Winter at Our Savior’s

Here at Our Savior’s, when the weather gets cool, we get cooler!
There’s lots happening here at church to keep us warm, both inside and out.

For additions, corrections, or more information, please email Pastor Anna at oslcpastor@comcast.net. 

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Advent is the first season of the church year: it’s a time to prepare! We prepare to celebrate Christmas, but we also prepare to welcome Christ in our everyday lives. 

ADVENT FESTIVAL
December 1, 9AM

Kick off the Advent season by making your very own Advent wreath — we’ll help you! Join us for this intergenerational event. You’ll also receive short readings and short prayers to go with each Sunday of the season. You don’t need to bring anything; just yourself!
IMG_0895.JPGLast year’s wreath making with a few of Our Savior’s awesome members!

ADVENT DINNERS
December 4, 11, and 18, all at 6:30PM
Each Wednesday during Advent, we have dinner, share communion, and study something together, led by Pastor Anna. This year’s theme is “People Look East: A Theology of Work and Vocation.” Food is prepared by Our Savior’s members, and it’s free! 
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Our Savior’s members Debbie and Dan discuss the topic of the evening during an Advent dinner.

ADVENT SUNDAY WORSHIP
December 1, 8, 15, and 22, all at 10:15AM
And of course, join us on the Sundays of Advent as we prepare our hearts for Christmas! 
Each service includes prayer, a sermon, and the Eucharist, and each service is visitor-friendly, with helpful notes in the bulletin to let you know what we’re doing together and why. Screen Shot 2017-12-07 at 11.21.02 AM
Advent in a nutshell.

BEER & CAROLS
December 17, 6PM, Sok’s Bar (30 Bridge Street, South Hadley). 
Join us for good beer & Christmas cheer! Get an early taste of Christmas as we sing carols and raise our glasses together. Note: Sok’s has a diverse drink menu with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. You don’t have to drink beer, or drink alcohol at all, to enjoy your time with us. Just come, drink whatever you want, and sing some carols!
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Our Beer & Carols (typically Beer & Hymns) band!

LONGEST NIGHT SERVICE
December 22, 4PM, Trinity Episcopal Church (27 Strieber Drive, Chicopee)
Join Pastor Anna and Pastor Daphne Burt of Trinity Episcopal Church for this special service. The service is designed especially for those who are experiencing emotional hardship during the Advent and Christmas seasons (due to an illness, death of a loved one, or other hardship), but all people are welcome. These services are known by many names, including “Blue Christmas” and “Longest Night,” and it is held on the longest night of the year. The service will include times of prayer as well as anointing for healing. 

CHRISTMAS & EPIPHANY
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When Advent is over, the celebration begins! The festival of Christmas begins at sunset on Christmas Eve (December 24) and lasts for twelve days, and we’ll be right here to help you celebrate! 

CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE
December 24, 5PM
Join us for this special celebration of the birth of Jesus. This is a service of light (candles are provided for adults; glow sticks for children). The Eucharist is celebrated, a short homily is preached, carols are sung, and we read the story of the birth of Jesus. Join us!

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Pastor Anna, Jeff, and Dan — our ushers for Christmas Eve one year.

CHRISTMAS
Ever heard of the “twelve days of Christmas”? They’re a real thing!
December 29, 10:15AM – the first Sunday of Christmas, featuring Dan Steininger, preacher.

EPIPHANY SUNDAY
January 5, 10:15AM
Join us for Sunday school for children at 9AM, followed by worship at 10:15AM, as we remember how the magi came to find the Christ child. This is also the Sunday when we  bless chalk to mark and bless our homes for the new year, a ritual that has been practiced by Christians for centuries. As the Holy Family welcomed the magi, we also commit to welcome guests into our homes with joy.
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EPIPHANY: A SEASON OF LIGHT
Epiphany Sunday signals the end of Christmas, but the season of Epiphany has only just begun! As light returns to us in the Northern Hemisphere and the days get longer, the church celebrates a season of light, living with the teachings of Christ our light as we enjoy the lengthening days. The season of Epiphany lasts until Ash Wednesday (observed this year on February 26, 2020), when Lent begins.

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Dawn from Mount Tom, here in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts. 

