Wedding at Cana

veronese_wedding_cana_grt

The wedding at Cana is the gospel lesson for the 2nd Sunday after Epiphany. This painting depicting this joyous occasion of the wedding at Cana by Paolo Veronese (1563) is on display in the Louvre, Paris.

Watchword: “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” (John 1,17)

Introit Psalm 105 verses 1-4

O give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord. Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.

God’s holy Word from the Old Testament: Exodus 33,17-23

And the Lord said unto Moses: Thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name. And he said, I beseech thee, shew me thy glory. And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy. And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live. And the Lord said, Behold, there is a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock: And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by: And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.

The holy Epistle: Romans 12,(4-8) 9-16

For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.) Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

The holy Gospel accourding to the evangelist St. John chapter  2,1-11

And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage. And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece. Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it. When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom, And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now. This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.

Sermon text from 1. Corinthians 2,1-10

And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.  And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

The liturgical colour is green.

Together with the holy Christian Church we pray with this collect: Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory, that he may be known, worshiped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Hymn of the week: LSB 408 

 

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully according to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Rom 1:16 NIV)

 

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Water for free

This year’s watchword is from Revelations 21,6. It’s the Lord’s promise: “I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life, freely.” Here’s my sermon in German for yesterday’s devotion in the chapel of the Old Latin School in the Luthercity Wittenberg both to read (Offb21,6 11.1.2018 OLS) or to listen to: 

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People on the way

What shall I say? These last hours have been quite a jump from O.R. Tambo to Frankfurt via Dubai and now I’m on the final stretch to Wittenberg and just getting past Leipzig traveling by train (ICE 692 which goes all the way to Berlin Gesundbrunnen). Lots of impressions even if most are fleeting and not only because I read bits of Frank Schirrmacher 2009: „Payback: Warum wir im Informationszeitalter gezwungen sind zu tun, was wir nicht tun wollen, und wie wir die Kontrolle über unser Denken zurückgewinnen.“, but just the number of people, who you sit next too, who make a favorable impression even way beyond midnight and that’s not even counting those thousands, who are not even registered by my senses, but who also have stories to tell, moving lives going up and down with countless memories. Still, it all goes by as if it’s just flying by. It’s just too many people in one train or airport. However let me mention some, who did catch my attention first and perhaps listing them chronologically will help my memory:

First passport check and asking for my boarding pass. He got us a trolley, because he didn’t like the idea of Chinese women misusing his trolley for a lounge right there in the Departures Hall at OR Tambo. My loved ones still witnessed that change over of trolley usage and we all posed behind the said trolley.

Without my normal routine of drinking a coffee or beer in the OR Tambo Mugg & Bean, I went straight to Gate 10, where the Emirates Airbus 380 was already being put into shape for its next intercontinental flight. I was one of the first there, but because I tried to clean out my mailbox and phone the rest of my family, this time flew by in no time. Didn’t talk much with anyone else, but did notice that most people were very engrossed in their Handys. Again proving Frank Schirrmacher’s observation, that we’re not changing the machines so much, but that they are rather very much changing us.

The stewardesses were all beautiful so that even serious layers of makeup didn’t  cover  up or even hide their charm. They were young and genuinely pretty and going a long way to prove that such loveliness is very much at home in all parts of the world. On the first leg, they mentioned 10 different languages at our service and for the second one 24 even. Can you imagine that? Sounds as if Emirates is a serious school for language, communication and translations.

For the first part of this trip I sat next to a single lady, who watched one movie after the other and only asked to stand up twice. She was not troublesome at all. Quite, kept her arms to herself and only laughed once in what I thought was about 4-5 movies.

The second leg I spent next to a guy somewhat resembling Christian Heicke or better still Herr Schneider the postman in Oberursel of yesteryear. Typical German from Hessian “an dem kein Falsch ist”. He wore Hotel slippers and was very well mannered too, not quite as quiet, but didn’t snore much nor did he cause any disturbance of this or that kind. I don’t know, whether he slept much for that matter, because I slept that stretch like a log or dog – sitting upright, but passed out.

He played Solitaire about as consistently as Madam Movie had watched her films, but he was much more jubilant as he celebrated every finished game with high-fives and exorbitant dances in so far as that’s possible in the cramped seats of the so-called economic class. I presume, that the slave galleys were something like these airplanes, which resemble tightly packed sardine cans. Surprisingly, we put on the chains (i.e. safety belts) ourselves and don’t even wait for the stewardesses – our modern slave drivers – to do this. Our drive for liberty is seriously retarded no question. The ancients had stronger drives for emancipation.

