Public

May 23 2021 - 9:00am

Pentecost Geraniums

$15.50

See the News page for more information.  Use order comments to indicate a dedication to be printed in the weekly email (in honor of ...; in memory of ...; in celebration of ..., etc.) 

$15.50

Sunday Morning Adult Bible Study

The Sunday Morning Bible Study has met most Sundays, September through May, since 1994, and is always open to members and visitors of all ages. We look forward to meeting again once our church returns to in-person gatherings!

Although we are a fun and supportive group, our primary style of study is academic in nature. Typically, when studying a book of the bible, one chapter is read aloud, followed by discussion of historical and cultural context, literary character, and theological meaning. Biblical dictionaries, atlases, Christian and Jewish commentaries, the Koran, Confucius, video lectures, and other sources are consulted in class to enrich and inform the discussion. 

 

 

Lutheran Disaster Response

Lutheran Disaster Response brings God’s hope, healing and renewal to people whose lives have been disrupted by disasters in the United States and around the world. When the dust settles and the headlines change, we stay to provide ongoing assistance to those in need. Follow this link to learn more about current projects and make a donation. 

A Welcome Message

Welcome to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, where our doors are wide open to people from all backgrounds.

We want to be a place of blessing. If you are just beginning to wonder about Christianity, this is a safe place to ask questions and explore possibilities. If you have been journeying with Christ for some time, this is a place to grow deeper in your walk as a disciple. If you have wandered here and there or up and down in your spiritual journey, this is a place to speculate, marvel, seek and find.

And, whether you live out your faith primarily through study, meditation, emotional experience or social activism, you can find others at Good Shepherd who share your spiritual temperament. This is a place of open doors, open minds, open hearts, open hands.

Life-giving Teachings

Here are a few snippets of teachings that we find life-giving. We recognize that faith is an ongoing journey, and we do not demand adherence to a particular understanding of creed, respecting each person's integrity in their relationship with God and each person's unfolding journey of spiritual growth.

About Being Lutheran

As Christians with roots in the Lutheran tradition, we are Christian first and Lutheran second. Lutherans have a lot of freedom - in how to structure themselves into a church (for example, bishops or no bishops), how to put together a worship service, what kind of music to use. Over time, as is true of any church, certain ways of doing things become the expected procedures. But we are always free to make modifications in how we deliver the good news of what God is doing in Jesus Christ. The what stays constant.

Typically, Lutherans are known to be people who embrace a "both and" approach. For example, each Christian is both saint and sinner (both completely forgiven and still in daily need of God's grace), we hear God's word to us as both law and gospel (both an accusation of where we fall short and a word of unconditional gift of love and blessing).

About God

We know God as Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier (as Father, Son and Holy Spirit). We teach that out of nothing God created the world and all that is in it and continues in ongoing creation. Faith and science do not need to be in conflict - the faithful proclamation of the who and what of creation and the scientific postulation of the how of creation ask and answer different questions.

In Jesus Christ the human being, God was fully present. Through Christ, God accomplished the salvation of the world and is still working out that salvation.

The Holy Spirit is the ongoing presence of God in the world, bringing courage, strength, comfort and inspiration; empowering faithful community; giving gifts of faith, hope, love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control and other gifts, bringing together people who would never imagine themselves as sisters and brothers.

About the Bible

The Bible is a book of many books - including pre-history, history, poetry, letters, visions and accounts of Jesus' life. We read the Bible as the inspired word of God to us. We teach that the Bible was not dictated by God, but that people were inspired by God to write. In reading, we take into account the historical and cultural considerations and issues of translation. We see that some things are descriptive of the times they were written and show us how God was working through the people and circumstances of that time: how people discerned God's will, what happened in their relationship to God as they followed and wandered and as God remained faithful to God's promises. Some of these historically and culturally conditioned things no longer apply today. We also see that some things are timeless and prescriptive of how we can most fruitfully live our lives in any era. It can get pretty tricky to discern which things are culturally conditioned and which things are timeless truth, so we continue to engage in dialogue with Scripture, tradition, scholarship, and one another. We see that reading the Bible breathes God's presence to us, and provides a dependable rule and guide for life. No person or group reads the Bible without filters of culture, social location, historical situation, personality, or need. This means that we must always approach the Bible with a spirit of humility, conscious of the limits we bring as human interpreters while also seeking to be prayerfully open to the truth of God's guidance.

