news & events
7/3/2016 What's New?
After the service, we will have a blessing of the children's backpacks as they start the new school year. Fellowship time will be in Nick Nelson's honor with a special blessing as he heads for Furman University.
The new school year has started for most Atlanta-area schools so our Sunday School will also resume. On Sunday 8/14 we will be asking God's blessing for our Sunday School students and teachers. We will also give special thanks to all who serve on the Altar Guild. The congregation council will meet at 1:00 pm.
Sun 8/21 Pastor Ruth on Day1 RadioThe broadcast be Sunday 8/21/2016 at 7:05 AM on WSB 750 AM, 95.5 FM and other stations. Afterwards, it will also be available for download at Day1.org as a transcript or various audio formats.
Over the summer, the Lunch & Learn group will be looking ahead one week to read and discuss the Sunday Bible readings. See the Education page for more details.
On Sunday 7/31/2016 we held a special service of healing in the wake of all the events of the past few weeks. Our attempt to stream it live over Facebook was only partly successful due to internet issues. But a video of the service is now available on our Facebook Page. Click the image to see it even if you don't have a Facebook Account.
Natalie, Jack, and Pastor Ruth attended Confirmation Camp at Lutheranch near Tallapoosa, Georgia, along with members of Shades Valley Lutheran Church, Birmingham, and Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church, Birmingham, from Sunday, June 5-Thursday, June 9.
Over Memorial Day weekend, May 27-29, Pastor Ruth, Sharon Mazna and Lindy Frietag represented St. Luke at the 2016 ELCA Southeastern Synod Assembly held in Birmingham, Alabama. The ELCA is divided into 65 synods. The Southeastern Synod encompasses all of the ELCA Lutheran churches in Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. Bishop Julian Gordy presided over the Assembly. In addition to passing resolutions, mostly dealing with social justice, many workshops were offered as well as beautiful worship services including jazz music from Nashville and even a hip-hop version of the Apostles' Creed. Lindy attended a workshop about commemorating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation while Sharon attended an innovative one on youth programs. It is a great way to meet more wonderful Lutherans and see what other congregations are doing and what the greater church is up to. For more information, see the June Lamp or visit www.elca-ses.org.
We bid farewell and Godspeed to our beloved vicar and friend, Karen Boda on her last Sunday with us, April 24, 2016. She had been with us since August 2015 but that seems like only yesterday. We are grateful to Karen who has brought us fresh ideas and ways to connect with God and our fellows: the "Gods Work, Our Hands" mobile, the Prayer Flags, the many timely Facebook posts accompanied by artistic photos by her talented husband, Alan, the Lenten class on Prayer with Tim Young and enlightenment for the Bible Study group. Karen hopes to stay in the Southeastern Synod now that she has been approved for ordination and is available for a call. May she be a blessing in her next endeavor as she has been a blessing to us! We miss, you Vicar Karen!
Anna Tew, former intern at St. Luke, has been called to be pastor at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in South Hadley, Massachusetts. She was ordained January 31, 2016 at St. John’s Lutheran Church on Ponce de Leon in Atlanta. She invited the whole St. Luke community to celebrate with her and we were well-represented at the beautiful ceremony. Anna served as St Luke's first intern pastor from July 2014 to July 2015. We at St. Luke were blessed by the wide variety of skills she shared in her teaching, preaching, outreach, faith and fresh ideas like Blessing of the Animals, Beer & Hymns Fellowships, and Ministry by Facebook!
With Alex and Jen Benford reluctantly departing for Alabama, St Luke has found a new Music Director/Organist. Starting August 9, 2015, we are delighted to welcome Jonathan DeLoach. Jonathan has a master’s degree in sacred music in organ performance from Emory University and Candler School of Theology. He has been organist, choir accompanist and director, and music director for a variety of Lutheran, Methodist, and Presbyterian congregations. He also plays the recorder and has performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra as well as with the Ritornello Baroque Ensemble, which he founded.
As the body of Christ on earth we have the duty and delight to share the Good News. At its core, the Gospel is the understanding that God’s love for us invites us to be closely related to God and to each other. The Gospel is about love—love of God, of neighbor, of self— that calls us into deep and committed relationships with God and each other. The world's ills are about fear that breaks and destroys relationships, putting the individual first and others (including God) last. In the coming year, St. Luke’s commitment to spreading the Good News will take an active turn in recognizing how the Gospel frees us from the burden of our sin and how we can invite others into a life of such freedom. Please contact Eric Brown at EricBrown2001@gmail.com to see how you can participate more fully in sharing the Good News with others.
We now have pagers so that Brenda, our nursery attendant, can discreetly summon parents if their child requires their immediate attention.
We all enjoy the coffee, tea, & treats during our after-service fellowship time. The Fellowship Committee coordinates volunteers who set this up each week. Coffee-making instructions are posted on the kitchen bulletin board. To volunteer or learn more, contact Sharon Mazna for June or Kim Schaeffer for July. Empty slots can also be seen online in the "Cookies" row on the Worship Assistants page.
Please consider signing up on the 2014 Flower Chart which is located outside the Fellowship Hall. Please consider remembering a friend or loved one with a flower arrangement on the altar. Check available dates in the "Flowers" row on our Worship Assistants page. Remember that each date has two opportunities.
