St. Paul Ev. Lutheran Church Newsletter
There was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and his angels fought back (Revelation 12:7).
Dear Friends in our Savior,
In our devotion calendars you occasionally see a day identified as a minor festival. In September you will note “St. Michael and All Angels” on the 29th. While we rarely take notice of these events, you will find many listed on pages 159-160 of Christian Worship. Our opening devotions for the next several months will relate to some of them.
The above verse from the book of Revelation brings mention of Michael. A battle takes place in heaven, literally, in the heavens or the sky. While our thoughts may tend first toward Satan’s rebellion against God early in creation’s history, the song of praise for his defeat indicates a later time is involved. The name Michael means “Who is like God?” and he is mentioned also in Daniel 12:1 and Jude 9. He is an archangel or ruling angel. Some Bible students see him as Jesus himself, but that is not necessarily the case. What is important is the victory. It is definitely won over the devil and his demon forces and is connected with Christ’s victory over Satan on the cross. He lost his power to accuse us with that event. (The name Satan means “accuser”.) Believers overcome him “by the word of their testimony” (v11). Although Satan’s efforts are not ended, the defeat is sure. We win through Jesus. In a sense the battle is repeated every time a sinner is won for Christ, bringing rejoicing among the angels of heaven.
Isn’t there a message of comfort in these facts? We have the forces of heaven working for us and winning the victory. We do not have to face the devil alone, nor could we hope to prevail on our own. But we are not alone. With Michael and his forces fighting for us, we will overcome and win. Tradition names Michael as the patron and protector of the Church, especially as the protector of Christians in the hour of death. Isn’t that when Satan throws all his weapons at us, in a final attempt to snatch us from the Lord? Be thankful that God’s superior forces are battling for you and winning. Be armed with the testimony of his Word and look forward to eternal enjoyment of the victory in heaven. If our eternal future is secure, doesn’t that also encourage us in every challenge we face in this life? God will not forsake us but will see us through. Live with confidence each day.
Rejoicing with you in the Lord,
Pastor James Rath
QUARTERLY MEETING REPORT
Vacation Bible School served 120 children with the message of God’s Word, assisted by fifty helpers. Opening enrollment at St. Paul’s School is expected to be 169 in grades K-8. This number includes seven new families. Work on the accreditation process will resume this year, with many volunteers needed. Sunday School and Bible Classes resume September 13. The Outreach Board seeks workers at our booth at the Fall Festival on October 4. A study of printing needs in underway by the Technology Board. The Stewardship Board reminds our members to return their time and talent surveys. The financial report noted offerings exceeded the budget for the past fiscal year, which enabled us to meet our commitments. We praise God for all his blessings upon our congregation as we work together in his service.
Doctrine and Policy Regarding Marriage
The Bible teaches that marriage was established and given by God at the time of creation. As he designed and instituted it, marriage is the life-long union of one man and one woman (Genesis 2:24, Matthew 19:4-6). It is a relationship that is to be honored and kept pure (Hebrews13:4; Ephesians 5:22‐33). As a man and woman promise life-long faithfulness to each other as husband and wife, God himself joins them as one. Marriage is not simply a contract between two consenting individuals, nor is it merely a creation of human society, culture, or tradition. God himself instituted marriage at the time of creation, and God himself joins a man and woman in marriage today.
The biblical teaching on marriage emphasizes the blessings God intends to convey to those joined together in the marital relationship. Through marriage God provides partners well suited and complementary to one another. In marriage, God provides a partner who will provide encouragement and support. Marriage is also to be the God‐ordained means to procreate and to establish a stable environment in which children can be nurtured both physically and spiritually. Marriage is the one context God intended for the use of the blessing of sexual intimacy, where the sexual union of one man and woman is an expression of love and oneness rather than a sinful satisfaction of lust. Finally, since we live in a fallen world, in marriage God provides a restraint for selfishness and sin as each partner strives to live the pure life that God intends for his people (1 Thessalonians 4:3‐8).
This is the Bible’s teaching about the origin, definition, and nature of marriage. For that reason it is also the doctrine of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. Every congregation and called worker accepts the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as the written Word of God and the only rule and norm of faith and practice.
That marriage is the God-ordained union of one man and one woman is the clear teaching of the Bible, and therefore is the teaching and confession of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod.
The policy and practice of St Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, a member congregation of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, is consistent with the synod’s beliefs and teachings regarding marriage. We believe that marriage is the sacred, life‐long union between one man and one woman. Therefore, our pastors will not officiate in any marriage ceremony or celebration and our church sanctuary and property may not be used for any activities related to a marriage ceremony or celebration that is inconsistent with these beliefs.
THIS FALL AT ST PAUL
Wednesday Breakfast Bible Study: 6:30 AM - Church conference room - Come for an amazing breakfast and a sneak peak at the lessons and sermon for the upcoming Sunday.
Dad was interested in our congregation and came to various events at church and school. Although unable to be present for the last few years, he regularly read the newsletter. He requested that memorials not directed elsewhere would go to the training of future pastors in the WELS.
Again, our deepest gratitude to all.
SCHOLARSHIP FUND ENVELOPES
WELCOME, NEW MEMBERS!
KELLY KINDSCHI grew up in Sun Prairie. She has both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from UW-Madison in speech therapy and works as a clinical liaison for a brain injury hospital. Her husband Jay hails from Marshall and also attended UW-Madison, then obtained a chiropractic degree in Minnesota. He teaches anatomy and physiology at Milwaukee Area Technical College. Their children are JONAS, entering 3rd grade and LIAM, entering kindergarten, both at St. Paul’s School. The family came here from the West Bend area and enjoys hobby farming and gardening.
Both TED and BECKY VRATNY are natives of Illinois, but Ted has an area connection as his grandmother ran a resort on Lake Ripley. Ted has a degree in Political Science from Regis University and a Master’s degree. He is now retired after working in upper management for Public Safety and Governmental agencies, private industry, consulting, religious and non-profit organizations. Becky has an Associate’s Degree in dental hygiene from Southern Illinois University and just retired after work in dental health and insurance administration. The Vratnys have lived in suburban Chicago, Missouri, Colorado, Oklahoma and Australia before coming to Cambridge. Both enjoy reading. Becky likes needlework, knitting and singing in the choir. Ted’s favored activities are fishing and cooking.
DAVID and MARLYS ZIMMERMAN have recently returned to St. Paul. David grew up in Lake Mills and Marlys in Madison. They are now retired, although David still works part-time at the Jefferson County Fair Park. They have three grown children, one grandchild and three step-grandchildren. Marlys likes quilting and David has restored old tractors.
August 2 $ 15,248
Also received during those weeks were amounts of $8.801 for the Building Fund (Bountiful Blessings), $410 for the Improvement Fund, $668 for Tuition Assistance, $550 for the Thankoffering, $214 for the church picnic and $20 for Wisconsin Lutheran Child & Family Service.
INTERACTIVE BIBLE STUDY
Check out www.wels.net/interactivefaith for more information.
ROCK RIVER AREA OWLS
RUN/WALK FOR CAMP PHILLIP
Check out www.campphillip.com/5K for more information.
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