October 16, 2017


October 31, 2017, marks the celebration the 500th anniversary of the Reformation – and you can be sure that there will be much celebration and thanksgiving unto our Gracious Lord as we think upon the rediscovery of the Gospel. Though the big celebration will be a few weeks away, I thought that it would be good to do a series of articles leading up to that time that will focus on various aspects of the Reformation history and our Lutheran Faith.

What was so important about the Reformation?

As I see it, the Reformation was truly the rediscovery of the Gospel – for that, in essence, is what the Reformation was about. I say rediscovery of the Gospel because for so long it had been lost to the Church, or at least the pure proclaiming of it. In the centuries after Christianity was made the official religion of the Roman Empire by Constantine, the Word of God was slowly being hidden.

I imagine that most folks are familiar with the “storm incident” in Luther’s life that led to his becoming a monk. He was traveling home from the University of Erfurt where he was studying to become a lawyer when a storm of such strength and magnitude knocked him down to the ground and fearing for his life cried out: “St. Anne help me and I will become a monk!”

By Luther’s Day, false teaching had spread throughout the entire Church, with practically no pastor holding onto the Words of Jesus and teaching the Word of God in its purity – and so the number of false teachings grew. A great contributor to the problem was that the Bible was literally kept out of church member’s hands. Obviously, there were very few copies available, and none in their own language.

Tragically, without the Scriptures available to people, the church leaders told the people what to believe. In time, more and more of God’s Word became twisted and distorted. The Law and Gospel were hopelessly mixed up. For many people, God was more and more portrayed more like fallen, natural mankind views God – as being a cold, vicious, vindictive judge, a stern and angry God with His ax of judgment ready to fall. That was the God that Luther trembled before and even despised at times.

But it was when Dr. Martin Luther finally was able to study the Scriptures themselves that the heart of our Loving God was revealed to Luther – revealed in the Christ Who would sacrifice Himself for our sins . In fact, it was this very revelation from God’s Word that so moved Luther to want to translate the Bible into the language of the German people. He wanted them to understand the Heart of God and hear the Gospel once again proclaimed to comfort their anguished souls.

That is the Reformation-it’s the rediscovery of the Gospel. That is the eternal and life-giving Truth that you have received in your Lutheran faith – a truth worth celebrating – and sharing with others!

I love serving as your pastor!

And I am eternally grateful for the Gospel being rediscovered by Luther and other Reformers.

In Jesus,

Thrivent Financial members
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Foundations class will not be meeting the next couple of weeks. Sunday's class will resume on October 22 at 12:15 p.m. and Wednesday's class will start back up on October 25 at 7:00 p.m.

Men's Breakfast

“Sean Rooney”

Sean went to Esperanza HS, earned 1st team All-League and All-County honors and signed to UC Davis on a baseball scholarship. He then signed with Pepperdine University; where his older brother, Patrick played and younger brother, Colin, would later go on to play. In June, the Washington Nationals drafted him in the 8th round of the 2006 MLB First Year Player Draft. Sean was named a South Atlantic League All-Star in 2008 in Low A with the Hagerstown Suns.

On January 11th, 2009, his father, Bill, and his older brother, Patrick, were tragically killed in a plane crash in Steamboat Springs, CO. They were traveling back from a trip of renovating a rustic barn for the reception site of Sean and Jana’s wedding to take place in the upcoming September. This life-altering event sparked a flame in him and the Rooney Family to make a life-altering impact on others.

Date: Saturday, October 21, 2017
Time: 8:00 a.m.—9:00 a.m.
Fellowship Hall

Passport to Ministry

Passport to Ministry at Hephatha Lutheran Church

Serving is about using the God-given gifts you to help others (I Corinthians 12:7) through the ministry of the local church. In fact, serving is a normal part of the Christian life (I Peter 4:10). At Hephatha Lutheran Church, opportunities to serve are everywhere. Join any of our ministry teams, partner with our Sunday school ministry, help people worship as a part of our Audio or Visual Production teams, or help with ushering and acolyting. There are so many ways to get involved! Check out all the great opportunities to start serving on October 22nd in between our morning services!

The 500th anniversary of the Reformation
is fast approaching!

Learn about Martin Luther, his writings, and the impact of the Reformation on the church today.

Discover a variety of resources on the Reformation for readers of all ages.

On Sunday, during the ministry fair, we will have a table set up in the courtyard with samples of books available for purchase along with an order form. The books will then be delivered to the Church for distribution.

To receive up to 50% off plus free shipping all books must be preordered and prepaid.

We will also have some other reformation themed items available for purchase at this time.