About Experiencing God

In addition to Bible reading and study, we experience God through prayer, worship, community, and every-day moments.

Art, poetry, music, drama, nature, dreams, walking a labyrinth, silence, retreats, prayer, meditation, worship, dance, sports, laughter, tears, massage, yoga, serving and being served, protesting, friendship, love, forgiveness, generosity, gratitude, life passages and many other experiences can bring us a sense of God's presence.
About faith

Everyone has faith - in something or someone. Faith in God comes to us as a gift. We receive this gift simply by trusting that it is true that God loves us - that God forgives us, welcomes us. Jesus shows us that God is for us. Another word for faith is "trust." Faith is not the opposite of doubt. In fact, doubt can bring us to deeper understanding and deeper trust in God. A tested faith is a strengthened faith. Faith can grow through spiritual practices such as prayer and God-talk conversations with others, through "aha" moments of insight, through suffering, through deep joy, and through experiences of God such as those outlined above.

About Salvation

Salvation is not just about getting to heaven. Salvation is made real to us in this life as a lifting of bondage, brokenness, burden. Just as Jesus as messiah brought the reign of God near by bringing sight to the blind, healing to the lame, cleansing for lepers, hearing to the deaf, new life to the dead, and good news to the poor, so too today salvation is visible in healing, wholeness, blessing, peace, new life and social transformation. As Christians, we see that salvation comes to us through Jesus Christ. We understand that the Christian church has historically presented several Biblical understandings of how Jesus accomplishes reconciliation between God and humans. We also understand that, similar to the experience of falling in love, some people come to a sudden dramatic moment of accepting Jesus, while for others the experience of being a disciple is a gradual awakening. Both paths are equally valid. Also, we welcome people at all stages of clarity, doubt, peace and discontent in their spiritual walk. We proclaim our faith in Jesus as savior, but we do not condemn those who follow other faith traditions and, indeed, are glad to walk hand-in-hand with them.

Jazz Prayer

Good Shepherd's Jazz Prayer service will resume in September! Jazz Prayer takes places on the third Friday of the month at 7:30pm. Stay tuned for more details!


United Power

United Power is the nation's first and largest network of multi-faith, broad-based citizens' organizations with 7 decades of experience winning tough battles on housing, health care, education, living wages, and immigration rights. Currently they are working on issues of mental health: creating alternatives to pushing the mentally ill into the prison pipeline, Housing in Chicago: reclaiming foreclosed housing on the southside and Gun Violence: working to change manufacturing. 

Donate to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

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Use this to make a donation to Good Shepherd's general operating fund.  Any dollar amount may be given. Just change the amount in your cart.

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Flock O'Readers

Come join us!  We meet on the following Wednesdays at 2:30pm to discuss new books, favorite reads and favorite authors. If you like to read and share with others about what you have read, this group is for you. We are currently meeting on Zoom.  Email the church office or let Barb Hunt know you would like to join the group. Our choices are always insteresting - and we share the good and not so good about each book.

  • February 24 - a love story
  • March 24 - musicians, music, music history books
  • April 28 - a book about craftspeople, blue collar, non-professional people

 

About Us

At Good Shepherd, we value diversity. Our mission statement, in its brief form, says it well: Embracing the diversity of God's creation and celebrating our oneness in Christ. We embrace diversity by welcoming all people regardless of race, nationality, marital status, family composition, sexual orientation, gender-identity, socioeconomic status, or physical ability. In embracing diversity we seek to be a bridge of understanding among people, to live in the creative tension of differences, to be a blessing to a community and a world where dialogue, understanding and collaboration among diverse people is needed. Read more »

What to expect

Our friendly community is diverse, lively, informal and filled with children. We are gay, straight, young, old, and multi-ethnic. Our goal is a warm welcome that stays with you long after you leave.

