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The “Bear” Essentials

We will be collecting “Bear Necessities”: underwear and socks, for students at the Hambright School.

The Social Ministry Committee is once again asking you to help the students at Hambright School. We will be collecting “Bear Necessities”: underwear and socks in sizes 8-10, 10-12, 12-14   boys or girls. The collection will be from February 2nd till February 23rd. Bring your donations to church and put them in the box provided that has the Bear on the front. The box will be in the narthex. Please bring only new items in their original packaging. Your tremendous response for the children at Hambright is really appreciated.  Thank you.


Lutheran Marriage Encounter Weekend

What better way for you and your spouse to spend a weekend than escaping from all the daily pressures and responsibilities to search out and discover an even warmer, closer, more joyful marital relationship!

ATTENTION MARRIED COUPLES:  Have you signed up for your spring Lutheran Marriage Encounter Weekend? What better way for you and your spouse to spend a weekend than escaping from all the daily pressures and responsibilities to search out and discover an even warmer, closer, more joyful marital relationship!  The Pennsylvania spring Weekends are:

March 28-30, 2014 at Park Inn Radisson, West Middlesex, PA,  where each couple has a king bed and their own hot tub — an hour north of Pittsburgh, just off of Interstate 80

April 25-27, 2014 at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in State College—Happy Valley’s premier conference center located on a quiet hillside with views of the Nittany Mountains

We are also accepting registrations for the fall Weekends:  September 12-14, 2014 at Spruce Lake Retreat Center, Canadensis, PA in the heart of the Poconos and September 26-28, 2014 at Olmsted Retreat Center, Ludlow, PA,  an hour north of DuBois.   Weekends are for married couples whether you have been married only a few months or upwards of 50 years, and they run from Friday at 8 PM to Sunday around 4 PM.  Two nights lodging, 5 meals for each of you, and all supplies are included.   There is a $45 per couple registration fee, plus toward the end of the weekend, you will be given an opportunity to make a confidential contribution toward the continuation of the program.  Register now to avoid being disappointed!  Simply go to the website: and sign up using a credit card to pay the $45 registration fee, or mark the option to pay by check, and you will be notified where to send your check.   For questions, or if you would like a brochure with registration form mailed to you, contact PA Directors of Lutheran Marriage Encounter, Fred & Julie Schamber, at or 724-325-3166.


From the Pastor

January 2014

The first day of the year is known by several titles. The most obvious, of course, is January first. The next most obvious is the name “New Years Day.” In the church, the first day of the year is also the 8th day of Christmas (Eight Maids a Milking – a reminder of the eight beatitudes). And it is also a festival known either as the Circumcision of Jesus or the Name of Jesus. It remembers the time when Mary and Joseph presented Jesus in the temple for circumcision and the declaration of his name. This event can be found in St. Luke 2: 21-38.

The naming of Jesus, while an established Jewish liturgical event, was also a public event. His name was spoken out loud by Mary and Joseph. In Luke’s account the man Simeon proclaimed that Jesus is the one who is a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for the glory of Israel. And the prophet Anna praised God, to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.

Now, in this new year, make it a point…resolve if you wish…for you also to speak the name of Jesus publicly. Make it a point to share how the name of Jesus helps you, speaks to you, saves you from the power of sin and death.  Make it a point to share the name of Jesus and how it is proclaimed and worshiped at Holy Spirit. Make it a point to share the name of Jesus through your witness, service and stewardship.

Let us all resolve to live, act and bear witness in the name of Jesus, sharing his love in word and deed. By this mission may this congregation be known to all who encounter it.




Adult Education Class

Check out the January Schedule.

Adult Education at Holy Spirit    Winter/Spring 2014*

(*Adult education happens after Sunday worship, about 10:45 a.m.)

Are you ready for new seasons filled with awesome times of learning?

The hits just keep on coming! Join in and welcome our special guests for adults forums, and some Bible study “twists” to keep us thinking. Join your Holy Spirit friends for good conversation, interesting topics and…coffee. There has to be coffee!


Epiphany Term

It’s a different topic each week. From the global church to our life right around the corner and from issues related to aging to how everyone can have fun at church camp.


January 5: Epiphany Blessing of the House

As we exit worship this day, we will stop by the front door as the pastor offers a traditional “Blessing of Our House” for the new year. Children will receive a craft to take home, and each household will receive a copy of the house blessing to use at their home. It’s a great way to begin the new year by asking God to bless the place we call home.


January 12: Lutherans of Ethiopia: A Holy and  Courageous Church

Lancaster County has a growing community of Lutherans from Ethiopia. Holy Spirit member Melese Anamo will share the story of the church in his native land and how it brings the gospel to people across the country.


 January 19: Our Companions in Christ in Tanzania

Pastor Eshbach will be describing the valuable connection God has provided with our brothers and sisters in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania. He will be joined by the Rev. John Mwasakilali from the Konde Diocese, who is currently studying at Gettysburg Seminary. You’ll see lots of photos of the church at work in Tanzania. And yes, there will be several photos of lions, and elephants and crocodiles, oh my!

 January 26: What a Relief For Lutheran World Relief!

Lutheran World Relief is known for its quilts and care kits. But there is much more! Visiting us this day is Mrs. Beth McKinley, Philanthropic Advisor for the Mid-Atlantic Region of LWR. She will be sharing with us about the mission of LWR beyond the distribution of the care kits. We will also learn about our new Holy Spirit quilting group and how we can help them.


Thursday Night Bible Study

The Thursday night dinner and Bible Study at the Apple Tree Restaurant begins the New Year on January 9th.

The Thursday night dinner and Bible Study at the Apple Tree Restaurant begins the New Year on January 9th. The title of the January class is “The First 500 Years”. From the start of the church as recorded in the Book of Acts, through years of persecution and acceptance, we will study the start and growth of Christianity and how we are the descendants of the evangelical witness of many years ago. Dinner is at 6:00 p.m. The study is at 7:00 p.m. and the Holy Eucharist is celebrated at 8:00 p.m.