St. Paul's Evangelical

330 Highland Drive
Chicago Heights, Illinois 60411

Church Office: 708-754-4493

We go forward in Witness, Mercy, Life Together.

Sunday Worship Service
10:00 a.m.
 Sunday Adult Fellowship/Bible Study  
9:00 a.m.

Sunday Youth Bible Study
9:00 a.m.

Sunday School
 9:00 a.m.

Wednesday Advent
 Worship Services
2:00 & 7:00 p.m.
Come and Worship with Us!

 Christian Resources For You!


Message from the Pastor

pastor_croonSt. Paul's Ev. Lutheran Church
Pastor’s Column
December 2017

“Everyone Engaging the Entire
Community for Christ”

And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.  And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds had told them. Luke 2:16 - 18

What joyous news the shepherds had been told! They were told by an angel of the Lord of great news that was for all the people. The great news was that on that very day, in the city of Bethlehem, the Savior had been born, Christ the Lord! So it was then that the shepherds hurried off to find what the Lord had told them about. There was no delay in their going to search for the Babe of Bethlehem. Just as the angel had told them, they found Mary and Joseph—and the baby Jesus! It was shepherds then, lowly shepherds, who carried the news of the birth of the Savior of the world throughout Bethlehem and the countryside. How the people hearing it were amazed!

This month will see us observing the season of Advent, as we prepare our hearts to celebrate the birth of our Savior: the birth of the Savior for all people! In the ancient church, Advent was observed, and rightfully so, in the same manner that most of us observe the season of Lent currently: a time of reflection on our sinful nature, a time of acknowledging the need for repentance and a time for acknowledging that in the Babe of Bethlehem alone rests our salvation. The month of December will culminate with the ushering in of the season of Christmas, as we joyously celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Much is said about the commercialization of the Christmas season and rightfully so. It is a time of year also when we focus on family, of being together in worship, in sharing gifts and joining in each other’s company at the dinner table. What a joyous time in being together with family and friends!

However, we at times overlook a major point of the birth of our Savior: that the “good news of great joy” that the angel proclaimed to the shepherds, is for all people! That “good news” the shepherds heard was not kept to themselves. They spread the word! The shepherds (they were, after all, just shepherds) were not concerned how others would respond, or what others would think of them. They did not hesitate to spread the word of what they had been told or what they had seen!

We have a unique opportunity this Advent and Christmas season to proclaim to all people the joy of the birth of our Savior. The opportunities abound during the Advent and Christmas seasons to tell others of the joy we know of in Christ. Waiting in long check-out lines lends ample opportunity to speak to others. A greeting of “Merry Christmas” at a “holiday” function sponsored by your employer goes a long way!  Putting a note telling of the love of Christ in a gift given to those in need or helping serve a Christmas meal to those suffering financial hardships at this time of year are further opportunities to tell of the Good News. These are just a few ways in which we are presented with the opportunity to tell of the joyous birth of our Savior to others in our community. For those of you already making the most of your time this month in sharing the news of the birth of our Savior, please encourage your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ to do the same! How can we keep such glorious news to ourselves?

Please remember in your prayers throughout this Advent and Christmas season those who serve in our Armed Forces who are on active duty and will be far away from their loved ones. Pray also for all those who are hurting and suffering throughout this Christmastide, whether it be throughout the world, our nation, our community or those of our own congregation and families. May their hurting hearts be comforted by the Babe of Bethlehem, our Savior, Jesus Christ.

God grant you a Christ filled season of Advent and Christmas, and may the joyous news of the birth of the Savior of the nations not only fill our church and homes, but be proclaimed to all people!

Go tell it on the mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere,
Go tell it on the mountain,
That Jesus Christ is born!

Pastor Croon