Come, share the gifts of God with us,
and serve the world together,
OUR SAVIOUR'S LUTHERAN CHURCH,
10 Farrand Street (at River),
THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO, CANADA
Our congregation is located on the traditional territory of the Ojibway of the Fort William First Nation, a signatory to the Robinson-Superior Treaty of 1850.
We invite you to be part of our community of grace and faith, active in Thunder Bay for the past 114 years. We seek to continue to be a place where people can grow in their understanding of God's forgiving love revealed through Jesus. Gathered in to worship, God's Spirit calls us out to share in word and action what it means to be people of God.
"Come share the gifts of God - serve the world"
September 21 - 27
In Person worship has resumed, with Service of the Word. Our first Communion service will be Sunday, October 4, at 10:30 a.m. See the column 'Welcome Back' for more details.
Sunday, September 207 - Time after Pentecost
10:30 a.m. In-person Service of the Word
Readings: Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32; Psalm 25:1-9; Philippians 2:1-13; Matthew 21:23-32
Sermon: 'Not the Way It Appears' - Pastor Matthew'
-Note: the Worship folder and sermon will remain available on this website (click on 'New - Worship Outline and Sermon' at top of page), and also by email and on Facebook ('Our Saviour's Thunder Bay')
To receive a copy of the monthly 'Ambassador' by email, please send a request to email@example.com.
Deadline for October 'Ambassador' articles: Sept. 28.
Note: the text version of our September 2020 Newsletter is on the page 'New! - Our Newsletter'.
In-person worship has resumed!
The service looks and sounds different than it did 6 months ago, but the goals are the same: to give God thanks, to be refreshed in faith, to build up community, and to be renewed in service and witness:
-We enter through the wooden doors in the front hall. Volunteers welcome you, ask you screening questions, and include your name on a contact list (to be used by the Health Unit if contact tracing becomes necessary.)
-There is a limit of 30% of capacity inside the sanctuary, with a limit of 50 in attendance.
The Sept. 19 limit of 10 for unmonitored indoor social gatherings does NOT apply to places of worship, for monitored gatherings, including our worship services.
-Signs direct you in the direction you are to travel, ask you to use hand sanitizer, and remind you of the need to wear masks. The worship folder is on the pew, helping to mark the designated, physically distant place you can sit. Those from the same social bubble are able to sit together.
Update: Spoken responses are permitted, provided masks are being worn and social distancing protocols are being observed.
-There is no congregational singing. No hymnbooks or other material are in the pew racks.
-The presiding minister and assistants are at least 5 m, 20 ft., from the assembly, if masks not worn; 4 m if they are.
-There are containers for offerings at the entrance to the sanctuary.
-The Sharing of the Peace can still be offered – through a gentle nod, a bow, a simple wave, sign of the cross, or crossing one’s arms over the chest.
-The service lasts 35-45 mins.
-Pastor Matthew does not greet people at the doors.
-There is no Fellowship hour. On the way out, please maintain physical distancing, exiting by the doors to the parking lot.
-There is no Sunday School.
-Our first celebration of Holy Communion will be on Sun. Oct. 4. More details to follow.
-Participants are encouraged ‘to go’ before they arrived. The upstair's washroom is available, but has to be cleaned regularly.
-On-line worship folders, and sermons, will continue to be available.
In order to facilitate our in-person worship for October, we still need volunteers…greeters, ushers, sanitizers & readers. For information, call Helen Dagsvik 983-2099.
“Where we are headed is not to be back to where we were, but we give thanks that who we are as a church has not changed.”
Your Congregational Council and Pastor Matthew
For the Beauty of the Earth:
To all members and friends of Our Saviour’s,
As we look forward to heading back to church this month, we also are preparing the building. Please assist us in developing new bulletin boards in Immanuel Hall. The theme is the hymn ‘For the Beauty of the Earth” and pictures, paintings, photos, drawings and anything illustrating the hymn’s words are needed. Please review the words and drop off your artistic submissions at the church. Remember to put your name on the backs or somewhere so that they can be returned.
This is a chance for everyone – young, old, or in-between, to participate in the life of our church.
Thank you in anticipation,
Pat Kaukola and Kim Koivukoski
For the Beauty of the Earth
John Rutter (modified)
For the beauty of the earth
For the beauty of the skies
Lord of all to thee we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise
For the beauty of the hour
Of the day and of the night
Hill and vale
And tree and flower
Sun and moon and stars of light
Lord of all to these we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise
For the joy of ear and eye
For the heart and mind’s delight
Linking sense to sound and sight
Lord of all to thee we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise
For the joy of human love
Brother, sister, parent, child
Friends on earth
And friends above
Lord of all to thee we raise
This our joyful hymn of praise.
