“And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile.” Matthew 5:41

Pastor’s Perspective


A few months ago in her awesome stewardship talk Jeretta Hecht said, “I’ve yet to hear a sermon on the Holy Spirit.” I think there’s a lot of truth in that statement.

Except on Pentecost and an occasional mention, I don’t preach much on the Holy Spirit and I know I’m not alone. In fact, I think it’s fair to say that we as Lutherans don’t talk much about the Holy Spirit. I remember one of my first seminary classes; it was a class on the Holy Spirit, taught by a dear friend, pastor and wonderful teacher, Dr. Richard Jensen.

Dr. Jensen explained how he was serving as a missionary, I believe it was in Africa, when he experienced speaking in tongues. He went on to say that he himself had experienced speaking in tongues.  I thought to myself, “What… was I in the right class? Was I even in the right seminary?”  Later on, in my time in seminary in another class we had the chance to attend a worship service where we experienced people speaking in tongues. Oh, be still my Lutheran heart!

But the really good news is this,

the Holy Spirit is alive and active in our church

and she doesn’t depend on me or anyone else to talk about her to be at work in our faith communities.

So on Sunday, May 24, get your red on (that is to say, wear red) as we celebrate Pentecost. The sanctuary will be alive in red as we gather once again to hear the story and celebrate the coming of the Spirit.  We will hear the story of how the disciples, filled with the Spirit, began to share the good news in many languages.  We’ll hear Peter’s powerful street sermon.

We’ll also celebrate the Spirt still at work right here at Good Shepherd. We will celebrate the work of the Spirt among us in our mission work in El Salvador, in our community mission work with our ministry partners, such as empty tomb and C-U at Home. We’ll celebrate the work of the Spirit among us in our support of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, ministries like our Easter Farm project, our Water Project, and the ELCA Malaria Campaign.

So get your red on!  See you in church on Pentecost Sunday as together we celebrate the work of the Holy Spirt.

Peace to you,

Pastor Tom



Church Picnic

September 2011, Champaign IL

Our youth enjoying the dunk tank during the annual church picnic.

Baby Sunday

August 2011, Champaign IL

A celebration of the all our families with children ages 3 and under.

Apple Festival

October 2011, Champaign IL

Pie-making for our annual Apple Festival, hosted by WELCA. 

Easter Egg Hunt

April 2012, Champaign IL

Children celebrate Easter together during our breakfast & egg hunt.

El Salvador Mission Trip

2011, El Salvador

Good Shepherd members work in El Salvador to rebuild a church.


December 2011, Champaign IL

Our young ones sharing the joy of Christmas during worship.

Trunk or Treat

October 2011, Champaign IL

After trunk or treating, our costumed kids play games in the fellowship hall.