The food was ok and the beverages too, even though you might think, I didn’t like the Heincken as I dropped it on my seat even before I had a sip of it and therefore had wet pants all the way to Germany and a dry throat too.  In Dubai I ate Japanese soup and noodles and caught up with a ½ pint of Stella Artois. That’s a lot less than I bargained for. I should have taken the full pint or at the very least the ½.

Having finally landed the Border Patrol (GSG 9 or Grenzschutzpolizei?) asked, whether I don’t have a German passport. Wonder why? Doesn’t he like my SA-one?

My baggage was all there and I even got onto the right bus and off at the right terminal to catch the subway into Frankfurt and to the main station. The timing was so good, that I actually could enjoy my first coffee on German soil and a cherry cake in the classic Bistro with a super waiter and a fabulous moustache there in the main station. His manners were straight out of the book or at least from the latest and authoritative English butler’s manual. I loved it so! Reminded me so much of the old colonial times, that have passed forever. (Bad joke – I know) I look forward to going there again. Hope it won’t take too long.

Although I had reserved a window seat in the ICE going to “Gesundbrunnen” (Great name!) in Berlin, I gave up this right, because a whole soccer team was occupying that reserved section. It was no real issue as lots of other free seats were available. I got to catch up with my mail from back home.

They served the best lentil soup, that I’ve tasted for a long time so that I went ahead and got myself a few tins as reserve at ALDI, when I got a chance in Wittenberg. Let’s see, if that lives up to the high standards of the Deutsche Bahn. Perhaps it was just the friendly service in the “Bord Bistro” that made the difference. The various conductors also impressed with their willingness to please the “ou boer seun vanuit die ou Transvaal” far from home and totally “unrasiert” even if in my case that doesn’t really say much.

So much for my first few impressions this side of the Equator and the Mediterranean or as the ancients called it: “The big water in the west”!

 

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1st Sunday after Epiphany

baptism-of-christ-1483

Watchword: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” (Romans 8,14)

Introit Psalm 72 verses 1-2.12.17b

Give the king thy judgments, O God, and thy righteousness unto the king’s son. He shall judge thy people with righteousness, and thy poor with judgment. For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper… all nations shall call him blessed. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.

God’s holy Word from the Old Testament: Isaiah 42,1-4 (5-9)

Sing, Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law. Thus saith God the Lord, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein: I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images. Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them.

The holy Epistle: Romans 12,1-3 (4-8)

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.

The holy Gospel accourding to the evangelist St. Matthew chapter  3:13-17

Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Sermon text from 1. Corinthians 1,26-31

For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

The liturgical colour is white.

Together with the holy Christian Church we pray with this collect: Father in heaven, who at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan proclaimed him your beloved Son and anointed him with the Holy Spirit: Grant that all who are baptized into his Name may keep the covenant they have made, and boldly confess him as Lord and Savior; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Hymn of the week:

1 To Jordan came our Lord, the Christ,
To do God’s pleasure willing,
And there was by St. John baptized,
All righteousness fulfilling;
There did He consecrate a bath
To wash away transgression,
And quench the bitterness of death
By His own blood and passion,
He would a new life give us.

2 So hear ye all, and well perceive
What God doth call a Baptism,
And what a Christian should believe
Who error shuns and schism:
That we should water use, the Lord
Declareth it His pleasure,
Not simple water, but the Word
And Spirit without measure;–
He is the true Baptizer.

3 To show us this He hath His word
With signs and symbols given;
On Jordan’s banks was plainly heard
The Father’s voice from heaven:
“This is My well-beloved Son,
In whom My soul delighteth;
Hear Him!” Yea, hear Him, every one,
When He Himself inviteth;
Hear and obey His teaching!

4 In tender manhood God the Son
In Jordan’s water standeth;
The Holy Ghost from heaven’s throne
In dove-like form descendeth;
That thus the truth be not denied,
Nor should our faith e’er waver,
That the Three Persons all preside,
At Baptism’s holy laver,
And dwell with the believer.

5 Thus Jesus His disciples sent
Go, teach ye every nation,
That, lost in sin, they must repent,
And flee from condemnation;
He that believes and is baptized
Shall thereby have salvation,
A new-born man he is in Christ,
From death free and damnation,
He shall inherit heaven.

6 Who in this mercy hath not faith
Nor aught therein discerneth,
Is yet in sin, condemned to death
And fire that ever burneth;
His holiness avails him not,
Nor aught which he is doing;
His inborn sin brings all to naught,
And maketh sure his ruin;
Himself he cannot succor.

