Posts tagged “Immanuel Lutheran School

Sermon Dei: 2017 Graduation

Posted on June 9th, 2017

Psalm 33 2017 Immanuel Lutheran School Baccalaureate Vespers Pentecost Wednesday +++ June 7, A+D 2017 Wherever you go to school next, you’ll probably find a counselor there. Many high schools have guidance counselors; they may advise you on what classes to take, what colleges to consider, what career paths to pursue. There are other kinds of counselors. Grief counselors help when someone dies, employment counselors help college students find work, and lawyers are called counselors for the help they give about courts and judges and laws. A good counselor might tell us what we don’t want to hear. Did I tell you about my advisor in college? I thought I was pretty hot stuff, but after he heard me play the piano the first…

Three Meditations for Evening Prayer

Posted on December 14th, 2016

Immanuel Lutheran School Choral Evening Prayer for Advent Three Meditations on Savior of the Nations, Come  December 14, 2016 I. A Light to the Nations We tell the story of the world by the stories of nations. There are wars and warriors, kings and generals, presidents and people. Many nations rise and fall, and it seems there is no end to their number. We humans are also good at dividing people up into groups and tribes. Skin color, language differences, where you were born or what school you attended, all these things make people think of you as a good person or a bad person. When it comes time for the Olympics, or the World Cup, we might get excited if America is doing well,…

Sermo Dei: Groundbreaking 2016

Posted on April 20th, 2016

Immanuel Lutheran School Expansion Project Groundbreaking Ceremony April 17, 2016 The sin at the Tower of Babel was not building a tower. It was in the name. “Let us make a name for ourselves,” they said. Solomon built the first great temple in Jerusalem, not for his own name, but a house for the name of God. When a group of German immigrants gathered in Old Town Alexandria in 1870, they gathered under the name Immanuel—God with us. It is the title given to the Savior of the world, the Lord Jesus Christ, whose name is forever blessed. The names of those people who first gathered have faded from our community’s memory. For those people sacrificed their time, their treasure, their talent, not to…

Baccalaureate Vespers 2015

Posted on June 3rd, 2015

Excerpt from the 2015 Baccalaureate Vespers service at Immanuel Lutheran School:   Do we have time for one last Latin lesson? Graduation has gradus as its root. We get “grade,” like “8th grade” from it, but that derives from the word “step,” like stair-steps. And it all derives from an even earlier meaning, “to walk, go.” The point is that graduation doesn’t mean you are done. It means now you walk, go to the next step on the journey. What’s the destination? For a Christian, the goal is the world-renewal that has begun with the resurrection of Jesus, which we heard Isaiah describe as when “the wilderness becomes a fruitful field,” when “the effect of righteousness will be peace.” God will bring about the…

Meditations on the O Antiphons for Advent

Posted on December 21st, 2014

An annual tradition at Immanuel is a choral Evening Prayer service toward the end of Advent, featuring student and faculty choirs and instruments. This year, the central part of the service was the hymn O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, with students and faculty singing in Latin, alternating with the congregation singing in English. The following meditations came after the highlighted stanzas. FIRST MEDITATION After man fell into sin and death, God promised that a Savior would come and restore life to man. Throughout history, God gave in His Word different images, pictures, titles for this Savior. In the final days of Advent, the Church has gathered up seven of these as prayers to the Messiah to come rescue us. They’re called the “‘O’ Antiphons” because…

Vocation and Virtue

Posted on September 5th, 2014

Vocation and Virtue: What’s the Purpose of a School? For Immanuel Lutheran School’s Back to School night; adapted from a longer essay written Spring 2014. Introduction Our culture pressures us to parent in unhealthy ways. Last Spring, the Washington Post had a feature on the parenting culture that drives children to succeed to the detriment of other values. The Post profiled Wilma Bowers, leader of a movement “that seeks to upend the achievement-at-all costs intensive parent and school culture” in northern Virginia. “There’s such a status thing here: ‘I went [to] Georgetown. I want my kid to go to Georgetown or better.’ It’s such a rat race,” says Bowers.… “Nobody is taking a step back and asking, ‘Is going to Princeton going to make me…

The Beheading of St. John the Baptist

Posted on August 29th, 2014

Matins, Immanuel Lutheran School Teacher Work Week Friday, August 29, 10:00 a.m. The Martyrdom of St. John the Baptist Mk. 6.14-29 Preparing to begin a new academic year, we would like an inspiring message, climbing mountaintops, slaying giants, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”! But that’s not what we get. We get John the Baptist, decapitated.   The world’s heart has not improved, but love has grown still colder, and our brethren across the globe are facing beheading.   In such a world, what are we to do? What is our mission, here in this Alexandrian outpost of the Lord’s Church? First, we learn from St. John to hold fast to the commandments of God. “John had been saying to…

Baccalaureate Vespers 2014

Posted on June 4th, 2014

Baccalaureate Vespers Wednesday before Pentecost John 14:15-21 June 4, 2014   Zeitgeist oder Heilige Geist? Das ist die Frage. (Translation: The spirit of the times, or the Holy Spirit? That is the question.) Spirit means wind, and the Zeitgeist, the spirit of the times, is a hurricane. It carries along everything in its path, and obliterates all who resist. Immanuel Lutheran School is a fortress against this seemingly unstoppable spirit. Benjamin, Hans, Abraham, Daniel, Emmanuel, Caroline – I love you; I am proud of you; and I am also worried for you. For the world is a worrisome place. I’m not worried about the schoolwork that is ahead of you. No problem, you’ll be fine. Academics, socialization, maturation – you will do well. But…

Holy Thursday Matins 2014

Posted on April 17th, 2014

If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what would you do?   You could go the route of pleasure. Enjoy some last bites of your favorite food. Play a game. Watch your favorite movie or show.   Maybe you’d try to finish up something left undone. Make sure everything was put in order. You might even have some things to hide – or destroy. Things you don’t want anybody else to find out about. Things that could embarrass you.   What does Jesus do? He knows that His friend, Judas, has made a secret deal with His enemies. Soon, men with clubs and torches and swords will come, in the dark of night, and take Him away. They’ll beat Him up, humiliate…

Creator of the Stars of Night

Posted on December 18th, 2013

Immanuel Lutheran School holds an annual Choral Advent service. This year’s theme was “Creator of the Stars of Night.” The following three meditations were interspersed with the hymn. First Meditation Creator. Don’t race past that word. Deus facit, homo fit. God makes, man is made. He is the creator, we the creatures. But in our hymn, it is not the Father only who creates, but the Son. The One who became a little baby, gazing up at the stars from a manger in Bethlehem, was the One who hung the stars in the sky. But why? Why does God become man? To cure and save our ruined race. Singular: “race.” There is one human race. We come in a few different colors of skin,…