We’ll celebrate this season of light every Sunday in worship at 10:15AM in January and February, ending with Transfiguration Sunday, February 23, when we’ll burn last year’s Palm Sunday palms, which will make the ashes for this year’s Ash Wednesday.
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The palm burning. 

Our Savior’s Autumn Season

Fall is upon us! Here’s what we’ve got going on at Our Savior’s.
(For additions, corrections, or more information about any of these events, please email Pastor Anna at oslcpastor@comcast.net.)

See each heading for events, places, and times, then see below for a brief description. 
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BEER & HYMNS
Thursday, September 5, at 6PM AND Monday, October 21, at 6PM at Sok’s Bar.

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The usual fare: beer + hymns + good company, including these awesome guys! See you on September 5 and/or October 21 at 6PM at Sok’s (30 Bridge Street, South Hadley).
[Note: Not all of us drink beer (or alcohol). Some of us don’t like beer, some are in recovery, and some of us just don’t drink. Come if you’re comfortable, and drink whatever you’d like!]
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GOD’S WORK, OUR HANDS SUNDAY (after worship at 10:15am)
+ KIDS’ SUNDAY SCHOOL KICKOFF (9AM)
Sunday, September 8

God's Work Our Hands
On September 8 at 9AM, the kids will be using their Sunday school time to serve our neighbors; they’ll be packing batteries for smoke detectors to remind our neighbors to change out their batteries and stay safe. Then we’ll have a brief, kid-friendly worship service with communion (as usual). Finally, the adults AND kids will be delivering the batteries after worship as our God’s Work, Our Hands (a nationwide Lutheran day of service) project. Another group from OSLC will be working to help out at Neighbors Helping Neighbors, the South Hadley food pantry. Choose your own adventure of service – see you on September 8

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ADULTS’ SUNDAY SCHOOL KICKOFF
Sunday, September 22, 9AM, fellowship hall

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The adults will continue their study of the book of Genesis beginning on September 22 at 9AM in the fellowship hall and continuing every Sunday until Advent begins in winter. No purchase or prior Bible reading experience necessary, and you can drop in for any and all sessions (each session stands alone).

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GOD’S WORK, OUR HANDS CELEBRATION
Sunday, October 6
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On October 6th, we’ll be celebrating the work we did on September 8 through learning, fun, food, and worship! Kids’ and adults’ Sunday school begins at 9AM, followed by worship at 10:15AM, followed by hamburgers, hot dogs, and fun!

FINANCIAL PEACE UNIVERSITY
Sept 15, 22, 29
Oct 6, 20, 27
Nov. 3, 10, 17
from 5-7PM
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For the fourth year in a row, Our Savior’s is happy to offer Financial Peace University, a course on strategies for:
– Paying off Debt

– Budgeting
– Saving Money
– Giving Generously
This year, we’re offering child care and food to make it easier for families to attend. The cost for the materials is $109+tax and shipping. For more information, email our instructor, Barbara Callan-Bogia, at barbara.callanbogia@gmail.com. 

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BISHOP’S VISIT
Sunday, October 20, at 10:15AM
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Bishop James Hazelwood, our Lutheran bishop here in the New England synod, is scheduled to visit Our Savior’s on October 20. He’s very tall, he’s a lot of fun, and we love hosting him! More details to come soon! 

Summer at Our Savior’s

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Everything tends to slow down in New England in the summertime, as we all take the opportunity to be outside on the beautiful, warm days of summer.

Our Savior’s is no different – things slow down, people go on vacation, and our pastor usually goes for a week or two to work with the kids at Camp Calumet, our synod’s summer camp in New Hampshire. (By the way, Camp Calumet offers plenty of space for anyone in a beautiful environment that’s also quite Lutheran – including Bible study for adults, day camp for children, gorgeous scenery and lots of possibilities for outdoor adventures, and Sunday worship! Check them out here.)

However, things don’t slow down completely – we still have plenty going on here at OSLC, and because our numbers are a bit smaller in the summertime, it’s a great time to join us or start attending again! Here’s what we’ve got going on.

BEER & HYMNS
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I mean – who wouldn’t want to hang out with these great guys?!

