Category Archives: Ministry

Gethsemane Lutheran Worship Changes Due to COVID-19

Dear Gethsemane members and friends,

Due to the spread of COVID-19 in the city of Austin, our worship services are modified. Following the guidelines of local health officials and the Southwestern-Texas Synod, we have established new ways of worshiping together as a community of faith. These are subject to change as the situation evolves, so please check back regularly for updates.

Online and In-Person Worship Schedule

Online Worship Options:

  • Attend our live Zoom Worship Service every Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m. You may also stream this worship service through Facebook Live (details below).
  • Watch the recording of the live Zoom worship service on your own time from our Gethsemane Facebook page.
  • Watch the recording of the in-person worship service on your own time once it is posted to our Gethsemane Facebook page.

In-Person Worship Options:

  • RSVP to attend in-person our taping of the recorded worship service every Saturday morning at 11:30 a.m. (social distancing instructions below).
  • RSVP to attend our in-person Wednesday Noon worship service
    (social distancing instructions below).

Online and In-Person Worship Instructions

Online Worship Service Details:

Join us on Sundays at 10:30am for our online worship services. If you’re able, create an at-home altar with communion elements as well as flowers and/or a candle.

Download our Zoom-friendly worship bulletin for this Sunday.

Download the traditional worship bulletin for this Sunday.

Download music lyrics for this Sunday.

Download the children’s bulletins for ages 3-6 or ages 7-12 for this Sunday.

To participate in the online service, you will need to download the Zoom app or program on you phone or computer. Here is the link to access the worship service: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/6996794165?pwd=WnVETVBQZHEzNTJRdnhCeWU2ODBQdz09

If you’re on a phone, you may not be able to access that link directly. In that case, you will need to go to www.zoom.com, click “Join a Meeting” and enter the following:

Meeting number: 6996794165

Password: 234133

If you do not use Zoom, you may view the Facebook live stream of the online service through our Gethsemane Facebook page.

In-Person Worship Service Details:

Join us for our taping of the recorded worship service on Saturdays at 11:30 a.m. and/or for our Wednesday Noon worship services.

***REQUIREMENTS TO ATTEND IN-PERSON SERVICES***

  • Please wear a mask
  • Enter through the narthex only
  • Please use the hand sanitizer available at the door
  • You MUST call the church office and leave a message with your phone number to RSVP to attend
  • Maximum attendance is 75
  • If you are sick, have been around someone who has been sick or have any symptoms, PLEASE stay home

Other Ways to Stay Connected With Our Community

This is a difficult time for all of us. However, we can feel good knowing that we are part of the community-wide effort to slow down the spread of the virus as much as possible. By doing so, we are helping keep people healthy and alive.

You can do your part in helping to keep our community well-connected by caring for one another. Call someone you know and check in on them, especially if they are elderly or have health issues that put them at risk. Offer to get groceries or prescriptions if they are trying to minimize contact with others in the community. Encourage those who are feeling anxious or depressed during this time of increased isolation. Reach out to your neighbors in the same way. Keep a prayer vigil going for our community and our church. Make an online offering to ensure we have the financial resources we need to keep operating well in this unique and difficult time. You can mail a gift or use our online giving page:
http://gethsemaneaustin.org/give/

Community Connection Initiative

As part of our ELCA Mental Health Ministry Grant, Gethsemane’s Community Connection Initiative is designed to help each of us work proactively to look after the mental well-being of ourselves and others. Make plans to get involved with projects that center around supporting mental health within our community. Also, acts of service support your own mental health as well!

“You Are Loved” Signs

We are excited to have Gethsemane Lutheran Church yard signs, posters and magnets to help us let people know we are thinking of them and they are loved! If you would like to help deliver/mail signs or if you know of someone who simply needs to know they are loved by the Gethsemane community, please contact Pastor Susie at info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Gethsemane’s Friend-to-Friend Program

Join this fun Friend-to-Friend program by visiting with a Gethsemane friend every two weeks from October to March. This structured program will help keep us connected during the winter months. The program runs from October 2020 to March 2021. Whether you are 100 years old or a senior high school student, there is a place for you! Friend Calls will occur about every 2 weeks for 15 minutes each. You can sign up to be a Friend that calls or receive a call from a Friend. A short Zoom training will help Friends that call. Let’s stay connected! Sign up via email: info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Look What’s Cookin’…The Casserole Ministry!

