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April 1, 2017

PALM SUNDAY – April 8

Celebrate Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem with EcoPalms.

To reinforce our Lenten theme of justice, we will be waving environmentally friendly palms that actually promote environmental and social justice.

Then hear the Passion Story as read in parts by the congregation.

By choosing EcoPalms we….

Promote Social Justice

  • Harvesting palms is an important source of income but gatherers receive a low price
  • Gatherers will receive a higher price for their “fair trade” palms improving their income

Promote Environmental Stewardship

  • Palms protect valuable natural forests because they provide income to forest communities.
  • Palms will be “sustainably” harvested and managed protecting the palms and the forests they need for shade.

Why a “Fair Trade” Palm?

  • To improve income and living conditions for the communities gathering the palm.
  • To protect the palms and  the important forests from which they are gathered through sustainable harvest programs.

Did You Know?

  • Approximately 308 million palm fronds were consumed in the United States in 1998.
  • Palm purchases for Palm Sunday may be worth up to 4.5 million dollars/year.
  • A congregation of 1,100 to 1,500 members will order approximately 700 palm fronds for Palm Sunday services.
  • Palm gathering actually protects valuable natural forests.
  • At least half of the farmers in the Central Petenof Guatemala earn additional income from harvesting fronds and, more than a quarter of household heads support themselves exclusively by collecting fronds.
  • Each palm plant produces 2 to 5 harvestable leaves over a 2 to 4 month period.

 

 

March 19, 2017

LivingLutheran.org complied 25 facts about Lutherans and Lutheranism in honor of the 25th Anniversary of the ELCA.  It’s also fitting to look at ourselves this year as it’s also the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation!

  1. The Lutheran Church is the oldest Protestant tradition.
  2. Martin Luther issued the “Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences” that became known as his “95 Theses” in Wittenberg on Oct. 31, 1517.
  3. Lutherans went viral nearly 500 years ago, when Martin Luther and his allies used the new media of the day — pamphlets, ballads and woodcuts — and circulated them through social networks to promote their message of the reformation of the church.
  4. Following the practice of naming a “heresy” after its leader, the name Lutheran originated as a derogatory term used by Johann Eck during the Leipzig Debate in July 1519.
  5. Rather than “Lutheran,” Martin Luther preferred to describe the reformation as “evangelical,” which is derived from the Greek word meaning “good news.”
  6. Generally speaking Lutheran teaching can be summed up by “Three Solas”: (1) Grace Alone; (2) Faith Alone; (3) Scripture Alone.
  7. The split between the Lutherans and the Roman Catholics began with the Edict of Worms in 1521, which officially excommunicated Luther and all of his followers.
  8. Luther’s Small Catechism (“Der Kleine Katechismus”) was published in 1529 for the teaching of children at home by their parents.
  9. Luther’s Large Catechism consisted of works addressed particularly to clergymen to aid them in teaching their congregations.
  10. The Book of Concord or “Concordia” (1580) contains documents that explain what Lutherans believe. It includes the three creeds of the ancient church and Reformation writings such as Luther’s Small and Large Catechisms, and the Formula of Concord.
  11. Composer Johann Sebastian Bach, a devout Lutheran, is credited with 1,126 musical works listed in the complete Bach catalog (Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis, or BWV). He wrote about 200 cantatas, including at least two for each Sunday and holy day in the Lutheran church year.
  12. Lutherans believe in “Salvation by grace through faith” — that salvation comes by grace through faith alone, not by works and sacraments.
  13. Philipp Melanchthon (Feb.16, 1497 — April 19, 1560), was one of the primary founders of Lutheranism. Born Philipp Schwartzerdt, he translated his name to its Greek form —  Melanchthon. He made the distinction between law and gospel the central formula for Lutheran evangelical insight.
  14. Since 1520, regular Lutheran services have been held in Copenhagen.
  15. During the 16th century, Lutheranism spread through all of Scandinavia as the monarchs of Denmark-Norway (also Iceland) and Sweden (also Finland) adopted Lutheranism.
  16. The first Lutheran worship service in North America is believed to have taken place in what is now known as Manitoba on Jan. 23, 1620. The sermon was delivered by Pastor Rasmus Jensen.
  17. Massive immigration from traditionally Lutheran countries to the United States between 1840 and 1875 resulted in 58 Lutheran synods being formed.
  18. The first Lutheran pastor to be ordained in the United States was German-born Justus Falckner on Nov. 24, 1703.
  19. German Lutheran Pastor Henry Muhlenberg was sent to North America as a missionary upon the request of Pennsylvania colonists. He is considered the patriarch of American Lutheranism.
  20. As late as the 19th century, Lutherans in the United States still looked to their European homelands to supply pastors and worship materials.
  21. Founded in 1826, the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg in Pennsylvania is the oldest operating seminary in the ELCA.
  22. Lutherans form the largest religious denomination in Namibia, formerly German Southwest Africa.
  23. Founded in 1947 in Lund, Sweden, The Lutheran World Federation now has 143 member churches in 79 countries around the world representing 70.5 million Christians.
  24. On Jan. 1, 1988, The American Lutheran Church, The Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches, and The Lutheran Church in America officially merged to form the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
  25. The ELCA is the largest Lutheran body in the United States.

