St. Luke’s Worship News

Join us for brunch following worship…

St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, North Baltimore
Sunday, May 19, 2019, 10:15 a.m.

Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled “So, What’s New?” based on John 13:31-35. 

Sunday School for all ages begins at 9:00 a.m. 

 

Please join us for brunch following worship to benefit our Vacation Bible School and Church Women’s Ministries.

“Jesus Loves Me”

A devotion from Pastor Ralph J. Mineo….

Charlie Brown, the well-known comic strip character, always seems to get the short end of the stick. Life is often unfair for poor Charlie Brown.

One day, he and Peppermint Patty were having a conversation. Patty was lamenting: “I need to talk to someone who knows what it’s like to feel like a fool, someone who knows what it’s like to be humiliated, someone who’s been disgraced, and degraded, someone who’s been there.”

In the final panel of the comic strip, there are no words. Charlie Brown simply had his arm around Patty’s shoulder. He’s been there. He understands.

The New Testament letter to the Hebrews teaches: “Jesus can help us in our sufferings, because of what he suffered.” Many religious leaders and average people of his day considered Jesus to be a complete fool, a blasphemer. Eventually, he was humiliated, disgraced, degraded, and crucified as a common criminal.

Jesus was always connected to the Father, even in suffering (especially in suffering). In the letter to the Hebrews, Jesus is called “the pioneer of our faith.” Not only did he endure the worst for us, he paved the way for us in dealing with suffering, by holding fast to faith.

In comparison to our sufferings, we can, with certainty, say about Jesus: he’s been there! Jesus understands.

We need never be alone in our suffering. Jesus offers a loving arm around our shoulder, no matter how bad life gets. Jesus offers grace, healing, forgiveness, love for our heart, body, mind, soul.

Do you need some comfort today? Do you someone to lean on? Do you need someone who’s been there?

If so, turn to Jesus Christ, the one who is already turning to you! You can always count on him to be there. Nothing can separate you from his love. Jesus is there right now for you!

Let us proclaim this truth every day: Jesus loves me! Jesus loves me! Jesus loves me!


St. Luke’s Church Worship News

Message titled “Listening to the Voice of Jesus”

St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, North Baltimore
Sunday, May 12, 2019, 10:15 a.m.

Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled “Listening to the Voice of Jesus” based on John 10:22-30.  Worship will include a celebration of baptism. 

Sunday School for all ages begins at 9:00 a.m.   

Please join us as we continue our celebration of the Easter Season.

St. Luke’s Worship News

Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled “Do You Love Me?” based on John 21:1-19, at the 10:15 a.m. worship service….

St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, North Baltimore,
Sunday, May 5, 2019, 10:15 a.m.

Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled “Do You Love Me?” based on John 21:1-19, at the 10:15 a.m. worship service.

Sunday School for all ages begins at 9:00 a.m. 

Please join us as we continue our celebration of the Easter Season.

“Render Unto God”

A devotion written by Ralph J Mineo……

I can’t TELL you the number of times I’ve heard the complaint over the years: “the church is always asking for money.” A local church certainly can’t operate without money (for building maintenance, staff salaries, insurance, utilities, various ministries), but the church has far greater and more important expectations of people.

Fortunately, I’ve never heard complaints like: “The church is always asking me to PRAY.” Or “The church is always asking me to READ THE BIBLE.” or “The church is always asking me to come to BIBLE STUDY.” Or “The church is always asking me to GIVE MY HEART AND SOUL TO GOD.” I’ve certainly never heard a complaint: “The church is always asking me to STOP SINNING!” (Speaking of sin, a Sunday School teacher was teaching that God created everything for a purpose. The teacher asked, “So what do you think the purpose of poison ivy is?” One student answered: “God wants us to keep our cotton-pickin’ hands off of some things!”)

During his earthly ministry, some leaders were trying to trap Jesus concerning money, specifically about paying taxes. He asked them for a coin used to pay the tax, asking whose image and title were on the coin. (It was the Emperor’s.) Then he said something that is a well-known statement even today: “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.”

It seems to me that Jesus is asking us to examine our hearts and souls with a question, “Whose inscription and name are there?” Created in the image of God, we’ll find that God is written on our hearts. This Jesus can say to us, “Render unto God the things that are God’s. Render unto God your life!”

For example, we’re called to render unto God our TIME, to give ourselves to God in service, prayer, Bible reading and study, quiet time, and Sabbath (weekly rest and worship).

Render unto God your RELATIONSHIPS. Desmond Tutu (the South African bishop) once gave a sermon about traditions in the church. He spoke about bowing to the cross, saying we should be bowing to each other! When our relationships are God-given, render them unto God.

Render unto God your GRATITUDE. God has given us so much! In gratitude to God, we give to others. We serve others because God has first given to us.

Render unto God your TEMPTATIONS and SINS. But, do our sins belong to God? Yes, by the Cross of Jesus Christ! He took upon himself our sins! So, we’re called to give our sins to God and let God do with them what God wants (that would be repentance and forgiveness!)

So yes, my friends, render unto God your EVERYTHING.



“SURPRISE!”

An Easter devotion by Pastor Ralph J. Mineo

An Easter devotion by Pastor Ralph J. Mineo

I get surprised all the time, especially by God. It’s not unusual for me use an expression like this when God surprises me: “The Holy Spirit slapped me up side of the head to get my attention.” This happens most often when I make a firm decision, but God has something else in mind.

Such divine nudges don’t really hurt, but they ARE surprising. Truth be told, this happens all the time. Sometimes, part of the surprise is realizing I’ve relied too much on myself. Trusting God, relying on God, is basic to the call of being a follower of Jesus.

