Friday, July 29, 2016

Victory News - Last Week of July

5:45 am on Monday morning right before Breakfast and Bible
Dear Friends,

What does a Japanese dish called Fugu and our celebration of the Lord’s Supper have in common?

Both require careful preparation before partaking.

Join me this Sunday as we explore an important passage in the Bible that teaches us about what the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper (aka Holy Communion) is, the incredible gifts that this sacrament actually gives, and how to be properly prepared to receive its blessings for your soul’s eternal good.

Get a head start on the sermon text by reading it ahead of time… 1 Corinthians 11:17-34.

Click here to watch this past Sunday’s sermon based on 1 Corinthians 9 about how our goal as a church is to win souls with the gospel, loving people enough to meet them where they are.

Victory Kids – For the summer months of July and August, we will have our Victory Kids ministry during the 9 am service only. There will be no Victory Kids during the 10:45 service. Victory Kids will return to two services at the end of summer

Volunteer For Victory Kids – Stop by the Victory Kids lobby any time after the first service to meet Liz Scheel, our new Victory Kids director. Also, register at the laptop kiosk to serve as a potential volunteer and automatically be entered in a drawing to win an iPad mini to be given away during Pastor Bill’s installation party on August 7th! You can also register using this link and this will also enter you in the drawing. Both current and new volunteers are asked to register using the link and all who register are entered to win.

Cassy “Thank-You!” Party – This Sunday, July 31, from 2-4 pm we are hosting a party for Cassy at the ministry center. Pease plan time to stop by and say “Thank-you!” to Cassy for taking our kids’ ministry from a handful of kids 9 years ago to the thriving ministry that it is today. There are 9 years of changed lives to celebrate! While this Sunday is Cassy’s last day in a paid staff position in kids’ ministry, we look forward to having Cassy as part of our church family worshiping with us and volunteering in other roles such as event planning.

Installation Celebration – August 7th! Monday will be Pastor Bill Limmer’s first official day at VotL. We’ll be having his installation on August 7th during both our regular Sunday morning services at 9 and 10:45 with a special tailgate party at noon in the parking immediately following the 2nd service. There will be grilled food, lemonade, games, a huge tent, and a lot of fun to be had come rain or shine. Please make plans to join us as we welcome Pastor Bill, his wife Jacky and their daughter Alyssa to our Franklin community and our church family!

Tuition Assistance Deadline is this Sunday, July 31 – The tuition assistance program is open, by application, to students and families that are current members of Victory of the Lamb who are either enrolled in, or intend to enroll in an area WELS grade school, high school, Martin Luther College, or the Seminary. This program is not funded through our church budget but through the generous gifts of individuals who value Christian education and seek to encourage young people to ultimately consider full-time preaching or teaching ministry one day. Applications and program guidelines can be picked up on the info table in the lobby or by visiting this link on our webpage. If you would like to donate to our Tuition Assistance fund, you can do so through our Online Giving page on our website.

Breakfast and Bible Group – Will meet this Monday August 1st in the ministry center lobby // all are welcome // free breakfast & coffee // 5:45-6:45 am // Just show up!

Support for Poulos Family -- As you may know from the prayer requests at church, John and Ashley Poulos' son Jackson is currently undergoing treatment for cancer. Please continue to pray for this family.  If you would like to help in a tangible way, you can purchase food/grocery/gas gift cards and place them in the box marked "Support for Poulos Family" in the welcome area at church. You can also sign up to bring a meal to the family through Care Calendar. To sign up, go to www.carecalendar.org. The Calendar ID is 237748, and the security code is 4799. Any dates that have "Dinner" in red are open for you to bring a meal! Due to a nut allergy in the family, please be sure to prepare all meals nut-free. Any questions? Feel free also to email Sammi Goodger.
 
Christian Victory Celebration – In His love and wisdom that never fails, our gracious God called home the soul of Ida Guenther this week Wednesday. Ida worshipped regularly with us at Victory of the Lamb and I was privileged to serve her the Lord’s Supper during worship as recently as two weeks ago. Ida was the mother of our member Jim Guenther and the grandma of Jeff and Jake Guenther. View her obituary as well as visitation and funeral details online here. I will be officiating Tuesday morning at St John’s on 68th and Forest Home.

The SOUL Ride – On Saturday, August 13th our church is hosting a motorcycle ride to raise financial support for the vital work of WELS Lutherans for Life and the local pregnancy care centers they operate. For more info about participating visit the event page on our website.

Sharing Christ’s Victory,

Pastor Ben

Friday, July 22, 2016

Victory News - 4th Week of July

Nothing better on a 90 degree day! Having fun at the reception for Liz as our Victory Kids Director.

Dear Friends,

As a church… Why do we do what we do? Why do we say that having an outward focus is one of our core values? Why do we say that the needs of people outside the church should take priority over the preferences of those inside the church?