7 The eye of sense alone is dim,
And nothing sees but water;
Faith sees Christ Jesus, and in Him
The Lamb ordained for slaughter;
With the dear blood of Jesus,
Which from the sins, inherited
From fallen Adam, frees us,
And from our own misdoings.

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully according to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Rom 1:16 NIV)

 

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Epiphany (6th January)

Watchword:

“The darkness is past, and the true light now shineth..” (1 John 2,8b)

Introit Psalm 100

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.  Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.

God’s holy Word

The Old Testament lesson: Isaiah 49,13-16

Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side. Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto t The multitude of camels shall cover thee, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come: they shall bring gold and incense; and they shall shew forth the praises of the Lord.

The holy Epistle: Ephesians 3, 2-6

If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel

The holy Gospel according to the evangelist St. Matthew chapter  2:1-12

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.  Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also. When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh. And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

 Sermon text from Colossians 1:24-27

Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church: Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

The liturgical colour is white.

Collect for Epiphanyp

Together with the holy Christian Church we pray with this collect: O God, by the leading of a star you manifested your only Son to the Peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know you now by faith, to your presence, where we may see your glory face to face; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Hymn for this Holiday:

  1. “O Morning Star, how fair and bright! You shine with God’s own truth and light, Aglow with grace and mercy! Of Jacob’s race, King David’s son, Our Lord and master, You have won Our hearts to serve You only! Lowly, holy! Great and glorious, All victorious, Rich in blessing! Rule and might o’er all possessing!
  2. “Come, heavenly Bridegroom, Light divine, and deep within our hearts now shine; There light a flame undying! In Your one body let us be As living branches of a tree, Your life our lives supplying. Now, though daily Earth’s deep sadness May perplex us And distress us, Yet with heavenly joy You bless us.
  3. “Lord, when You look on us in love, At once there falls from God above A ray of purest pleasure. Your Word and Spirit, flesh and blood Refresh our souls with heavenly food. You are our dearest treasure! Let Your mercy Warm and cheer us! O draw near us! For You teach us God’s own love through You has reached us.
  4. “Almighty Father, in Your Son You loved us when not yet begun Was this old earth’s foundation! Your Son has ransomed us in love To live in Him here and above; This is Your great salvation. Alleluia! Christ the living, To us giving Life forever, Keeps us Yours and fails us never!
  5. “O let the harps break forth in sound! Our joy be all with music crowned, Our voices gladly blending! For Christ goes with us all the way— Today, tomorrow, every day! His love is never ending! Sing out!  Ring out! Jubilation! Exultation! Tell the story! Great is He, the King of Glory!
  6. “What joy to know, when life is past, The Lord we love is first and last, The end and the beginning! He will one day, oh, glorious grace, Transport us to that happy place Beyond all tears and sinning! Amen!  Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! Crown of gladness! We are yearning For the day of Your returning!”

Philipp Nicolai (1556-1608)

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully according to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Rom 1:16 NIV)

 

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1st Sunday after Christmas

Watchword: “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1,14)

Introit Psalm 93

The Lord reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the Lord is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved. Thy throne is established of old: thou art from everlasting. The floods have lifted up, O Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their waves. The Lord on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea. Thy testimonies are very sure: holiness becometh thine house, O Lord, for ever. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.

God’s holy Word from the Old Testament: Isaiah 49,13-16

Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains: for the Lord hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted. But Zion said, The Lord hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.

The holy Epistle: 1.John 1,1-4

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

The holy Gospel accourding to the evangelist St. Luke chapter  2:22-40

And when the days of her (Mary’s) purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him (IX) to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord; (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;) And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons. And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.  And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law, Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.  And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him. And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem. And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth. And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.

Sermon text from 1. John 2,21-25

I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth. Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also. Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

The liturgical colour is white.

Together with the holy Christian Church we pray with this collect: O God, our Maker and Redeemer, You wonderfully created us and in the incarnation of Your Son yet more wondrously restored our human nature. Grant that we may ever be alive in Him who made Himself to be like us; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit one God for ever and ever. Amen.

