely switched over to the new setting and use the new booklets in the pews. The pieces are probably quite familiar, but may not have been referred to as that title, but are in the current Evangelical Lutheran Worship book.

Christian Preismeier, a direct descendant of Martin Luther, will be on a North Carolina Tour, stopping at St. Paul's on Thursday, April 21 at 7:00 pm for Dessert and Conversation about Luther and Life. He is a voluntary preacher in the Lutheran Church and a member and secretary of the Board of "Lutheriden Association" in Zietz. This association brings together the descendants of the reformer Martin Luther and Katharina von Bora or one of his collateral relatives and altogether are called "Lutheriden." Current there are about 200 enrolled members, without the spouses and children of the current estimated 3,000 to 4,000 still living descendants. This evening is open to the public.

Our Vacation Bible School program this year is "Cave Quest" which will take place
Monday through Friday, June 20-25, 9:00 am until 12:30 pm. Children will see how Jesus gives us hope, courage, direction, love, and power throughout the week as they travel to different areas in the church for music, stories, crafts, science, Bible quests, recreation, snack and cinema. Applications are available on the website under the tab "Resources," look for the page: "Forms".  Children aged 3 through grade 5 are invited to attend. We also are looking for adults and teens to help shepherd the children through the week.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Lent to Easter

Our spring-like weather beginning in February has confused some of us looking at the calendar. It is only the fourth week in Lent and we have flowers and daffodils blooming everywhere along with 75-80 degree temperatures, and Lent is early this year. 

We continue with our Lenten Worship Services on Wednesdays at noon and 7 pm on March 9 and 16. We also have dinners on those Wednesdays at 5:45 pm (15 minutes earlier so the handbells can get to rehearsal).  We will have two more Friday noon Meditations on the Stations of the Cross, led by Rev. Lorrel Strom-Jensen, March 11 and 18.

Holy Week Schedule
  • March 20 -- Palm/Passion Sunday -- worship at 8:30 and 11:00 am with the reading of the Passion according to St. Luke.
  • March 24 -- Maundy Thursday -- worship at 12:00 noon (Holy Communion) and 7:00 pm (Holy Communion and Washing of the Feet)
  • March 25 -- Good Friday -- worship at 12:00 noon ("The Way of the Cross" using the stations of the cross in the meditations) and 7:00 pm (Tenebrae service)
  • March 26 -- Holy Saturday -- Vigil of Easter at 7:00 pm 
  • Sunday, March 27 -- EASTER! -- Services are at 8:30 and 11:00 am. We have an Easter Breakfast at 9:30 am in Trinity Hall and an Easter Egg Hunt for children at 10:15 am. Bring a basket for the egg hunt. Flowers can be brought to decorate the   Easter Cross.
The Paschal Triduum
The three evening services in Holy Week (Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Vigil of Easter) are the Paschal Triduum, and we experience them as one celebration marking the central events of the Christian faith.

On Maundy Thursday, the disciplines of Lent are concluded with a remembrance of the New Command to love one another as Christ loves us. This is demonstrated by washing the feet of a selected number of people. As this was the night Jesus instituted the Holy Communion at the Passover meal with his disciples, we come to the Lord's Table. This first day's worship concludes with the stripping of the altar. Symbolically, Christ now stripped of his power and glory, is in the hands of his captors.

On Good Friday, the baptized who could not watch with Jesus one hour in Gethsemane, fled from the Place of the Skull. Come to hear the story of our disobedience and Christ's obedience even unto death for our benefit. This is done by reading the Passion. By grace we are given the gift of laying our burdens down at the foot of the cross.

Neither Maundy Thursday nor the Good Friday liturgy ends with a benediction. As the benediction ("good word" from our God) concludes the worship; it is reserved for the end of the Vigil of Easter.