LSS Walk A Thon, Saturday, October 28 8:30 a.m. Yorba Regiional Park

Reformation 500
An Evening of Word and Song

Wednesday, November 1, 2017, 7:00 p.m.
Segerstrom Concert Hall • Costa Mesa, California

Concordia's choirs, handbells, and orchestras join with musicians from area churches and schools in a 500-member ensemble to lead a festive evening with hymns, choruses and sacred music around the themes of the reformation. The theologians from Christ College at Concordia will share what it means to always be Reforming as we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

Tickets are going fast. Please be sure to purchase your tickets.
Order your tickets here
or call 714-556-2787
Dinner Auction Friday, November 3rd from 6:30-10:30 p.m. at the Historic Fullerton Ballroom

Hephatha’s Operation Christmas Child Service Project

On Wednesday, November 15th, Hephatha will once again be participating in Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child. The school will be packing shoeboxes filled with gifts to send to needy children around the world. Operation Christmas Child is an International Christian relief and evangelism organization that works with churches around the world to bless children and share the Good News of God’s love through these shoeboxes. This year they hope to reach another 10 million children and this is where Hephatha families and students can help.

We invite you to join us by getting a box from the office and filling it with items for a boy or girl in need. (See the “Suggested Items List” for some ideas.) Then return the filled shoebox to the school or church office on or before Nov. 13 and the students will take care of the rest.

We also ask you to donate $9 to cover shipping costs. You can give online or you can write a check to Samaritan’s Purse (note “OCC” on the memo line).

Go to Samaritan's Purse

As achurch/school we have set a goal of 250 boxes! Refer to the “Gift Ideas” for suggestions of items to pack in your box.

Please have all items at school by Nov. 13th

Speaker: Donna VanLiere
The Story of Us

The story of Christmas so long ago began our story filled with a beginning, characters and plot lines, a climax, and an ending. Share the joy of Christmas and be reminded of your valuable part in the story.

A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Donna VanLiere has published 14 books including The Christmas Shoes and The Christmas Blessing, both of which were adapted into movies (starring Rob Lowe, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, and Neil Patrick Harris) and garnered big ratings for CBS television. The Christmas Hope (starring Madeline Stowe) was adapted by Lifetime Television and her books The Christmas Secret and The Christmas Note were among the highest rated movies in the history of the Hallmark Movie channel. Her latest book, The Christmas Town, is scheduled for its movie premiere in December 2019.

Donna is the recipient of a Dove Award, A Silver Angel Award, and two Audie Awards for best inspirational fiction. She has appeared at countless events around the country, including Women of Faith and Extraordinary Women. Donna is a wife and mother of three and lives in TN.

Please reserve your spot. Need name, email address, and phone number.
Pay later: $55 if we have 30 p3eople, otherwise $65.

Concordia Brunch and Boutique
November 18
Hilton Orange County, Costa Mesa
9:00 a.m.-vendors open
11:00 a.m.-brunch and program begin.

For more information contact the church office at 714-637-0887 or HephathaChurch@Hephatha.net


Love the outdoors? Join us on the trails. Join us in discussion as we hike. Love hiking? So do we, and we love to share with those we hike with. This group meets a couple times a month on Saturdays to hike at places all over Southern California. A variety of scenic views, elevation gains, and distances are offered throughout the year.

November 11—Oak Canyon at 7:30 a.m.

For more information and directions contact Barbara Andrews at afandrews777@hotmail.com

What is Happening at
Hephatha this Week

MONDAY: October 16

  • Junior High School Youth Group @ 7:00 p.m. in the Youth Room.

TUESDAY: October 17

  • Hephatha Mom's Bible Study @ 6:30 p.m. at the Potthoff's home.
  • Praise Band Rehearsal @ 7:00 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

WEDNESDAY: October 18

  • Women's Wednesday Morning Study @ 9:00 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall.
  • Confirmation @ 3:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary.
  • No Foundations new members class.
  • High School Youth Group @ 7:00 p.m. in the Youth Room.

THURSDAY: October 19

  • Women's Thursday Morning Bible Study @ 9:30 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall.

SATURDAY: October 21

  • Men's Breakfast @ 8:00 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall.

SUNDAY: October 22

  • Services: 8:00 a.m., 9:30 a.m., and 11:00 a.m.
  • Sunday School @ 9:30 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall.
  • Child Care @ 9:30 a.m., 11:00 a.m., and 6:01 p.m. in Room 6.
  • "Open in the Word" Bible Study @9:30 a.m. in the Youth Room.
  • Ministry Fair @ 9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m. in the Courtyard.
  • Foundations new members class @ 12:15 p.m. in Pastor's Office.

MONDAY: October 23

  • Junior High School Youth Group @ 7:00 p.m. in the Youth Room.
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