April 2020


Easter Joy – Under Duress

Easter’s good news has been assaulted from the beginning. Doubts were spread and charges made that Christ’s dead body had been stolen and hidden away to make it look like he had come back to life (Matthew 28:17, 13). Even his resurrected appearances were doubted – thinking some look alike had staged them (Luke 24:16; John 20:15, 25).

     Today’s no different – Easter is still under duress. Supposed friends of Christianity insist that what matters most is not the raising of a corpse, but “spiritual rebirth” in believers (Ian Johnson, “The Eastern Jesus,” The New York Review of Books, October 24, 2019). And striking lines from award winning poets say that rather than pausing to wonder about “fresh mourners” gathered by a nearby grave, we should instead celebrate “teenagers blasting music and drinking beer in the parking lot behind the chapel” (Edward Hirsch, “I Walked Out of the Cemetery,” NYRB, October 10, 2019).

     Martin Luther believed that these criticisms weren’t based in the relevant facts but were due to falling asleep spiritually and intellectually. And so he concludes that Easter is “certified, first of all, by the testimony of [Christ’s] adversaries; then, by the testimony of His friends; third, by the testimony of the Lord Himself, by revealing Himself to be alive and by showing Himself; and fourth, by the testimony of the prophets and Holy Scripture…. Upon such testimonies every Christian should joyfully and confidently rely and should believe certainly and without any doubt that Christ rose from the dead on the third day” (Luther’s Works 69:287–88).

     Following Luther we then stand with John 14:19 – because Jesus lives after he died, we also will live with him when we die because we believe in him! Happy Easter to you all.

Pastor Marshall


President’s Report…by Cary Natiello


The Coronavirus (COVID-19) created a serious dilemma for our church.  Should we do our best and provide worship services for our congregation or should we concede that we might not be able to meet King Counties Health Directives regarding gatherings of less than 250 people?  What would Christ want us to do?  Shouldn’t we gather together in prayer to ask for strength, comfort and guidance?  And what about the Third Commandment – that we are to keep the Sabbath day Holy?  What about John 6:53 where Jesus says if you do not eat of my flesh and drink of my blood you have no life in you?

     The Executive Council decided continuing one worship service was worth the risk, as long as we took the necessary precautions.  Our Sunday worship service (March 15, 2020) went very well.  Nine congregation members attended.  We set up the chapel so that a 6-foot separation between individuals would be maintained (exception was made for married couples).  We had other chairs set up in the Nave in case we had too many for the Chapel.  Pastor Marshal took his temperature right before the service (it was normal thanks be to God).  As we entered the Chapel we each used the provided hand sanitizer that was placed at the entrance.  Pastor Marshall used a plastic glove to distribute the body of Christ to us each individually at our seats and then we received Christ’s blood one a time at the altar to maintain our separation.  After the service all items that we touched were wiped down, including the hymnals.  It was actually quite a success.

     Unfortunately, with what appears to now be confirmed, COVID-19 can be spread when a person is asymptomatic.  Even though the March 15, service (and the following education hour) could be considered safe, we made the difficult decision to suspend all services and classes through April 1, then later further suspended services and classes through April 12, 2020 hoping that we can resume regular services following that.  Even though we took the recommended precautions, the reality set in that the safety and wellbeing of our congregation must be our top priority.  Ultimately, we determined that doing everything we can to help slow the spread of COVID-19 is the right thing to do for our church, congregation and community – it is the Christian thing to do right now.  This was probably the most difficult decision we have had to make in a very long time.  As has been the long standing tradition at our church, we wanted to make every effort to continue to offer Holy Communion to those who could continue to come to church.  But these are unprecedented times that require unprecedented actions. 

     Thank you to everyone for keeping up with your giving to our church.  Through February our giving continues to be on a positive trajectory.  But suspending church services coupled with the uncertainty about the economy may adversely impact our giving.  Even though we are not having services does not mean that our expenses get suspended too.  We hope and pray that we can all maintain our tithe and continue to support our church and staff. 

     Finally, let us remember these passages that were in the Litany on the COVID-19 that was prayed at the March 15 service: remember God’s power to heal (Jeremiah 17:14, James 5:14), and our Savior Jesus Christ who, by his mercy and in his time, rekindles our faith by restoring health in this vulnerable and perilous life (2 Kings 5:14, Acts 3:6).


