Being Lutheran — Nothing to Be Ashamed Of!

St. John’s Riverside Lutheran Church
5686 Highway 32 South
Gillett, Wisconsin

June 1 – 4, 2009

Four Evenings to Renew and Deepen Our Faith and Understanding

June 1
Treasures in the Attic
Our Faith Is Not Clutter
June 2
God’s Pottery Wheel
The Shape of Worship; Worship that Shapes
June 3
Everyday Life
Where Faith Bears Fruit
June 4
Sharing the Gospel
Being Honorable Beggars

7:00 p.m. — 8:30 p.m.

Everyone is encouraged to attend all four evenings. Each evening will be valuable on its own. If you can’t join us on a certain evening, come on an evening or evenings that work out for you.Each evening will include the participation of a presenter and a pastor who will lead opening and closing worship and provide opportunities for conversation and advice.

Schedule for Each Evening
7:00    Responsive Prayer and Hymn
7:10    Presentation
7:55    Questions and Discussion
8:15    Compline Service

On Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, we will meet in our fellowship space in the basement. Tuesday evening, we will meet in the sanctuary.
A handout will be distributed each evening so that what is learned can be reviewed and shared with others.
Chaplain: Pastor Shane Cota
Presenter: Michael Zamzow

Over the years Lutherans in America have lost the confidence many of their ancestors brought to this country. The Lutheran proclamation of the Gospel was so central to their lives, that some of them left Europe so they would not be coerced or punished for being Lutheran. While not all our ancestors braved crossing the Atlantic for religious reasons, they cherished the faith enough to form Lutheran congregations and synods rather than merely melting into the religious mainstream of their new surroundings. They knew that the Lutheran Church proclaimed the Gospel with a clarity and focus that was not to be found elsewhere.
Lutherans are sometimes not mindful of just what a blessing the Lutheran Church has been in proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ with such vigor and clarity. Christians throughout the world sing Lutheran hymns, listen to the great music written by Lutherans like J.S. Bach, are aided by institutions founded by Lutherans and profit from the studies and writings of Lutheran scholars. In the past decade increasing numbers of Christians are attracted to the Lutheran Church for the very reasons our congregations and synods were founded and grew. They long for the clarity and focus which inspires the proclamation of the Gospel and the music and worship of our Church.
While others have come to treasure and cherish our heritage, we have let it gather dust and let it fall into disuse or irrelevance. The four evenings we have planned are intended to remind and re-acquaint us with the Lutheran heritage so that the Gospel can be proclaimed and heard clearly and with focus and conviction in our midst. With that renewed clarity and focus we will be better able to bear witness to Christ in our lives and through the ministry of our congregation and synod.
Each of the evenings will unwrap the insights and beliefs which bring the clarity and focus of the Gospel which is the very reason why there is a Lutheran Church and why we are not ashamed of it. This unwrapping will be done engagingly and with an opportunity for questions and discussion.
The first evening will let the basic insights of the Lutheran Reformation proclaim anew the Good News of Jesus Christ. Lutheran doctrines are not just musty old phrases spouted by musty old guys. They are teachings which protect the Gospel from destructive distortions and inspire the teaching, preaching, and worship in our churches.
The second evening will be devoted to deepening our appreciation and understanding of how and where Lutherans worship. The goal is to let the liturgy. hymns, and worship space become a part of the clear and focused proclamation of the Gospel.
The third evening will concentrate on the Lutheran understanding of vocation and how it shapes daily living and our self-understanding not only in our workplaces, but in our families, our communities, and the public square.
The fourth evening will offer a take on how Lutherans share the Gospel. Evangelism is too often stereotyped in such a way that Lutherans are justly skeptical of methods and attitudes commonly employed.
Members of St. John’s Riverside are encouraged to bring along people they know who would be interested in what we are offering. People interested in what Lutherans are all about might find these evenings informative. Lutherans from other congregations or synods might find them inspirational. Our time together will be worthwhile if just one of us is a bit less ashamed of who we are and what we believe.


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