So, God shows up and surprises! There’s nothing more beautiful in this life when God shows up!

In a few days, no one will be surprised it’s Easter Sunday. Not really. But the first Easter was a HUGE surprise! The first disciples weren’t expecting the resurrection. Jesus died on the day we call “Good Friday.” He really, truly, actually died. As an ancient Christian hymn (quoted by Paul in Philippians chapter 2) says, “he was obedient to death.” Jesus died.

The first disciples weren’t waiting around to see it happen! They certainly wouldn’t bring embalming spices for a dead body if they were expecting a resurrection. No, death happened. When they arrived at the tomb, they were surprised by LIFE! They were REALLY surprised!

We have many images of resurrection, eternal life, heaven: pearly gates (some envision St. Peter there to greet them), clouds and angels, golden streets (as in the Book of Revelation), a huge mansion with many rooms (as described by Jesus), and so on. It’s very helpful for our human minds to have practical images of heaven. That’s why they’re in the Bible for us. They help our finite minds focus on the infinite gift. But we should never forget that every human image falls short of what the reality will be. We can’t fathom eternity!

There’s a popular contemporary song by Lutheran composer, John Ylvisaker, titled “Borning Cry.” God is the speaker, promising to be with us at every moment of life’s journey. When the song talks about the moment of death, we hear God say, “I’ll be there with just one more surprise.” I LOVE that phrase! It’s my favorite phrase to use about eternity, “just one more surprise.”

Just as the resurrection of Jesus was a surprise to the first disciples, our entrance into eternal life will be nothing less than a huge, glorious, divine God-surprise! No matter how much we think we have it figured out now, it will be a divine surprise.

In the meantime, as we journey through our lives, God gives us glimpses of the eternal surprise. God gives us holy moments and experiences. God is all about surprising us!

I close with a blessing: May God’s Holy Spirit slap you up the side of the head this Easter, and SURPRISE you with amazing grace, love, forgiveness, healing, peace, joy, and all that you need to appreciate God’s gift of eternal life.

Crowd-Pleasing Easter Brunch

Elevate your holiday brunch beyond an egg casserole with a Spiral Ham with Red Wine and Citrus Glaze as the centerpiece for your table.   


(Family Features) Easter is a time to celebrate with friends and family. You can create a crowd-pleasing brunch with affordable, high-quality ingredients, wine and tablescape decor.

Elevate your holiday brunch beyond an egg casserole with a Spiral Ham with Red Wine and Citrus Glaze as the centerpiece for your table.

Finish the meal with a Mini Blueberry Chocolate Tart for a dessert that’s perfect for spring. Combining sweet and fruity notes, this treat can leave your guests craving more.

Find ingredients for these recipes at ALDI, which offers high-quality, fresh and affordable foods to help you put together a vibrant spread. From brunch essentials and beverages to fruits, veggies, snacks and more, you can make Easter pop. Plus, there are chocolates, candy and flowers to add a splash of color to your table or any Easter basket.

Find additional recipes at ALDI.us.

Spiral Ham with Red Wine and Citrus Glaze

Recipe courtesy of Rebecca Gallop (@adailysomething) on behalf of ALDI
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10-12 minutes per pound of ham

Ham:

  • 1          Appleton Farms Spiral Cut Double Glazed Brown Sugar Ham (about 4 pounds), reserving liquid

Glaze:

  • 1/2       cup Intermingle Red Blend wine
  • 1/4       cup Nature’s Nectar orange juice
  • 1/4       cup Specially Selected 100% Pure Maple Syrup
  • 1/2       cup Simply Nature Organic Light Brown Sugar
  • 1          tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1          dash salt
  • 2          tablespoons Burman’s Dijon Mustard
  1. To make ham: Heat oven to 325° F. Place ham in roasting pan on rack. Pour reserved liquid over ham and cover tightly with foil. Bake 10-12 minutes per pound.
  2. To make glaze: In small pan, combine wine, orange juice, syrup, brown sugar, rosemary and salt. Heat to boil then lower to rapid simmer until mixture begins to thicken and reduce, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and whisk in mustard.
  3. When ham is 10 minutes from being done, remove from oven and increase temperature to 400° F. Remove foil and brush ham thoroughly with glaze.
  4. Place ham back in oven, uncovered, about 10 minutes, or until ham reaches internal temperature of 140° F.
  5. Remove ham from oven and let sit 10 minutes. Slice and serve.

Mini Blueberry Chocolate Tart

Recipe courtesy of Chef Michelle, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 17 minutes
Servings: 12

  • 1          Bake House Creations Pie Crust
  • 1 1/2    tablespoons Sweet Additions Stevia No Calorie Sweetener
  • 1          cup fresh blueberries
  • 1          Choceur Dark Chocolate Bar (2.64 ounces), chopped
  1. Heat oven to 400° F. Cut 1-2 sheets of parchment paper into 5-by-5-inch squares. Line each cup of 12-cup muffin pan with one square of parchment paper.
  2. Roll out pie crust and cut 12 circles, 2 inches each, with cookie cutter. Press each circle into lined muffin cup.
  3. In medium bowl, combine sweetener, blueberries and chocolate. Divide mixture among pie crusts.
  4. Bake 17 minutes until chocolate melts. Allow to cool and serve.

SOURCE:
ALDI

Palm Sunday at St. Luke’s Church

Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled Imitating Christ….

St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, North Baltimore, Palm Sunday, April 14, 2019, 10:15 a.m.

On Palm Sunday, when we celebrate Jesus’ triumphant entrance into Jerusalem, Pastor Ralph Mineo will offer a message titled Imitating Christ, based on Philippians 2:5-11.  Please join us as we continue our journey through Holy Week.