The book bag I use on Sundays, for my Confirmation and Sunday School material, was a gift from Connie Carver. The side of the bag reads: “Give me grace and good coffee.” If you were raised Lutheran, you understand those are two of the most important items in the life of a Lutheran – especially those of us who are Scandinavian as well. So it’s no surprise that our after-service coffee is a time-honored tradition. It’s an opportunity to pause a moment, with a cup and with a friend.

With that in mind, the newly formed Outreach Committee has decided, in our desire to help grow our community, to focus on the coffee (the grace is covered quite well, thank the Lord). On the last Sunday of the month – today included – we will be providing gourmet coffee and fancy goodies during coffee time, as our way of encouraging you to visit with us and with each other.

If you are brand new, please identify yourselves to the people at the coffee table, so we can welcome you and offer you information about our community of faith. If you have visited with us before, please stay for a bit so we can reconnect with you. And if you are here every week, please linger to get caught up with an old friend or make a new one.

The chance to chat with each other is a blessing in this busy world, and an opportunity to extend our bond from the sanctuary out into the world. Our sense of community is a source of strength, and it grows stronger with every new face. The better we get to know each other, the better equipped we are to pray for each other, to serve each other, and to find ways to celebrate and collaborate (especially for events like Pastor’s birthday luncheon next month – don’t forget to get your tickets.)

Thank you for joining us this morning. God has the grace. We have the coffee. We hope you’ll be blessed by both.

“Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.”          Romans 15:7