Missouri Synod Church in Downtown Memphis

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The Next Chapter

People often refer to a good book as a real “page turner.”  Of course, that’s because you can’t wait to get to the next chapter, to find out what is going to happen.  Life sometimes works that way, too!  In fact, it is a pretty good description of my own life. For the past 8 months, I have been serving you as your Vacancy Pastor.  When we entered into this agreement, none of us really knew how long it would last, which just goes to show that God always has a better plan than we do. His plan, now, is for us to move on to the next chapter of the book.  For Trinity that means continuing to faithfully worship and serve God, loving your neighbors, and sharing the love of Jesus with everyone you can as you “go and make disciples”.  It also means praying for Pastor Boehlke as he considers your call to serve in your midst.  And it means, praying and caring for one another in mutual encouragement. For me, it means continuing to help congregations experience “mission revitalization” as the Executive Director for the Transforming Churches Network (TCN).  It also means serving as the Vacancy Pastor at Grace Celebration Lutheran Church in Cordova.  My responsibilities there will be very similar to what they have been here at Trinity.  Of course, many people have asked me, “why are you leaving Trinity to do basically the same thing at Grace Celebration?” Well, the answer is two-fold.  1) Trinity

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Holy Land Classic 2019

with Pastors Terry and Larry Tieman 10 days in The Holy Land STARTING FROM $3448   Join Pastors Terry and Larry Tieman on this exciting 10-Day journey where you will visit all the major sites, such as the Sea of Galilee, Mt. of Beatitudes, the Jordan River, Bethlehem, Nazareth, Jerusalem and more with prices starting at $3,448 from New York.  Enhance your journey by adding an optional extension.  The tour departs on June 11, 2019. Download a PDF with more information by clicking on the image below You can register on line at the following web page…http://www.eo.travelwithus.com/tours/hl19061119l58447#.WzoZltJKhpg Or contact Pastor Tieman (901) 494-7375; Terry.tieman@gmail.com

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Filled with the Spirit

This article was taken from the South East of Victoria Lake Diocese website. See the article at http://elct-selvd.org/filled-with-the-spirit/ This was it! All the months of planning, packing, and fund-raising, all the hours and days of travel, all the prayers and Bible studies, emails, and meetings were over. It was really here, we were ready to start.   We weren’t visiting another church, school, or mission outpost. We weren’t signing a guest book, admiring the fruits of a grant or donation, we were entering the mission field and Satan was working overtime, plaguing my thoughts with doubts, fears, worry, and apprehension. What was I doing? I wasn’t an evangelist, I wasn’t a pastor and I certainly wasn’t an apostle. And, wait, I seemed to remember all the things that happened to those people – beatings, ship-wrecks, stoning, jail time, and all sorts of major persecution. I felt we could rule out the ship wrecks – people were walking miles just to secure a bucket of water, but I certainly saw plenty of rocks. In fact, I felt plenty of rocks, my fit bit registered over 8000 steps before we even left the vehicle!  Everyone else seemed so confident, smiling, laughing, and re-connecting with the pastors and evangelists from past trips. And the other team from CTK had been so successful, they had baptized nearly 600 during their week. What if we were rejected, what if no one listened or cared about the Gospel message? I felt like the shy, quiet, little girl that had attended a two-room

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Service Project Sunday Huge Success!

We wanted to extend a big THANK YOU to all our volunteers who helped with Service Project Sunday this past Sunday (April 8th). We had a group who passed out Homeless Survival Kits to homeless people around the area and ran out of bags pretty quickly. The ladies of our Naomi Circle packed them all in assembly line style and we are truly grateful for their help and support. Another team went outside around Trinity and the jail to pick up trash and make our immediate community a little bit cleaner. Thank you so much to those who helped brighten up the area! A third group went over to Tom Lee Park and Mud Island Park to pass out water bottles to anyone they came in contact with. Thank you for participating in a small act of kindness to our neighbors. Yet another team stayed behind at Trinity to prepare lunch for all our hard workers. Thank you for your support, too! To everyone who helped out:  You planted seeds of hope around a cause you care about. You stepped up, took the lead, and challenged others to take action. And together, you made a positive change. That’s not just awesome–it’s awe-inspiring! Thank you for sharing your God-given gifts to make the world a better place. You are truly a blessing… to your family, your friends–and the countless people you’ve touched through your generosity.  

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“God Connects” – new study!

"God Connects" - new study!

