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February 2008—In this Issue:
View the entire issue as a full-color PDF via the link below:
February 2008 HeartBeat (PDF)
I love to walk. Now don’t get me wrong, I admit that I have a hard time joining my wife, Jean, at 6:00 a.m. for her morning constitutional, but after my coffee I am ready to stride. One of my favorite places to walk is Ala Moana Park. The beauty of the ocean, the variety of trees, the birds and the skyline come together magically. But not everything is paradise. Every parking sign reminds visitors not to leave valuables in their parked car. Local folks advise visitors to be careful in the park at night. Thefts, robberies, muggings, and panhandling are realities that come with increasing urbanization, and Ala Moana Park is not immune. Still, I walk there. But how I walk is reflective of that place.
Growing up in the city, one develops a habit of being aware of one’s surroundings while walking. It becomes second nature to listen for footsteps, to “check your back,” and to scan forward for giant potholes and dangerous characters all while enjoying the beauty of the park. While in Mexico a few years ago, I even learned to watch for open manhole covers in the middle of the sidewalk! The goal is to enjoy the walk, stay reasonably safe, and keep moving, all at the same time.
In a way, mission in the church is not all that unlike an urban walk. God lays before us God’s promise and our mission. We long to rush ahead into that bright promise unfettered, but we are weighed down by worry. We worry about the unknown and about those who might be left behind by too quick a walk. We are concerned about tradition, unsure of our assessments, preoccupied with survival, and not at all sure the path leads where we desire to go. So if we move at all, it is with molasses-like caution. We remain safe, but not much closer to the goal. We remain true to tradition but sacrifice the possibility that God may be opening new ways and byways for us.
So what might happen if we simply began to walk? To be sure, we must remain attentive to the wonderful gifts and wisdom of our tradition. God was working mighty deeds through God’s people long before any of us came around. We ought to pay attention to it! But God’s mission is not captive to past generations. God is living, and God is present in our ministry today! Just as Jesus sent his disciples out into the world, so we too are sent. That means that neither the church collectively nor we individually are done walking. There are places to go and people to meet along the way. We have to keep our noses in front of us, eyes scanning the horizon and feet moving. It is not always safe, and we are bound to make some wrong turns; but God promises unequivocally to accompany us on the journey. So why be afraid?
It is wonderful that in so many ways, the congregation at Lutheran Church of Honolulu continues to walk well. You have a long history of reaching out to the homeless population through IHS and Angel Network. Our Music Ministry brings joy to our community and raises money to feed the hungry and share the gift of music. Augusta Victoria Hospital in Palestine has heard your footsteps. Interns and seminarians have benefited by their stroll in your midst. Each day dozens of keiki grace our halls and buildings with their limitless energy.
Through our website, people around the world have the opportunity to hear God’s word and share in our ministry without ever setting foot on our grounds. In your work and in your families, God’s love is taught, God’s caring hands are felt, God’s voice is heard, and God’s peace is shared. At times it is exhausting and exhilarating all at the same time, and we need to sit quietly on the bench for a while. But sooner or later, we get up, tighten our shoelaces, and keep walking. And how we walk is reflective of this place. The key is to enjoy this walk in mission, remain reasonably safe in God’s promise, and keep moving, all at the same time.
Pastor Jeff Lilley
Jimmy Castro, Bill Potter, Olivia Castro, Rudy Riingen, and Mary-Jo Estes serving dinner at IHS. Karyn C., Ray Herradura, and Seth L. also helped serve. The cooks were Olivia Castro, Chuck Huxel, and Jeff and Jean Lilley.
fasting & feasting: Special gift of $825 was sent to ELCA World Hunger in January 2007 from an appeal during Advent/Christmas/Epiphany 2006/07. In December 2007, we matched a $1,600 grant from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, enabling us to give $3200 to Kokua Kalihi Valley (KKV). Started by Lutheran Pastor Jory Watland in the early 1970s, KKV has become a major social service agency in the Kalihi area, providing medical, dental, translation, social work, and many other services to immigrant families. Our gift is designated for medical care for Pacific Islander immigrants.
