Enews: Sunday, February 21, 2021

Dear Friend,

 

Water – in the flood and in the baptism of Jesus and
of Christ’s followers – is the striking image at heart of
this first week in Lent. But, along with it comes God’s
promise of restoration, of grace and of the united
creation toward which God is working.
In the Noah story, the promise that God will not again
destroy the earth with a flood is freely given, not just to
Noah and the human beings, but to the whole of creation.
In the Gospel, we return to the account of Christ’s baptism (which we last encountered in the first week of Epiphany on Baptism of Christ Sunday) , but now, the temptation narrative is included, along with the start of Jesus’ ministry. Here again, God’s affirmation of Jesus, along with the baptism experience, is a highlight, leading on to God’s sustaining of Christ in the wilderness. Here, too, a vision of a united creation is offered, as we read that Jesus was cared for by angels and wild animals…
We find a simple, but transforming message coming through. The act of baptism, which is a sign of our welcome into God’s community of grace and salvation, embraces and includes all of creation. And, as all of creation is brought together, so we are all called to be agents of God’s grace and sustenance and life to one another.

READINGS :

God promises Noah that God will never again destroy all life through a flood, and God gives the rainbow as a sign of this promise.

Jesus died for us and was raised to life, having preached to the “spirits in prison” who disobeyed in Noah’s time. And now we are given the sign of baptism to show that we are saved & cleansed within by Christ, who now rules with God in heaven.

Jesus is baptized by John, affirmed by God and sent into the wilderness to be tempted. Then after John is arrested, he begins his ministry calling people to repent and believe in his Good News message.

Prayer of Brokenness
Ancient of Days, the earth flooded long ago, and we were given a sign: the rainbow, a reminder that Your covenant is with the whole earth, that You will never again destroy the earth by flood. Your covenant is a reminder to us that the world is still broken, but You strive to make it whole. We have failed and fallen short, but You have remained steadfast. Your love for us has never ceased, though we have wandered and sought after the world’s desires.
Call us back to Your covenant. Remind us of how You formed the world and made us in Your image. Remind us that we come from You, and we return to You, and Your promises never end. You may be ancient, but You also make all things new. In Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

 


Re-Opening Survey!
By this time all of us have received a survey send out  On behalf of our Health Team. As you may recall, we
do have in place the protocols for re-opening. We  are clear for in-person worship, however we need  to sense where you are with this step. So, PLEASE  REPLY TO OUR SURVEY NO LATER THAN
FEBRUARY 23 RD

Help us staying connected through our prayer….

Please email Jennifer ( jennifer@firstumclombard.org ) with any of your Prayer Requests, including joys & concerns.

And once you see our list, please showering them with cards, that’s one way we show our love and care for one another. Nothing bright your spirit like a card of “thinking of you”.  Thank you!

ZOOM Coffee Social at 11:15am,
following the Sunday Virtual Worship.
The link will be the same,  to sign in on, every Sunday.  If you don’t have the link  or experience technical difficulties,  please contact Alex at
 
Black History Month
Tuesday, February 23 rd
Confirmation Hour @ 3:30pm
Wednesday, February 24 th
Study- “The Enigmatic Parables of a Controversial Rabbi Short Stories by Jesus” @ 6:45pm (meeting opens @ 6:30pm)
Thursday, February 25 th   
Music Rehearsals & Video Recording
Sunday, February 28 th – Second Sunday in Lent
Christian Formation Hour on ZOOM at 8:45am – “What is the Bible”
Children’s Hour on ZOOM at 9:15am
Worship Online at 10:00am
Fellowship Hour- 11:15am on ZOOM
Link to facebooklive

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