Blessings to you all.







My Song Is Love Unknown

Perhaps it is because I have always associated singing with inspiration and reverence that I am drawn to hymns as expressions of praise, need, love, and gratitude.  Or it might be a phrase that has been part of my life for many years, that “…when we sing, we pray twice.”  Whatever the reason, I love the hymns of the church and find great solace, guidance, and gratitude in their contemplation.

     As we near the end of Lent and anticipate the joy of Easter, I find that many hymns speak to me about how I should live my life, care for others, use my wealth, spend my time.  Hymn 94 establishes in the first line, “My Savior’s love to me, Love to the loveless shown, That they might lovely be.  Oh, who am I, that for my sake, My Lord should take frail flesh and die?”  I am not deserving, yet, “He came from his blest throne, Salvation to bestow;…..Who at my need his life did spend…”

     So how can we show our gratitude for the great sacrifice that Christ has made for us?  Hymn 482 gives some guidance in the last verse, “Were the whole realm of nature mine, That were a tribute far too small; Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all!”  Now that is no small requirement!  Jesus demands every part of our lives – our inner most being and thoughts; all of our behavior, decisions, and actions in our lives; and everything else in between.  No part of our life is left out of being committed to Christ.  It’s our duty, what is required of us, our total commitment of being a Christian. 

     And this applies to how we allot and spend our money.  The books of Numbers and Deuteronomy specify that we give the “first fruits,” the best things we have, not our castoffs.  Malachi instructs us to give the whole tithe to God.  Matthew tells us, “Freely you have received, freely give.”  And in First John it emphasizes that, “We love, because He first loved us.”  Giving freely, regularly, and gratefully of our best treasures, time, and talents is expected as members of Christ’s church.  Taken all together, the instruction from Scripture is unavoidable and required in response to Christ Jesus’ amazing gift to us. 

     Search the Bible for answers to stewardship.  Search your hearts for opportunities to grow in your understanding and application of how we can each better commit our talents and gifts to the life of the church, and show our gratitude for all that Jesus has done for us.  The closing verse of Hymn 94 summarizes this well……


                                    Here might I stay and sing ― No story so divine!

                                    Never was love, dear King, Never was grief like thine.

                        This is my friend, in whose sweet praise I all my days could gladly spend!


                                                                                                ―Larraine King, Church Council



The Body


“I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”

(Psalm 139:14)


You don’t know how the body is formed in the mother’s womb.”

(Ecclesiastes 11:5)


The Lungs


“Every day you breathe in and out about 20,000 times….. [Air comes] pouring in through… the nostrils. From there it passes through the most mysterious space in your head, the sinus cavity. Proportionate to the rest of your head, the sinuses take up an enormous amount of space, and no one is at all sure why…. The space isn’t a complete void, but rather is riddled with a complex network of bones, which are thought to helping with breathing efficiently, though no one can say quite how…. Efficiency is also assisted by a slight differential in air pressure between the outside world and the space around your lungs…. If air gets into the chest, because of a puncture wound, say, the differential vanishes and the lungs collapse… Breathing is one of the few autonomic functions that you can control intentionally, though only up to a point…. The first thing you do when you stop holding your breath is blow out. You would think that the most urgent need would be to get fresh air… The body so abhors CO₂ that you must expel it [first]…. Humans are pretty poor at holding their breath…. Our lungs can hold about six quarts of air, but normally we breathe in only about half a quart at a time… The very longest any human being has voluntarily held his breath was twenty-four minutes and three seconds…. Some seals can stay underwater for two hours. Most of us can’t last much more than a minute…. [And] where asthma is concerned, no one knows much of anything…. We have very little idea what the primary causes are [of asthma attacks, and we] can do nothing to prevent [them]…. All we can really say about asthma is that it is primarily a Western disease…. [And] no one knows why [hiccups] happen…. If you do get hiccups and they don’t go away spontaneously after a few minutes, medical science is at a more or less complete loss to help you…. The world record for hiccups [is held by an Iowan farmer who] hiccupped continuously for sixty-eight years.”


