First English Lutheran

5th Sunday in Lent-March 29th

From Pastor Ryan

Dear First English,

Jesus said, “Remember, I am with you always” (Matthew 28:20). I pray this promise from our Savior be at the forefront of your minds, however you are experiencing this pandemic. Even in times of scattering, we are One in Christ.


I would like to give you an update on a few important things going on you may not see:


—Main Office: the main office continues to be open Mon. thru Thurs. 9am—2pm; we ask that you refrain from going inside the church building unless it is necessary—but do call with needs, prayer requests, and to get information. FELC staff are hard at work, whether at home or at church.


—Connecting: we have augmented our recent Connect Group structure and created a phone tree. Connect Group leaders have begun calling every member to check-in. We will continue to be connected in faith and life.


—Outreach: we remain connected to key mission partners in the community. We will post ways you can continue to safely witness and serve. In the meantime, help one another.


FELC will host an American Red Cross Blood Drive on Tuesday, March 31st from 8am to 1pm. This is considered an essential activity and the Red Cross has measures in place to keep donors and volunteers safe. To donate, please pre-register redcrossblood.org or simply come.


—At-Home Worship: It was such a delight to see all the ways you worshipped from home this past Sunday! FELC will continue to send resources for all ages—we are especially working on some creative ways to observe Holy Week and celebrate Easter at home,

until we can celebrate together again.


God’s rich grace to you. And may the same grace fill your minds, hearts, homes, and lives—by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Yours in Christ,

Pastor Ryan

Follow @felcpeoria on Facebook and Instagram.

At Home Worship Opportunities

On Sunday morning, March 29th, please plan to worship from your home. At 10am gather your Bible, scripture for the day, daily prayers, and plan to watch a video from Pastor Ryan. A link to the video will be sent to you by email and available on the FELC Facebook, and webpage.



Sunday School Staff will also have Sunday School lessons/Children's sermons available on Facebook. Please plan to follow along.

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Brief Order of Worship for at Home


+ Whether worshipping alone or with your household, consider speaking out loud, even while reading scripture—to hear God’s voice amidst this new silence.


+ You may follow this simple order of service at any time of day.


Gather

L: God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit watch over us/me.

C: Amen.


Remember Your Baptism

Remember that you have been baptized and claimed as God’s beloved child. Nothing can separate you from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Rest assured that your sins are forgiven. You may pray together:

L: Almighty God, who gives us new birth by water and the Holy Spirit and forgives us all our sins, strengthen us in all goodness and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord,

C: Amen.


Read Scripture [find daily scriptures in the Taking Faith Home resource]


Reflect

—On Sunday, watch a video message from the pastor on the FELC Facebook page

—Discuss the scriptures with those in your household

—If you are with a family with young children, use some of the other provided resources for the faith formation of youth, or have children draw the scene in the scripture reading or some other comforting Bible Story and talk about details of the picture

—If you are alone, meditate, reflect, or journal on the scripture and/or other devotional material


Say the Creed

Recite out loud the Apostles’ or Nicene Creed (easily found online)


Pray

You may pray from the heart—praying for the Church, the world, and all those who are in need. For additional prayers, see below…new prayers will be provided each week.


Say the Lord’s Prayer

Recite the Lord’s prayer out loud.


Conclude Worship

After singing a hymn/song perhaps, or whatever else may serve your devotion say:

L: God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit watch over us/me.

C: Amen.

Prayers for Sunday, March 29th

Prayer of the Day


Almighty God, your Son came into the world to free us all from sin and death. Breathe upon us the power of your Spirit, that we may be raised to new life in Christ and serve you in righteousness all our days, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


Prayers of the Church

Turning our hearts to God who is gracious and merciful, we pray for the church, the world, and all who are in need.


God of life, bind your faithful people into one body. We pray for our Bishops, Elizabeth and John. We pray for the members of First English and the Church found everywhere, that you watch over us and help us find ways to continue to witness to your power and serve our neighbors. Accomplish your work of salvation in us and through us, for the sake of the world. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


God of life, you love the world you have made and you grieve when creation suffers. Heal areas of the world ravaged by storms, floods, wildfires, droughts, or other natural disasters. Bring all things to new life. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


God of life, show redemption to all who watch and wait with eager expectation: those longing for wars to cease, those waiting for immigration paperwork to finalize, those seeking election, and those in dire need of humanitarian relief. Come quickly with your hope. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


God of life, you weep with those who grieve. Unbind all who are held captive by anxiety, despair, or pain. Bring healing and peace to all affected by the novel coronavirus. Bring relief to those who are in any kind of need (especially—say, out loud, the names of those who need prayer). Fill us with compassion and empathy for those who struggle, and keep us faithful in prayer. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


God of life, we give thanks for opportunities for this congregation to collaborate with our community in caring for the needs of our neighbors, even during this crisis. Strengthen our ties with other local congregations, agencies, and services. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


God of life, you are our resurrection. We remember all those who have died and trust that, in you, they will live again (especially—name those who have died and gone before us). Breathe new life into our dry bones, that we, too, might live with you forever. Hear us, O God. Your mercy is great.


According to your steadfast love, O God, hear these and all our prayers as we commend them to you; through Christ our Lord. Amen.





Portions of this liturgy are taken from Sundays and Seasons Copyright © 2020 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Annual License #SAS002975.

Weekly Communication

Please contact the church office if you would like a paper copy of this week's newsletter.

We have a list of people we will be mailing resources to each week, and we are happy to add you to our mailing list. Please let us know if this would be helpful to you.


office@felcpeoria.org

309-685-0337

Request an Updated Electronic Directory

If you would like to receive an updated FELC Directory via email, please contact Lois Neptun in the FELC Office via phone or email.

Online Giving to Support FELC

As we are staying home, please continue to give to First English Lutheran Church. It is important that FELC staff, our building & grounds, and our ministry continue to be supported through this pandemic.


Financial Gifts: Please send a check through the mail, send your tithe/offering through your banking institution, sign up for 'Simply Giving.'


You may also take advantage of our new online giving with Tithe.ly.


First English has added an electronic way to support the ministry of the church. For now, the app we have chosen and installed is tithe.ly. There are three ways to use this stewardship feature:


  1. Website—find the “Support FELC” button on our home page: www.felcpeoria.org
  2. FaceBook page (search for First English Lutheran and look for the link)
  3. Download the tithe.ly app to your mobile device


Thank you for continuing to support the church and our mission as you are able.

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Document these Days

Most often our scrapbooks, photo albums, and online social media lives are saved for recording the "high points" of our lives. While these are days we might want to escape and try to forget once they have passed, there are lessons to be learned, memories being made, and God's grace flowing over all of it.


+ Take some photos. Pay attention to what life looks like.

+ Write it down. Share with family or friends. Save for yourself. (Writing out some words or feelings and then ripping them up is a very satisfying way to release stress.)


+ Share your worship at home experiences with your FELC friends. It is good to see everyone's faces, even if only in photo or online.


You can email photos to Pr. Heather or share on FB with permission to share. Thanks to everyone who has shared photos. I notice we have a very "cat friendly" congregation.

April Birthday and Anniversaries

The birthday's and anniversaries for April will be posted in the Buzz. Watch for this on Friday.
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Keep In Touch with FELC

Submit prayer requests to the prayer chain email address: prayer@felcpeoria.org


Please update your contact information by calling Lois Neptun in the main office. office@felcpeoria.org.