Beer & Hymns doesn’t break for summer! Our next event is Monday, June 17, at 6PM at Sok’s Bar (30 Bridge Street, South Hadley). This event is all it says it is and nothing more: beer + hymns. There’s no sermon or obligatory invitation to church – we just sing, drink beer, and enjoy the good company.
NoteIf you don’t drink beer, are in recovery, or just don’t enjoy alcohol, we’d still love to welcome you. Sok’s has a diverse drink menu with alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages available. Not all of our attendees drink beer or other alcoholic beverages, and drinking beer isn’t a prerequisite to enjoying your time with us.
Bottom line: come if you’re comfortable, sing with us, and drink whatever you want!

OUR SAVIOR’S CAMPING WEEKEND
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“Get in the picture, Ken!”

Every year, Our Savior’s goes camping! This year, we’re going camping on August 23-25 at Country Aire Campground in Charlemont, Massachusetts, just off the Mohawk trail. You can check out the campground here, and you can call to make a reservation of a campsite or RV site.

If camping isn’t for you, you can still participate! Every year, we have a brief worship service with communion followed by a famous Lutheran potluck. That’ll be on Saturday, August 24, around 5PM.

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Our brief worship service out in God’s gorgeous creation, often complete with campfire! 

AND FINALLY, WORSHIP!
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We’ll be here, every single Sunday, at 10:15am with Good News and communion.
Come see us! 

Note: There’s no 9AM adult ed or children’s Sunday school during summer.

Celebrate Easter With Us!

If you hang around with us during springtime, you’ll notice that Easter is kind of a big deal for Lutherans.

Easter falls this year on April 21, but for us and other liturgical Christians, it doesn’t end there: it’s a FIFTY DAY FESTIVAL.

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We’ve got lots of opportunity to celebrate! 


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Kicking off the Party: Easter Vigil, April 20, 7PM
For the ancients and for many religious folks today, festivals begin at sundown on the day before, as sundown signaled for our ancestors the end of a day and the beginning of a new one.
That’s why we start celebrating Easter on Saturday night!
Join us for this one-of-a-kind celebration of fire, storytelling, laughter, bread and wine — and wine & sweets! Children are especially welcome at this service, but we welcome folks of all ages to come and kick off our favorite season with us.

Easter Sunday: April 21, 10:15AM
Easter Sunday is typically our largest service of the whole year, as we gather with friends and family from near and far to celebrate the biggest day in Christianity.

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Beer & Hymns: April 29, 6PM
It’s our birthday! We started Pioneer Valley Beer & Hymns two years ago in May. Come celebrate with us at Sok’s Bar (30 Bridge Street in South Hadley Falls). This event is all it says it is, and nothing more: we drink beer (or whatever we want — alcoholic or non-alcoholic), we sing hymns, we laugh, we have fun.
Come enjoy the singing and the good company!


Adult Education: Genesis, Every Sunday in April and May EXCEPT Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, 9AM
Join us as we explore the first book of the Bible together in an informal, low-pressure setting. No prior biblical knowledge is required, and each sessions stands alone.

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Our Savior’s Works: Fine Arts Show, Pentecost Weekend
(June 8, 5PM-8PM and June 9, 11:30AM – 3PM)
This year, we’re celebrating Pentecost by displaying how God’s Spirit of creativity has inspired our people! Come see their good work and meet the artists themselves.
Wine and refreshments will be served. 

Holy Week 2019


HOLY WEEK
We accompany Christ to the cross.
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Good Friday shadow drama, 2016.

You’ve heard the story of Jesus’s last days – but have you lived it?

Palm Sunday, 2018.

Palm Sunday (April 14, 2019) begins Holy Week. Our celebration will begin at 10:15AM. Meet us in the narthex (what Lutherans call a “lobby”) and get ready to wave some palms and shout some Hosannas! 

Following worship, we will be treated to a full pancake brunch in fellowship hall.

Note: THERE WILL BE NO 9AM ADULT EDUCATION ON PALM SUNDAY.

During Holy Week, the Triduum (“Three Days”) Service at the end of Holy Week is observed, as the name indicates, over three days. Though we most certainly go home at the end of each part and gather again the following evening, we do not officially dismiss one another until after the Easter Vigil. Join us for this life-altering journey as we accompany Christ from the Last Supper table, to the Garden to pray, to the cross, to the tomb – and out of it!

The 2019 Triduum at OSLC

Maundy Thursday: April 18, 2019 – 7PM
A dramatic retelling of the Last Supper through Word, Table, and voluntary foot washing.

