CAPITAL CAMPAIGN PROGRESS
Our capital campaign "A Memorial for the People" had pledges of $2.56 million. The campaign has received $1.84 million to date. We have reduced debt by making principal payments totaling $254,000 so far in 2014. The campaign cabinet wants to remind the congregation that the loan will be re-amortized on 1 December. If you are considering fulfilling the remainder of your pledge in 2014, it would be very beneficial to the church's debt reduction program for you to provide your gift to the church now in October or November. Our goals are being met, however, the sooner we pay off our debt the sooner were able to put all of our gifts toward ministry. So let's make that final push a big success!
Freedom of Religion Threatened
Jesus says, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's" (Matthew 22:21). Mayor Annise Parker's administration has targeted five area pastors with subpoenas demanding that they submit all their communication that refer to sexual mores, the mayor and the recently passed so-called Equal Rights Ordinance (ERO). This shocking move is offensive to us as citizens of a nation founded on the principle of free speech and freedom of religion (First Amendment to the Constitution). While pastors should have no problem submitting their proclamation to the government as pastors and in that way rendering to God what is God's, they should be free to defy this frightening demand from the government on the basis of the Bill of Rights. It is right to wonder if this isn't a preview of attractions to come; when government operators will use the power of the state to silence Christians. Let us pray not. Kyre, eleison!
Because You Asked
Pastor Murray is being sent to the convention of the Lutheran Church in the Philippines 20-24 October to represent the LCMS. The Lutheran Church in the Philippines is a partner church with which the LCMS has full altar and pulpit fellowship. Since it is a partner church with the LCMS, it is important that our church body send a representative to this convention, at which he will stand in for President Harrison. It is an exciting opportunity for Pastor Murray and he will be glad to tell you about his visit with our Lutheran brothers and sisters in the Philippines when he returns. Pray for his safe travel.
If you have suggestions about things that you'd like to see in the Memorial Messenger, please let the office staff know. We would love to hear from you.
Rev. Dr. Scott R. Murray
Memorial Lutheran Church and School