Hymn of the week: Hail to the Lord’s Annointed

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully according to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Rom 1:16 NIV)

 

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Weber memories in Murrayfield 2017

Looking back at 2017 recalls old Moses’s reminder: “Our years quickly pass and we fly away.” (Psalm 90:10) We’ll remember my father’s blessed passing just a day after my birthday even as we miss his booming laughter and easy smile fitting well with his humble, generous and determined fatherhood. He was always keen to remind us and all, who cared to listen: “Christians never see each other for the last time!” Well, I for one look forward to seeing him again and not just for his capacity of listening to endless troubles, deep concerns and visisons of darkness and evil without despairing or losing hope. See, he was more than just my father, because bearing the same beautiful office and beloved pastoral joke he was also my predecessor at Seminary and long-time confidant of Bishop Schulz. As such he was the perfect sounding board and prophetic voice addressing pastoral issues and episcopal matters with unbiased severity and undeserved benevolence. Very different to the predominant pragmatists, clueless bureaucrats, hapless perfectionists and incompetent fools running wild where angels feared to tread. 

Angelika is doing well at the University of Pretoria (UP). By now, she’s the longest serving academic in their department and very much at home there. Again she successfully published two articels in academic journals, but her first love is still teaching students German making use of classical and other significant texts.

It’s with great joy and gratitude, that she can see our son Detlev following in her footsteps as he continues to study Germany abroad even as he finished off the Honours degree here at UP with flying colours. We expect him to continue abroad for some years now and God only knows, whether he’ll eventually return here to where at least some of his forebears were at home.

Friederike has successfully completed her university studies (LLB) even as she visited Law School (5-9 pm every day) – and worked at the Day-Care-Centre in her free time. Now she’s doing her articles in family law and glad that it’s not all about litigation. She’s still staying with us in Rubida Street and that’s always a great joy. Not only because she visits the same gym as her parents, but also because of her wit and sparkling humour. That can really boost one’s moral after “a hard day’s night” (Beatles).

Her elder brother Christoph is coping nicely down in Natal, where he stays with his grandmother Scharlach and works for his uncle Gerald Scharlach. The national board for electrical appreticeship is more or less chaotic to put it kindly.  That is why, he never knows, when the next seminar will take place nor when the next exam will follow.

I don’t know, how they want to address the serious shortage of trained artisans if their training programs are in such a shambles. Compared with that, our daily schedule at LTS was close to perfect for the past decade and a half.

Matthias has completed his apprenticeship in Linz and has now moved back to Gauteng. For the time being, he’s living with us, but is probably moving to Cape Town in the next few weeks to get some more practical exposure, before settling down in one of the Almi-Centres locally in Southern Africa.

We are overjoyed and grateful, that all four of our children could celebrate Christmas with us this time around here in Murrayfield. It might even be the last time here, because we’re considering selling our home and moving on to “greener pastures” – as they say. Perhaps it’s more like “getting out of the kitchen, if you can’t stand the heat.”

The classes with 10 theology students (Romans/Luke in New Testament; Prolegomena, Creation and Anthropology in Dogmatics) and 28 in the preparatory course (Symbolics: Luther’s Catechisms) was an underserved blessing once again. I would have obviously liked to continue with St. John’s gospel and Justification/Sanctification.  The correspondence course with the 25 Ethiopians living in South Africa in their diaspora was an ongoing success story. It’s just unbelievable, what positive motivation, perseverance and good fun these foreigners bring along as they go about studying confessional Lutheran theology. It’s quite contagious too. I’m sure, that I’m going to miss these my dear students most of all. No small wonder as some of them have been at LTS for 5 years or more.

Still, it has now finally come to this, that I’m moving to Wittenberg in Germany next year. Angelika is planning on joining me after the first semester. We are very grateful for the church councils charged with this joint partnership project that they are so positive, supportive and motivating. It feels very much like the early days here at Seminary nearly 2 decades ago. I’m grateful for this godsend and just so glad, that I’ll not just be tending the flowers in our garden as yet and as if I already was in early retirement.

Already I’m getting the hang of the “Bundesliga” and trying to forget the Springboks, which is not so difficult after all considering their dismal performance over the past months (or is it years already?) It’s like turning your back on some or other “vrot kol”. No problem at all! The first guests have already made appointments in Wittenberg. The air tickets are booked. My official telephone here has been disconnected and I’m ready for the move. It is, what it is: “Our years quickly pass and we fly away.” (Psalm 90:10)

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2nd Holiday of Christmas commemorating the 1st martyr of the church: St. Stephen

Watchword: “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints. O Lord, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds. I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord.” (Psalm 116:15-17)

Introit from Psalm 119

My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word. Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me?

For I am become like a bottle in the smoke; yet do I not forget thy statutes. How many are the days of thy servant? when wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me? The proud have digged pits for me, which are not after thy law. All thy commandments are faithful: they persecute me wrongfully; help thou me. They had almost consumed me upon earth; but I forsook not thy precepts.

