Worship service changes due to COVID-19

Hi Everyone,

Peace to you in Jesus!  Please read through this e-mail for important information about worship and other activities at Trinity Lutheran in Auburn during the coming weeks.

With the new recommendations announced yesterday by Gov. Pete Ricketts to limit gatherings of people to 10 or less, the Board of Directors and Board of Elders have made the decision to suspend worship services and other activities here at Trinity  beginning immediately and for the next two weeks—until the end of March.  This suspension will include worship, Sunday School, Bible studies, confirmation, and fellowship activities/meals.

While this was not an easy decision, the Directors and Elders think that it is important to cooperate/work together as good citizens based on the recommendation of the state in order to try to limit the spread of the coronavirus and protect those who are most vulnerable.

Though this is not an enforceable mandate that prohibits worship/other faith-based activities, as citizens we will honor the Fourth Commandment which includes not only parents but also governmental authorities—acknowledging that “they also serve as God’s representatives for the support and protection of our life on earth.”   (Luther’s Small Catechism with Explanation, p. 81)

This is a challenging time.  Though change is not easy and we don’t like restrictions on our normal activities and interactions, this suspension of church activities fits with the love for our neighbor that God wants us to show.

Word and Sacrament ministry here at Trinity will still be available over the next two weeks.  We  still want to provide the food that the Holy Spirit uses to feed the faith of His people and give them comfort during difficult times like this.  What does this mea

Worship Services:  The Lord-willing, worship services for both Wednesdays and Sundays will be conducted for the purpose of making a digital audio recordings that can be posted to Trinity’s website—www.trinityaubne.org.   Those recordings will be posted after the services are complete.  Those computer/smart phone access to the internet are encouraged to listen to/participate in those together as individuals/families.

Participants in these services on-site at the church will be limited to 10 people or less—maybe just the pastor, a musician, and an elder.  If you are healthy and would like to participate, please give me a call—first come, first served.

I am willing to send copies of my sermons to those interested who do not have access to the website.

Communion:  If you would like to receive Holy Communion individually or as a family, please give me a call at the church.  I would be happy to give you Communion privately either in your home or here at church.

Other worship resources that you are encouraged to use:

Portals of Prayer—read the Bible readings and the devotion for each day.  Prayers for each day and for special circumstances are in the back.  The new Portals of Prayer for the next quarter are available at church on the table in the narthex.  I can bring you one if you’d like.  Please give me a call.

 Main Street Living:  Main Street Living is a television ministry of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and the Lutheran Churches of Nebraska.  A worship service is broadcast on KLKN-TV on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m.  Re-mastered programs of “This is the Life” are shown right before at 10 a.m.  If you have computer/smart phone access to the internet, you can access the worship services by going to:  mainstreetliving.com

The Lutheran Hour Radio program is broadcast on the following stations:

KFAB (1110 AM) on Sunday mornings at 6:30 a.m.

KMA (960 AM) on Sunday mornings at 7:30  a.m.

KTNC (1230 AM) on Sunday mornings at 8:30 a.m.

**Please note that the Lutheran Hour Ministries website (www.lhm.org) has devotions and other resources that can be accessed with a computer or smart phone.

Confirmation:  Assignments will be e-mailed to parents for their students.

Offerings:  Even though we will not be together over at least the next two weeks, there will still be a need to pay the bills at the church, so first fruit, sacrificial giving is still important.  You can do the following in order to continue to support the Lord’s work here with your offerings during this time:

 Send your offering to the church through the U.S. Mail.

Go to the church website (www.trinityaubne.org) and give your offering by way of e-giving. Go to the “Resources” tab on the home page.  Go to the “Helpful Links” tab.

**It is easy to do this.  If you need some assistance, you can call Tim Becker at 402-414-1931

Though we will not able to be together for the next two weeks and maybe longer, you are encouraged to continue to care for each other.  That’s what the members of the Body of Christ do for each other—1 Corinthians 12:24-26.  Use your phones to call each other and check on each other and give encouragement to each other as well as to your neighbors.

I think that’s all for now.

If you need anything or have any questions, please give me a call at the church.

God’s continued blessings you!

In Christ,

Pastor Jon Rathjen

Psalm 27:1:  The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear?  The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?

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