Dear members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church,
God says to his children: “Do not fear, for I am with you. Do not be overwhelmed, for I am your God.” (Isaiah 41:10) Notice that God doesn’t say “Do not fear, because you have such strong faith,” or “do not be overwhelmed, you need to hold it together.” Rather than putting the onus on you, God chases away your fears and feelings of being overwhelmed by pointing you to where he is and who he is.
Even as you navigate through this strange and uncertain time, God promises that he is immediately present. But what makes his presence so comforting is that he tells us who he is. He is the God that created and maintains full control of the entire universe -including the microbes and viruses and the unfolding of events. He is also the God whose is so personally invested in you that he sent his Son to die for your sin so that he could completely rescue you. He became your Father at your baptism. You are his own dear child. With this in mind God’s people can both be uncertain how this will all unfold while at the same time be certain why these events are unfolding and what they are ultimately leading to: In all things, God is working for the eternal spiritual good of those who belong to him. (Romans 8:28)
In keeping with the government mandate to refrain from groups larger than 10, and not wanting to be the cause of pain and suffering in our community, we are suspending all gatherings including worship, bible study, confirmation class, Sunday school, fellowship events and support groups. Our plan is to reassess our practices/plans on April 5. Please know that your pastors are as determined as ever to continue to shepherd the flock of souls that has been entrusted to their care.
The plan includes, but is not limited to the following:
-Curating and providing you with spiritual content to feed your souls. This will include online worship services, sermons, bible studies and devotions in video and printed format. It will include information about where to find good spiritual content on the radio and TV for those who don’t have or use the internet.
-Communicating regularly with our members by way of phone calls (and/or text messages), and emails. Please graciously allow us the time to speak with you. The phone calls and emails will be a critical component in allowing the Good Shepherd flock to continue to care for and be a blessing to each other. The concerns and joys and life stories that you share with your pastors will shape the messages they send out. The people of Good Shepherd will no doubt be eager to hear about them and offer prayers and encouragement in response to them as your pastors regularly communicate these things to you.
-Coaching you how to make your home into your church. The early Christians used their homes to gather for worship. This circumstance has necessitated a return to this practice. Your pastors intend to converse with you about developing new habits and using old and new resources in new ways.
Please be on the lookout for an email from Good Shepherd and a phone call from one of the pastors in the near future. In the meantime, here are few resources to get you started:
Worship streaming: https://yearbook.wels.net/streaming
Worship radio broadcast from St. Peter’s Lutheran in Fond du Lac: KFIZ 1450am at 8:00am on Sunday mornings.
Television: Time of Grace on WGBA (NBC 26) Sunday at 6:30am
Daily Devotions: https://wels.net/serving-you/devotions/
If there are any questions, please do not hesitate to call one of the pastors.
May our gracious God keep us strong in the faith and confident in his promises.
Pastor Adam Zimpelmann
Pastor Matthew Grunewald