[Bill Bryson, The Body: A Guide to Occupants (2019) pp. 212–13, 215, 217, 218, 220, 224–25.]




Given the governor’s stay-at-home directive that includes all spiritual gatherings, the executive committee has determined that it is necessary to continue to suspend all church services and education at least through EASTER Sunday.   

Holy Week and Easter


April 5            Sunday of the Passion

               8:00 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

               9:00 am     Church School Passion Faire

             10:30 am     Holy Eucharist – Procession with Palms

               8:00 pm     Compline

April 6            Monday in Holy Week: Jesus’ Cleansing of the Temple

             11:45 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

               7:00 pm     Vespers

                                    The Great Litany - Chapel

April 7            Tuesday in Holy Week: Anointing Jesus for Burial

             11:45 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

               7:00 pm     Vespers

                                    The Great Litany – Chapel

April 8            Wednesday in Holy Week: The Betrayal of Jesus by Judas

               9:30 am     Matins - Chapel

             11:45 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

               7:00 pm     Vespers

                                    The Great Litany – Chapel

April 9            Maundy Thursday: The Last Supper

             11:45 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

               7:00 pm     Solemn Eucharist

                                    Stripping of the Altar

April 10          Good Friday: The Crucifixion of Our Lord

               9:30 am     Holy Eucharist – Chapel

                                    (Reserved Sacrament)

               7:00 pm     Office of Tenebrae

                                    A Liturgy of Lessons, Hymns and Prayers

                                    (Reserved Sacrament)

April 11          Holy Saturday: The Burial of Our Lord

             11:45 am     Liturgy of the Burial – Chapel

     Easter Vigil

               7:00 pm     Liturgy of Light, Readings, Baptism

                                      and Holy Eucharist

April 12             The Resurrection of Our Lord – Easter

            9:00 to 10:00 am   Easter Brunch in the parish hall.

            10:30 am      Festival Eucharist


Our Gamble


Trusting Hebrews 9:27


By Pastor Marshall


Most people think this world is all we have. They don’t believe that we’re judged by God after we die (Hebrews 9:27) and, depending on how that judgment goes, that we’ll end up either in heaven or in hell for all of eternity in a new world (John 5:29).

     But they’re wrong. This world isn’t the only world where we’ll live (2 Peter 3:13). Another world is coming – made up of heaven and hell, which lasts forever. This world is preparation for the next one (Luke 12:20; Colossians 1:13; Romans 8:19–23; Hebrews 9:28). But most think not, and so they use their lives now to luxuriate – thinking nothing of what’s ahead.

     May we all instead wake up and learn from Martin Luther that “coarse, lazy Christians… do not know how to reflect very deeply on matters, and therefore unconsciously become sluggish and secure as if they needed neither God not his word” (Luther’s Works 38:131).




the two signs of



By Pastor Marshall


Jesus famously said that our wicked world doesn’t deserve any signs to prove that he was from God except for the sign of Jonah. But there are two of them – one objective (Matthew 12:40) and the other subjective (Luke 11:32). The objective one proves that Jesus will rise from the dead after three days because that’s what Jonah did after three days in the depths of the sea in the belly of a whale (Jonah 1:17, 2:10). And the other one admonishes all who hear about Jesus to repent like the people of Nineveh did after hearing Jonah preach (Jonah 3:5–9). Both are in Matthew 12 – but only the subjective one is in Luke 11. Mark 8:12 says, however, there aren’t any signs at all.

     What shall we make of this? Not much – because we are to live by faith in the Word of God and not by sight in signs, visions or wonders (2 Corinthians 5:7 – John 2:11 vs John 12:37). We are simply to hear the word and keep it (Luke 11:28). And we have already been told to repent (Matthew 4:17, 11:20) and that Jesus will be resurrected after three days in the grave (Matthew 16:21, 17:23, 20:19, 27:64) – precisely the two things the sign of Jonah is supposed to give! Attend to those words – and not the sign of Jonah. They’re all that you need (Luke 10:42).



Luther on Samson


By Pastor Marshall


Judges 14:4 says that God had a secret plan for Samson to lead the charge against    Israel’s enemy – the Philistines – who were dominating them. About this plan, Martin Luther writes that Samson did not pursue it “to avenge himself,… but to serve others and to punish the [enemies of God].” And so he concludes that “no one but a true Christian, filled with the Spirit, will follow this example…. Therefore first become like Samson, and then you can also do as Samson did” (Luther’s Works 45:104).




