February 2012



Getting Ready to Celebrate Salvation


Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 22. This is a time of repenting and fasting – as we look forward to the celebration of our salvation on Holy Week and Easter. Our salvation is from sin and for righteous living – both now and in heaven after we die.


     So what’s it like to repent? Well, it includes admitting we have sinned. But Psalm 51:17 adds that it’s also about having a broken and contrite heart. The Lutheran Confessions (1580) teach that this involves feeling “heartily sorry” for our sins and being “terrified by the proclamation of the law” (The Book of Concord, ed. T. Tappert, p. 559).

These emotional qualifications are rare among Christians (Luther’s Works 32:35, 35:22), simply because we don’t like feeling broken. We much prefer being upbeat, jovial and light-hearted. During Lent, then, we should carefully consider the Biblical words against the superficial happiness that’s everywhere in the world (Luke 12:19; Ephesians 5:4).


     That doesn’t mean, however, that we should be sad sacks. Instead, during the forty days of Lent, let us aspire to that heavenly joy that erupts over the repentance of any single sinner (Luke 15:7).      Amen!


                                                                                                                              Pastor Marshall

X  X  X



President’s Report… by Matthew Kahn


February this year brings the start of Lent.  It is time for fasting and self-reflection.  It is also a sort of New Years for FLCWS. While the beginning of the Church calendar is marked by Advent, and the secular calendar starts on January 1st, February is really the start of the congregation’s New Year.  At last month’s Congregational meeting new officers and church council members were selected and now they take their places to help lead the Parish. New committees are formed and new goals are put forward all with the singular focus to serve Christ and spread His Word.

     While not as fiscally as good as 2010, this last year we were able to pay all of our bills and provide support to some of our extended ministries. The Total General Budget Income for the year was $228,877.57 which was down from 2010’s number of $244,769.40. This is a decrease in General Budget Income of 9.3%.  I have been told that we should be thankful for this because other parishes are down 25% - 33%. We had budgeted about $248,274 for Total General Budget Receipts, but only were able to take in $231,176.64 in Total General Budget Receipts. The budget gap was filled by keeping expenses lower than we had estimated, and by using a small cushion of cash we had from the previous December.  There is no such cushion going forward this year.

     FLCWS is blessed with great staff and with members who sacrifice their time and energy to help the Parish operate. I wish to thank our church council members whose terms are expiring: Peter Douglass, Jason Ross, and Louis Koser. I would also like to thank Elizabeth Olsen who served as my Vice- President this past year. I especially would like to thank Lynn Hopson who boldly stepped up and faithfully served as our Parish’s treasurer this past year.  The Treasurer is a difficult and critical position for any organization.  Lynn performed her duties admirably and was committed to the position, overcoming the great distances and the mess that is Seattle traffic. We will miss all of our outgoing leaders.

     I am thankful for our newest officers and council members, Vice-President David King, Treasurer Janice Lundbeck, council members Melanie Johnson, Earl Nelson, Jeff Sagmoen and Peter Douglass.  With their dedication and guidance we will have a very successful 2012!  I also want to thank everyone who attended our Annual Congregational Meeting. It is vital for any organization to have participates who care so deeply about its cause.

     I pray that as the New Year dawns FLCWS finds more members who want to share in our classic worship of God and His creation.


Stewardship                                             Budget                    Received

            Month (December)                       $30,041                   $21,773

            Year to date (Jan-Dec)                 $248,274                $232, 390









Giving Obediently

     The season of Lent which precedes Our Lord’s suffering and death is a time of reflection, fasting, praying, and possibly giving up something we normally enjoy and think we could not do without – most often a favorite food.  Giving up something for Lent is something I do and each year; it is one of two things I feel I indulge in the rest of the year and should consider giving up.  The question is always should I give “it” up?  Will I give “it” up?  Can I give “it” up?  But it should not be an inner conflict each year but a resounding “yes” that I should give it up.  “Yes” I can give it up with God’s help, and “yes” I will give “it” up.  By giving up this item I feel it draws me closer to God in preparing me for the pain, suffering, and sacrifice that I know he went through for me when he was crucified.  It is also the very least I can do for all I have been given from God – the blessings of baptism, His steadfast love and forgiveness for all my sins.