 

December 11, 2016

Church Services - Postponed until 3:00 p.m.

Whenever weather is inclement on Sunday morning, worship will be postponed instead of being cancelled. As long as the inclement weather is cleared in time, services will be held at 3:00 p.m.

Check weather related announcements on these public services:

RADIO STATIONS

96.5 WTIC FM

Lite 100.5  FM

Talk News 1080 AM

TV CHANNELS/ WEBSITES

WFSB Channel 3       www.wfsb.com/caregory/211195/school-closings

WTIV Channel 30     www.nbcconnecticut.com/weather/school-closings/

SHELC VOICEMAIL

860-658-0583

 

December 4, 2016

Farmington Valley Home Educators Homeschool Group

which operates out of Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church on Fridays, will be hosting an International Fair on Saturday, December 10 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.. Students of a variety of ages will have prepared exhibits on a location or culture that they wished to learn more about and want to share with others. If you are curious about us, or are just looking for a way to spend an hour or so, we would like to invite you to come join us at our International Fair.

We hope to see you Saturday!

 

 

 

November 28, 2016

Take time out of the hustle and bustle of Christmas preparations and refocus on the meaning of the season. Join us for all or some of the events listed below (no reservations required.)

Saturday, December 10, 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Luncheon & Movie, “Hillsong – Let Hope Rise” According to film critic Bob Walszewski, the moviedelivers a stirring, refreshing – and musically familiar – reminder that Jesus still reigns amid the chaos of our world and that He invites us to worship and adore Him in it….The movie gives viewers a better perspective of the humble beginnings behind the Hillsong Church movement in Australia that launched this global worship phenomena…. that now includes – on any given Sunday – an estimated 50,000,000 believers around the world singing at least one Hillsong worship tune.” He gave it a 5 star rating!

Join us for a meal and earn why we at SHELC sing “those contemporary songs.”

Sunday, December 11, 3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Field Trip to see the Nativity Village Diorama Display at New Life in Christ Fellowship, 250 Firetown Road, Simsbury. The diorama has over 110 Fontanini figures, 20 buildings and landscape pieces, and 40 animals.  A 15 minute presentation on the birth of Jesus will be given as different areas of the display are highlighted. A 15 minute close-up look and Q&A session will follow. Meet at New Life in Christ Fellowship 250 Firetown Road, Simsbury.

Wednesday, December 14, 7:00 p.m. – Blue Christmas Service of Healing. We come together seeking healing and room to share emotions that often feel out of place during the holiday. Nearing the time of shortest daylight in the year, we come with our honest yearnings seeking the return of light and hope. Invite yourself and someone you know who is struggling amidst the stress of preparations and expectations around Christmas time. Refreshments to follow in the Gathering Space.

Saturday, December 24, 7:00 p.m. – Christmas Eve Candlelight Holy Communion

Sunday, December 25, 10:00 a.m.Christmas Day Holy Communion

 

June 17, 2016 No comments exist

WE EXTEND OUR CHRISTIAN SYMPATHY…

to Charlie and Gert Baier at the recent passing of their grandson, Eric Charles Baier.  Services were held Friday, June 17 in Avon, CT

to Pastor Chris Dion and her family at the recent passing of Pastor Chris’ aunt, Joyce Bottom.  Services were held Saturday, June 18 in Auburn, MA.

 

June 11, 2016 No comments exist

Increase your gift giving when you use AmazonSmile

Next Sunday, June 19, is Father’s Day. What better way to shop than to use AmazonSmile where Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to Shepherd of the Hills?

Just visit smile.amazon.com and select Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. Then every eligible purchase you make at smile.amazon.com will result in a donation of 0.5 percent – it can really add up and make difference!

Don’t know what to get dad? Click here for Father’s Day gift ideas.