Heifer International: Thanks to our very own youth for kicking off the ARK III Project with their Benefit Concert on March 3. We exceeded our $5,000 goal. LCH floated another ARK of animals, and the youth have about $600 as seed money for this year.
Bread for the World: On March 1, BFW received a check for $1,403.56. This amount came from projects in 2006 for which funds had not been forwarded. Also on October 17 (nationally, Bread for the World Sunday), a Letter Writing campaign in the Hörmann Courtyard netted 25 letters for Hawaii’s congressional delegates regarding various provisions of the new Farm Bill.
Abendmusiken Benefit Concerts: Two benefit concerts were given this past year. In each case, funds from ticket sales, donations, and refreshment contributions went to the beneficiary. On April 28, $2,225 was raised for IHS, beyond our monthly meal service. On October 26 and 27, two performances of Harpsichords 1-2-3-4/Violins 3-4 enabled LCH to give $4,500 to Angel Network.
Mother’s Day Bake Sale, May 13: This year’s beneficiary was the Augusta Victoria Hospital in East Jerusalem, a Lutheran World Federation project. Bakery sales on May 13 and ongoing sales of remaining coffee and chocolate bars netted $1,350 for AVH.
Operation Backpack: responding to increased need, two collections were taken in 2007, on April 19 and October 28. Items collected included toilet paper, toothbrushes, toiletries, canned food, towels and other items. All items were taken to the Angel Network at Calvary by the Sea for packing and distribution; LCH Youth assisted. This is a joint project of Oahu Lutherans and Episcopalians.
Angel Network: We regularly gathered non-perishable food for the ELCA Hukilau food bank, and a special gift of 52 canned hams was given at Easter in honor of Interim Pastor Steven Jensen. The first Sunday of each month has been designated as an intentional collection day.
IHS Third Friday Monthly Meal: We continued our tradition (now over 25 years!) of providing a complete meal for over 300 people once a month.
Save the FoodBasket: A fall collection of dish liquid and laundry detergent was taken for disabled persons living with HIV/AIDS unable to purchase these items with food stamps. Save the FoodBasket operates out of Church of the Crossroads.
FACE Rally: On March 17 seventeen LCHers joined with 850 others at St. Theresa Co-Cathedral in support of legislative action for homelessness, and specifically for keeping Kukui Gardens as affordable housing.
Recycle Your Glasses: In the fall, Sophie C. collected eyeglasses as part of her Junior Girl Scout Bronze Award project. The 40 pairs of specs from LCH went to the Lions Club and Give the Gift of Sight Foundation for cleaning, repairs, and classification by prescription. They will be sent to people in developing countries who can’t afford glasses. Thanks, Sophie, for giving us this opportunity to recycle old eyeglasses!
Mark the first Sunday of every month on your calendars and make that extra trip to Costco or Sam’s Club. While donations for Angel Network are welcome any time, Pastor Jeff has set the first Sunday of every month as a special ingathering for Angel Network (located at Calvary by the Sea Lutheran Church). Bring canned foods, sample-sized shampoos, soaps, and personal items. Spam, Cup-a-noodle, and canned tuna are favorites. Also, bring plastic grocery bags, which are used to distribute the items to our friends in need. There is a table set up in the Hörmann Courtyard to receive your donations.
Friday, February 1, and Saturday, February 2
A few reminders to both youth and adults who’ve signed up to work this year’s fundraiser that will enable our youth to attend the OYEA summer camp at Camp Erdman.
There are still many shifts available to cover, so please encourage others to volunteer and join in the fun for this Youth Fundraiser. We promise you that you’ll have a good time!
Pastor Jeff is leading a book study on Kelly Fryer’s book Reclaiming the “C” Word: Daring to be Church Again every Sunday until February 10 at 9:15 a.m., between the two services. The congregational council recently studied this book as part of their monthly devotions.