This Sunday’s message based on 1 Corinthians 9 provides a helpful filter for questions like these with the phrase… “for the sake of the gospel” (1 Corinthians 9:23).

So join me this Sunday morning as we view both our church’s ministry and our personal lives as Christians through this gospel filter and apply what we might consider as the apostle Paul’s personal mission statement: I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings (1 Corinthians 9:22b-23).

Click here to watch this past Sunday’s sermon about how “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up” (1 Corinthians 8:1).

Victory Kids – For the summer months of July and August, we will have our Victory Kids ministry during the 9 am service only. There will be no Victory Kids during the 10:45 service. Victory Kids will return to two services at the end of summer

Welcome Liz!
Volunteer For Victory Kids – Stop by the Victory Kids lobby any time after the first service to meet Liz Scheel, our new Victory Kids director. Also, register at the laptop kiosk to serve as a potential volunteer and automatically be entered in a drawing to win an iPad mini! You can also register using this link and this will also enter you in the drawing. Both current and new volunteers are asked to register and all who register are entered to win.

Volunteer For Victory Kids – Sunday, July 31 will be Cassy’s last day as our Children’s Ministry Director. Please plan time to stop by and say “Thank-you!” to Cassy for taking our kids’ ministry from a handful of kids 9 years ago to the thriving ministry that it is today. There are 9 years of changed lives to celebrate!

Bible 101 Continues July 26th – Bible 101 is a 4 week class and is the next step for those who would like to know more about the basic teachings of the Bible. It is also for anyone who would like to receive the sacrament of Holy Communion. // 4 consecutive Tuesday evenings from 6:30-8:00 pm starting July 19th. If you missed the first lesson this past week and you still want to jump in with this group, just let me know. We’d still love to have you join us!

Installation Celebration – Save the Date! August 1 will be Pastor Bill Limmer’s first official day at VotL. We’ll be having his official installation on August 7th during both our regular Sunday morning services with a special tailgate party at noon in the parking immediately following the 2nd service. There will be grilled food, lemonade, games, a huge tent, and a lot of fun to be had come rain or shine. Please make plans to join us as we welcome Pastor Bill, his wife Jacky and their daughter Alyssa to our Franklin community and our church family!

The Tuition Assistance Program is open, by application, to students and families that are current members of Victory of the Lamb who are either enrolled in, or intend to enroll in an area WELS grade school, high school, Martin Luther College, or the Seminary. This program is not funded through our church budget but through the generous gifts of individuals who value Christian education and seek to encourage young people to ultimately consider full-time preaching or teaching ministry one day. Applications and program guidelines can be picked up on the info table in the lobby or by visiting this link on our webpage. If you would like to donate to our Tuition Assistance fund, you can do so through our Online Giving page on our website.

Breakfast and Bible Group – Will meet on Monday July 25th in the ministry center lobby // all are welcome // free breakfast & coffee // 5:45-6:45 am // Just show up!

Sermon Series Retreat – Last week I had a fruitful sermon series planning get-away with the pastors from St Paul’s in Muskego. Pastor Bill also got to join us for a day which was great! I’ve really enjoyed getting to know Bill this past month as we’ve been planning his transition here and I’m excited to have him coming on board as my Team Victory teammate! With special thanks for Pastor Jeffrey Bonack from Muskego we’ve got another year’s worth of well-crafted sermon series outlines that are faithful to the Bible, respectful of the historic church years, timely and relevant to the conversations and issues of today’s people.

Lead Pastor Feedback – Thank you to all of you who took the time to provide feedback on my strengths and weaknesses as a pastor, especially in regard to how I can grow and thrive as a teammate with Pastor Bill coming on board as an associate pastor. We had some great conversation at our Leadership Team meeting this past week regarding the comments. There were also some very specific suggestions and remarks regarding my blind spots and areas for improvement. I greatly appreciated these as well and plan to take some more time to prayerfully consider them.

It was affirming for me to be encouraged to continue pouring my best energy into preaching and worship, outreach and evangelism, and teaching. It was also freeing to be encouraged to delegate more, to offload as much administration type responsibilities as I can, to grow in the areas of time management and efficiency, and to unleash more people in doing ministry so that I can have more time for my own family too. Pastor Bill was also able to attend our meeting and participate in this conversation which I think was very helpful. We both want to serve well together with our strengths and passions for the good of the ministry of the gospel.

One immediate step I took this week was to download an app called Priority Matrix which came highly recommended as a productivity tool to help me focus on what matters most and to manage projects that have many moving parts. Google Keep is another app I’ve recently begun using to help me keep track of prayer requests, to-do lists, and creative ideas.

If you didn’t get a chance to fill out the lead pastor survey, I would still welcome any personal feedback. Shoot me an email please.

