November 19, 2020
for Sunday, Nov. 22
Exekiel 34:11-16, 20-24
REFLECTION - Musings from NYS Synod
The Rev. Lori Kochanski, Assistant to the Bishop for Faith Formation
This text always reminds me of those undercover experiments broadcast on television in a variety of formats and mediums. The premise is the same and, unfortunately, the outcome is often the same, too. Someone in power disguises themselves as a "regular" person in order to see if their business ethics, rules and practices are translated into the everyday experiences of people in a specific work place or company environment. Or the televised experiences of actors who play a role regarding abuse or discrimination in order to uncover what people would really do when encountering unjust situations in public places.
Most often the aspirations of a business or the best hearted intentions of the people on the street are no match for the inherent systems of violence embedded in our work places and communities. We watch from our couches as business owners learn about the practices that harm those who work for them. Sitting in our recliners, we can say that we would totally jump in when someone was being racially profiled in a coffee shop like the actors on the tv screen. The truth is, right now, every day and all day, we are not living into Jesus' list of "whens"
When I was
Jesus is preparing the people of God for a time when he will not be physically present. Jesus cannot physically sit us down and tell us a story and answer our questions in real time. This requires us to intentionally dwell in the word, practice sacred listening with the stories from long ago.
It is easy, in this time of being intentionally physically distant, to say that we can't do the things necessary to living into neighbor justice. I could not disagree more. Actually, this is the most important time for us to find the ways we act on the belief of the truth of Jesus' list of "who" in redemptive and creative ways.
My prayer for us right now is that we can continue to seek wisdom for today in stories like this one. And that we can live them in our actions
Toward the end of Jesus' life he shares the story for this day. The fact that he compares himself to "a king who moves among his subjects to see how he is treated: what is done for the least of those who belong to his family is truly done for him," shows his commitment to the words he speaks of love for neighbor being true in word and deed. At the same time, it shows that Jesus knows that even his faithful followers are going to have a hard time believing neighbor justice to be the truth.
Jesus compares himself to a king who moves among his subjects to see how he is treated: what is done for the least of those who belong to his family is truly done for him.
[Jesus said to the disciples:] 31"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34Then the king will say to those at his right hand, 'Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.' 37Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?' 40And the king will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family you did it to me.' 41Then he will say to those at his left hand, 'You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' 44Then they also will answer, 'Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?' 45Then he will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.' 46And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."
Names will remain of the Prayer List for a month - at which
time it will be taken off unless, or course, there is still a continued need
for our prayers and we’re asked to keep the name on.
Christ the King Sunday this week. We will celebrate communion.
With the onset of colder weather, we will be changing how we get communion cups to you. Instead of asking the usher to stand out in the cold, rainy or snowy weather for 20 minutes, we will bring the cups out to you when everyone has arrived, gotten their bulletins and parked.
Also for colder weather, we have a portable charger available in the church JUST IN CASE….J
Stay warm, and stay healthy!!!
Pastor Ivy had back surgery on 11/17 and a second procedure is scheduled on 12/1. While she is out, you can contact Pastor Heather Allport-Cohoon if there is a need for pastoral care. She can be reached at 716-708-6466.
Synodically Authorized Minister Ned Lindstrom will be leading worship and preaching on Sundays. He can be reached at 716-490-3820.
Pastor’s first surgery went very well. Continued prayers are appreciated.
Thanks to the many folks who have made contributions for our Honduras Promise Children Mission. We have received over $4,000.00 so far, and we are very grateful!
***We continuously collect food items for the 5 & 2 Ministry. Bring your donations and place in the black bin in church narthex. Lists detailing items needed are also available in the narthex. Monetary donations welcome!
Fighting childhood hunger one student at a time in our community.
***5 & 2 Ministry Food Bins Donated to Date: 86
***ONLINE GIVING now available at St. Timothy for Debit/Credit cards. 3 ways to give:
- Go directly to our website at
- Use our QR code with the QR reader on your smartphone
- Download the app ‘GivePlus Church’. Create an account.
For further information, see Kathy Carlson on Sundays or call her at 485-1316.
• For our community of faith as we seek to do God’s work in the world.
• For those in our congregation and community who suffer silently with illness, financial burdens, and family obligation.
• For people affected by coronavirus, essential workers, doctors, nurses, aides, those working in nursing homes, etc.
• For victims of wildfires, flooding and earthquakes.
• For Pastor Ivy Gauvin, Sandy Carlson, Ron Simpson, Karen Johnson, Roy Pihl, George and Janet Balcom, Maj-Britt Traynor, Beverly Klang, Trudy Fetzner, Thom Shagla, Matt Isaacson, Mabel Tranum, The People of God at Zion Lutheran Church in Cobbleskill, Bishop John Macholz, Kay Mattern, Emerson Allaby, Sarah Van Staalduinen, John Gingrass, and Dick Starks, those serving in the military and law enforcement and their families, including Ben Wickerham, Jeffrey Clauson, David Bentley and Kris Peterson, those caught up in violence and war who have no safe home in which to live.
• For all children, that the love of Christ may reach them through all of us who have resources to love, protect, pray and provide for them.
• For The ELCZ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe and ELCZa Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zambia.