Rev. Fryer challenges the current structures of the church and calls us to reclaim our missional heritage in the context of a changing culture. She makes a convincing argument that the Lutheran Church has a gift to give that the world is desperate to receive.
If you are interested in participating in this study, please see Pastor Jeff or call him at the church office, 941-2566.
Jeanette Hansen and Ilse Layau of the Fellowship Committee roll, cut, and bake cookies for the Sunday School Epiphany celebration.
Sunday School children—with a little help from parents, aunties, uncles, and grandparents—decorated cookies with icing and sprinkles.
Don’t they look delicious! Even though the children ate some of the cookies, there were plenty left for the whole congregation to enjoy. Following worship, Chuck Huxel delivered cookies to our kupuna.
ARK IV: Children’s Benefit Concert
for Heifer International
To kick off this year’s “Fill the Ark” Heifer Campaign, the youth of LCH are organizing and performing a concert on Saturday, February 9, at 4:00 pm. About $4,000 is needed to complete our goal of purchasing an ark of animals to distribute through Heifer International to help end world hunger. The concert is free, but come prepared to give a donation and/or sign up to commit to the $1-a-day Lenten Season giving plan. This year marks our fourth annual fund drive and third annual Benefit Concert. For more information about Heifer International or the concert, see Linda Miller or Mitchell G.
Writers’ Workshop will meet on Monday, February 4, from 7:00 to 8:30 pm in the Board Room (or the Rainbow Room) at LCH. This will be the second meeting of the new year. Our Spring 2008 schedule also includes meetings on March 10 and April 28.
For more information, please contact Kathryn Klingebiel through the Church Office (941-2566) .
Always meaning to do handwork? Come join In Stitches, the LCH craft group, and work on your own project, learn a new skill, or work on objects for the church. We meet the second and fourth Saturdays of each month in the newly refurbished Board Room from 9:00 to 11:00 am. The next meetings are this Saturday, February 9, and also on February 23 and March 8 and 22.
Contact Linda Miller through the Church Office (941-2566) for more information.
The Mary Magdalene Society will meet on Saturday, February 9, at 6:00 pm. Meetings are every other month on the second Saturday of the month at the same time, beginning with a pot luck (bring your favorite dish), followed by a short business meeting, then games. As a Reconciling in Christ Church, Mary Magdalene is an outreach to the GLBT community; however, all are welcome to attend. We meet in the Isenberg Hall. Please bring a friend.
Lunch Bunch meets on Sunday, February 10 (the second Sunday of every month). Everyone will gather in the Hörmann Courtyard at 12:00 noon, then decide where to go and have lunch. Please join us for this fun-filled fellowship!
For more information, contact Stephanie Miller through the Church Office (941-2566).
Food for Thought will meet for a potluck supper and discussion at the home of Irmgard Hörmann on Saturday, February 23, at 6:00 pm. All are welcome.
For directions or information, please contact Kathryn Klingebiel through the Church Office (941-2566).
You are invited to Game Night on Saturday, February 23 (fourth Saturdays of every month), at 6:30 pm. It’s a potluck at Stephanie Miller’s home, so bring a dish of your choice, and a game! Would love to see you there. It’ll be great fun.
For directions to Steff’s home or for more information, call the Church Office (941-2566).
The 2008 Swamp Romp is just around the corner! Hawaii’s dirtiest race will take place on February 23 at the Marine Corps Base in Kaneohe. Six-person teams will run the 4–5 mile course, which includes obstacles, a short sprint through the surf, and of course, knee-deep mud and muck in the beautiful Nu‘uipa Ponds of MCBH. Open to the public, there is a $20 entry fee per person if registered by February 15th.
Organizations from all over Oahu—including HPD, CIA, FBI and a multitude of civilian teams of differing capabilities—participate in this annual event. So come on out and get dirty with America’s finest!
