Hallam, PA

St. James Lutheran Church

                                                                                                                                                                    


Rev.  PAUL N. FRANK, JR.                                                                                                                                                   CHURCH TELEPHONE:

 (717) 757-6818

SEPTEMBER - ST. JAMES

LABOR DAY

 

           Monday, September 4. It is ironic that we honor labor during Labor Day weekend by having a day when we do no labor. Work is part of our make up as human beings. We want to use our time in a productive way and contribute in some way to the betterment of society.

 

           And we glorify God in our work. Jesus was a carpenter. The disciples were fishermen. Paul was a tentmaker. After all, we spend a large portion of our life at work. A twenty-one-year-old facing a life of work with retirement at sixty-five has ahead of him eighty-eight thousand hours of employment. That is a major share of life and hopefully we can glorify God in some manner during those hours. How?

 

           First, by being honest. Second, by doing the best job that one can do. And finally, by treating others the way you want to be treated - co-workers, customers, employees and employers.

 

           But we must keep life in balance. We do not want to be workaholics. We must make time for worship; to pray and to study the Scriptures, to feed not only the body but the soul. We need leisure time, to rest and restore the body. And we need to make time for loved ones - family and friends.

 

           I once read that a person who finds a job that they love will never work a day in their lives. May you find the blessings of your labors as we celebrate Labor Day.

 

MARTIN LUTHER

           On October 31, 1517 Martin Luther nailed to the door of the All Saints' Church in Wittenberg, Germany, the Ninety-Five Theses. This marked the beginning of the Protestant Reformation. This year marks the 500*" anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. (The word Protestant comes from the word “protest”. Luther was protesting some, not all, of the teachings of the church of his day. Luther did not want to divide the church, only reform - The Protestant Reformation).

 

           Martin Luther was born on November 10, 1483 in Eisleben, Saxony. He was baptized the next day, St. Martin's Day, thus he was given the name Martin. His parents wanted him to be a lawyer, but after being caught in a terrible thunderstorm he cried out to God saying that if he survived the storm he would become a monk. He entered the monastery of the Augustinian order at Erfurt and in 1507 was ordained a priest. In 1512 he received the degree of doctor of divinity and was appointed professor of theology at Wittenberg.

 

           Luther was always concerned about how good one needed to be in order to get into heaven. From studying the Scriptures he came to the conclusion that salvation begins with God; that one cannot earn salvation, it is a free gift. We are saved not by what we do, but by what God has done for us in Jesus

Christ.

           lt was while Luther was teaching at Wittenberg that the church began selling indulgences. This was to raise money to build St. Peter's Church in Rome. A priest named Johann Tetzel was given the task of selling indulgences in Wittenberg. Moved by this Luther nailed the Ninety-Five Theses to the church door challenging the Pope's authority to sell indulgences. lndulgences were purchased for the forgiveness of sin. The Ninety-Five Theses were written in Latin but translated in German. Due to the ìnvention of the printing press, Luther's message was carried throughout  Europe. Luther got a following.

 

           Luther was ordered to recant. He refused. He was excommunicated. The Pope ordered Luther to appear before the Imperial Diet, which met at Worms. This was a gathering of the Emperor, German princes, nobles and clergy. The Diet demanded that Luther recant his teachings. He refused. He replied: “Here l stand, I can do no other. God help me.”

 

           The Emperor condemned Luther as a heretic, but allowed him to start for home safely. As he neared Eisenach he was captured by a group of masked horsemen who took Luther to Wartburg Castle. He was hidden there by Frederick, the ruler in Saxony, who feared for Luther's safety but dared not protect him openly. Luther spent ten months here and during that time he worked on translating the Bible into German. He was known as Knight George.

 

           ln March of 1522 Luther returned to Wittenberg and began work organizing a new church. He wrote hymns. He translated the Catholic mass into German. He married Katharina von Bora, a former nun. They had six children and took care of several orphans.

 

           Luther continued to preach and write. Luther died on February 18, 1546 while on a visit to Eisleben, the town of his birth. His body was taken to Wittenberg for burial in the famous church on which twenty-nine years before he had nailed his Ninety-Five Theses.

 

 

                                                             See you in church,

                                                                                     Pastor Paul N. Frank, Jr. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

See you in church,

Pastor Paul N. Frank, Jr.

 

Pastor’s Message

September 2017

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