The Vigil of Easter is the earliest form of Easter worship in the church. Gathering in the darkness of sin and death, the church marks the gift of light at creation and in readings marks the mighty acts of salvation that bring us to the new creation in Christ, the light of the world. This new life of the resurrection is then celebrated in remembrance of the Holy Bath of Baptism and the foretaste of the heavenly banquet at Holy Communion. The three-day service is concluded with the benediction. 

Easter is a joyful celebration of music and words as we shout - "He is Risen -- He is Risen Indeed!" Our 8:30 and 11:00 am services welcome all to worship. There will be an Easter Breakfast beginning at 9:30 in Trinity Hall to share in fellowship with others. Children are invited to bring a basket and participate in the Easter Egg Hunt which begins at 10:15 am. 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Live Your Faith

St. Paul's is one of five congregations statewide that will be participating in "Live Your Faith" Events throughout the synod. We anticipate many of our neighbors coming to join us. The Synod is providing facilitators and study material at no cost to you. Each day begins at 10:00 am and ends at 4:00 pm. Lunch will be provided. Dates are February 27, April 9, May 14.

February 27 -- this event will call us to LISTEN CURIOUSLY TO GOD AND NEIGHBOR -- DWELLING IN THE WORD. What if every meeting our church has could begin by dwelling deeply with God's Word, listening for God in one another? What if, by hearing God's Word in a story, and by appreciating the story through the eyes and ears of our fellow members and even strangers visiting with us, we could begin to notice God's calling for our congregation and community? This day is a beginning. A way to practice being in the Word of God together in community.

April 9 -- This event will call us to BUILD RELATIONSHIPS DEEPLY BY DWELLING IN THE WORLD. We want to notice God at work in life, in the lives of ourselves and others. We also want to know the people God is sending to us to be in mission with each other. But we are very shy, or jealous of our time, and we don't go out of our way to have simple conversations with people God might bring into our lives. How can we get over this reluctance? Come and practice ways to dwell in the world.

May 14 -- This event will call us to TELL THE GOSPEL CONFIDENTLY BY ANNOUNCING THE KINGDOM OF GOD. We are believers in God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Have you ever been with a friend who is despairing and wanted to be able to confess the hope you have in God? How would you like to be able to notice God at work in the world and tell someone about it, to help you both on your journey of faith? All it takes is practice and support. But how can you give or get such practice and support for such a simple but profound act? Come and practice the Kingdom with a group of faithful friends.

These events could be life changing for you and our congregation. Please contact Pastor Scott Anderson (pastor@stpaulsdurham.org)

Friday, January 29, 2016

February

Transitioning from Green to White to Purple...

Lent comes early this year so we have been Epiphany green in January, will have the white of Transfiguration on February 7 and then Ash Wednesday begins purple on February 10. All in a matter of days.

On Wednesday, February 3, the Preschool is having a fundraising spaghetti supper at 6:00 pm in Trinity Hall. An opportunity for a great meal and lots of fun with the children as we all enjoy their singing. Come out and support the preschool. Proceeds from the meal provide scholarships whereas donations from the bake sale support the playground renovations.

Shrove Tuesday is February 9 when we will have our traditional pancake supper, with sausage and applesauce. Typically, on Shrove Tuesday, also called Fat Tuesday, households used up the fatty foods and cooking fat which would not be consumed during the forty days of Lent. Come out at 6 pm to enjoy the pancakes (regular and chocolate chip) and prepare for Lent.

Wednesday, February 10 is Ash Wednesday and we will have worship services, including the imposition of ashes, at 12:00 noon and 7:00 pm.

Then on Friday, February 12 the Valentine's Day Big Band Bash will take place at 7:00 pm in Trinity Hall. Come and enjoy the sounds of the Durham Jazz Orchestra, an 18 piece band plus vocalists. All ages will enjoy the music from the big-band era and the dance floor will be open if you are so inclined. Please bring some sweet or salty dessert treats to share with others.