Dinner will be served (no reservations necessary)

Good Friday: April 19, 2019 – 7PM
A remembrance of the crucifixion through word and song.

Kicking off the Party: Easter Vigil, April 20, 7PM
Join us for this one-of-a-kind celebration of fire, storytelling, laughter, bread and wine — and wine & sweets! Children are especially welcome at this service, but we welcome folks of all ages to come and kick off our favorite season with us.

Wicked Big Storm Coming, BUT CHURCH IS STILL ON! (January 20)

YES, we are having church tomorrow morning, January 20, at 10:15 as always.

However, YOUR SAFETY is the most important thing to us.
Please do not venture out if you are not 100% confident doing so.
This applies regardless of any worship leadership duties you may have tomorrow. 

For those who are snowed in, Pastor Anna’s sermon manuscript will be made available on her blog like always, and we will be “going live” on Facebook for the sermon and possibly other parts of the service as well. If you can’t join us in person, feel free to join us there!

Stay safe, stay warm, and see you soon!

For more on the current season we’re celebrating, see our post below. 

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The Time After Epiphany: A Season of Light

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Here at Our Savior’s, we celebrate all the seasons of the church year, not just the well-known seasons of Advent, Christmas, Lent, and Easter.

DID YOU KNOW? The Sundays after Epiphany are known as a season of light!

Why tho?

Well, Epiphany itself is celebrated on January 6 and signals the end of Christmas by celebrating the arrival of the magi who followed a bright star. Then, the Sundays after the Epiphany detail the revelation of Jesus’ light to the world by telling the stories of his baptism, his first miracles, and many of his key teachings.

The season ends with a celebration of the Transfiguration, when “light” goes from being a metaphor to being literal. In the story, Jesus amazes and confuses his disciples on a mountaintop when his clothes “become as bright as a flash of lightning” and Moses and Elijah appear in the dazzling light with him. The Transfiguration is always celebrated on the Sunday before Ash Wednesday — this year, that Sunday is March 3. 

Finally, for us in the Northern hemisphere, the Sundays after Epiphany coincide with the time of the year when the days are slowly getting longer, driving home the theme of light for us.

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Sunrise from Mount Norwottuck, a few miles from Our Savior’s.
Photo credit: Christopher, Tania, and Isabella Luna

OKAY. SO HOW DO WE CELEBRATE THIS SEASON OF LIGHT?
Great question! Here’s what’s happening at OSLC during the season after Epiphany!

WORSHIP
First and most obviously, join us any Sunday from January 13 through March 3 at 10:15AM for our weekly service of word and table as we hear the stories of Christ’s light being revealed to the world and gather at the family table to be fed by the light of Christ in bread and wine.
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ADULT EDUCATION: GENESIS (THE BOOK OF THE BIBLE, NOT THE BAND)
Beginning on February 10, join Pastor Anna in the fellowship hall every Sunday at 9AM as we discuss the book of Genesis and all the questions (both silly and existential) that it raises. The series will continue every Sunday through the end of May, with the exceptions of Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday (April 14 and 21, respectively).
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DON’T FORGET THE KIDDOS!
We’ll also have Sunday school and kid-oriented worship on the first Sundays of February (the 3rd) and March (also the 3rd) at 9AM. Be sure to invite the kids in your life to join us for this fun time of learning, music, and snacks!
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BEER & HYMNS
February’s weather got you down? Join us on February 25 at 6PM at Sok’s Bar (30 Bridge Street, South Hadley) and raise your spirits, your voices, and your glasses with us!
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THE TRANSFIGURATION: LAST LIGHT AND LENTEN PREP
Where do Ash Wednesday’s ashes come from?
Simple – Palm Sunday’s palms from the previous year. 

Finally, on March 3 at 10:15AM, join us for worship as we remember the Transfiguration of Jesus, then join us after the service for some traditional pre-Lenten sugary treats – and a fire! We will be burning last year’s Palm Sunday palms to make Ash Wednesday’s ashes.
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As you can see from last year, we’ll burn the palms on Transfiguration Sunday – rain, snow, sleet, or shine! 

The Ash Wednesday service will be held this year at 6:30PM on March 6, ending the season of light and ushering us into the penitent days of Lent.

We hope to see you soon during this season of light! 4139846569_132a094861_b