For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!’ And they began to celebrate” (Luke 15:24).

Prodigal Son Parable painting by Bertram Poole

I love reading the Gospel of Luke chapter 15, which includes the Parable of the Lost Sheep (Luke 15:4-7); the Parable of the Lost Coin (Luke 15:8-10); and the Parable of the Lost Son (15:11-32). In each parable the lost is found, which is always a cause for great celebration. The shepherd finds the lost sheep and exclaims, “Rejoice with me!” A woman finds the lost coin and shouts, “Rejoice with me!” A father regains a lost son, draws him close and cries, “Let us feast and celebrate!”

During these last few months our Northwestern Ohio Synod has had much to celebrate. In June a delegation from the Global Mission Board was able to travel to Serbia and spend time with our global companions from the Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Augsburg Confession in Serbia, a member of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). This was the Global Mission Board’s first international trip since 2019.

In August and September, we celebrated three joy filled Ordinations and Installations, with three more right around the corner. Our most recent Ordination and Installation was Pastor Robin Small at St. Mark’s, Bowling Green, on September 10 (see picture below).

Last Sunday morning, we started a fire, when the people of God at Lutheran Church of the Master in Perrysburg gathered in the parking lot after worship to burn a mortgage (see picture below). There was a delicious meal accompanied by great stories and peals of laughter. Good food, great stories, and lots of laughter. It is so good to celebrate all that God does for us and through us.

So, what are you celebrating these days? Drop me a line. I’d love to hear about some of your celebrations.