Living our Faith - Bible book club
An Invitation from National Bishop Susan Johnson:
“Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus. Last year we began a four-year emphasis on Living our Faith, an invitation to Pray, Read, Worship and Love. I am writing to you today to ask for your help and support this September, as we begin the second year of this emphasis focusing specifically on Read — the practice of regular reading of scripture.
To begin growing our focus on reading the Bible, we invite you to join us in a Bible book of the month book-club type of approach. Each month from September 2020 to August 2021, we hope the whole church will focus on reading the same book of the Bible. We have received permission to use the introductory sections from the Lutheran Study Bible to help provide context for each book. And we have asked a broad array of people from across the ELCIC to write questions to help us engage more fully in a discussion of the monthly readings.
I’d like to encourage you to form book clubs to read and discuss together. Invite friends and family, full communion partners, and church neighbours in your community. And let it happen. Watch my video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vu1qKoPfht4
The Introduction and Reading for September, on the book of Genesis: https://elcic.ca/livingourfaith/documents/September-Genesis.pdf
The Questions for September:
Here at Our Saviour's we had our Introductory meeting on Sept. 16. If you would like to join the club, please see Pastor Matthew.
We will have our Sept. monthly Zoom meeting to talk about the questions for the book of Genesis on Weds. Sept. 30, at 7:00 p.m. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the sign-in invitation, or to arrange another time to meet.
Season of Creation
Each year, the ecumenical Season of Creation is celebrated from 1 September (the day of prayer for the care of creation) to 4 October (the feast of St Francis of Assisi as observed by many traditions). This year its theme is “Jubilee for the Earth.”
Each week, the leaders of our North American partner churches share a reflection with us:
September 20 -
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, The Episcopal Church
My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better; but to remain in the flesh is more necessary for you. Philippians 1:23b-24
There are a lot of good hymns and spirituals about heaven and how wonderful it will be to rest from our labors and be there with the Lord. And this is true. The apostle Paul, when he wrote his letter to the Philippian Christians, was in prison and didn’t know if he was about to die. If so, he said, that would be just fine: “To die is gain.” But he went on to say that, although this world and its problems can be tiresome, he needed to stick around because there was still work to do. To remain, for Paul and for us, was “necessary for you.”
Now, “you” isn’t just our loved ones, or even our neighbors, co-workers and folks we meet. “You” is also the world in which we live and breathe, the vineyard in which we toil. To “remain in the flesh” is hard work, because it calls us to be ever more intentional in our care for all around us, including creation itself. German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer once affirmed that “it is only by living completely in this world that one learns to have faith.” This world, and all that it holds, is in God’s hands. But as long as we remain in the flesh, then by God’s call it is in our hands as well.
Liberating, life-giving God, help us to know that we and the world you have created are truly the work of your hands. Give us knowledge and wisdom to care for your handiwork now and for future generations. Amen.
Suggested hymn: “He’s got the Whole World in His Hands”
National Bishop Susan's Daily Hymn and Prayer
Join our National Bishop:
"Many of us are feeling isolated as we practice social distancing because of COVID-19. Join me each day in focusing our prayers around one hymn."
Twice weekly Bishop Susan suggests a hymn from Evangelical Lutheran Worship. Join her to pray while you sing, and then in prayer through the petition. Please share these with others in your community.
Season of the Spirit
LWF Communion Prayer for the Pentecost 2020
The liturgical season of Pentecost is called “ordinary” because the weeks are ordered, or numbered. Some churches order these weeks according to the Sundays after Pentecost, some after Trinity Sunday, and others, until the start of Advent, and a new liturgical year.
Our Lutheran World Federation is offering 'Season of the Spirit' to the global Lutheran communion, as a way to be in the solidarity of prayer during this sesason.
The daily prayer follows a simple order: psalmody and prayer. "We commend these prayers to your use, whether alone in your home, as a family, or as your community is able to gather at a distance. As you pray in solidarity with the communion across the globe, and the communion of saints in all times and places, be encouraged by the counsel that Luther offers in his letter, A Simple Way to Pray:
“Never think that you are kneeling or standing alone, rather think that the whole of the Church...are standing there beside you and you are standing among them in a common, united petition which God cannot disdain. There we find God the Creator, God the Redeemer, God the Holy Spirit, that is, God who daily sanctifies us.”
