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Dear Congregational Family,

1. 9-11: Seventeen years ago today (9-11-2001), the unthinkable happened as terrorists invaded our homeland and killed over 4,000 innocent lives. In the midst of this horrific evil, there were also displays of supreme sacrifice as firefighters, police and others rushed in to burning buildings and death itself to save others. In PA, we have the memorial in Shanksville to commemorate the passengers who knowingly gave their lives to bring down Flight 93 in order to save hundreds of others. Jesus said, “Greater love has no man, than to give his life for his friend.” This is sacrificial love for country, family, friends, and even for strangers. The Bible tells us that “For while we were still helpless, at the right time, Christ died for the ungodly.” (Romans 5:6) The entire human race was trapped in this sin-cursed, doomed and burning world because the Terrorist (Satan) had delivered a deathblow to our first parents in the perfect Garden of Eden. Thankfully, Jesus came into our world to rescue us! He ran into our world of death and died for us in order to give us life! Satan has been defeated and God is at work restoring His creation to its perfect order. Come again, Lord Jesus!

2. Men’s Dinner: Rev. Dr. Ed Glover, founder of Urban Impact and Man Up in Pittsburgh will be our speaker this year! Our Steak/Chicken Dinner is on Thursday, Sept. 27th at 7:00pm. Family Deli is catering the dinner. Kurt Radke is providing music. Cost is $15.00. Youth are only $10.00. Pastor Glover has a passion for men’s ministry. Don’t miss this great time of fellowship together!

3. Pastor Dennis: For 58 years Pastor Dennis was at Ruthfred Lutheran Church and he left an indelible mark on our congregation throughout its most formative years (and almost ALL of our years!). On Sunday, we will be marking the 10th anniversary of his passing during Sunday School, by sharing memories of him and his ministry in our midst. If you never knew him personally – which includes many of us now – this would be a great opportunity to learn more about how his life impacted Ruthfred and so many members.

4. Louis Zamperini: In 2014 the movie “Unbroken” came up showing Zamperini’s ordeal as a WWII captive and the torture that he endured and survived under the Japanese. But the movie did not focus on how his life was restored! This Friday, the movie “Unbroken: The Path to Redemption” will be showing in which the story of Zamperini’s conversion to Christ is told. This was the beginning of true healing in his life which had been falling apart after the war from aftermath of the effects of the torture which he could not escape.

5. “Reproductive Justice”: In the wake of the Kavaughnah nomination for the Supreme Court and the ongoing Senate hearings, I read a “Christian” article addressing “Reproductive Justice.” This was a new term for me. The article laid out the traditional arguments for keeping abortion legal, but added that it was a social justice issue for women to have the right to “have a baby” or to “terminate a pregnancy.” No consideration was given to a child’s social justice right to live. Disturbing, was that the article quoted from John 10:10 where Jesus said, “I have come that you might have life, and have it to the full (abundantly).” The author went on to say, “Jesus wants for women to have ‘reproductive justice rights’” to give life to a child or to take the life of a fetus depending upon what would make their (the mother’s) life “full”. This misses Jesus’ point in so many ways! Foremost of all, Jesus is saying, our life is full by receiving Him and the salvation He offers (not by eliminating the God given gift of life!). Also, the first part of the verse (unquoted in the article) was Jesus saying that the “thief/devil comes to steal, kill and destroy.” It is in contrast to this, that Jesus highlights that He has come to bring life!

6. Journey Through the Word (JTTW): This starts this Wednesday! Let me strongly encourage you to take part in this excellent ministry of studying God’s Word and enjoying fellowship with others in the church! You can register online or call the church office.

a. Morning Journey is studying Revelation. (9:15am – 11:15am)
b. Evening Journey is studying “The Big Story of God’s Single Story of Rescuing and Restoring His Created World.” If you ever wanted to see how the Bible fit together as a whole, this is your chance! (6:45pm – 8:00pm)

7. “National Back to Church Sunday”: This officially begins this Sunday! Invite someone to come with you!

God bless you as we continue,

“Growing Together in our Faith as the Family of God.”

Pastor Carlson

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