Sacrament of Penance

On the third Saturday of each month, between 3 and 5 pm, the Sacrament of Penance is offered in the Chapel.  This brief liturgy enables people – one at a time – to confess their sin and receive the blessed assurance of forgiveness.

     This liturgy is similar to the Roman Catholic confessional, but unlike it, in that it is done face to face with the pastor.  Copies of the liturgy are available in the church office.

     This individual form of confession is more forceful than the general form used during Advent and Lent in the Communion liturgy, the Mid-week Eucharist, and at each Sunday evening Compline.  It allows for, but does not require, listing of specific sinful burdens. 

     Martin Luther's critique of confession never included the elimination of individual, private confession.  His critique instead only corrected the way it was being done.

     So we continue to honor his words in his Large Catechism:  “If you are a Christian, you should be glad to run more than a hundred miles for confession.” (The Book of Concord, p. 460).  Plan to come – Saturday, April 25th, 3 to 5 pm in the Chapel.  Blessings await you. 



FREE MONEY?  Sign up for the Bartell Drugs loyalty card program and designate First Lutheran Church of West Seattle.  4% of your purchases will be automatically donated to the church.  Also Amazon.com has a program called Amazon Smile that one can sign up for that works in a similar fashion. 

SUNDAY EDUCATION:  Luther’s Great Treatise:  On Christian Freedom.  This eight week class will study Martin Luther’s 1520 treatise on Christian freedom – on the occasion of its 500th anniversary. Our text will be the new translation and annotated text by Timothy J. Wengert (2016).

WEST SEATTLE FOOD BANK BENEFIT:  The 13th Annual Instruments of Change Benefit Dinner is planned for Saturday evening, May 9th, this year.  There will be a Happy Hour with games, Liquor Tasting and great items in our Silent Auction.  Then enjoy a 3-Course dinner by Tuxedo and Tennis Shoes with a dessert dash.  This fundraising event is at the Seattle Design Center, 5701 6th Ave S.  Tickets: $125 or $1,250 for a table.  Also, the Taste of West Seattle has moved to September 24, 2020 this year.


Hosea 4:14

Monthly Home Bible Study

April 2020, Number 326


Along with our other regular study of Scripture, let us join as a congregation in this home study. We will study alone then talk informally about the assigned verses together as we have opportunity. In this way we can “gather together around the Word” even though physically we will not be getting together (Acts 13.44). (This study uses the RSV translation.)

We need to support each other in this difficult project. In 1851 Kierkegaard wrote that the Bible is “an extremely dangerous book.... [because] it is an imperious book... – it takes the whole man and may suddenly and radically change... life on a prodigious scale” (For Self-Examination). And in 1967 Thomas Merton wrote that “we all instinctively know that it is dangerous to become involved in the Bible” (Opening the Bible). Indeed this word “kills” us (Hosea 6.5) because we are “a rebellious people” (Isaiah 30.9)! As Lutherans, however, we are still to “abide in the womb of the Word” (Luther's Works 17.93) by constantly “ruminating on the Word” (LW 30.219) so that we may “become like the Word” (LW 29.155) by thinking “in the way Scripture does” (LW 25.261). Before you study then, pray: “Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in Our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen” (quoted in R. F. Marshall, Making A New World: How Lutherans Read the Bible, 2003, p. 12). And don’t give up, for as Luther said, we “have in Scripture enough to study for all eternity” (LW 75:422)!


Week I. Read Hosea 4.14 noting the word prostitutes. What is a prostitute? On this read Amos 7.17 noting the line your wife shall be a harlot in the city. This implies that she earned money by having sex with strangers. What does God think of prostitution? Is it a way for untrained women to achieve financial independence? (see Gregor Gall, Sex Workers Unionization, 2016). On this read Proverbs 5.3–14 noting the words bitter, death, wander, groan and ruin. How shall we then regard prostitutes? On this read Proverbs 29.3 noting the line squanders his substance. Prohibition follows from this. Note also the words sin and wickedness in Romans 6.12–13. Read also 1 Corinthians 6.15–19 noting the words never, join, one, shun and temple. They also are words of prohibition. Is it punished, then if practiced? On this read Deuteronomy 22.21 noting the word stone. Read also Genesis 38.24 noting the word burned. Why then would anyone want to practice it? On this read John 3.19 noting the words love and darkness. Does that make for fast money in prostitution? Is that gain worth the risk?