God, are You there? Everyone, at some point, asks this question. It can come at moments of sterile reflection or in times of deep despair. “God, if You are there, why don’t You show Yourself to me?” In this confusing world where authenticity is so elusive, it seems like we cannot connect to God. We could not connect to God, but the good news is that God connects with us. He has been doing this from the beginning in amazing ways. The most direct way God connected to us is when He became one of us in Jesus Christ. When Jesus was on this earth, He was the very revelation of God as He taught and healed and loved. Then to restore our connection to God, which had been shattered because of sin, on the cross, Jesus willingly paid the penalty for our sins—in His own death! This is the most authentic, startling and determined love the world could have ever imagined. Now God connects to us by revealing Himself in the Bible. This God-given book has an amazing story. It tells of God’s constant and compassionate work to restore our relationship with Him. God Connects wants to share that story with you. God Connects is a course that tells this unique, unequaled story. Whether you do not believe in Christ as Savior or want to deepen your faith in Him, as you delve into God Connects you will explore what the Bible says about this remarkably loving God, and

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Fear, Death, And This Christian With Cancer

We fear death. We Christians know we needn’t, but we do. It’s natural. It’s universal. But shouldn’t we actually be fearing life instead? David Brugge talks about the irony of how we as Christians have such a tough time confronting death, and perhaps how we should really be looking at it.

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Has God Withheld His Blessings? This Might Possibly Be The Reason.

A recent podcast of the program Hidden Brain, interviewed Dacher Keltner, the director of UC Berkeley’s Social Interaction Lab. He spoke about some of the interesting scientific studies in how people interact with each other. When looking at how people in social settings gain power, studies find something that might seem counter intuitive. If we think about power as being able to dominate by scheming and maneuvering people into positions of disadvantage, the people who display altruism, kindness, and social intelligence, these are the people who gain power and respect from their peers. But there is a catch. Once these people become powerful, their power tends to undermine the very qualities that help them get there in the first place. Dr. Keltner says, “There is something about the seduction of power that makes you lose site of ethics and other people’s interest.” Twenty years of study on thousands of people has shown that any group of people, when first brought together, quickly evolves into ranking by social power. Often times, those who are boisterous and bullying start out grabbing attention, but over time they start to lose power and never gain the social position that they are seeking Meanwhile those who listen to others, who shows empathy and compassion, rise in the esteem and the ranking of their peers. We support those who listen to us, show us compassion and understanding, and are respectful of us and our ideas. We resist those who try to dominate us and who try

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Cheeseburgers, Cognitive Dissonance, and the Holy Spirit

All of us have experienced cognitive dissonance. That is the stress that is created when we try to hold two or more conflicting beliefs or values in our head, or when we do something or learn something that conflicts with these beliefs or values.

Cognitive dissonance theory says that we all try to keep our mind (our cognitive function) peaceful and in harmony and that when a conflict arises (dissonance) we will act to reduce the conflict, most times without our even realizing that we are doing so.

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Does Your Faith Need a Recharge?

Not all submarines are nuclear powered. Those that are not rely on diesel powered generators to recharge their batteries. The diesel engines can only be operated when the submarine is on the surface of the water. This limits how long a submarine can stay submerged. Stay too long and the batteries would completely drain out and the submarine would loose the power necessary to operate. So time to time, it has to return to the surface to recharge its batteries. The same is true in the life of a Christian. When all is well, our faith is strong and our spiritual life runs smoothly. Although Christ’s redemptive work gained us our freedom, and the Holy Spirit has infused us with a saving faith, it is our duty and responsibility to maintain that faith. Scripture does not support the idea that “once saved, always saved.” With out care, it’s quite possible for us to lose our saving faith. From time to time, we need to “recharge” our faith batteries. The very best way to recharge one’s faith is by reading the Word of God. When reading the scriptures, the Holy Spirit works directly on our heart, pumping life giving faith back into our system. So to can be said of hearing the Word of God, not only in bible readings, but in hearing the Word preached in church. Another way is by sharing the Word of God. As you share your faith with someone else, your own faith is strengthened. And

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What’s Up With That Masonic Symbol?

Almost every one of the stained glass windows in Trinity has at least one Christen icon or symbol. None of them elicit more questions than that of the All Seeing Eye. “So what’s up with the Masonry symbol?” people ask. It appears at the top of the window on the East side, closest to the front of the nave, overlooking the area where Pastor and the Deacon sit, and for generations, was seen by small, fidgeting children as God’s disapproving eye on their distractful restlessness. The All Seeing Eye, also known as The Eye of God or The Eye of Providence has been used for centuries as a Christian symbol. Art work, depicting the watching eye of God started appearing in Europe in the late fourteen hundreds, usually as a huge eye floating in the sky, or looking through the clouds. As people became more familiar with the meaning of the symbol, it began to appear with a triangle drawn around it to represent the Trinity. By the late seventeen hundreds, it had become a universally accepted symbol throughout Christendom. When the United States was founded, the All Seeing Eye was incorporated into the Great Seal of the United States, appearing above an unfinished pyramid. The idea was that God (or Providence) oversaw and gave his approval of the growing nation. The Pyramid was made of thirteen rows, with room for more. Popular legend has it that the founding fathers were greatly influenced by the Freemasons and that these mason’s

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