Zion congregation worships each Sunday:
9:00 am (Traditional Service)11:00 am (Contemporary Service)
You'll find us on Vista Road, three blocks north of Trent, at the intersection with Buckeye Avenue. We're across from the main entrance of West Valley High School.You may refer to the map below.
(509) 926-5407 firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
This is temporarily serving as Zion's web site while a new one is being built. After that, this will revert to being the pastor's blog.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Friday, December 13, 2013
Note: We have one service at 9:00 am on Sunday, December 29.
- Christmas Concert with various musicians sharing their talent, 7 pm on December 15
- Mid-day Christmas Eve Service, noon on December 24
- Family Christmas Eve service, 5:00 pm on December 24
- Traditional Candlelight Christmas Eve service, 7:00 pm on December 24
Note: We have one service at 9:00 am on Sunday, December 29.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Saturday, November 2, 2013
- Pastor: Ladd Bjorneby
- Children and Family Ministry: Meredith Koshgarian
- Office Manager: Debra Grube’
- Office Assistant: Nancy Boeving
- Chancel Choir Dir: Ken Moore
- Organist: Tyler Pattison
- Contemporary Worship Leader: Cliff Conrad
- Custodians: Shirley & Kurt Perrigo
- Phil Operana
- Zoo Crew Teachers: Pam Clark
- Sandi Moore
- Childcare: Laci Volland
Zion Lutheran Church, 8304 East Buckeye, Spokane, WA 99212
Phone: (509) 926-5407, Fax: (509) 926-0072
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: www.zionlutheranspokane.org
Zion’s Annual Congregation Meeting takes place Sunday, November 17. All members are urged to attend as we vote on the 2014 budget, elect officers for open Board of Administration and Team Leader positions, and review the status of our service time changes
Nomination forms for open positions are available at the Information Center and the church office. Please prayerfully consider who you would like to see serving (including yourself), then write your recommendation on the form or call the office at 926-5407.
Sunday, November 17
One worship service
Please note that there will be only one worship service at 10:00 a.m. that day, preceded by a reception starting at 9:00 a.m. to welcome early arrivals and visitors.
Following the worship service, at about 11:30, we’ll move to the Social Hall for a potluck lunch and meeting. Bring your favorite main dish, salad or dessert to share. Fair Trade
Regular Sunday Schedule
9:00 a.m. Traditional worship
10:30 a.m. Contemporary worship
Exploration Station for kids during both services
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
“Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress. Psalm 46:10-11 NIV©
The Board is reading a book a pastor suggested to me while I was on sabbatical. Jim_Collins writes mainly for business, but he has other organizations like churches in mind too. As mechanics like to figure out how motors work, Collins likes to figure out how human organizations work. But wait, the church isn't a human organization, is it? After 56 years of life in congregations, exactly half of that time as a pastor, I can assure anyone that the church is a human organization. To be sure, God is at work in it. But God is at work in our whole world, businesses, non-profits, trade unions, even the government! We have much to learn from those who figure out the mechanics of human institutions.
Let’s pop the hood with Collins. He writes about what he calls the "Stockdale Paradox." It's named for Admiral Stockdale, who was a prisoner of war in Vietnam. When Collins interviewed him, he asked him who survived the experience of being a prisoner of war, and who didn't. Stockdale told him the ones who didn't survive were the optimists. They said "surely we'll be out by Christmas" and when they weren't, they were heartsick. Stockdale's answer was to be brutally honest about the challenges they were facing, but never to stop believing they would prevail in the end. Those things sound contradictory. But sometimes the truth is best told by holding together two things that sound contradictory. (That the truth is often best understood by holding two apparently contradictory things together is at the heart of Lutheran theology!)
For decades, since the boom times after World War II, the traditional denominations in the US have been optimists, waiting for those boom times to come back, filling our Sunday Schools to overflowing again. That optimism has almost killed us off. How about if we try the Stockdale Paradox instead?
Here's the brutal reality: Society has changed, and keeps changing. American society no longer values religious community—that's just an option for those who are "into" church. There is no holy time in the week, no common time of rest, much less a common time for worship. Families are under increasing pressure. Organized sports have gone from an important way to teach teamwork and encourage fitness (both of which we need) to the main way Americans raise our children. America's faith is in sports’ ability to form the character of the next generation. The old-line denominations have made some fundamental errors in trying to pass on the faith, errors we recognize now but that aren’t easy to correct. That’s reality.
Zion is like most congregations in that it's been shrinking and aging for decades. Now, even the very conservative groups that boomed while we were already going bust find fewer people in worship, overall, and some are shrinking fast. As we try to carry into the future what we treasure, the good news of Jesus Christ and the fellowship of a church family, we are going against the stream.
Knowing this, how are we supposed to maintain our faith that we will prevail in the end? "Were they to take our house, goods, honor, child or spouse, though life be wrenched away, they cannot win the day; the kingdom's ours forever." We Lutherans love to sing those words of Martin Luther. Do we believe them? Yes, our God is a mighty fortress.
We're trying some new things this fall, not dreaming that these will magically bring back the boom times of Zion's past, but trying these things in the hope that these will help us move forward into the future God has awaiting us. This is a great congregation, with some wonderful young families, a lot of faithful seniors and a strong sense that God is at work.
Let's live in the Stockdale Paradox. Lutherans ought to be right at home there. These are tough, challenging times to be a congregation. On the other hand, we serve God, for whom nothing is ever too tough.
Thursday, June 27, 2013
Thursday, June 21, 2012
It's nearing the Fourth of July. Are we losing our sense of patriotism? I hear the concern often from regular folks. Meanwhile, I hear the concern of quite a few pastors that we are too patriotic. Pondering that, I find myself thinking there’s a really good, healthy patriotism and then there’s an unhelpful, even dangerous patriotism. We need more of the former, but not more of the latter.
A good healthy patriotism understands that it’s not all about me; it’s about us. God calls us to care about our neighbors. We have a special responsibility because in our nation, our government is, at bedrock, “We the people.” When we are loyal to those neighbors and seek to defend them and build them up, when we participate in our communities and seek the common good, that’s the best kind of patriotism. Can we have too much of that?
Lutheran pastors in particular tend to be nervous about patriotism because of what happened under the Nazis. Yes, people compromised all kinds of Christian principles under the guise of being patriotic. The government favored certain ethnic groups and despised and killed others, and relatively few Christians objected. Country came before God. It was one of the most unspeakably cruel periods of human history. That period is an important warning, but it we shouldn’t overreact to it in such a way that we lose what is good about patriotism.
I love my country. I fly my flag. I would rather live here than anywhere else on earth, and for reasons that are too numerous to count.
I do not believe God loves America more than other nations, or that we deserve what other nations don’t. “God shed his grace on thee,” we sing. It’s grace, not deserving. When I’m at a gathering and O Canada is sung, I join in. I do the same with Yes, We Love This Land, the national anthem of the land most of my ancestors came from, or You Old, You Free, You Mountain-high North, the anthem where the rest of them came from. They’re not my countries, but they’re part of this God-beloved world too.
Fly your flag, bless God for the grace shed on our country, and pray that God will guide us as we continue to seek to be a place “with liberty and justice for all.”