Week II. Read again Hosea 4.14 noting the same word prostitutes. What did Jesus think of them? On this read John 8.3–11 noting the words caught, stone, test, without, sin, away, condemn and neither. Even though this woman was not technically a prostitute, the sexual infraction was similar (adultery – sex outside of marriage). What does Jesus add to the analysis of guilt? Both are at fault in the sexual infraction – because either could have stopped it by refraining. So he condemns neither the woman nor the men. Even though Jesus shows mercy all around, he still concludes with do not sin again. Why is that? On this read Romans 6.1 noting the tension between the words grace and sin. So grace can abound without sin abounding too. For admission of guilt does not imply permission to sin.


Week III. Reread Hosea 4.14 noting the word cult. How did prostitution become a part of the cult in the temple? On this read Ephesians 5.18 noting the competitive words debauchery and spirit – as they vie for dominance in one and the same person. What does that tell us about prostitution sneaking into the temple? Just as the passion in drunkenness takes over the passion of the Holy Spirit, so the passion of worship and sacrifice in the temple are usurped by sexual passion. On this matter read Galatians 5.23 noting the word self-control. This is to offset fleshly passion. On the norm of spiritual passion, read Romans 12.11 noting the words zeal and aglow. Self-control, without destroying passion, measures it so that it isn’t misused – as in the cases of cult prostitution and drunkenness. Another use of cult prostitution was trying to guarantee fertility. On this read 1 Samuel 1.5 noting the phrase closed her womb, as well as Isaiah 66.9 noting the phrase shut the womb. Note also the phrase opened her womb in Genesis 30.22. So if God controls fertility, control by prostitution wouldn’t work.


Week IV. Read Hosea 4.14 one last time noting the words punish and   ruin. Why is there both blessing and curse here – no punishment and yet still ruin? On this read John 8.3–11 again noting that same shared guilt between the woman and the man. God has mercy on the women prostitutes here because of the men who buy their services – since they share in the guilt of the prostitutes. But that doesn’t prevent the ruin from taking place. On this read 1 Thessalonians 4.3–6 noting the words abstain, unchastity, honor, lust, wrong and avenger. Abstinence therefore is required to ward off the contamination that the sexual infraction brings. Why is this allowed to take place? On this read 1 Corinthians 6.16 noting the line one body with her. This is an unavoidable consequence of the sin. God allows it to take place. Why is that? On this read Galatians 6.7 noting the words mocked and reap. So to break the moral deduction from sowing to reaping mocks God – and therefore it cannot be done. God’s holiness can surpass his benevolence. Does that explain Romans 7.12 about the holiness of the law and Matthew 5.17 about the inviolability of the law?




The Apostle Saint Paul


“He who began a good work in

you will bring it to completion”



by Pastor Marshall


Martin Luther believed that this verse (Philippians 1:6) was about how salvation comes to us – and so it was at the heart of the New Testament. So it should dwell richly in us (Colossians 3:16). Note, then, that it teaches that “the beginning, the advance, and the completion [of salvation] is God’s alone.” How startling, since nothing is left to us! That’s because “everything” we begin is “sin and remains sin.” And this is a critical point because “if out of your own free will you could not sin, or could do what pleased God, what would you need Christ for?” It’s false then to think we can pick Jesus for ourselves. Rather the beginning of salvation is that we must “fall away” from works and “despair” of ourselves – seeing that all that we “do is sin and amounts to nothing!” What this does is push us to “cling” to Christ, “appeal” to His grace and “find consolation only in His goodness.” “Without a doubt, you do not come to Him and fetch Him [Romans 3:11]; He is too high and too far from you. With your effort, pains, and work you cannot reach Him, lest you boast that you had brought Him to yourself…. Before you can call on God or seek Him, God must first have come to you and have found you…. He is present already when you… seek Him. Therefore you “do not seek Him; He seeks you. You do not find him; He finds you…. And everything that faith works in you comes from Him, not from you” (Luther’s Works 75:33–35).