     The hymn “Jesus calls us; Oer the Tumult” comes from our Lutheran Book of Worship.  The last verse:

Jesus calls us! In your mercy,

Savior, make us hear your call,

Give our hearts to your obedience,

Serve and love you best of all.

     This is my prayer.  Thanks be to God!!                                                Church Council




Extended Ministries Focus for February


For the month of February the Extended Ministries Committee is asking that the congregation support LUTHERAN WORLD RELIEF.  We can do that in 2 ways…..first we can add them to our prayers, lifting their ministry to God on a daily basis.  And we can donate money to be used to purchase items for the Health Kits that are needed around the world at times of emergency. 

    Lutheran World Relief was founded in 1945, by US Lutherans, as a program to provide aid to those devastated by the effects of World War II.  It is supported by both the ELCA and LCMS.  Its current mission is to provide aid areas that have experience natural disasters around the world, most recently in Japan, Sudan, Pakistan, and Haiti. 

    Money that is donated will be used to buy supplies for Health Kits, that the Sunday School students will assemble later in the year.  We will be providing a detailed list in the spring of needed supplies, but since they are quite specific and change as the needs of the areas to be helped change, donating money at this point will be the most useful action to take.  Please note on your $$$ donation that it is to go toward these supplies. 

     Thank you for your generous support of our extended ministries projects.  Keep them in your prayers. 


-Larraine King, Church Council

The Presentation of Our Lord

On Thursday, February 2nd we celebrate The Presentation of our Lord at 11:45 am in the chapel with Holy Eucharist.  This feast day revolves around a prophecy in Luke 2:34-35 that relates a stirring story about Christ’s ministry.  It says he will be spoken against, and that he will cause the rise and fall of many.  Honor God this day for the wisdom of this prophecy.

The Transfiguration

of Our Lord

The Last Sunday in Epiphany, Sunday, February 19th, is the Transfiguration of Our Lord.  On this day we behold the splendor of Christ surrounded by the glory of God. 

    Study Mark 9:2-9 to learn more about the time when Moses and Elijah appeared to Jesus, and the mysterious cloud from which God’s voice tells us, “This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!”


February Book

With the Mind:  Readings in Contemporary Theology

3-5 pm in the Church Lounge, Saturday, February 26th.


The book for February is Second Coming (1980) by Walker Percy (1916-1990), winner of the National Book Award in 1962. This book is about struggling with the sadness of life – in light of the Christian faith. It takes up the themes of parents and children, and why suicide looms so large for some as the solution to life’s problems.

     At the end of the book, the lead character, Will, finds another broken wing, Allie, and marries her – and also finds God in the process. “Will… thought about Allie,” Percy writes, and Will’s heart “leapt with a secret joy…. Is she a gift and therefore a sign of a giver? Could it be that the Lord is here, masquerading behind this simple silly holy face?” (p. 360).

     A copy of this important novel on true happiness is in the church library. If you would like to purchase one for yourself, contact Pastor Marshall. Feel free to attend our meeting when we discuss what this book says is the best way to handle what makes life sad.


GOLDEN FELLOWSHIP is planning a luncheon for Tuesday, February 21st.  Sign up on the sheet that is posted in the lounge.  Also new trips are planned for this year. If you are interested in going along, Evelyn Coy has information about times and cost (938-4493).

FOOD BANK COLLECTION suggestions for February are canned fruits & vegetables. 

NEW MEMBER ORIENTATION will start on Sunday, February 5th immediately following the 10:30 am liturgy, in room D.  If you know someone who is interested in the class, suggest they talk with Pastor Marshall. 

SUNDAY EDUCATION:  Suffering With Christ: A Study on the Epistle of First Peter – In this eight week class (from February 5th to March 25th) we will study the book of First Peter – which has been a favorite of Lutherans for generations.

WEST Seattle Food Bank benefit & social hour: live music, guest speaker, dinner, and a dessert auction at the Hall of Fauntleroy.  Friday, May 4, 2012, 6-9 pm.  Ron Sims will be key note speaker this year.  Save the date.