Throughout this green time, may the Spirit of God bring forth new growth in you."
September 6- 12
August 30 - September 5
July 26 - August 1
July 5 - 11
June 28 - July 4:
May 31-June 6:
World Council of Churches Prayer Cycle:
Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Peru
20 - 26 September 2020
We are thankful for:
the distinctive rhythms, music, dance, food and natural medicine in this area
the beauty of the region, forests, mountains, rivers, lakes, and ocean coastlines, and especially indigenous peoples’ relationship with, and care for, the natural environment
churches who witness and work both ecumenically and with those of other faiths to build relationships of trust and commitment amid ongoing injustice and oppression
the diversity of languages and cultures flourishing in the region despite disruptions that have occurred through colonization, and political and economic turmoil.
We pray for:
Christians to have the courage, imagination and energy to build bridges of peace and understanding against conflict and division, and to pursue justice for the poor, marginalized and dispossessed
an end of corruption in all levels of the society, including economic exploitation which impoverishes and hinders economic growth from benefitting all.
immigrants and refugees seeking a new home, and those who accompany and support them
coca farmers to find sustainable incomes from other crops, for an end to drug trafficking, and effective assistance for those who are addicted.
A Mapuche* Blessing
God of life, Mother of all, you renew creation.
Bring us peace and justice, ‘balance’ in the Mapuche sense:
balance and harmony for the earth,
balance and harmony for the peoples of the world,
balance and harmony for men and women,
balance and harmony between nature and ourselves and God.
(*Mapuche means ‘people of the earth’. They are the aborigines living in the south of Chile and Argentina. Source: the Mapuche Pastoral Team, Santiago, Chile. From: The website Red de Liturgia, Latin American Council of Churches)
Our Father in heaven, holy is your name.
We thank you for the gift of life,
which is renewed every moment with your beauty.
Your mercy, God, confirms your love.
In your hands are our destiny and our life.
All-powerful and merciful God, we pray for the future of Peru,
for the poor who often go hungry,
for the victims of disasters.
Provide them with all they need from you,
with all they require of you.
For the salvation of our souls through the death of your Son,
we thank you,
but we pray for those who are left out,
who do not have a relation with you,
who do not even know of your existence.
Lord, no longer allow human evil to go forward.
Keep corruption, which often touches the life of churches,
We especially pray for the authorities of Peru,
that they be given the wisdom to plan towards a better future.
We pray for justice because here, too, the rich dominate
while justice is denied to the poor.
Lord, we pray for the leaders of your churches,
give them courage to bear with the poor, and the ignorant,
but also with those educated, who in their hypocrisies scorn your people.
Grant, O Lord, peace in all the world
and an end to war which only destroys and kills.
May the strength of the Holy Spirit dwell in our hearts.
May we live under your refuge and protection.
Bless our families.
Give us your happiness.
Thank you, Lord, for turning your ears towards our requests.
Give us the humility to accept your will.
In your hands we place our future and our livelihood.
Thank you, Lord, for giving us much more than we deserve,
especially for giving us the happiness
of having access to your word.
Receive our adoration and our prayers.
Thank you, Lord, for answering us.
(Victor M. Ascanio Huaringa, Peru, 2005. English transl. Terry MacArthur/WCC)
God of Life,
prepare our hands for a touch,
a new and different touch.
Prepare our hands for a touch,
a touch of encounter,
a touch of awakening,
a touch of hope,
a touch of feeling.
Many are the worn-out gestures.
Many are the movements frozen in time.
Many are the useless excuses just to repeat attitudes.
Give us daring
to create new titles of community,
new kinds of affection,
breaking away from old ways of relating,
encouraging true, meaningful ways to move into closeness.
(Ernesto Barros Cardoso, Brazil. Gifts of Many Cultures: Worship Resources for the Global Community, Maren C. Tirabassi and Kathy Wonson Eddy, United Church Press, Cleveland OH, USA, 1995, p.4.)
And the waters will flow from your altar, Lord
and flood the earth.
And we will be like a garden watered,
exposed to life.
Oh! let these waters come,
impetuous and pure,
and destroy the powers
and clean the paths
which my people will take,
singing and rejoicing
in an endless celebration,
the Word, Life, Freedom
and the Resurrection!
And the waters will flow from your altar, Lord,
and clean away the debris
and we will have courage to act,
to change the world.
And the waters will flow from your altar, Lord,
life will be rekindled,
and we will see the new creation,
act of your love.
