Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Walk-Run-Ride for Life Is Back!

I am again registered as a participant for the annual Walk-Run-Ride for Life to raise funds for our local Pregnancy Center - the Assist Pregnancy Center. Please sponsor me! I've set my goal really high this year to see if I can raise more. This Center does excellent work and is worth our support as they help mothers and fathers keep and care for their babies. Here's the link to my fundraising page - and if you'd like to join our team and help raise funds, you can do so through this link as well. Thanks!

Friday, April 20, 2018

You Know You Live in Washington . . .

. . . when "Light traffic in your area" means "Delays up to 29 minutes!"
(Yes, an actual screenshot of my phone!)

And . . .

. . . when walking in DC you find a store selling nesting dolls of Bill Clinton and the women he fooled around with!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Yes, They Did It Again!

Champions again! Second time in three years. Awesome. Just wish my Dad was in a little better state of mind so he could really enjoy this too. He is a Villanova alum from way back in the day, which is why we are Villanova fans. I didn't fill out any brackets this year - just didn't have time that week, but enjoyed watching the games. (Actually, while I saw most of the semi-final game on Friday night, I fell asleep for most of the second half on Monday! I woke up just in time for the final minute and the celebration. :-)

And the future looks bright  . . .  Here's to a couple more trophies . . .

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

A Story I Wish Was in the Bible . . .

On Easter, Paul told us that after His resurrection the Lord appeared to over 500 brothers at the same time (1 Corinthians 15:6). I wish that story was in the Bible! Where did that happen? How? What happened? What was the reaction?

Another question for the next life . . .  :-)

Monday, April 2, 2018

Lent and Easter Reflections

What a glorious day yesterday, celebrating the Resurrection of our Lord. It just never gets old.

This was a rather weird Lenten season for me, though. Not the usual. I cannot tell you why. It just wasn't the same for me. Maybe because we are still not in our regular church building - 8 months out now! I never would have guessed that, that it would take that long. Maybe it was because of other busyness I had to attend to, and all the trips I wound up taking. Maybe it was just satan playing with me, pushing my buttons. I cannot tell you, just that it was somehow different for me this year. I wasn't even as busy this year - at least, during Holy Week. I usually have to go to the rental place and pick up some chairs, and then have to haul all our church stuff to where we will be having our Holy Week services. Didn't have to do that this year, since we've been in our "temporary" location for 8 months now (did I mention that?). We also didn't have a Good Friday noontime service this year. The woman who reserves that room for us has been recovering from illness and a stroke all the season of Lent and was unable to do that.

So I got to Holy Week this year, and it just didn't seem right. But Holy Week . . . that just put everything right again. :-) I love Holy Week, soaking in the Word all week, thinking, writing. This was weird too - usually I cannot write my Easter sermon until Saturday, after I have been through all the other services of Holy Week. But this year, I was able to write it on Friday morning. Again, not sure why. Just the way it was for me this year.

And then our Divine Service yesterday! Our keyboardist who played yesterday is just awesome. I love all our musicians, just she just has a way. Sadly, she and her husband will be leaving our congregation soon, beginning a new time of life. I will miss them! And I think I was probably one of only a handful of pastors in the United States who didn't use April Fools Day in my sermon! (Click here to listen.) But getting all the parts of the liturgy back from our liturgical Lenten fast, getting all the chanting back, the wonderful hymns and readings . . . just great.

So now another 7 weeks to celebrate our Lord's resurrection! Some things getting back to normal, some new ventures begun . . .

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

+ Rest in Peace, My Brother +

Not my familial brother, but my brother in the Office of the Holy Ministry, Rev. Chris Ongstad, was called home by our Lord suddenly this morning. A reminder to all of us that we know not the time when our Lord will call us, and that His ways are not our ways. Chris will be missed. Husband, father, and pastor. Third Vice President of the SELC District, its Webmaster (or web servant, as he liked to say), and past Board Secretary. Rest in peace, my brother. It was an honor to serve beside you. And I look forward to the resurrection of all flesh on the Last Day, and our reunion in heaven.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Surprise Party!

Yesterday was my dear wife's 50th birthday, so I decided to have a surprise party for her! The party was on Saturday and we had approx. 60 people come - family from out of town, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and church folks. It was a great day and went really well. Here are a few pictures . . .

Here's all the family who could make it. Laurie's parents (from Detroit), her brother and his family (from north of Pittsburgh), my sister (from Connecticut), the peasant kids (two came back from college just for this!), and of course, my wife and I inside the "5" and the "0." We had those big numbers made and took everyone's pictures with them. :-)

Yeah! Cake! (My brother-in-law and I being silly.)

Robert is a young man in our congregation who turned 5 the day before the party. So we reversed the numbers and held them up for him!
This is a "wordle" we made from the descriptions of Laurie we asked the people to write down. I think it came out really well. :-)

A great day for a great woman - a true gift from God to me.