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Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee!

By Vicar Lisa 

Joyful, joyful we adore thee, God of glory, Lord of love!
Hearts unfold like flow'rs before thee,
praising thee, their sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness,
drive the gloom of doubt away.
Giver of immortal gladness,
fill us with the light of day.

I receive a daily devotional from Luther Seminary (which I am so excited to visit for my June Seminary experience). This week, they have been asking the question “Where do you find joy?” in hopes that it will give us readers pause and take the time to look deep within our souls and capture the light coming to us from the Spirit.

My past church tradition has taught me that I should be careful to check my emotions so as not to appear too exultant or triumphant. I remember all the lessons I was taught as a child regarding how to “behave” in church. And, being raised in the Church of Christ, where even instrumental music was prohibited, it often seemed that church was a joyless place. Good people of God, how sad is that!

The gift of joy from the Holy Spirit illuminates all things and brings everything to the light. The dark tomb is opened, and we can joyfully exclaim, “Christ is risen, he is risen indeed! Alleluia!” Henry Van Dyke’s poem above is icing on a magnificent Beethoven tune that helps us experience that God’s work of salvation is for all of creation. No doubt, you sang it to yourself as you read the words! 

The Easter joy brings hope to all that God’s hand brought to existence. During this season of Easter, it is permitted to let the stops out and declare, “Joyful music leads us sunward, In the triumph song of life.” 

Let us rejoice each and every day in the “Joy of The Lord!”

A quick prayer: Gracious, singing God, help us raise our voices in song, sometimes in harmony, sometimes in unison, but always in love to you and all of creation. Amen!

Sunday, April 23, 2023

Flowers: Donated by Dick and Ann Rasmussen for Ann’s Birthday


  • Sunday Bible Study: Our Sunday morning Bible Study has changed. The 8:30 a.m. study has been replaced with Adult Education at 11:30 a.m. after each Sunday worship, except on the Sundays when church council meets.
  • 5 Loaves Help Wanted: Next Saturday, April 29, we deliver lunches for our 5-Loaves feeding ministry. If you can help deliver, please let Norine Hazen, Peggy Gustafson, or Jo Moss know.
  • Centering Prayer: Rita Burton will lead our Centering Prayer event beginning at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, May 12, and continuing each Friday thereafter, in the Fellowship Hall. Contact Rita for information.
  • Zion's 2nd Annual Campout at Trinidad Lake: There still is time to let Jeff Smith or Jo Moss know if you would like to join us for our annual picnic/campout, May 18 to 20 (Thursday through Saturday). Maps and other details will be available on Zion's website, in the April newsletter, and via e-Formation. If you have questions, please let Jeff or Jo know.
  • Santa Fe Trail Days: Again this year, Zion's will have a booth at the festival, June 9-10. Paula Little and Mike McNeil are organizing Please let one of them know if you would like to participate, including help in staffing the booth.
  • Vacation Bible School: The community Vacation Bible School will be held at Fisher Peak Community Church. VBS is for grades K-6 and will take place the mornings of June 12-16. Teen and adult volunteers are always needed. For more information, contact Carol Smith or the FPCC church office.
  • Save the Date: Zion's 135th Anniversary celebration is Sept. 23-24. If you would like to be part of this committee, please see Vicar Lisa.
  • Flower Update: We share heartfelt thanks for our flower guild and the beautiful additions they make to our worship. You can support their work by dedicating the flowers on a Sunday. The recommended minimum donation is $35, so sign the flower book today.


Sunday, April 23, Third Sunday of Easter

On this coming Sunday, we hear about three thousand people who were baptized and about two disciples who were surprised to discover that they were eating a meal with the Risen Christ. Come to worship: celebrate your baptism and join us at a meal with Christ.

Luke 24:13-35

The Emmaus story illustrates the weekly assembly of Christians, who first search through Moses and the prophets to hear about the Messiah and who then share a meal and, in so doing, recognize the risen Christ. In keeping with Luke’s many parallels between the sexes, some contemporary artists depict the two disciples as a man and a woman. This Sunday in our congregations, we find Christ in the scriptures and recognize Christ at our table.

Acts 2:14a, 36-41

The miracle of the resurrection continues, as thousands of people repent, believe, and are baptized. As usual, Luke sees the purpose of this conversion to be the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. We are now this baptized community, assembling weekly for this apostolic teaching, the meal with the risen Christ, and our prayers.

1 Peter 1:17-23

According to this heavily metaphoric post-baptismal sermon, we are now the exile community that in Christ is judged, ransomed, purified, and born anew. The word grows in us each week, and the blood of Christ buys us back from the power of death.

Zion's Lutheran Church