HOLY EUCHARIST – Communion:  Those who are baptized in the name of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and believe are welcome to receive the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper.  If you are not able to walk up to communion but would like to receive, contact the Parish Deacon before the liturgy.


Joshua 2.5

Monthly Home Bible Study, February 2012, Number 228

The Reverend Ronald F. Marshall


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).


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).


Week I. Read Joshua 2.5 noting the line I do not know. Who says this? On this read Joshua 2.1 noting the name Rahab. Why should we care about her? On this read Matthew 1.1-16 noting the words genealogy, Christ and Rahab. Why does the genealogy of Christ matter? On this read Matthew 1.1 noting the names David and Abraham. Why does it matter that Jesus comes from David and Abraham? On this read Genesis 22.15-18 noting the words Abraham, all and bless, and 2 Samuel 7.8-13 noting the words David, kingdom and forever. And what is this blessing? On this read Act 7.17 and 52 noting the words promise, Abraham, Righteous and One, and Acts 13.22-23 noting the words David, king, Savior and Jesus. And what is this promise of salvation coming from Abraham and David? On this read 1 Timothy 1.15 noting the words save and sinners, and 1 Timothy 2.5-6 noting the words mediator and ransom. Why does this salvation matter? On this read Romans 5.1 and Colossians 1.20 noting the same word peace. And why should we care about having this peace? On this read Colossians 2.14 noting the phrase against us. So, are you now convinced of the importance of Rahab? If so, why? Note finally Hebrews 7.3 noting the words without and genealogy. Does this conflict with


Matthew 1.1? Why not? On this read Hebrews 7.3 again noting the line priest for ever. How does this differ – and so does not conflict with – Matthew 1.1 about Abraham and David?


Week II. Read again Joshua 2.5 noting this same line I do not know. What is it that Rahab doesn’t know? On this read Joshua 2.1-6 noting the words Joshua, sent, two, men, secretly, hid and roof. Is it true that Rahab doesn’t know about their whereabouts? Why is it that she lies to her king’s men about these spies sent by Joshua to case out Jericho in order to destroy it? On this read Joshua 2.9-13 noting the words know, save, father and mother. But why did she have to lie to her king’s men in order to save her family from what she thinks is sure destruction at the hands of the Israelites? Wasn’t there any other way to go? Why didn’t she try to broker a mass surrender on the part of her people? On this read Joshua 2.11 noting the line no courage left in any man because of you. Why wasn’t that sufficient grounds for planning to surrender? On this read Judges 11.1-33 noting the words mighty, warrior, Ammonites, war, took, land, pass, through, not, listen, Moab, Amorites, not, trust, great and slaughter. Did Rahab think her demoralized people would fight anyway like the Ammonites, Amorites and Moabites would latter do? Is that why she lied to them – because of their reckless endangerment of her family? If so, was her approach justifiable? On what grounds?


Week III. Reread Joshua 2.5 noting that same line I do not know. So was Rahab justified? On lying read Exodus 20.16 and Deuteronomy 5.20 noting the line against your neighbor. Read also Colossians 3.9 against lying in general. Does the Bible teach that all lying is bad – or is it alright to lie to your enemies? Did the wise men lie to Herod when they didn’t return to him after finding the Christ child but went home by another way as Matthew 2.12 says? Was that defensible? Was it right for the midwives to lie about Moses in Exodus 1.15-20? How about Samuel lying to King Saul in 1 Samuel 16.2-5? Or how about Joseph lying about his identity and his brothers in Genesis 42.6-16? Isn’t it an irony that he demands honesty from his brothers in Genesis 42.19 when he doesn’t practice it himself? And how about Abraham in Genesis 12.10-20 and 20.1-18 – both times endangering his wife with his lies? Note also what we might call the bad lies in Genesis 3.4-5 by Satan, 4.9 by Cain and 27.18-24 by Jacob! So where does the Bible stand on lying?