New Baby Baskets
For many years St. Luke has given a "New Baby Basket" to members who are celebrating the birth of their first child. The baskets are filled with new items donated by members of the congregation. With the birth of two new babies recently, we are in need of items such as baby clothing, toys, baby shampoo, washcloths, pacifiers, spoons, etc. Please place donations in the baskets in the Fellowship Hall. All donations are greatly appreciated! Please see Kim Schaeffer if you have any questions.
Any and all who would like to help us make a joyful noise are welcome to sing with the choir, no audition or previous experience necessary. Lively rehearsals are 7:00–8:30 pm on Wednesday evenings, with a warm-up at 9:15 am on Sunday mornings. Please stop by the organ bench after service and speak with our delightful new music director, Jonathan DeLoach, if you’d like to learn more.
St Luke Communications
Our monthly newsletter, The Lamp is available several ways: Postal mail, Email, or it can be Downloaded from the Resources Page. We also have a weekly email update, This Week at St Luke. To be added to the postal mail list for The Lamp, just call the church office and provide your address. To be added to the email list for either or both publications, please forward your email address (and any other contact information that has changed) to Pastor Ruth (Pastor@stlukeatlanta.org).
If you are interested in membership, please talk with Pastor Ruth or send her an email. You can join by Letter of Transfer, Affirmation of Faith or Adult Instruction. We would be delighted to welcome you into membership.
On Sunday February 21, 2016, we welcomed Jim and Lou Taylor into membership at St. Luke by affirmation of baptism. We thank God for sending us these people who will enrich us with their presence and their gifts.
Join us in welcoming all visitors and new members into our St. Luke family.
For the Altar Guild, please contact Tina Blackney (404-812-9080). For other positions, please contact Catherine Ramsdell (email@example.com) or the church office (404-237-4413) if you are interested in any of these opportunities.
We welcomed Hunter Britt Pitre into the family of God through the sacrament of Holy Baptism on Sunday April 3, 2016. Hunter's parents are Josh & Britt Pitre. His sponsors are Bill Adams, Eric Hilgendorf, Laci Adams and Emily Popler. We rejoice and give thanks to God for the gift of new life. St. Luke’s baby population continues to explode with Noelle Jean Thompson (2/7/2016), Lawson Jacob Powers (12/6/2015), Oskar James Sarafin-Johnson (11/29/2015), Margot Renee Davenport (baptized 9/27/2015), Adam Richard Shilander (baptized 6/28/2015), Selene Joanne Barnes (baptized 2/15/2015), Griffin Frederick Vagts (baptized 9/21/2014), Isabella Grace Kalise Michel (baptized 12/7/2014) and Conner Felix Powers (baptized 12/22/2013).
The Congregation Council met on Saturday, July 23, for its annual planning retreat. Members discussed goals for the coming year, our congregation’s strengths and areas that could be improved. Reviewing the past year, they examined what went well, things that could have gone better, what we wanted to do or cease doing, and potential new activities. One theme that surfaced regularly was how to engage members of the St. Luke community in worship, activities, and service. After lunch, individual committee plans were presented and discussed. The year will include family-friendly events, small-group dinners, Oktoberfest brunch, activities and educational opportunities linked to the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, and development of a directory of participants’ interests and gifts. A monthly dinner combined with a service of evening prayer also was proposed. Check The Lamp for specific upcoming events. The council also approved a marriage policy for St. Luke and the formation of a task force on planning, led by Mark Freitag. The next council meeting is Sunday, August 14, at 1:00 p.m.
Unfortunately, nearly all those signed up for the Vickery Creek Trail Hike had to cancel due to conflicts. Jenn Boudoin and Barb Shaeffer, who hiked over six miles of the trails, concluded that we must schedule another hike there in the fall. The trailhead was easy to reach. The trails were well-marked and easy to follow with spectacular scenery and plenty of places for rest and conversation. For photos, see our Gallery Page. For trail information, visit www.atlantatrails.com/hiking-trails/roswell-mill-vickery-creek-trail.
On Saturday April 9, 2016, we enjoyed the gastronomic skills of our church members along with a delightful literary discussion with our own Atlanta writers Ren and Helen Davis. They shared Landscapes for the People, their most recent publication and first biography of George Alexander Grant, the pioneering photographer for the National Park Services.
Twelve of us, including two kids, enjoyed dinner at Tortugas Cuban Grill on Saturday March 19. A good time was had by all. The food was delicious, the mohitos awesome and the Cuban coffee amazing.
The Annual St Luke Chili Cook-off was held Saturday February 20, 2016. We had an amazing nine chili entries! All were really tasty creating a challenge for the judges. Congratulations to the 2016 winners: Pastor Ruth (Spiciest), Elba (Most Unique) & Jody (Best Overall). Many thanks to Paul and Tina Blackney for hosting us at their lovely home in Buckhead.
The Semi-Annual Meeting was held Sunday May 22, 2016 accompanied by a festive brunch. Paul Powers and Ken Torrence were each re-elected to a second two-year term on the Congregation Council. Paul Blackney and Lindy Freitag were elected to full two-year terms, having completed partial terms. Lou Taylor was elected to her first two-year term. New terms begin July 1. Thank-you to Sharon Mazna and Catherine Ramsdell who have completed two two-year terms. The meeting also received reports from the pastor and council committees as well as an audit summary. At the meeting, the congregation talked about the Sunday morning schedule (and agreed to have further conversation on the topic). Ways for St. Luke to become more family-friendly and to increase participation were also discussed.
The Annual Meeting was held Sunday January 24, 2016 following worship and a delicious brunch hosted by the Fellowship Committee.