University Lutheran ChurchLutheran Campus Ministry

at Arizona State University - 340 E. 15th Street, Tempe, AZ 85281-6612 (480) 967-3543 (map)
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Happy New Year!

Pastor Gary McCluskey
Pastor Gary N. McCluskey

Pastor's Notes
Gary N. McCluskey, pastor

Happy New Year! So, what will be new in 2017? Many things, no doubt. Some good, some not good. There will be events and incidents that are predictable, and there will be surprises, even shocks.

Here at ULC/LCM one thing we are planning for 2017 is marking the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. It was October 31, 1517 that an unknown priest in a backwoods college town is said to have posted 95 theses on a church door. The rest, as it is often said, is history. And what a history it has been! When the twenty-first century was arriving, many lists of the most influential people during the past 1,000 years were assembled. On all those I saw, Martin Luther finished no lower than 10th most influential! 

Lutherans do not celebrate the Reformation. Who would celebrate the division of the church? Yet, remarkable rediscovery of the good news of the gospel is reason to certainly recognize this anniversary. Here at ULC/LCM we are planning on doing something most every month. One forum in January will have Aiko Yamada Mancini, our music director making a presentation on our Lutheran heritage of music. 

Other events will be further forums on Luther and Lutheranism. Also a forum on lesser known yet very influential leaders of the Reformation. We will learn about reformers beyond Lutheranism. Currently I am working with Roman Catholic Bishop Nevares and our own Bishop Talmage to have a discussion on the ASU campus in fall (October 10?) concerning the 32 points of agreement adopted by both Lutherans and Roman Catholics. You may have noticed Pope Francis went to a Swedish Lutheran church this past October as a result of such agreements. 

So, I have a proposal for a New Year's resolution for you: Why not plan on attending one or more of such sessions? Why not read at least one book on Luther and/or the Reformation during the course of the year? Our church library has many. And I am happy to loan items from my library. I am also happy to talk about which book/reading might be best for your interest.  This just might be an opportunity to refresh your confirmation learning. (by the way Augsburg Fortress has a Small Catechism app for your!)

Check out other places, events regarding this observance. Some are listed elsewhere in this newsletter. 

So, Happy New Year! One thing predictable for 2017 is that God and God's grace will be with us!

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