If you can provide a casserole (homemade or store-bought) to a Gethsemane friend to lift their spirits or just revive their joy in dining during these unprecedented times, contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org. Casseroles should be in a non-returnable container, they do not need to include any additional sides or items and they should be delivered via porch-dropoff when the recipient is home. We will provide you with name, address, contact info and any necessary dietary restrictions. Let’s Get Cookin’!

Bereavement Sympathy Cards

We’re beginning another new ministry of sending sympathy cards to families who have lost a loved one during this difficult time. If you would like to help with this ministry please contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

God’s Work Our Hands – September 12-13, 2020

Make plans to get involved with Gethsemane’s “God’s Work Our Hands” service projects September 12-13, 2020! We have eight wonderful service projects this year, with opportunities for everyone to get involved in various ways, big and small! Volunteer with something as simple as a phone call, sympathy card, yard sign delivery or food pantry donation. Or give of your time making dog toys, birthday kits or casseroles. Also, make plans to attend the annual blood drive – a vital service opportunity needed this year more than ever!

All service opportunities will be conducted with proper COVID-19 safety protocols. Please plan to wear a mask and maintain social distance.

Service Opportunities

Gethsemane’s Friend-to-Friend Program

Join this fun Friend-to-Friend program by visiting with a Gethsemane friend every two weeks from October to March. This structured program will help keep us connected during the winter months. The program runs from October 2020 to March 2021. Whether you are 100 years old or a senior high school student, there is a place for you! Friend Calls will occur about every 2 weeks for 15 minutes each. You can sign up to be a Friend that calls or receive a call from a Friend. A short Zoom training will help Friends that call. Let’s stay connected! Sign up via email: info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Look What’s Cookin’…The Casserole Ministry!

If you can provide a casserole (homemade or store-bought) to a Gethsemane friend to lift their spirits or just revive their joy in dining during these unprecedented times, contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org. Casseroles should be in a non-returnable container, they do not need to include any additional sides or items and they should be delivered via porch-dropoff when the recipient is home. We will provide you with name, address, contact info and any necessary dietary restrictions. Let’s Get Cookin’!

Birthday Boxes for Jeremiah Program

Unfortunately, the program, Sharing Happy Birthdays, for which we made birthday boxes the last few years has closed due to the COVID pandemic. So this year we will provide birthday boxes for Jeremiah Program.

Jeremiah Program offers one of the nation’s most successful strategies for transforming families from poverty to prosperity two generations at a time. Jeremiah prepares determined single mothers to excel in the workforce, readies their children to succeed in school, and reduces generational dependence on public assistance. Jeremiah’s proven, holistic approach begins with establishing a supportive community for determined single mothers to pursue a career-track, college education. Through a combination of quality early childhood education, a safe and affordable place to live, and empowerment and life skills training, families find stability and a path out of poverty.

We will provide all the goodies for an entire birthday party for three children who live at the Jeremiah Program facility. The themes will be mermaids/beach, minions/emojis, and animals.
The items needed for the three boxes are:
-cake mix & icing & candles
-themed cupcake liners, sprinkles or other items for decorating cake/cupcakes
-themed decorations (balloons, streamers or banner)
-themed blowers, party hats, etc or additional party supplies (for 16 kids)
-themed tablecloth, napkins, plates, & cups (for 16 kids)
-themed goodie bags (for 16 kids)
-themed goodie bag items to put in the goodie bags (for 16 kids)
-candy & snacks (Doritos or Cheetos) (non-perishable) (for 16 kids)

Sign up here:
https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4BADA92DA20-gods

If you have any trouble with the sign-up, you can contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org. Please bring your items to Gethsemane either Saturday, September 12th from 10a.m-noon or on Sunday, September 13th from 10a.m.-3p.m. to be put into boxes/bags and delivered to the Jeremiah Program facility.

Yard Sign Deliveries

We are excited to have Gethsemane Lutheran Church yard signs to let people know we are thinking of them and they are loved! Pastor Susie is needing volunteers to deliver the signs in sets of about 10 (depending on the area). If you would like to help deliver the signs please contact Pastor Susie at info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Dog Toy Kits for the Austin Humane Society

We are again making dog toys for our neighbor, the Austin Humane Society. It will be a little different this year. We will be distributing kits to make 10 dog toys. The kits will be available for pick up on Saturday, September 12th between 10am-Noon. The completed dog toys will need to be returned Sunday, September 13th between 10am-3pm. For more information, contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Annual Gethsemane Blood Drive

Sunday, September 13th, 10am-3pm
This year’s blood drive is by appointment ONLY. NO walk-ins accepted.
Please contact Pastor Gronberg at the church office, 512-836-8560, to schedule your appointment.