Worship changes frequently with many different kinds of music, from classical to contemporary. We enjoy jazz, blues and gospel worship. The service is liturgical, filled with music, and easy to follow in the bulletin. While the two worship services are very similar, special music generally happens at the later service.

Weekly communion is open to all with a choice of wine and grape juice, bread and gluten free wafers.

Donate to Building for Mission

A fire in the roof rapidly spread through the attic in September 2018. Smoke and water damage affected every part of the building, furnishings and personal property. The cost of rebuilding, replacing and modernizing the structure and effects is over $3 million.  While insurance covers some costs, more than $1 million is the responsibility of the congregation. We continue to seek funds for the modernization. Would you like to donate towards the effort? This link will take you to the donation page. 

Kidz Express

Kidz Express was founded as part of Good Shepherd's social ministry in 1997 to move forward in faith by providing programs and services for students in Austin. Today Kidz Express is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization; however, it remains closely partnered with Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. While programming for over 60 children takes place each weekday and for the bulk of the summer, volunteers are always needed on Tuesday nights at 6pm to help with tutoring. To volunteer at Kidz Express please talk with Pastor Kathy or go to: www.kidzexpress.org. Read more »

Reformation 500 Celebration!

Reformation Sunday, 2017, was the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 theses on the door of the Castle church in Wittenberg, Germany. At Good Shepherd we have been celebrating this historic event in various ways to focus on what the Reformation means.

We began our celebration year on Oct. 30, 2016 at Thatcher Woods Pavilion where we shared a meal, had some fun dressing up and taking pictures with a photo booth, and held a silent auction. We held a potluck and Jell-O cook-off in November. What is a Lutheran potluck without Jell-O? During the Education hour, adults started at the beginning with a Lutheran Basics class and discussed how the German political scene at the time influenced Luther. Read more »

Vacation Bible School

LIfting up prayers that Good Shepherd Vacation Bible School 2021 will be a go! Our VBS is held the third week of June. In 2021, our dates will be June 21-25, 5-8pm. Registration will begin in early May.

Our VBS begins with a meal, then students move through rotations which include music, games, science, and drama. VBS is open to students that are 3 years old through outgoing fifth graders.

Questions can be directed to Deaconess Debbie Speer.

Make a Memorial Donation

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Use this to make a donation to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in memory of someone recently deceased.  You may change the dollar amount of the donation in your cart to any amount you desire.

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Looking for a Church for Your Marriage?

Good Shepherd recognizes that love is a gift from God for LGBT couples and heterosexual couples.

As a Christian congregation we celebrate with couples who have found a life-long partner and wish to make a binding commitment to one another. We happily perform wedding services for all couples. Wedding preparation guidelines for all couples include three counseling sessions. Please contact Pastor Kathy for more information and a copy of our Wedding Guidelines.

Celebrate Pentecost with Red Geraniums

Sunday, May 23, 2021 - 9:00am

Help "Paint the Sanctuary Red" on Pentecost with a garden of geraniums or help paint the Good Shepherd garden pink with wild geraniums. Order through the mail with the order form provided in the May newsletter, in person during office hours at church, or online here. Please note in the comments if you are choosing a potted or a wild geranium and if you'd like to dedicate your flowers to someone. Pentecost is on May 23 and plants must be ordered by May 9th. 

After Pentecost, if you choose a potted red geranium, plants may be taken home to be enjoyed in your own garden.  

Title Post date File
Advent - Those Who Dream Dec 4 2020
Building Usage Guidelines During Pandemic Sep 24 2020
Restoration Plan and Guidelines for COVID-19 Sep 24 2020
Leader Application for Children & Youth Ministry Aug 29 2018
Parental Consent Form Aug 29 2018
Child Safety Policy Aug 29 2018
2018 Summer Congregation Retreat Brochure Apr 19 2018
Automatic Donation Form Oct 18 2016
Request Money from the Memorial Endowment Fund Jun 30 2015
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