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NEWS > Announcements



SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS
(updated March 11, 2011)

ABOUT LENT
Our participation in the life, suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ is at the heart of the Christian faith. We are delivered from sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus, and by the Holy Spirit we are born into eternal life with God. The seasons of Lent and Easter call us to remember the mystery of our redemption in Christ and to more fully participate in his life-giving spirit. It is also a time for Christians to become engaged in the process of spiritual renewal. the period of lent is forty days, which recalls Jesus' wilderness fast of Mark 1:13. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and continues until Easter. Sundays are not included when we count the days of Lent, thus making the 40 days of Lent.

ASH WEDNESDAY
Ash Wednesday, the seventh Wednesday before Easter Sunday, is the first day of the season of Lent. Its name comes from the ancient practice of placing ashes on worshippers' heads or foreheads as a sign of humility before God, a symbol of mourning and sorrow at the death that sin brings into the world. Ash Wednesday is a somber day of reflection on what needs to change in our lives if we are to be fully Christian.

A TIME OF PRAYER AND PREPARATION
Lent is marked by a time of prayer and preparation to celebrate Easter. Seven Sundays celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. The six Sundays that occur during Lent are not counted as part of the 40 days of Lent, and are referred to as little Easters. The number 40 is connected with many biblical events, but especially with the forty days Jesus spent in the wilderness preparing for His ministry by facing the temptation that could lead him to abandon his mission and calling. Christians today use this period of time for introspection, self examination, and repentance. This season of the year is equal only to the season of Advent in importance in the Christian year, and is part of the second major grouping of Christian festivals and sacred time that includes Holy Week, Easter, and Pentecost.

HONORING THE NAME OF CHRIST
Before we begin to take pride in the fact that we do not use the Lord's name to curse the persons, things, or events that get under our skin, consider this. Do we call ourselves Christian? That means that we claim for ourselves the name of Christ! Have we taken the name in vain? Do we live up to the commitments we made when we accepted the salvation that is open to us through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ? Do we live up to the commitments we made at our baptism and that we make each time we renew that commitment as others are brought into the community of faith? We committed ourselves to nurture others in the Christian faith, to proclaim the good news, and to live according to the example of Christ.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR OUR LIVES?
Are we living up to what we think it means to be a Christian? Is the life of Christ our example of what our lives show to the world around us? Jesus lived a radical understanding of love, of what it means to be neighbor, and of who is included, and demonstrated special concern for the poor, the sick, and the excluded. Do we? Jesus embraced the Samaritans of His day -- the lepers, the bleeding woman, the tax collector, the cultural outsiders, and the religiously "incorrect." Do we? If not, we are taking the name of the Lord in vain. What changes do we need to make during this Lenten season so that our claim and our lives give us the right to use the name "Christian" -- and not in vain?

A COMMUNION EXPERIENCE AT EASTER
We were celebrating Holy Communion. The bread, the body of Christ, we were told, was being placed in our hands. Then we were invited to dip it in a cup, announced to be the blood of Christ. As I dipped the bread in the cup and raised it to my lips, a large, red drop from the bread fell onto my hand...

Time seemed to stand still. I watched the droplet fall on my finger, then slowly make its way down between my fingers, and then onto my palm...

Suddenly, a warmth began to grow in my hand and spread to my arm and soon engulfed me - heart, head, spirit - all of me...

Staring at the red droplet, images began to form in my head. I saw...

The crucified hands of Christ, red but not with wine...

A crown of thorns pressed into his brow...

The wound made by the spear in his side...

A faint, but clear voice spoke these final words, "It is finished!"

I looked up at the man on the cross as His head fell forward...

Hot tears filled my eyes and ran down my cheeks...

The images were suddenly gone, the room was black and without light...

I don't know how I made it back to the pew...

In the darkness I found myself raising my own hands and offering them and all I was to Christ and His service...

AMEN
Thank you, Lord.

 

THIS IS A GREAT TIME TO BE A CHRISTIAN
Many churches are in trouble, and Christians are often ridiculed or more often ignored. All of that makes it a great time to be a Christian because being a Christian today really matters. The world needs us even if it doesn't know it. We have a great story to tell and the world needs to hear that story. The world needs to hear about the birth, life, teaching, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The world needs to know that we have a savior who wants to save us. The world needs to see that we care and reach out in love and concern to all people. The world is hurting and we can help, one little Christian act at a time. Will you invite someone to attend church with you on the next Lord's day? Make a concerted effort to invite several people to come to church on Easter Sunday.

YOU ARE INVITED TO JOIN US EVERY SUNDAY
Easter Sunday is the most important day in the Christian church. The tomb is now vacant and, because of that, God has given us salvation through Jesus' life, death and resurrection! Bring the your children and grandchildren to church on Easter morning.

OUR EASTER PETTING ZOO AT PEACHTREE LUTHERAN - IT'S A TRADITION!
We've made special arrangements to have our Easter Petting Zoo Friends here after our 11:00AM Easter Sunday service - just for YOU.




 
Peachtree Road Lutheran Church  •  3686 Peachtree Road NE    Atlanta, Georgia 30319