May Newsletter

May is a special month.  We have confirmation on May 13, where two of our young people will affirm their Baptism and publically proclaim their faith.  There is also Mother’s Day, graduations, commencements and Memorial Day on May 28 (which unofficially marks the beginning of summer for all of us).  There are many big events that affect our lives in the month of May.

May is also a special month for our church.  In addition to confirmation, the church celebrates the Ascension of Our Lord on Thursday, May 17, and Pentecost on Sunday, May 27.  These are two days that are specifically mentioned in the book of Acts.  The Ascension is in Acts 1: 1-11 (as well as Mark 16 and Luke 24).  Pentecost can be found in Acts 2: 1-21.

The Ascension of Our Lord is a special day for the church; so special, it is one of the 4 events in the life of Christ that is mentioned in the Apostles’ Creed.  There’s the birth (“conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary”), the death (“crucified, died, and was buried”), the resurrection (“on the third day He rose again”); and there’s the ascension (“ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father and He will come again to judge the living and the dead”).  That the Creed would mention it, emphasizes the importance of the ascension.  It was the event that marked the end of Jesus’ mission here on earth.  Everything Jesus had come to do, He had accomplished.  To use the 4 events of the Creed; He was born to be the Savior, He died on the Cross to take away our sins, He rose on Easter so we could rise with Him to life everlasting, and now He ascends to heaven.  His job was over.  It was time for Him to return to heaven, where He would “judge the living and the dead”.  His mission was over.  It was time for our mission to begin.

Pentecost marks the beginning of our mission.  When the Spirit descended upon the disciples, giving them the charismatic power to “speak about God’s mighty deeds of power” to people of different lands and languages (Acts 2: 11), then Jesus Christ would be revealed to them.  In this way, the people of different lands and languages might believe and come to Christ, and receive Christ’s gifts of forgiveness and life. 

Jesus said to Thomas, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.”  But how does one believe if they haven’t seen?  If they can’t see, they have to hear.  They have to hear the “mighty deeds of God”.  Very few people ever saw Jesus, especially the Risen Jesus.  Very few people believe because they have seen.  All the other believers have believed because they have heard.  Someone has told them the story of the Cross and the Resurrection, which is the story of forgiveness and life.  Blessed are those who have not seen, but believe because they have heard.  And blessed are those who have told the story, so others could hear and believe.

That’s our mission, to tell the story.  Our mission began on Pentecost.  Just as the disciples were sent out to tell the story, so are we.  We are called to tell the story that has been handed down from the disciples on that first Pentecost.  May is a special month for us.  It is the month where we remember the Ascension of Our Lord and the Day of Pentecost, by going out and telling the mighty deeds of God, so all could hear, and believe, and be blessed.

Your friend in Christ,  Pastor Ron