For more information, see the flyer posted in the courtyard, visit <www.mccshawaii.com/cgfit.htm>, or see Stephen Schmidt.
I got the care package and it was wonderful! Mahalo nui loa! It was definitely a taste of the islands and it was so good to hear from so many of you. I really miss everyone from LCH and the wonderful island you all get to call home! Thank you for your prayers. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I hope to see you all again soon. Joy and Peace to you and all your loved ones!
For the past two summers, people from Hawaii and the Pacifica Synod have traveled to New Orleans and worked with Lutheran Disaster Response (LDR) in rebuilding people’s homes and lives.
We have another trip planned this year for the week following Synod Assembly. The dates are May 4–10, 2008. (The big reason for shifting from summer is to avoid the heat and humidity.) We are hoping that our voting members to the Synod Assembly with be able to go on this special mission trip.
The major cost will be the airfare to New Orleans, and that cost will change depending on when the flight is booked (the earlier the better). For voting members to the Synod Assembly, the cost of airfare to LAX is reimbursed by the Synod. There will also be a daily costs for food and housing to be determined by LDR.
We are planning to arrive in New Orleans Sunday afternoon/evening ready to go to work Monday morning. We will be leaving Friday evening for LAX and return to the islands on Saturday.
For more information, contact Pastor David Kieffer at Christ, Mililani (Phone: 623-9229; Email: email@example.com).
Bill Potter, Webmaster
As usual, there have been a lot of small changes on the LCH website as new pictures and articles were added to the “Congregational Life” section and other pages have been updated.
The big change on the site has been the addition of audio for weekly children’s conversations. With the quality of Pastor Jeff’s weekly children’s conversations, this seemed a natural. You can get to the audio via the “Children” page, and as with the adult sermon, you can subscribe to the children’s conversations using iTunes or any RSS application.
Thanks to Bill Fay, who faithfully converts the audio from our sound system to mp3 files and sends them to me each Sunday afternoon for posting to the website.
Under the direction of Jim Cartwright, members have been working off and on since last summer to salvage the LCH Archives of old records. In this time they have pulled all the old records from the crypt below the counting room. disposed of some ruined records which were so badly damaged they could not be rescued, packed the remainder in boxes, wrapped each box in two heavy plastic garbage bags, and sealed each plastic bag with duct tape. Bishop Museum then froze some thirty of these boxes of our records to kill the insect pests in them. We received the boxes back from Bishop in early January and have stored them in a storage facility off campus. We are now in the process of opening each box, one at a time, and cleaning the records which still have a lot of dirt, insect residue, and other foreign stuff in them.
Currently we have planned another volunteer day on Saturday, February 9, beginning at 10:00 a.m. Contact Chuck Huxel if you wish to work that day. We are limiting the size of the work party for this Saturday. Please come dressed in old clothes. It’s dirty work.
Next Heart Beat Deadline is Tuesday, February 19!
Signs & wonders
Sign outside Morrison United Methodist Church in Leesburg, FL: “Peace starts with a smile.”
Sign outside a church in Huntsville, Ontario: “Be an organ donor. Give your heart to Jesus.”—via Alan Newell
Sign in the office of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s office: “You ain’t learnin’ nothin’ when you’re talkin’.”—via Jim Reed Cotter, AR
Sign outside Upsala Community Presbyterian Church in Sanford, FL: “Live your life so you don’t have to hide your diary.”
Sign outside a church: “If you must curse, use your own name!”—God
Presidents’ Day reflections
I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.”
“Winston Churchill believed that brevity was the hallmark of a good speech. Churchill never forgot the example of Abraham Lincoln. At the cemetery of Gettysburg, the leading orator of the day, Edward Everett, spoke for nearly two hours. Lincoln uttered only 10 sentences, but his Gettysburg Address remains a classic inspiration, while no one remembers what Everett said.”
—Jim Reed Cotter, AR
Copyright © 2008 Lutheran Church of Honolulu
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