HE HAS RISEN!

What an amazing time we live in. It seems that faith is really being tested due to the current situation the entire world is facing. Right now the world is dealing with such uncertainties; pandemic, economic ruin, and health issues to name a few. When times get rough and it seems as if there isn’t light at the end of the tunnel, we can tend to forget the promises God gives us daily through his Son Jesus Christ. I am reminded about God’s promises through struggle by reading 1st Peter 1:3-10. Peter writes a letter to encourage elders in Asia Minor to watch over congregations that were enduring significant suffering. He describes people as chosen, holy and supremely precious to the chief Shepherd, the Lord Jesus.

During these hard times of economic struggle, disease and uncertainty, the resurrection is needed even more. The promise of God that gives us hope that His Son leaving the grave empty doesn’t shield us from worldly harm but gives us the strength to endure what may come our way. It means that God loved the world, he sent his only Son to give hope, mercy, forgiveness and most of all love. We are promised.  I pray for those who are suffering during this pandemic and all of the doctors, nurses and essential workers who are helping everyone during this trying time. Through their work, let it be a reminder that God does send his disciples to care for the flock; help will always come from the Lord.

I hope all is well with everyone and anyone who is going through suffering during this trying time can find refuge in the promise that God will never forsake us.

Blessings, Pastor Woody

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Hello Brothers and Sisters of Heidelberg!

For the next two months we will be celebrating the life, death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Jesus’ life gives us a look into how the Kingdom of God is lived out. In his ministry, Jesus came across many different types of people.  Some were sick, tax collectors, widows, Pharisees, etc. To everyone he came across, he showed them how the Kingdom of God works to love all unconditionally.  Through his death, God used the cross to redeem humanity.  Jesus paid the price for our sins so we can have a full relationship with God.  Through his death, God made it possible for us to be saved. The glorious resurrection of our Savior changes everything. We are restored, forgiven, and welcomed back into the arms of God.

As we go through the seasons of Lent and Easter, let us be reminded of the love God shows us every single day. Let us reflect on what separates us from God and repent, turn around and walk away from it.  Let us share the good news that Christ lived, died and was resurrected so the world may know love. It is love that is at the center of the cross that Jesus had to bear for us; and it is love that made the grave empty so we may have eternal life.  Happy Easter!

In Christ,

Pastor Woody

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             I HOPE EVERYONE IS KEEPING WARM!

The change in weather is something that we all have to go through.  Some love the cold, snowy and sleet-filled days and nights. Others wish for warmer days.  I for one, always wish for warmer weather during winter months.  Whenever I go through things that are not my forte, I have to keep reminding myself that God is always with me while I have to face situations.   While we are facing situations in life, we can never forget the promise God gives us through his son…to never leave us…even though it can be unpleasant to go through growing pains and learn from situations we’d rather not go through.  Like weather, change does come; and we are faced with a new season.  No matter the season, we are called to learn about who we are in God’s love.  I encourage all of us to grow in all seasons of life and continuously remember that God is with us.          STAY WARM!

Pastor Woody

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The first time I had ever felt snow was when I was 5 years old. My family moved from Hawaii back to Reading. I was so scared when the airport doors opened, I climbed up on my mom. It was a HUGE change for me. I asked my mom, “What is this white stuff coming down from the sky?” She laughed and answered, “It’s snow.” I still didn’t understand, and it was cold. I never felt cold air before. Honestly, the change of weather was one of the first changes I had to go through in life.  I came from a very hot place, never saw snow, and never saw my breath in the air because it was cold outside.  I was in shock for a few days.

Change can be hard, scary and liberating.  Depending on what is changing it can either be good for us or not. Life throws a lot of changes our way. Once you were single, now you are married. Once you didn’t have any kids, now you are going to soccer games. Once you were very thin, now you have extra pounds. There are changes in life we can’t stop, like growing older or the seasons changing.

Whatever change we are facing in life, there is something that doesn’t change; God’s love for us. Through God’s unchanging love, God has changed us from being dead in sin to having life through Jesus Christ.  This is an awesome change! God restored our relationship to God’s self.  Through this change, God promises us to be there through every change in life we face. God promises us to see us through the good changes and the bad changes.

Snow is coming soon. A change I rather not go through, but I know God is with me.  I pray that wherever you are in life you can feel the unchanging love of God.  May you and your family have a thankful Thanksgiving and a very Merry Christmas.

Blessings,

Pastor Woody

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Santiago

Hello, my name is Rev. Rashion Santiago. I am from Reading, Pa. I am a graduate of Reading Senior High School, attended Trinity Lutheran College, and graduated from Philadelphia Lutheran Seminary. I currently reside in Allentown for the past 5 years. I enjoy laughter and seeing smiles. I really enjoy seeing God interact in people’s lives. It gives me a fuller picture of who we are and who God is. I am a proud parent of a Yorkie named Roscoe.

I am really excited to see what God has in store for the ministry of Heidelberg. It will be exciting to seek the Lord’s face together.