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Mount Olive Lutheran Church

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Olive Branch, 4/24/13

Accent on Worship

The Fifth Sunday of Easter

     A new commandment, a whole new direction and a new Jerusalem, all of which came about because of the Resurrection of Our Lord.

     In the book Field of Compassion, author Judy Cannato puts forth her scholarly insight about God’s love.  She writes, “God creates in order to give God’s self away in love.  All that creation has ever been invited to do is accept this gift of love.” She writes that all love comes from God, that we cannot love until we are loved and by this love we love others because, we are nothing more than conduits of divine love.

     The depth of God’s divine love became flesh in Jesus.  In the Gospel for the Fifth Sunday in Easter, Jesus gives his apostles a new commandment. He says, “Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.” God’s love triumphs in Christ’s resurrection, and his followers are commanded to continue to bring the triumphant love of Jesus into the world.

     In the First Reading for Sunday, the apostle Peter brings a broader understanding of God’s love to the Jews in Jerusalem who criticized him for going to the uncircumcised with the message of the resurrection and the grace of God.  However, Peter’s vision of God’s inclusiveness wins them over and sends the early church in a whole new direction. The followers of Jesus would thereafter preach God’s grace and love through the life, death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior to all.

     In the Second Reading, John gives us a vision of what is to come because of the resurrection of Jesus who is “making all things new.”   Jesus will return from heaven to a new earth in a new Jerusalem in all her splendor. “Death will be no more.”  Jesus is the beginning and the end.  He came as the enfleshed expression of God’s eternal love and completes his journey in the New Jerusalem.

Alleluia! Christ is risen!

- Donna Neste  

Sunday Readings

April 28, 2013 – Fifth Sunday of Easter
Acts 11:1-18 + Psalm 148
Revelation 21:1-6 + John 13:31-35

May 5, 2013 – Sixth Sunday of Easter
Acts 16:9-15 + Psalm 67
Revelation 21:10, 22—22:5 + John 5:1-9

Hebrews Study on Thursday Evenings

     Postponed twice due to bad weather, the third Thursday Bible study series of this year will finally begin this Thursday, April 25, and will run for five more weeks on Thursday evenings.  Meeting in the Chapel Lounge from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Pr. Crippen will be leading a study of the book of Hebrews, an early Christian sermon preserved in the New Testament.  As usual, there will be a light supper when we begin.  All are welcome to this study opportunity!

The Ascension of Our Lord
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Holy Eucharist at 7:00 p.m.

Semi-annual Congregation Meeting to be Held This Sunday, April 28

     The Vestry has announced the date of the April semi-annual congregation meeting to be Sunday, Apr. 28, after the second liturgy.  Among the items on the agenda will be election of officers and directors, whose terms will begin on July 1.  Any wishing to suggest names to the nominating committee for the positions of president, vice-president, secretary, and directors of congregational life, evangelism, or neighborhood ministries are encouraged to contact Adam Krueger, congregational president.

     Also on the agenda are several constitutional and bylaw amendments presented to the congregation by the Vestry, attached to this Olive Branch as a separate document.  The first page, the constitutional amendments, is a second hearing of amendments presented and approved at the October semi-annual meeting.  Should these be approved again, with at least a 2/3 majority of those present and voting, they will be formally ratified.  The second pages are bylaw amendments which only need the one hearing and vote at this meeting.  Included in these amendments are bylaws establishing a business and finance committee, directed by the treasurer, and some corrective edits to several directors’ bylaws.

Book Discussion Group

     Mount Olive’s Book Discussion group meets on the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. at church. For the May 11 meeting, they will discuss Children of God, by Mary Doria Russell, which is the sequel to her book The Sparrow.  And for the June 8 meeting, they will discuss The Calligrapher's Daughter, by Eugenia Kim.

New Members to Be Received on Day of Pentecost, May 19

If you are interested in becoming a member of Mount Olive this spring, please contact Pastor Crippen (, or Andrew Andersen, Director of Evangelism (

May Day, May Day!

     Far from being an emergency, this is a call for you to enjoy watching the May Day Parade.  We would like to have a large number of folks from Mount Olive to watch the parade as a group, making our presence in the community known in this way.  The plan is to leave from Mount Olive after the Congregation Visioning Meeting (lunch will be served there) on Sunday, May 5, either walking or by car, to view the parade together from between 31st and 33rd on Bloomington Ave. Rides may be arranged for those who need them. If you have a Mount Olive shirt, or other item with the Mount Olive logo, please be sure to wear it.  You may also want to bring a lawn chair. Let’s have a good turnout for a fun time, taking part in a neighborhood activity.

Prayer Shawl Retreat to be Held April 27

     This Saturday, April 27, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Mount Olive’s Prayer Shawl group will join the group from Our Savior's Lutheran Church for a joint Prayer Shawl Retreat at Our Saviour’s (2315 Chicago Ave. S.).

        This retreat is for anyone interested in needle arts, prayer and the neighborhood.  It will be a day of prayerful work, fellowship, and reflecting on the neighborhood community of our churches.  There is no cost for this retreat and participants are welcome to join us for all or part of the day.

     The morning will include an opening prayer, sharing stories, and prayerful work. The afternoon will include a walking meditation and neighborhood experience, prayerful work, and closing prayer.
     For a full agenda and additional information, please contact Cynthia Prosek, 612-860-7228, or by email to

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