     So in 1536 Luther writes that “in this way I… have been preserved by the grace of God the past eighteen years. I have let my enemies rage, threaten, slander, and damn me…. I have let them worry anxiously how they might kill me and destroy my teaching, or rather God’s. Moreover, I have been… of good cheer…. That is, I have committed my cares to our Lord God, into which He had led me absolutely without my will or counsel…. When I look behind me and consider how matters stand,… I really must be surprised that things have gone so far. I should never have dared to imagine that even one tenth of what is now evident would happen” (LW 12:175). Even though God allows his good cause in us to be “buffeted and tempted,” Luther still believed he’d prevail because God can “perfect that which has been begun” in us (LW 44:375). For God “it is who will complete and close it outside and beyond our counsel and effort; concerning this I have not the slightest doubt” (LW 49:337). “For he who has begun his work in you will also graciously complete it, since we are unable to help ourselves in such matters. We are unable to accomplish anything against sin, death, and the devil by our own works. Therefore, another appears for us and in our stead who definitely can do better; he gives us his victory, and commands us to accept it and not to doubt it” (LW 50:21).

     In 1947 Karl Barth elaborated upon these insights. “It was not Paul,” he writes, “who began the good work in Philippi, nor did the Philippians themselves do so by becoming converted. God began it. That strips them and him of all glory, all self-assurance, but precisely therewith also of all despondency, all inquisitorial deliberation as to whether everyone in Philippi is still as much in earnest as ever and will always remain so; whether they will keep faith and not perhaps forsake the way upon which they have entered. It is a question of God’s earnestness, God’s good faith, God’s way – and there is certainly no question about him, whatever the state of the Philippians may be. Paul believes (for himself as for the others) in the sanctification with which God hallows the unholy” (Karl Barth, Epistle to the Philippians: 40th Anniversary Edition, trans. James W. Leitch, 2002, p. 17). And so it is “not their hardships that contradict the gospel,… but the gospel that contradicts their hardships” (G. Hunsinger, Philippians, 2020, p. 12)!


Catching Up on Plague Literature


by David M. Buerge

Seattle, Washington

March 2020


AS WE SHELTER IN PLACE it is time to catch up on plague literature.  Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron, “Ten Days”, set outside Florence during the bubonic plague of 1348 appeared in 1353. Daniel Defoe’s, Journal of the Plague Year, set in London during the Great Plague (bubonic) of 1665-6, based on his uncle’s notes, saw print in 1722. Histories of Seattle’s influenza outbreak from September, 1918 to February 1919, can be explored on line, and Albert Camus’ The Plague, set in the French Algerian city of Oran during a 1940s cholera outbreak (the actual outbreak happened in 1849) was published in 1947.

     All deal with the human response toward mass death and suffering. In Decameron, seven young women and three young men flee Florence and spend the time telling earthy, engaging stories and jokes. Defoe’s narrative has strikingly modern parallels: the appeal of statistics, economic inequality enabling the rich to flee while the poor die and the debilitating, encompassing fear. 

            For Seattle, details of the plague’s onset and the turbulent civic reaction so matches present experience that its history could serve as a route-guide. But objectivity generalizes the trauma.  Influenza orphaned journalist Emmett Watson (1918–2001) and author Mary McCarthy (1912–1989), arguably turning them to writing.  I am privy to another family’s account.

            Medard (pronounced Mido’r) Emard, a street railway conductor, his wife Catherine and children Louise, Joe, Rose, Catherine and Margaret lived in Belltown. A light pole cum-hitching post near their house bore tooth marks made by panicked horses chewing on it during the great 1889 fire. Louise was ten and Margaret two when their mother became one of Seattle’s 1,400 plague victims in early 1919. 