Bereavement Sympathy Cards

We’re beginning another new ministry of sending sympathy cards to families who have lost a loved one during this difficult time. If you would like to help with this ministry please contact info@gethsemaneaustin.org.

Food Pantry Items Donation

Along with the regular non-perishable items needed for the families who come to the Gethsemane Lutheran Food Pantry, we are in need of
TOILET PAPER AND LAUNDRY SOAP.
Please call Pastor Gronberg at the Church office, 512-836-8560 to schedule a time to drop off any pantry items.
Thank you for your support of this ministry!

Family of Gethsemane Retreat

February 29 – March 1 is the 38th annual retreat at Camp Chrysalis (near Kerrville, Texas) for the Family of Gethsemane. Please consider being part of the fun!

The theme: “Leap into Lent” —1 Peter 5:6-8. Registration brochures available in the narthex.

This is a very special opportunity for friends and all members of the congregational family: singles, couples, those with and without children, from the very young to the not so young in years, but all young in spirit.

All are “Called by Grace” to come enjoy a relaxed, informal time, to share thoughts, histories, dreams, conversations, laughter, songs, the bread and wine of communion, the fresh air of the hill country, and good food.

“Led by Faith”, you may climb to the cross on the mountain, read your Bibles, play, eat, visit, and rock on the porch.

“Welcoming All to Share God’s Love”, we will meet new friends and have time to relax and be with those we may not know so well. This is a great event to invite friends to share in the family life of Gethsemane.

Please print the 2020 Family of Gethsemane Retreat Brochure and return to Dar, Belinda or Pastor Susie by February 16th.

Advent Wednesdays

ADVENT WEDNESDAYS
December 11th & 18th
Advent soup and sandwiches prepared by Tim Huston
served at 5:30pm

Learning & Fellowship for all ages

Confirmands meet with Pastor Schnelle @6pm

Adults will meet with Pastor Gronberg and Roger Temme sharing his Advent story.

“Holden Evening Prayer” Eucharist @7pm
Confirmands meet with their mentors after service

Come light the Advent candles in preparation
for the twelve days of Christmas!

The Bridge at Gethsemane

You’re invited to join The Bridge at Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Austin! This ministry is designed to bridge the gap between youth programs and ministries catered toward retired adults. We are a diverse group–young professionals, singles and families with and without children–looking to build community through fellowship and faith-sharing during this busy stage of life. We meet during the Sunday Learning Hour (9:30-10:30am) downstairs in the room adjacent to the church office. Sunday School or nursery care is available for children. Come have a cup of coffee or tea and connect with us! Find our group on Facebook: The Bridge at Gethsemane

Gethsemane Receives ELCA Mental Health Grant

In the United States, almost half of adults (46.4 percent) will experience a mental illness during their lifetime. When families are struggling with mental health conditions the first place they call is the church, yet churches are often lacking the information and resources needed to help. 

Gethsemane Lutheran in Austin is launching a Mental Health Ministry Plan thanks to a $10,000 grant from the ELCA. Gethsemane will host twelve workshops over the next year and a half covering a variety of mental health topics for both adults and children. The first “kickoff” event will be a 4-hour workshop to inform and support people who have friends or family with a mental health condition on Saturday, November 16th from 1-5 p.m. at Gethsemane Lutheran in Austin led by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

In addition, all Southwestern-Texas Synod clergy and their church leaders are invited to attend one of two mental health training conferences led by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) at Gethsemane Austin on January 9 & 25, 2020 to learn the tools needed to support mental health in congregations and facilitate an environment that is knowledgeable, open and supportive of individuals and families dealing with mental health issues.

Photo Caption (photo attached): Grant proposal writers (left to right) include Gethsemane Austin members Elizabeth Kite, Alice Bassett, Pastor Susan Schnelle, Karalyn Heimlich and Glenda Holmstrom.  

Fall Midweek Connections

MIDWEEK CONNECTIONS
2019 FALL SEASON
WEDNESDAYS, SEPT. 18-NOV. 20
11:00 a.m. Faith Conversations with Pastors Gronberg & Schnelle
12 Noon  Holy Communion (Sanctuary)
5:30–6:30 Supper ($5 per person) (MPR)
6:15–7:10 Faith Conversations with Pastor Gronberg, Confirmation class with Pastor Susie, and Children/Youth activities (PreK-12th grade)
7:15–7:30 Holy Communion (Sanctuary)
7:30–7:45 Mentors & Confirmands
7:45–8:45 Sanctuary Choir Rehearsal (MR)