Quicken me after thy lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth. For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven. Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth. They continue this day according to thine ordinances: for all are thy servants. Unless thy law had been my delights, I should then have perished in mine affliction.

God’s holy Word from the Old Testament: 2nd Chronicles 24,19-21

Yet the Holy God sent prophets to them, to bring them again unto the Lord; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear. And the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, which stood above the people, and said unto them, Thus saith God, Why transgress ye the commandments of the Lord, that ye cannot prosper? because ye have forsaken the Lord, he hath also forsaken you. And they conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of the Lord.

The holy Epistle: Acts 7,55-60

But Stephen, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

The holy Gospel accourding to the evangelist St. Matthew chapter 10:16-22

Our Lord IX said unto them: “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you. And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

Sermon text from Revelations 7,9-12

After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

The liturgical colour is red.

Together with the holy Christian Church we pray with this collect: Heavenly Father, in the midst of our sufferings for the sake of Christ grant us grace to follow the example of the first martyr, Stephen, that we also may look to the One who suffered and was crucified on our behalf and pray for those who do us wrong; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit one God for ever and ever. Amen.

Hymn of the week

Saints, See the Cloud of Witnesses – LSB 667

1 Saints, see the cloud of witnesses surround us;
Their lives of faith encourage and astound us.
Hear how the Master praised their faith so fervent:
“Well done, My servant!”

2 These saints of old received God’s commendation;
They lived as pilgrim-heirs of His salvation.
Through faith they conquered flame and sword and gallows,
God’s name to hallow.

3 They call to us, “Your timid footsteps lengthen;
Throw off sin’s weight, your halting weakness strengthen.
We kept the faith, we shed our blood, were martyred;
Our lives we bartered.”

4 Come, let us fix our sight on Christ who suffered,
He faced the cross, His sinless life He offered;
He scorned the shame, He died, our death enduring,
Our hope securing.

5 Lord, give us faith to walk where You are sending,
On paths unmarked, eyes blind as to their ending;
Not knowing where we go, but that You lead us—
With grace precede us.

6 You, Jesus, You alone deserve all glory!
Our lives unfold, embraced within Your story;
Past, present, future—You, the same forever—
You fail us never!

1997 Stephen P. Starke.

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully according to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Rom 1:16 NIV)

 

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Webers in Murrayfield: Rückblick 2017

Webers Rundbrief aus Murrayfield 2017

Rückblickend ist auch dieses Jahr eilig vorbei gerauscht: „Es ist als flögen wir davon.“ (Ps.90,10) Das selige Sterben meines Vaters einen Tag nach meinem Geburtstag wird uns bei bleiben, mehr noch aber sein herzhaftes Lachen und frohes, väterliches Wesen bis wir uns dann in der ewigen Seligkeit wiedersehen. Er sagte öfter beim Abschied: „Christen sehen sich nicht zum Letzten Mal!“ Dagegen ist mein Abgang vom Seminar eher typisch: „Non-event“.

Der Anfang von Friederikes Berufsleben nach erfolgreich bestandenem Jurastudium (LLB) und Detlevs Wechsel in die USA, wo er den „BA Honours“ an der Universität Pretoria cum laude beendet und den Masters an der Universität von Missouri (Colombia, MO) schon mit Bravour gestartet hat, stimmt uns überaus dankbar und zuversichtlich. Detlev unterrichtet Anfänger in seiner Muttersprache, was ihm den Aufenthalt dort finanziert und schreibt beachtenswerte Aufsätze über das Nibelungenlied.

Christoph hat sich Gott sei Dank gut erholt, er wohnt bei seiner Oma Scharlach und arbeitet fleißig bei seinem Onkel Gerald im Elektrogeschäft. Nebenbei setzt er seine theoretische Schulung fort. Vorgestern haben wir gerade seinen 28. Tauftag gefeiert.

Matthias hat seine Ausbildung in Linz erfolgreich beendet und seine Karriere als Rugbyspieler des Linzer Klubs gesund und mehr oder weniger heile überstanden, obwohl er uns zeitweilig mit einer eingefallenen Lunge mächtig erschreckt hat. Die Woche auf der Intensivstation war ihm zwar langweilig, uns aber doch überaus tröstlich.

Zusammen mit seinen beiden Brüdern erwarten wir ihn sehnsüchtig zum Weihnachtsfest Zuhause. Heute hat er sich dort drüben verabschiedet und fliegt nun bereits über London nach Hause. Detlev dagegen ist mit einem Uni-Shuttle nach St.Louis und von dort mit dem Flieger über Atlanta und nach 37-minütiger Verspätung (Flug Delta 200) unterwegs nach hier ins sommerliche Pretoria. Das wird so Gott will und wir leben ein frohes Fest in der Rubida Strasse 196. Ich kann es kaum erwarten, während Angelika und Christoph bereits den Weihnachtsbaum aufbauen.