Week IV. Read Joshua 2.5 one last time noting the same line I do not know. Does Jesus also lie? On this read John 7.1-10 noting the words not (with yet being added in the footnote), but and private. And also read Matthew 5.39 about turning the cheek when slapped – but with Jesus not doing so in John 18.23. What’s up? Are the two cases different because of the witnessing in the second and the fact it was Jesus who was struck? Explain your answer. Does Jesus clarify the rule against lying? How so?




A Forgotten But Powerful Voice:

Dr. Kent S. Knutson, 1924-1973

By Pastor Marshall


Dr. Knutson was the presiding bishop of the ALC from 1971-1973. In this column I continue to select passages from his most famous book, The Shape of the Question: The Mission of the Church in a Secular Age (1972) for our mutual, considered evaluation. Here is what he says in part about Jesus being both fully human and fully divine:

[The creeds put] the emphasis… on the relation of the [two natures] to the [single] person [of Christ] rather than on the relation of the natures to each other in some direct way. Is this a weakness? The Lutheran tradition said yes and developed further a doctrine on how the divine nature ‘communicates’ its powers to the human nature without changing the human nature…. [On this view] God does not change the human into something divine in his work. Human remains human. Divine remains divine. Implications are that the Bible does not become less human because God speaks to us through it. The church does not become perfect or errorless because there God dwells and feeds his people. The bread does not turn into something supernatural because God’s presence is mediated through it. We don’t become divine because God dwells in us. Nature bears grace. It does not become grace. Nature retains its integrity. God retains his. Let God be God! (pp. 68, 70).

This communication of properties [communicatio idiomatum] between the human and divine natures of Jesus, “remained key to Luther’s Christology, for Christ’s person, divine and human natures inseparable yet distinct in one person, provides the foundation for understanding his work of the salvation of sinners. That formed the heart of Luther’s call for reform of public teaching” [R. Kolb, Martin Luther: Confessor of the Faith (2009) p. 117].

Enjoy the convenience of electronic giving!





Thank you to those members that have signed up for giving electronically.  If you have thought about it but are still uncertain, I can answer any questions.  Just call or email me. 

    The process is completely safe – it is the same as having your mortgage payment or insurance payment automatically deducted from your checking account.  I handle all the paperwork locally so your authorization form never leaves my possession.  If at any time you want to change or cancel the automatic transactions, let me know and I will immediately process the change. 

    Giving can also be done through our web page now!  Look for the blue button at the bottom of the first page that says “Donate”. 

(Teri Korsmo, Financial Secretary, 206-932-7914, TLHK@comcast.net)



Remember in prayer before God those whom He has made your

brothers and sisters through baptism.


Jeannine Lingle, Connor Bisticas, Dorothy Ryder, Richard Hard, Louis Koser, Rollie Storbakken, Agnes Arkle, Clara Anderson, Pete Morrison, Mary Goplerud, Teri Korsmo, Bob Baker, Peggy Wright, Bob & Barbara Schorn, Margaret Hard, Craig Purfeerst, Rolf Sponheim, Robin Lantzy, Mona Elliot, Bob Smith, Tabitha Anderson, David & Kay Thoreson, Gail Van Zandt, Cameron Lim, Rosita Moe, Ion Ceaicovschi, Linda Anderson, Frank Rowlands, Joyce Baker, Chris & Margeen Bowyer, Jim Cunningham, Dana Amori.

     Pray for the shut-ins that the light of Christ may give them joy:  Clara Anderson, Agnes Arkle, C. J. Christian, Vera Gunnarson, Pat Hansen, Margaret Hard, Lillian Schneider, Crystal Tudor, Vivian Wheeler.

     Pray for those who have suffered the death of a loved one:  Pray that God will bear their grief and lift their hearts:  Pray for Olive Morrison, the Morrison family and friends on the death of Alan Morrison, husband, father and grandfather.

     Pray for our bishops Mark Hanson and Chris Boerger, our pastor Ronald Marshall, our deacon 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, and homeless this February. 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 it's ministry.

     Pray that God will bless you through the lives of the saints: Martin Luther, Renewer of the Church, 1546; Saint Matthias, Apostle.