Throughout Lent, there will be Wednesday Night suppers at 6:00 pm and Lenten devotions at 7:00 pm worship services. On Fridays at noon during Lent, Rev. Lorrel Strom-Jensen will be offering meditations on the Stations of the Cross in our sanctuary.

On Sunday, February 21 at 3:00 pm, we will have a presentation of War Room. Come join us for this powerful movie on the power of prayer -- popcorn included.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Advent to Christmas

Advent Wednesdays -- We know Advent as a time of anticipation and preparation for the emergence of God in the world in the person of Jesus Christ. To help us prepare, we are having beautiful Advent Wednesday evening candlelight services starting at 7:00 pm. Our services will be Marty Haugen's Holden Evening Prayer with a couple musical pieces during communion from Haugen's Creation Mass. The service is preceded by a 6:00 pm supper which you are all welcome to attend. Services are on December 2, 9, and 16.

Advent Celebration: Musicians of St. Paul's -- On Friday, December 11 at 7:00 pm, please come to support the St. Paul's Senior Choir and Bell choir to celebrate this season of Advent with J. S. Bach's Cantata, Nun Komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 62, and other advent music! With instrumentalists and vocal soloists from the Durham area, this concert is sure to get you in the spirit of Advent.

Christmas Pageant Rehearsals have been happening for several weeks in anticipation of our annual Christmas Pageant on Sunday, December 13 at 5:00 pm, followed by our traditional lasagna supper. We hope to see you there for this joyful event and wonderful fellowship. We thank Jody Timmins for her leadership in this year's Pageant.

Christmas Eve Worship Schedule (all services celebrate Holy Communion)
  • 5:00 pm Family Service
  • 7:00 pm Candlelight Service with Handbells participating
  • 10:00 pm Candlelight Service with the Senior Choir participating

Sunday, December 27 worship will be a service of Lessons and Carols with Holy Communion.

The Church Office will be closed from December 25 through January 3. Blessings to you and yours!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Reformation Tour

St. Paul's Reformation Tour to Germany in 2016

You are invited on an 11 day tour to Germany. 

We will learn about Luther’s life and ministry as we visit key Lutheran sites including Erfurt, Eisenach, Wittenberg and Eisleben. Music lovers will enjoy the Bach Motet concert in Leipzig and a special after-hours concert in the Bach House in Eisenach. Dates are May 22 - June 1, 2016.  Abbreviated itinerary is as follows:


  • May 22: Depart on overnight flights to Frankfurt, Germany
  • May 23: Mainz - afternoon is free or join a guided tour of Mainz, including the Gutenberg Museum
  • May 24: Worms, Eisenach - Reformation Monument, Diet of Worms plaque
  • May 25: Erfurt, Mühlhausen - walking tour of Erfurt including St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. Severin’s 
  • May 26: Eisenach - Wartburg Castle, Tour of Eisenach including St. George’s Church, the Luther House and the Luther Monument, ending with a special after-hours wine and music reception at the Bach House
  • May 27: Eisleben, Leipzig – Eisleben, where Luther began and ended his life; Motet concert at St. Thomas’ Church
  • May 28: Wittenberg, Leipzig – Lutherhalle, the Town Church of St. Mary’s, Castle Church and the Cranach courtyard, free afternoon followed by a Wittenberg English Ministry Saturday service.
  • May 29: Leipzig – optional service (in German) with tour of Leipzig
  • May 30: Dresden – Baroque cathedral “Church of Our Lady in Dresden, tour of Semper Opera, Semper Gallery, Zwinger Palace and Bruehl’s Terrace
  • May 31: Torgau, Spreewald – Hartenfels Castle and Katharina von Bora’s grave, guided boat tour on a traditional barge
  • June 1: transfer to Berlin Airport to return to the USA

Detailed information is available at this website. Brochures are also available in the foyer on the sign-up table. Contact Morris or Pat Casper if you have questions or are interested in signing up for the trip. There are still a few vacancies for our tour.