Angelika ist “aan die gang”

Angelika schafft fleißig in Haus und Beruf. Zuletzt hat sie auch wieder angefangen neben dem Chorsingen Klavier und Orgel zu üben, damit sie auf Wunsch von P. Klaus Damaske den afrikaansen Gottesdienst begleiten kann. So komme ich Zuhause in den regelmäßigen Genuss dieser schönen Lieder und lutherischen Liturgie.

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Zu Beginn des Jahres hatten uns Oma Scharlach und Schwägerin Ulrike besucht. Zusammen mit Angelika haben sie tagelang im Garten gewirtschaftet. Jetzt im nächsten Sommer und nach guten Frühjahrsregen sind auch einige der umgepflanzten Palmfarne (Cycads) ausgeschossen. Das ist beinah so erfreulich wie das rigorose Blühen der Rosen, Clivias und Frangipani in unserem herrlichen Garten oder die prächtigen Orchideen, die sie nun auch erfolgreich züchtet und im Haus ausstellt.

Inzwischen hat Angelika mehrere Artikel publiziert. Das gehört zu ihrem Beruf dazu. Jährlich sind das 2x aufwendige Einsätze ihrerseits. Das hat sie erfolgreich erledigt und ist auf den Vorstand der SAGV und des Deutsch Lehrervereins gewählt worden. Im akademischen Auftrag war sie dieses Mal in Stellenbosch und Durban. Der Besuch in Windhoek wurde kurzfristig abgesagt. Überall drückt der finanzielle Schuh und die Betroffenen müssen sich entsprechend anpassen.

Zwar macht sich Angelika nichts aus Facebook wie ich, aber dafür ist sie umso aktiver auf „Whatsapp“ mit Geschwistern und unseren Kindern. Sie spielt auch kein Scrabble online mehr, aber den „Tatort“ läßt sie nur ungerne ausfallen – so wie ich „Kommentaar“ (RSG 101). Durch die sogenannten Podcasts (“Potgooi”) können wir das jedoch bei passender Gelegenheit nachholen. So gibt es doch wesentliche Verbesserungen durch Forschung und Technik.

Für unsere Kinder hat Angelika dieses Mal ein „Familien Kochbuch“ gezaubert. In ihren langen Nächten hat sie dafür Bilder sortiert, Rezepte redigiert und fein sorgfältig sortiert. Ein schönes Buch ist es geworden und zwar in 5x Ausführung. Neben der Gärtnerei, dem Musizieren, Wandern und Lesen bleibt das ihre Lieblingsbeschäftigung. So freut sie sich schon sehr auf den Urlaub in den Bergen mit ihrer Mutter und Schwestern.

Unsere Söhne Christoph und Matthias

Christoph und Matz in Linz 2017Unser Ältester zu Besuch in Linz bei unserem Jüngsten und zwar im hiesigen Winter. Er war zur Hochzeit von Daniel Ackermann nach München geflogen, um dort als MC zu fungieren. Er hat seine Ferien ausgiebig genossen und sein Bruder Matz hat ihm sichtlich geholfen. Beide sind sichtlich ausgelassen beim “Selfie-Machen” für die Eltern Zuhause. Wie gut, dass dieser Besuch so reibungslos geklappt hat und dass er so gut voran kommt. Matt hat sich auch nach seiner Rugby Verletzung fabelhaft erholt. Wir sind darüber unserem Schöpfer und Erhalter von Herzen dankbar und glücklich. Wir wissen, es kann vor Abend anders werden. Da preisen wir Gottes Güte für jeden Tag unter seiner Gnade und Barmherzigkeit und gerade wenn wir gesund und fröhlich sind.

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Unsere Tochter Friederike

Mit ihrer lieben Mutter Angelika auf den Felsen von Margate (KZN) im Juli. Herrliches Wetter und nicht nur zum Schwimmen, sondern auch zum Sonnen und Faulenzen während ich wieder mal eine Vertretung von Schwager Kurt auf Kanzel und am Altar. Schöne und bunte Erinnerungen für den grauen Juristenalltag und als gute Abwechslung vom Studium, das sie erfolgreich an der Uni Pretoria abgeschlossen hat.

