COVID-19 EMERGENCY

VIRTUAL CHURCH IS ALWAYS OPEN

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EMERGENCY PHONE (941) 548-6163

ALL IN-PERSON EVENTS

INCLUDING ACTIVITIES/MEETINGS/WORSHIP

CANCELED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

This is the broad scope of our planning to safely re-open Messiah Lutheran Church for in-person worship. In line with guidance from the Churchwide Office and Presiding Bishop in Chicago, our Synod Office and Synod Bishop in Tampa, and CDC Guidelines, in-person worship requires several steps in order to proceed safely.

The minimum safety precautions include, among others, hand sanitizing stations at all public entrances, the use and wearing of masks, and the taking of temperatures of all persons entering the building.  We have had these items on order with suppliers since the latter part of March. At the time the sanitizer stations and sanitizer, masks, and thermometers were ordered, they were immediately placed on backorder with an anticipated shipping date of mid-June.

Your personal safety, the safety of our friends and neighbors, as well as our pastoral staff needs to remain paramount in our decision-making processes. These are certainly trying times, and we appreciate your patience and understanding. The risks of getting this wrong, and re-opening too soon and/or without the necessary safety precautions in place, are too dire to imagine.

In the meanwhile, we will continue to provide our thrice-weekly devotions from Pastor Rich, Deacon John, and Deacon Scott, we continue to offer times during the week to gather for study and conversation (with plans to increase these opportunities in the near future), as well as our weekly service recording on the weekend. Our recorded service will likely continue to be posted each weekend, as when in-person worship resumes, there will be social-distancing limitations placed on the number of attendees.

We all long for the day that we can resume in-person worship, and the future time when all limitations will be able to be lifted, until that time, please be assured of our prayers for each and every one of you.

Should you have any questions, you may direct them to us via email

pastor@messiahnfm.org
john.renfroe@messiahnfm.org
office@messiahnfm.org

 

Disciples Engaged in Mission

Hospital Visitation Request

We are Beggars... This is True


11th Sunday after Pentecost - August 16, 2020

 

“We are beggars; this is true,” are reported to be Martin Luther’s last written words. Christians are “beggars” for God’s grace, undeserving but graced nonetheless. A beggar’s faith focuses not on what is given or accomplished or believed, but on what is received: the healing and sustenance desperately longed for and needed.

In today’s gospel, the Canaanite woman is such a “beggar” for Jesus’ healing for her daughter. She is denied a place at the table at first, but she will accept even “crumbs” in the faith that Jesus’ healing power and love are intended even for her. As a Gentile outsider, she inhabits the margins of Jesus’ mission to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Jesus’ eventual response to her beggar’s faith reveals that the love of God even encompasses the margins.

Marginalized or not, we are all beggars before God, as Paul reminds the Romans—all “imprisoned in disobedience” and dependent on God. Thus, our sense of “insider” and “outsider” crumbles in the face of our common need and God’s abundant mercy to all. Instead of dividing people between those who have a place at the table and those who get crumbs, we have an opportunity to share hospitality with our fellow beggars.

It can be challenging to see ourselves as beggars. Today the Canaanite woman becomes our model, as she persists with both humility and audacity. As disciples of Jesus and “beggars” for God’s grace, we live the same paradox of humility and audacity, boldly coming to Jesus and humbly acknowledging our need. Even though crumbs from God’s table would be enough for us, we are offered instead the abundance of Jesus’ own self in bread and wine and invited to share this abundance with insider and outsider alike.

(c) 2020 Sundays and Seasons

Contact Information  
Messiah Lutheran Church
2691 NE Pine Island Rd
Cape Coral, Florida 33909
Phone 239.995.0133
Fax 239.995.2720
Mobile 941.548.6163
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