            A literate man, Medard wrote his grief into poetry after her burial.  Louise was put in charge of her siblings, but baby Margaret was given to Great Aunt Margaret Duffy to raise. Their story was not unique, but its outcome is moving. They all married and remained close, living bare miles from one another, the sisters becoming buoyant matriarchs of a vast, extended, family well into the 1970s. The deep trauma of their childhoods catalyzed an exuberant love of life, roistering humor and a profound love of children. Childless, Louise mothered mobs of nieces and nephews until old age.  The others raised families as they chatted to one another daily on the phone.  Catherine translated her grief into poetry and an intense, empathetic gaze that drew children to her lap where they confided their thoughts to her

     I married her youngest, Mary Anne. She inherited her mother’s anguished concern for children’s welfare, becoming a gifted and much-loved teacher. I recall asking her what her favorite moment was when our and her brothers’ families spent summer weeks at Cannon Beach. “When everyone is home safe,” she replied. 

36,000 people died in Florence, 60% of the population, in Europe’s first encounter with the black-death. 100,000 died in Defoe’s London. Cholera killed 6% of Oran’s 25,000 in 1849. But in Decameron, the ten celebrate being alive; Defoe voices his uncle’s compassion, and Camus, a native of Oran and one of the first existentialist writers, concludes that despite the plague’s absurdity, there is more to admire in humanity than deride. In Seattle, what does not kill us can enrich us. 





Remember in prayer before God those whom He has made your

brothers and sisters through baptism.


Ana Korsmo, Eve Young, Pete Morrison, The Tuomi Family, Sam & Nancy Lawson, Bob & Barbara Schorn, Connor Bisticas, Eileen & Dave Nestoss, Kyra Stromberg, Tabitha Anderson, Diana Walker, The Rev. Chelsea Globe, The Rev. Albin Fogelquist, The Rev. Howard Fosser, The Rev. Kristie Daniels, The Rev. Kari Reiten, The Rev. Dave Monson, The Rev. Paul Smith, The Rev. Dan Peterson, The Rev. Eldon Olson, Sheila Feichtner, Richard Uhler, Yuriko Nishimura, Leslie Hicks, Eric Baxter, Paul Sponheim, Mary Lou & Paul Jensen, Hillary & Jim Thoren, Trevor Schmitt, Cheryl Atwood, Lesa Christensen, Maggie & Glenn Willis, Audrey Palomino, Garret Ross, Shirley Graham, Evelyn, Emily & Gordon Wilhelm, Satsuki Tanizawa, Karen Berg, Bjorg Hestevold, Wayne Korsmo, Antonio Ortez, Garrison Radcliffe.  Also, pray for unbelievers, the addicted, the sexually abused and harassed. And, pray for those suffering from the flu epidemic.

     Pray for those in our congregation who are on the front lines seeing and caring for the sick:  Gina Allen, Janine Douglass, Dana Kahn.   

     Pray for the shut-ins that the light of Christ may give them joy:  Bob & Mona Ayer, Bob & Barbara Schorn, Joan Olson, Doris Prescott, C. J. Christian, Dorothy Ryder, Lillian Schneider, Crystal Tudor, Nora Vanhala, Martin Nygaard, Gregg & Jeannine Lingle, Anelma Meeks.

     Pray for our bishops Elizabeth Eaton and Shelley Bryan Wee, our pastor Ronald Marshall, our choirmaster Dean Hard and our cantor Andrew King, that they may be strengthened in faith, love and the holy office to which they have been called. 

     Pray that God would give us hearts which find joy in service and in celebration of Stewardship.  Pray that God would work within you to become a good steward of your time, your talents and finances.  Pray to strengthen the Stewardship of our congregation in these same ways.

     Pray for the hungry, ignored, abused, addicted, and homeless this Easter.  Pray for the mercy of God for these people, and for all in Christ's church to see and help those who are in distress.

     Pray for our sister congregation: El Camino de Emmaus in the Skagit Valley that God may bless and strengthen their ministry. Also, pray for our parish and its ministry.

     Pray that God will bless you through the lives of the saints: Albrecht Dürer, painter, 1528; Dietrich Bonhoeffer, teacher, 1945; Saint Mark, Evangelist; Catherine of Siena, teacher, 1380.



A Treasury of Prayers


O God, heavenly Father, I cannot live without your blessing. Life is too hard and my duties are too great. I come before you with meekness asking for your help and strength. Give me good cheer. Help me encourage others. May I always be a benediction to all I meet – giving Christ all the glory. In His dear name I pray. Amen.

                                                                       [For All the Saints I:998, altered]