Unsere beiden jüngsten Söhne Detlev und Matthias

Zusammen und einträchtig wie bei Brüdern üblich unsere beiden Jüngsten beim Detlev und Matthias beim Dam 2017.pngBrauhaus am Dam nach einem erholsamen Tag unterwegs. In diesem Jahr waren sie beide weit weg im Ausland und haben dort ihre Ausbildung eifrig und fleißig und auch erfolgsversprechend vorangetrieben. Matt ist inzwischen fertig in Österreich (vorerst) und Detlev hat den „Honours“ an UP sehr gut hinter sich gebracht und ist jetzt in Columbia, MO mit dem Magister beschäftigt. Aber beide werden Euch versichern, dass es oft schwieriger war als dieses Bild vielleicht insinuiert. Dennoch oder vielleicht gerade deswegen ein herzhaftes: “Prost!” und “Wohl bekomms!”

Von einem Ort zum anderen

Fünf große Reisen habe ich in diesem Jahr unternommen und zwar in folgender Reihenfolge: Rom, Wittenberg, Addis Abeba, Nairobi und Dresden. Eigentlich war Dar es Salaam als letztes Ziel dran, weil ich dort die Zusammenarbeit in der theologischen Ausbildung und Austausch weiter auszubauen wollte, doch mit dem bevorstehenden Wechsel am LTS habe ich nach der finalen Semianarratsversammlung (“Board meeting”) umdisponiert und dieses nicht mehr weiter gemacht. Schade drum. Wie um manches andere übrigens auch.

Bei der Oktobersitzung ist endgültig klargeworden, dass die „members“ nicht bereit waren „bona fide“ bzw ernsthaft auf die gewichtigen Einwände von „board“ einzugehen. Im Gegenteil, im Alleingang haben sie bereits im Juni ihre Alternative auf dem Bleckmarer Missionsfest und in der sogenannten „Bekennenden Kirche“ veröffentlicht ohne Rücksprache oder gar Einwilligung des “boards”. Von ihrer Warte war das wohl alles „billig und recht“ (Auf Englisch: “We can!” bzw “typisch AMWay”), für uns dagegen bloß „mit einem Schein des Rechts“. Wir hätten uns so manche Sitzung sparen können. Schließlich ist der „board“ solidarisch bis zum Schluß fast geschlossen zurückgetreten bzw. „gegangen worden“ und ich habe nun den neuen Anfang in Wittenberg in Aussicht. Es tröstet uns bei diesem gravierenden Umbruch, was mein leider zu früh verstorbener Onkel Ulf öfter mal betonte: „Er wird es wohl machen!“ Ja, wir singen auch noch weiterhin: „Er sitzt im Regiment und führet alles wohl“. Letztendlich geschieht alles um IX willen „uns zugut“ und „trotz aller Feinde Toben.“  Ende des Monats übergebe ich als letztes noch die Finanzen ab und fange dann so Gott will und wir leben im neuen Jahr in Wittenberg wieder mal  – weder im alten Pfarrhaus noch im Schwarzen Kloster, sondern in der Alten Latein Schule (Old Latin School): Jüdenstraße 8 neu an. Die Startbedingungen erinnern stark an unseren Umzug vor 16 Jahren als wir nach Pretoria zogen. Wieder geht alles nur wegen der tatkräftigen Initiative und Unterstützung zuständiger Kirchenleitungen, die auch dieses internationale Lutherische Partnerschaftsprojekt gemeinsam anpacken. Noch einmal bin ich zuversichtlich, dass das ähnlich gut geht wie in den vergangenen 16 Jahren hier, denn Er hilft wie Er geholfen.

