True Bread

A theme for worship and preaching, July 29 through August 26, 2018 with Pastor Bernt

Open the newspaper and you’re forced to think big: there are changes going on in our world – everything from rising ocean levels to conflict between nations armed with nuclear weapons – and we’re called to respond as we can.  Add to that our personal crises and it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

Which is why we shouldn’t just think big, we should think small.  What opportunities, what gifts has God set before me, right here and now? What do I need to sustain me, come what may?  What wisdom, values, pathways do I need to hold on to?  What are the signs of hope?

When Israel found itself in the wilderness on the way to some unknown land, God rained down a flakey bread-like substance from heaven – “manna” which means “what is it?”  What is our true bread today?

By “bread” we don’t just mean the high carb loaf from the bakery or the paycheck we bring home from work.  Think of bread as a symbol for all the everyday ways our Creator provides for us and shows us grace.  The presence of true bread in our kitchens and lives       may seem perfectly obvious, but it’s not.  We need God to open our eyes to what’s right there in front of us.

Some themes we might explore – let Pastor Bernt know any of particular interest to you:

  • Lectionary passages from Old and New Testaments, especially the “Bread of Life” discourse in John 6 but also Exodus, Proverbs and the Psalms.
  • Revisit the Stoics, who came up in last Summer’s theme sermons – set alongside biblical wisdom traditions.
  • Bread is a product of technology (oven, mill, etc..).  Is technology a gift from God?
  • Bread is gift of creation.  How does the created world sustain us?
  • Simple gifts such as bread in a wealthy place such as Palo Alto.
  • Not “my” but “our” daily bread – what place does sharing have in our lives as a way of sustaining us?

Luther on daily bread, from the Small Catechism:

Give us today our daily bread.

What is this?

In fact, God gives daily bread without our prayer, even to all evil people, but we ask in this prayer that God cause us to recognize what our daily bread is and to receive it with thanksgiving.

What then does “daily bread” mean?

Everything included in the necessities and nourishment for our bodies, such as food, drink, clothing, shoes, house, farm, fields, livestock, money, property, an upright spouse, upright children, upright members of the household, upright and faithful rulers, good government, good weather, peace, health, decency, honor, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like.

Summer Fellowship 2018

All are welcome!  Invite your friends and neighbors.

Monday, May 28 Memorial Day Talent Show and Potluck– Come share your talents with us from the kitchen to the stage! All are welcome to participate from the silly to the serious–end-of-the-school year recital programs, jokes you love to tell, anything goes! Potluck will begin at 4:00 PM. Signups are in the fellowship hall. Contact Margaret and Soren for details.

June 22nd Picnic in the Park– Join us at Hoover Park around 6:00 pm for a laid back end to the work week and to give our teens a Bon Voyage as they leave for the 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering. Pizza will be ordered. Bring something to drink. RSVP for a rough estimate.

July 14 Summer Redwood Hike in Wunderlich- information here …

August 18 National Lemonade Day Sale– Join us for a fun afternoon at FLC with our youth who will be selling lemonade to the local neighborhood. Sales start at 3:00 pm but lemon squeezers and sign-makers should arrive at 2:00. The kids will pick an organization to support. Adults please bring lemons, treats to sell and a hankering  for lemonade!

Triduum 2018

Orientation to Nueva Esperanza Program

Orientation to Nueva Esperanza Program:
Solidarity & Accompaniment with Migrant Communities 
Second meeting March 18 at 1:30pm at FLC

FLC’s concern for migrants (especially minors) through AMMPARO, our history with sanctuary and commitment to being a welcoming congregation has led us to connect with the Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity.  An opportunity is opening up for us to unite our efforts with another Palo Alto congregation and accompany a migrant family in need in our area.

Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity’s Nueva Esparanza program is a collaborative initiative of individuals, faith communities, and partner organizations seeking to respond to the needs of recently arrived minors and families, and individuals released from detention who require support, housing, and resources. Their hope is to offer the resources, passion, and presence of faith communities in direct accompaniment with our migrant neighbors.

Whether you’re just curious to know more or think you might want to get involved, please join us to learn more!  We have begun to form a small accompaniment team, and would be open to more participation.  Contact Pastor Bernt for more info.

Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity is a faith-rooted, state-wide organization working at the intersection of immigrant justice and criminal justice reform. Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity upholds the belief that every person is sacred across all borders and that everyone has the right to a life with opportunities. 

Presenter: Sarah Lee – Faith Community Organizer with Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity

A Message from our Sister Congregation

December 15, 2017

Queridos hermanos: Dios de la vida y la esperanza sean con ustedes siempre

Las fotografías adjuntas son las celebraciones de cumpleañeros y del día del niño y la niña que hemos realizado en los últimos meses. Las flores del altar son elaboradas por Rebeca, joven madre que es líder del grupo juvenil.

Su hermana en Cristo Jesús

Rev. Vilma Rodríguez


Iglesia Luterana “Ríos de Agua Viva”

Christmas 2017

Santa Lucia Festival 2017