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Hello, Lisa Rygiel here with this week’s e-formation.  

We began an interesting Sunday Morning Bible study entitled the Wesley Challenge which consists of asking ourselves 21 questions originally posed by John Wesley, father of the Methodist denomination.  

The first section focuses on an upward focus where we are exploring our relationship with God.  The first of 21 questions in the Wesley Challenge is “Is Jesus Real to Me?”  The author Chris Folmsbee, states that this question may be the most important of the 21 questions.  He says that Jesus is real to us when Jesus is tangible to others through our words, actions, disciplines, and practices.  As Christians, we ought to desire to have a genuine, sustainable relationship with Jesus, the Christ.  We need to move beyond the head knowledge of Jesus to the heart knowledge of Jesus and to seek a true relationship with him.

Think of how you “know” people on social media.  You know what they are up to by their posts, the photos they choose to share, and how they respond to others.  However, knowing facts about someone is not the same as really knowing them is it?  You get to know someone by spending time with them, walking and talking to them, sharing your joys and your sorrows, your fears and frustrations.  That is the relationship we should have with the Lord. 

I shared with the class that one of my favorite hymns is In the Garden"   Several others agreed that it was one of their favorites as well.  The lyrics are beautiful and speak to that close relationship we can have with him.  I will quote the refrain.  “And he walks with me and he talks with me, and He tells me I am His own.  And the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.”   If you are unfamiliar with the tune, or just want to hear the hymn, click on the link above, it is beautiful!


This week (other meetings/gatherings will be taking place as well but here are some things to note):

Sunday May 22, The 6th Sunday in Easter

· 8:30 a.m. Sunday morning Bible study -- We are studying "The Wesley Challenge".  This is a study intended to develop our spiritual lives and help us become more deeply committed Christians. Join us at: Or Dial 1 312 626 6799 Meeting ID: 907 628 370 -- Passcode: 332397.

· 10 a.m. Worship with Holy Communion -- Please join us, either in person OR via ZOOM ('hybrid' worship). If you will be worshiping via Zoom, log on or call in using these links: -- or Dial: 1 301 715 8592 -- Meeting ID: 917 3921 4242 -- Password: 731771. For those of you who will be worshiping in person, masks will now be at the discretion of each individual. We continue to be mindful all the different ways people are compromised that may not be known and so please continue to practice healthy community habits such as staying home when you are sick etc. 

Worship leader: Pastor Becky McNeil; 

Assistant: Julie Wersal; 

Organist: Connie Pallone; 

Ushering: Peggy Gustafson and Cheri Holder; 

Reading: Peggy Gustafson; 

Communion prep/cleanup: Carol Schulzkump and Ruthie Culpepper

Flowers: Donated by Lynn Chase in memory of her brother Russ

· Fellowship time at approximately 11:15 a.m. to share a cup of coffee/soda and conversation!

· Bread and Belonging will resume! Our high school/college ministry gathers each Sunday night from 6-8 p.m. in the lower level of the Fellowship Hall.

Other important stuff of note:

Women's Bible Study:  The Women's Bible Study has begun a new series on the Psalms. The next session will be held Friday, May 20 at 9:30 am.  We will meet in person in the fellowship hall downstairs and will also be on Zoom. Any questions can be directed to Becky McNeil or Carol Smith.  All are welcome! To Join Zoom Meeting:  Meeting ID: 831 3642 4723 -- Passcode: 865505 (or call in 1-312-626-6799).

  1. 1.You can still join Zion's Afghan sponsorship team through Lutheran Family Services-Rocky Mountain!  Pamela & David Serafini have stepped up to be our primary contact people so join the team and let them know your level of planned engagement.  
  2. 2.The flower ministry blesses our worship space and they bring such joy to our sanctuary.  Please coordinate with Lynn Chase to sponsor the flowers.
  3. 3.Prayer Shawl Ministry:  Are you interested in knitting one/some to share?  Join the knitters who bless so many. Let us know if you are interested and we will connect you with these talented individuals.


This coming Sunday is the 36th day of Easter, so we are still singing some rousing Easter hymns. We continue reading from Acts, Revelation, and John’s gospel. Come to worship, to share in the fruits of the tree of life.

The Readings in the Bible

John 14:23-29

In this short excerpt from the Johannine discourses, the evangelist summarizes several of his primary themes: Jesus, the Son of God the Father, is known through the word and experienced in love. He will send the Spirit, who will lead the community into peace and truth. John, writing in the mid-90s, repeats his claim that the believers can live in peace, without fear, despite the present persecutions.

Acts 16:9-15

Writing in the late 80s with special attention to his Gentile audience, Luke presents another narrative that grounds the Gentile mission in the earliest and most beloved apostles: in about 50 ce, Paul responds to a vision from God to evangelize Europe. Here begins one of the “we” sections of Acts, perhaps citing from a journal written by a companion of Paul. Philippi is in the northeastern area of contemporary Greece. Among Luke’s references to wealthy women who support Jesus (see for example Luke 8:2-3) and the Christian mission is Lydia, a dealer in purple (expensive) cloth who is able to offer accommodations to the traveling missionaries. In a detail that indicates Christian precedence over Judaism, Lydia becomes Christian on the Sabbath.

Revelation 21:10, 22—22:5

In this climax of the seer’s vision of the new Jerusalem at the end of time, the temple has been replaced by the presence of God and the Lamb. Realistic details of a royal city (gates, a throne, the street) are interwoven with fantasy (no sun or moon, everyone reigning forever). The tree of life, which sinners cannot approach (Gen. 3:22-24), is now available with twelve different fruits and miraculous leaves. Ancient Jewish belief that no mortal could look at God and survive is countered with the Christian hope that everyone will see God’s very face.


Zion's Lutheran Church