Mein Unterricht war in 2017 vielseitig und ergiebig. Wie Bischof Schulz damals in Enhlanhleni, habe ich neben Dogmatik und Symbolik Neues Testament mit meinen 10 Studenten im theologischen Kurs bearbeitet, aber nicht in Zulu, sondern Englisch, wie alle unsere Fächer. Da habe ich zuerst den Römerbrief behandelt, weil das mit Dogmatik passte und dann wie damals Professor Stolle in Oberursel mit Lukas weitergemacht und obwohl wir nicht weit über die ersten Hauptstücke gekommen sind, war es doch erstaunlich ertragreich. Der erste Band von Professor Just lag uns im Seminar vor und hat beim Übersetzen und Verstehen geholfen. Gerne hätte ich mit Johannes weiter gemacht. In Dogmatik ging es nach Prolegomena mit Anthropologie weiter. Leider stand Detlev Schulz neuer Band zur Sache noch nicht zur Verfügung. Wir haben uns derweil an Luthers De homine und De servio arbitrio probiert, ebenso wie an Melanchtons Loci communes und Gerhards Loci communes. Selbstverständlich hatte jeder Student auch Piepers Dogmatik I zur Ergänzung. In Symbolik habe ich Luthers Katechismen mit den 28 Anfängern im Präparationskurs durchbuchstabiert. Das ist jedes Mal ein Erlebnis, wie Studenten, die kaum in English Lesen und Schreiben können, schließlich nach einem Jahr bereits gut und z.T. sehr gut mitkommen.  Diese Studenten aus S.Sudan, Äthiopien, Kongo, Sambia, Liberia, Uganda und Südafrika werden mir fehlen. Besonders die „magnificent 8“ aus ELCSA, die aus NW und auf Geheiß ihres Bischofs gekommen sind, haben mich durchgehend positiv beeindruckt. Wenn die nächstes Jahr nach Mapumulo wechseln, wird das fürs LTS herb. Ebenso, wenn der Korrespondenzkurs mit den 25+ Äthiopier wegen Vernachlässigung ins Wasser fällt. Das sind typische Ungewissheiten um Weihnachten herum, außerdem ist das nicht mehr mein Bier.

Vieles habe ich wieder gelesen, mehr noch gestreift und einiges studiert: China, USA und hiesige gesellschaftlichen Geschichten und politischen Entwicklungen. Überblicksmäßig für die hiesige Lage möge der bekannte Bartholomäus Grill (Spiegel) mit seinem spannenden Artikel “Druckversion – Südafrika in der Krise_ _Fürchtet euch sehr_ – SPIEGEL ONLINE – Politik oder die Buchbesprechung: Two books that tell the unsettling tale of South Africa’s descent dienen.

Zum Lutherjahr gab es so viel Gutes und auch z.T. Neues und Erfreuliches. Das hat mich riesig fasziniert, aber ich werde jetzt keine Liste meiner Vorlieben posten. Das habe ich im Laufe des Jahres gemacht und das reicht. Die Ausstellungen in Wittenberg waren beeindruckend. Die theologischen Konferenzen in Rom und Wittenberg überaus ergiebig. Mal sehen, was von dieser Konzentration auf Luther noch kommt und ob ich drüben in Sachsen-Anhalt zum Abfertigen komme oder ob mich die Tagesgeschäfte so gefangen nehmen, dass ich zu nichts Weiterem mehr komme. Dankbar bin ich, dass die „Sache Luthers“ für mich nicht mit 2017 abgehakt ist, sondern dass ich daran weitermachen kann. Vielleicht geht das nach dem Ansatz von Baier und Kolb: „Luthers Theologie nach Wittenberger Art“ und zwar dreifach gestuft für Anfänger, Kenner und Fortgeschrittene. Mal sehen!

In Hatfield bin ich gerne und regelmäßig im Gym gewesen. Die Stunden mit JC & Co sind mir lieb geworden. Es gehört inzwischen für mich schon dazu. Komisch, wie ich gerade dort Freunde und guten Austausch gefunden habe. Im Sinne meiner Hausärztin: „The meaningful other“.  In Wittenberg habe ich inzwischen 3 Alternativen gefunden. Vielleicht findet sich ein passender Trainer. Andernfalls konzentriere ich mich auf meine 4 Wände, bewege mich dort angestrengt und versuche mich an bereits gelerntes zu erinnern.

Nun schließe ich ab und bereite mich auf Neues vor. Allein der Wechsel vom Telefonanbieter, Bankverbindungen und Gesundheitsversorgung nimmt Zeit in Anspruch. Über Weihnachten wird das sicherlich nicht leichter. Morgen holen wir unsere Jungs vom Flughafen ab. Es ist Weihnachten und wir sind als Familie froh und dankbar zusammen, dass der Herr so gut mit uns meint und uns so wunderbar geführt hat durch seine nimmer endigende Gnade und Güte. Er hilft, wie er geholfen!

Der Weihnachtsbaum steht. Die Lichter brennen. Der Puter ist im Gefrierfach. Die Spätzle sind bereits gekocht. Den „Triffle“ wird Angelika wohl noch her zaubern. Zum Festessen hat Angelika wieder Professor Gruner eingeladen und natürlich die Studenten, die nicht nach Hause konnten oder das LTS bereits als Zuhause sehen. Ich dagegen interessiere mich schon mehr für die Bundesliga als für die südafrikanischen Proteas oder sonstige Fauna und Flora. Es geht alles sehr schnell, eben als flögen wir davon. (Psalm 90,10)

10x Persönliches auf familienumfrage-2017

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