(Simei Monteiro, Geneva, Switzerland. English transl. Colleen Reeks. Whole Life, Holy Life, Ernesto Cardoso, ISER, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.)
Prayer for peace and justice in Bolivia
O God, from Bolivian soil,
The Bolivian people implore you to listen to their voice,
feel their sadness and see the tears of your people,
which are also your tears.
So many bodies without any life left
have fallen in the streets,
in the roads and in the fields,
leaving behind pain and sorrow within the Bolivian family.
In those moments in which their hearts are mourning from such suffering,
give them consolation.
Do not allow them to relinquish their self-control,
but give them a vision
so they can see with their own eyes the way they ought to go,
so they can reach life by the path of justice.
Hear, O God, the voices of the multitudes
who march in the streets and highways
crying for justice,
tired of so much misery,
the lack of work, corruption and violence;
tired of so much authoritarianism by the people in power,
who take decisions without consulting the people
and who are guided by their own stingy interests;
tired that the natural resources
that you have given for the well-being of all the people
are once more being used to benefit the economic interests of the large
Hear the voice of the Bolivians
and give them discernment and strength
so that they can respond
to hatred with love,
to injustice with righteousness,
to apathy with commitment to their people,
to individualism with solidarity,
to violence with peace.
Hear their voice and inspire within their hearts (and within ours)
the knowledge of peace,
the strength of justice,
the joy of being close to one another.
Guide them to walk with the crowds on the way of peace with the signs of justice.
O God, hear their voice
and grant to them (and us) your eternal peace.
(Gustavo Loza and Mirela Armand Ugon, Cochabamba, Bolivia. © Red de Liturgia y Educación Cristiana CLAI-CELADEC.)
Mandatory Use of Mask or Face Covering within Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church
Under instructions issued by the Medical Officer of Health, all businesses and organizations, including places of worship, in the Thunder Bay District Health Unit area must adopt a policy that requires all members of the public and employees who enter or remain in an enclosed public space to wear a mask or face covering.:
1. Beginning 12:01 a.m., July 24, 2020, all members of the public, employees, and others who enter or remain in enclosed public areas of Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church of Thunder Bay, Inc. are required to wear a mask or face covering. The mask or face covering must cover the nose, mouth and chin without gaping.
a. The following persons are exempted from the requirement to wear a mask or face covering and will not be required to provide proof of such exemption:
i. Children under two years of age, or children under the age of five years either chronologically or developmentally who are unable or refuse to wear a mask or face covering and cannot be persuaded to do so by their caregiver;
ii. Individuals with medical conditions rendering them unable to safely wear a mask or
face covering, including breathing difficulties, cognitive difficulties, hearing or
iii. Individuals who cannot wear or are unable to apply/remove a mask or face covering without assistance, including those who are accommodated under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) or who have protections under the Ontario Human Rights Code, R.S.O. 1990, c.H. 19 as amended;
iv. Employees who are within or behind a physical barrier (e.g. Plexiglas).
b. Temporary removal of the mask or face covering is permitted where necessary when:
i. actively engaging in an athletic or fitness activity, including water-based activities;
ii. consuming food or drink;
iii. receiving services in a personal service setting on an area of the face that would otherwise be covered by a mask or face covering; and
iv. for any emergency or medical purpose.
2. This policy will be implemented and enforced in “good faith” to primarily educate people on wearing masks or face coverings and promote their use in enclosed public spaces. Persons listed under 1a) are not required to show proof of exemption.
3. Signs about the requirement to wear masks or face coverings will be posted prominently at all public entrances. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer will also be made available at all entrances and exits for persons entering or exiting Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church of Thunder Bay, Inc.
4. Employees/staff will be trained on the policy, including:
a. How and when to provide verbal reminders of the policy’s masking requirement to persons entering or remaining without a mask or face covering, and those who remove their mask or face covering for an extended period of time.
b. where and how to properly wear a mask or face covering;
c. how to respond to customers who do not have a mask or face covering;
d. where people can get more information about the policy; and
e. how to handle a customer who becomes aggressive about the new requirement.
5. A copy of this policy will be made available on request to a public health inspector or other person authorized to enforce the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.
Dr. Janet DeMille, the MOH has included these words in her directive:
Emerging evidence supports that wearing a mask or face covering when in enclosed spaces is an important measure in reducing community transmission of COVID-19. Increasingly, recommendations and expectations around masking in enclosed spaces are being strengthened to reflect this...
Implementation of the policy should be enacted and enforced in ‘good faith’ and should be primarily used as a means to educate people on mask or face covering use in public spaces."