38011 Morrisonville Road
Lovettsville, Va. 20180
40588 Tankerville Road
P.O. Box 307
Lovettsville, Va. 20180
This Sunday marks the beginning of a Season we call ADVENT. It’s an ADVENTure alright! If your email looks anything like mine, you will find ad after ad after ad, sometimes 3 or 4 from the same sender each day, reminding us Christmas is just ___ days away! Add on the parties, gift buying, baking, stringing of lights, decorating of trees, wrapping of presents, jams of traffic, expectations of family, unseen expenses… for many, this can be an overwhelming time of year. We may be asking: “Is this what God wants us to experience at the Advent of His coming?” “Is this what Christmas is about?”
To keep CHRIST at the forefront, we need to step into a place of solitude, peace and soulfulness. Jesus retreated to the mountains to meet with his SOUL MATE … His Heavenly Father. I too would like to find the time to climb the mountain and rise above the mountain of my do list. Instead, maybe I need to follow Elijah into a cave to get away from it all. Mothers have often found refuge in the bathroom behind a locked door, Fathers in the garage (or dog house) and kids in a tree, by a pond or under the bed. Wherever you may go, I invite you to take a gift with you. Faculty and Students from our United Lutheran Seminary have sent us an ADVENT Star Devotional to guide us through this season of restlessness. They have chosen a lesson and have shared a written prayer for each day from now until Christmas Day. Take ADVantage of this ADVENT Star; may it illumine the path before you and may you hear God speaking to you amidst all the noise. Take some time each day for you and God to sit and share, listen and pray, feel and be moved by His Almighty Presence this ADVENT Season. May this be the beginning of a new ADVENTure for you and your family as we prepare to celebrate the Great I AM, Emmanuel, God with Us! His Presence is the only Present we need this Christmas!
Pick up an Advent Star at church or check our website (BZChurches.org) that will have the lessons and prayers for you each day of the coming weeks. Together, let us take time to be wholly caught up in the wonder of the Word made flesh that birthed new life into our hearts at Christmas both now and forever.
On Sunday morning, join us in singing our favorite Christmas carols throughout the month of December. God loves you and so do I! Pastor Andreas
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 8
Loving God, as we prepare for the coming of Son, give us courage and strength to heed the words of John the Baptizer, that our lives bear witness to your grace through deeds of kindness, acts of love, care of the stranger, and the work of justice. Give us joy in serving as we await our Hope. Amen
* Rev. Dr. Peter Boehringer, Chair, ULS Board of Trustees
MONDAY, DECEMBER 9
I Thessalonians 4:1-12
Creating Lord, you have shown us in the example of Christ Jesus how to love one another. Continue to inspire us through your Holy Spirit to see people as you as you see them, without judgement or agenda, but simply as our siblings, worthy of your saving grave, for it is in you that we live and love. Amen
*Rev. Dr. Angela Zimmann, Vice President of Advancement
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 10
God of the Cosmos, you reveal yourself to us in Christ Jesus, and you call us to minister to a world in need. Guide our words and deeds as we proclaim the good news, so that our lives serve as living testimonies of your grace and presence; through the same Christ Jesus, whose coming is certain and whose days draws near. Amen
*Rev. Dr. Kyle Shiefelbein-Guerrero, Assistant Professor of Worship and Liturgy
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 11
God of all power and might, we give you thanks because you have won the eternal victory—not by the power of the sword or spear, but rather through the birth of a child in the little town of Bethlehem. All honor and glory belong to you, for you have shown us that there is strength in humility, gentleness, and forgiveness. Teach us your ways, O Lord, that we might be worthy to join the ranks of the saints who praise you day and night! Amen
*Rev. Dr. Quintin L. Robertson, Director of Urban Theological Institute
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 12
Abiding God, we give you thanks for those loved ones who have stood by us in challenging times, and for giving us the strength to stand by others. We hold in our hearts the lost, the lonely and the estranged. Comfort them with your loving presence. We pray in the name of our Comforter. Amen
*Rev. Dr. Kristin Largen, Professor of Systematic Theology
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13
2 Peter 3:11-18
God of New Creation: give us your patience and insight to see your creativity now and soon, and courage to join in your work that will last. In Christ. Amen
*Rev. Dr. Gilson Waldkoenig, Director of Town and Country Church Institute
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 14
1 Samuel 2:1-8
Holy and Gracious God, we echo the words of your servant Hannah, that there is no one like You. You know all things and are in all things; help us to remember that you are with us in our joys and our sorrow. Turn our hearts this season to rejoice in the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen
*Eileen Ruppel-Doan, Philadelphia Campus Council Chair
"Zion is the most welcoming church I have ever attended. The first time my husband and I walked into Zion we were greeted by multiple people immediately. We may have been strangers when we walked thru the door for the first time, but we didn’t feel like strangers for long. The greetings were warm and sincere. An that is one of the things that has us coming back for the last almost 30 years. Even though we moved to Ashburn 8 years ago we can’t leave the people or the church behind.