Sharing Christ’s Victory,

Pastor Ben 

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Victory News - 2nd Week of July

4th of July Parade
Dear Friends,

As another week draws to a close this evening, my heart is tugged by all the tension in our world. Yet at the same time I know that once again tomorrow morning God will speak to my heart a message of peace and hope—the message of a Savior who said: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Don’t you need to hear that? I do…and I’ll be the one preaching it!

(Click here to watch this past Sunday’s sermon, “It’s a Perfect Time to Grow Up!” Special thanks to our very own Prof. Bivens for filling in for me and preaching so I could officiate my brother-in-law’s wedding this past weekend down in Illinois.)

Mulch Day – What a fantastic crew who showed up today to mulch and water here at the minister center. Thank you so much, everyone. The place looks great!

Victory Kids – For the summer months of July and August, we will have our Victory Kids ministry during the 9 am service only. There will be no Victory Kids during the 10:45 service. Victory Kids will return to two services at the end of summer.

Open House and Pizza Party – On Thursday evening, July 21st from 6-8 pm all parents, volunteers, and Victory Kids supporters are invited to a pizza party at the ministry center. We will be welcoming Liz Scheel, our new Victory Kids director, and to give you all an opportunity to get to meet her and other members of the Victory Kids leadership team. This is also a time for you to give us feedback and for you to find out about ways you can be involved in the Victory Kids ministry – with the chance to win a free iPad mini!

4th of July Parade – Getting to participate in the Franklin 4th of July parade is always so much fun. Special thanks to the Quest teens for decorating the float, all who donated candy, and all who showed up to help the day of the parade…including Pastor Bill and his wife Jacky which I thought was pretty cool! Something that wasn’t cool was me trying to twirl a baton (it’s harder than it looks!)…unlike Taylor who absolutely rocked the house for us throwing it up and the air! To check out some pics from the parade, visit our Facebook page.

New Bible 101 Class Beginning July 19thBible 101 is a 4 week class and is the next step for those who would like to know more about the basic teachings of the Bible. It is also for anyone who would like to receive the sacrament of Holy Communion. // 4 consecutive Tuesday evenings from 6:30-8:00 pm starting July 19th. Contact me to register for Bible 101! All materials provided.

Bible 201 – No class this coming Wednesday at 6:30 pm at the ministry center

Installation of Pastor Bill – August 1 will be Pastor Bill Limmer’s first official day at VotL. We’ll be having his installation on August 7th during our regular Sunday morning services with a special tailgate party at noon in the parking immediately following the 2nd service. Stay tuned for details about the fun!

The Tuition Assistance Program is open, by application, to students and families that are current members of Victory of the Lamb who are either enrolled in, or intend to enroll in an area WELS grade school, high school, Martin Luther College, or the Seminary. This program is not funded through our church budget but through the generous gifts of individuals who value Christian education and seek to encourage young people to ultimately consider full-time preaching or teaching ministry one day. Applications and program guidelines can be picked up on the info table in the lobby or by visiting this link on our webpage. If you would like to donate to our Tuition Assistance fund, you can do so through our Online Giving page on our website.

Breakfast and Bible Group – Won’t meet on the 11th. Will meet on July 18th and 25th in the ministry center lobby // all are welcome // free breakfast & coffee.

Pastor Ben Out of Town – This week I’ll be heading up north to do sermon series / worship planning with the pastors from St Paul’s in Muskego. We’ve been doing this the last couple years and it’s a great opportunity to engage with local brothers in the ministry and work together to put forth a plan to share God’s Word for the upcoming year. I will be back in plenty of time to preach for church on Sunday. I will have limited phone and internet access though during the week. I would love though if you have any ideas or suggestions for sermon series to please send them my way.

God's Abundant Blessings – Although attendance doesn’t always tell the whole story, we sure have reason to thank God for his blessings this past fiscal year. From July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016 our Sunday morning attendance increased by 41.5%. That means 15,862 people heard God’s Word preached throughout the year. Thus weekly attendance increased to 305 up from 215. During this same period Victory Kids also increased by about the same percentage to 55 a week up from 38 a week the previous year (kids and helpers). God be praised that we have an opportunity to keep reaching out to more people this new fiscal year!

Along with the growth in attendance, God has also poured out his blessings on our church through the generosity of our members and guests in giving. Our general fund is in good shape and we’re in solid financial standing to be able to support the addition of Pastor Bill coming in August, as well fund all of the current landscaping projects to completion. If you’d like more details there will be a narrative budget document available this Sunday on the info tables.

Awake and Alive – The Christian even for the 18-25 generation continues its Summer group series Sunday evening July 17th in Muskego at The Bridge, on the grounds of St Paul’s Muskego. Come for a great night of community with our famous $2 dinner, special music with Mike Westendorf and the Awake and Alive band as well as great discussion and encouragement for your Christian journey. See awakalive.com

Sharing Christ’s Victory,

Pastor Ben