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Welcome to Trinity Lutheran Church
Lutheran Church Missouri Synod - Norman, Oklahoma
"In grateful response to God's grace and empowered by the Holy Spirit through Word and Sacraments, the mission of The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod is vigorously to make known the love of Christ by word and deed within our churches, communities, and the world." -LCMS Mission Statement
Greetings in the Lord Jesus Christ!
From the Pastor
Dear Fellow Redeemed,
As we enjoy summer vacations around the country and the world, we pray for safe journeys for all, protected by the holy angels. Take the opportunity to visit an LCMS church wherever you may be.
In July, I will begin a new Sunday morning Bible class entitled, "Praying the Catechism - The Six Chief Parts." We will see how the words of Luther's Small Catechism are both doctrine and prayers at the same time.
This Bible study will utilize the book, "Praying Luther's Small Catechism," by Dr. John T. Pless from Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne. Plan to purchase the book and use it during this Bible class. You can purchase the book at Concordia Publishing House or on Amazon.
For example, we learn these words in the catechism from the "Introduction" to the Lord's Prayer:
" 'Our Father who art in heaven.' What does this mean? With these words God tenderly invites us to believe that He is our true Father and that we are His true children, so that with all boldness and confidence we may ask Him as dear children ask their dear father.”
How can we pray these words? "Dear Father, I am your child through Holy Baptism, in the power of the Holy Spirit, and through faith in my Lord Jesus Christ. I come to you in boldness and confidence with my requests. You are my dear Father and I am your dear child. I will pray to you because you have invited me to do so, and because I believe you tenderly desire to grant what I ask of you."
That is indeed how our Lord wants us to pray. Jesus said, "And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!" (Luke 11:9-13)
So bring your children to Sunday School this summer, where they will learn about how our fellow Christians are being persecuted for their faith around the world, and yet remain faithful. At the same time, you join us in the fellowship hall for this new Bible study on prayer. You will be glad you participated!
In the Lord of the Church - Jesus Christ
The month of July is a good time to remind ourselves of God's institution of both the Church and the State.
The State: Independence Day is July 4th, and then later came the founding of our constitutional, democratic, federal republic - the United States of America. It was and is a great blessing for temporal life and grants us our civic freedoms.
(The State is called "The Kingdom of the God’s Left Hand" - it has the office of the sword and rules by Civil Government)
The Church: Established by the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, it continues today in Word and Sacrament- the holy, catholic (universal), apostolic church - and gives great blessings of eternal life and spiritual freedom.
(The Church is called "The Kingdom of God's Right Hand" - it has the office of the keys and rules by Word and Sacrament.)
From the Vicar
Twelve months have past by in seemingly a blink of the eye. I've been truly blessed to have been given the opportunity to serve the Lord's people in Norman, Oklahoma. If you would have asked me last year, I would have never guessed life would consist of red dirt, wild winds, and dodging hail. Nevertheless, Trinity Lutheran has now become a part of me, especially as I continue to learn and grow into the Lord's servant He would have me become.
This past year has been my favorite year at seminary, and I'm sure it will stay that way even as I return back to school. I will never forget the welcoming smiles and words of encouragement when I first arrived. Those smiles and words of encouragement never ceased, even as the months grew on. I figure that's the fantastic thing about being Vicar #27; the congregation loves each of the vicars and takes their growth (or mistakes) in stride.
The vast amount of ministry opportunities such as everyday congregational life, Sunday adult Bible study, LCMS-U college group, elementary school interactions, home visitations, and hospital visits all have shaped and gave me a unique experience; but more than that, the personal interactions in each and every one of those situations is where I have been able to see God's Word work in this life. I've seen God's love shine through the people at Trinity Lutheran to others and to myself.
I pray that you continue in His forgiveness and mercy all the days of your lives. We, as brothers and sisters in Christ, have each other to lean on, learn from, and carry the burden with; so let us always rejoice in the relationships we have made and the love of God we share. Since the LCMS is a small world after all, someday down the line our paths might cross again.
Thank you Trinity Lutheran for a wonderful year.
I leave you with my confirmation verse, which often reminds me of my own life but also the life of Christians.
"More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us." Romans 5:3-5