Another thing that keeps us coming to Zion is the minister. Pastor Armstrong is dedicated to getting the word of God out, not just to the people sitting in the pews but out into the community as well. His messages are always creative and inspiring, and he has a wonderful sense of humor that frequently comes thru in his messages., welcome
There are other things I could say about Zion such as it’s beautiful country church setting and the simple but lovely interior, but I invite whoever reads this to come and join us for Sunday Service and I will guarantee you will not be a stranger for long.”
“It is the little stone church in the alley by a bubbling creek. A fine setting for the loving arms of the congregation within. We were welcomed as a family when we first came and then became hooked on the kind and thoughtful message of the Pastor who speaks from the heart without reading or prepared text. Happiness abounds here”
“Zion gives me a powerful peace. Maybe it starts with the beautiful setting by the stream or the old lovely building. The people who are caring, humble and faithful welcome and accept me. The Pastor who is warm and dedicated and sincere, renews and inspires me. The presence of God inspires me.”
“Zion members were constant prayer partners when our family needed prayer”.
“When I came to Zion many years ago, I got that warm and cozy feeling, then I knew I belonged there. The church family is so welcoming, this is where I need to be.”
Mary Anne Williams
“Thirty years ago, when my husband and I were looking for a church close to home, we visited a few churches but never felt this is the one, until we visited Zion and all the friendly people who welcomed us.”
“Zion is what comes to mind ion is what comes to mind when you think of a small country church. Welcoming, caring, supportive and engaging. It is its own community.”
“Zion church is one of the best things I have ever experienced in my whole life. All the people here from the Pastor to all the members are outstanding and friendly people.”
“Warm and welcoming, offering prayers for members, their families, and friends and all in need.”
“Pastor Armstrong speaks to my heart as he does to everyone else who hears his message. Attending service at Zion is the best way to start you week.”
“The church is truly a family that looks out for its members and works together to leave the mark of God’s love on its community. Every week it resets me in my relationship with God.”
“Zion’s members are caring and very friendly.”
“My church is a sanctuary where I feel peace and love. I feel God’s presence when we walk through the door. What ever situation you may be going through our Pastor can pray with you and make thigs feel better. Caring church family.”
“Zion is a small one room church with two additional classroom buildings. The church is set in a tranquil country setting, even a bubbling creek. Although the church is small it has a HUGH heart. Everyone is friendly and welcoming. The church has a wide outreach not only in the local community but, singing widespread. The Pastor is wonderful and always has an insightful message.”
“I felt like a lost soul ay my previous church. A dear friend spoke of Zion and its family. So, I went and felt so happy and fulfilled that I found and have been happy and had the greatest feeling of being with the family of God and all his faithfulness.”
"My church is a wonderful, welcoming church with a great spirit, an energetic Pastor and wonderful people. For needed prayers they will surely come to you from this Congregation.”
“I originally married into the church almost 50 years ago. The congregation has always felt like family from the beginning, and I have gone through several generations. You’re never a stranger when you walk through the door. The outreach is exceptional not only in the congregation but in the community also. The Pastor is inspiring and devoted to his congregation. No matter what the need he is always there.”
If you are searching to hear
some Good News
about God’s love for you
and to find a community
that welcomes you with open arms,
then be our guest
and put our service to the test.
We are nestled in a beautiful country setting in Lovettsville, Virginia.
Bethel & Zion Lutheran Churches
are sister churches
served by pastor Andreas Armstrong.
Welcome from Pastor G. Andreas Armstrong
I am presently serving the people of Zion and Bethel Churches and what a blessing it has been! God has also blessed me with a wonderful wife and two grown children, our daughter who lives and teaches school with her husband in Costa Rica and who have brought into our lives two wonderful grandchildren, and a son who works as a bartender in California (serving others like his dad?). I have had the pleasure of serving churches in Texas, North Carolina and Virginia since 1982 as part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America before coming here. God is indeed good.
There is so much more we can do when we serve together. That blessing becomes a reality when I, the only one at Church who is designated in writing as a part-time minister, am joined by everyone else here as full-time ministers. We take that calling seriously. I pray you will too if you consider joining this wonderfully blessed team of ministers to live out your faith, hope and love through Zion and Bethel Lutheran Churches. We are called in Christ Jesus our Lord to share the love of Christ from one generation to the next. Let’s do it!
God loves you and so do I!