Thursday, May 28

Good morning, church!

I have been watching a few ghost games in the last two weeks. That’s what they call soccer games without anyone in attendance. The German league was the first international league to allow such games, resuming play that had been suspended since March, bringing the season to an end and saving some clubs from financial ruin. This Tuesday was the clash of the two biggest clubs with the best players, “Der Klassiker,” played in front of 80,000 empty seats in Dortmund. It was a very good game, probably the best of the few that I have seen since they resumed play. Overall though, it’s the WEIRDEST experience, trust me! It makes you realize that the fans make up more than 50% of the entertainment value of games like that, maybe more than 75%. Usually those stadiums are full of atmosphere, cheering, singing, people waves, orchestrations by dedicated fan clubs, banners and the like. Usually, the fans influence the game and they influence the referee as well. If a player is slightly touched and the fans jeer, there is pressure on the referee to blow the whistle for a foul. If the home team is behind in the last quarter of the game, there is a huge swell of support from the ranks.  Now you watch a ghost game and there is this eerie silence, interrupted only by screams from the coaching team that echo through the abandoned skeleton of a dome. What a downer! I hope that this sad experience will help players appreciate their fans some more. Some of these players make a sinful amount of money. The salaries and transfer fees have gone up, up, up for decades and reached levels beyond reasonable measure, just because they could. You know what I am talking about because it’s the same in American Football, Basketball, Hockey, Baseball, is it not?  As these clubs feel the pinch of the current Sports Depression, I hope they find ways to operate in more reasonable ways and valuing the enthusiastic crowds that support them some more. What are they without their fans? I am sure you will all see some ghost games this summer. Don’t get too excited!

I have been promising Mrs. B. to remind all of our graduates to please send in some nice pictures for our June 14 service with the honoring of graduates. Last time I talked to her she had only received seven pictures. Please, if your child is finishing Elementary School, Middle School, High School, College, Vocational School this year, send her a picture. We would like to participate in your joy. You can email her at dfm@stpetersnorthwales.org.

We are getting ready for a big weekend at St. Peter’s. For this Sunday’s Pentecost service we are teaming up with our dear friends from Puerto Rico. They had plans and hopes to visit us this summer with about a dozen people, collaborating with us in charitable work in Philadelphia. Late last year I spoke to Celiannette Tirado who was to be the leader of that group, together with our friend Jose M.  Unfortunately, that trip has been canceled.  But Celiannette will join Pastor Sharon Rios Concepcion and their youth council president Manuel in our recording for this Pentecost Sunday. The music will also include contributions from the island. One of Bernie H.’s favorite stories connected to our Puerto Rico Mission trips is the discovery of the handless Jesus, a statue displayed on top of one of the dorm buildings.  As we learned, the absence of hands is intentional. We are to be Christ’s hands and feet is the message.  Well, we are for sure this coming weekend! Please remind your neighbors of our community-wide food drive. All weekend long you can “dump” food donations at church by placing them in one of the bins in front of our Fellowship Hall. We have shifts of volunteers bringing them in every few hours and transporting them to our local food banks early next week. Join the good work!

Today I would ask you to pray again for people who are caring for loved ones in the last stages of their lives, surely one of the most difficult experiences these days. I know that Mr. Bill K. Sr. was transferred to the hospital with congestive hard failure while his wife is still trying to recover from Corona; both are up in age. I also know that Dave G. who was featured a few weeks ago is about to enter the Hospice phase. He has been afflicted with Parkinson’s for years.  None of these situations are easy for the people affected or their immediate families (also affected), especially under the still pretty strict visitation restrictions.  Please keep them dearly in your prayers!         

Attached is the material for today’s noon Bible Study.  We will read and discuss the 4th chapter of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. Here is the Zoom Invitation:

Mrs. B’s Children’s Hour will take place every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m., starting on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM;

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

Today is the birthday of Gail P. Happy birthday, Gail!!!

As always, be blessed and be safe!

Pastor Andreas Wagner

Wednesday, May 27

Good morning church!

Another quiet day in the neighborhood, we have had a lot of those! I woke up a little bit later this morning. I usually have a pretty impeccable internal clock and haven’t used an alarm clock in decades, but when the dog throws you out of bed at 3:00 a.m. because of some doggie business, that clock gets messed up. This quarantine time is a humbling experience for me on some levels, let me confess that, because I have probably sounded very upbeat in many of my emails. In fact, someone said to me in the early going, “You seem to enjoy this!” Yes, parts of it, but there is that other aspect too. The reality is, it’s harder to stay in touch with ALL the people in our congregation; it is more difficult to know where everybody is mentally, spiritually, despite many phone calls and other modes of communication. In some ways I feel like Paul, whose letter to the church in Philippi we studied recently. In his opening remarks he wrote: “I am confident that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ.” (Phil 1:6) There was Paul, “homebound” in some Roman prison, trying to reach his congregation, but his hands are (perhaps literally) tied. He can’t do much. And he is placing his faith and confidence in Christ. This quarantine is a lesson in practiced faith and humility for us pastors. We do have a tendency to think that so much of church life depends on us (mostly wrong!) and we sometimes fail to put our confidence where it belongs: Christ is completing the work in you and the Spirit is moving among the people of our congregation, especially in times like these.

Christ will be at work this weekend in the form of many hands joining together to restock our local food pantries. Robin A. shared good news yesterday. She has enough volunteers to cover the various shifts this weekend.  Let me also remind you that there will be no food collection today because this week we are placing all emphasis on the big community-wide collection that runs from Friday through Sunday. Our church and many others will receive food donations from Friday through Sunday, 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Big food bins will be placed outside the Fellowship Hall on the upper part of the Parking Lot. Volunteers will transfer donations every few hours from the bins to boxes in the Fellowship Hall and early next week we will transport all donations to the food banks. Let me also remind you that it is perfectly fine to make a monetary donation to Manna on Main Street or any of the other food banks. In fact, that’s what our family will do. The monetary donations enable them to purchase whatever food or supplies they are short of. You can mail in your donation to the church earmarked to the food bank of your choice. That way it will be recognized as part of this big drive.

Yesterday I received sad news from Charlene. Her mother, Dori passed away peacefully at the age of 97.  Charlene was very fortunate to be able to visit her mom frequently in the Nursing Home under Hospice conditions. Not everybody these days is so lucky, and in fact, the restrictions that bar people from seeing loved ones who are facing the last days and weeks of their life remains one of the most difficult realities created by the social distancing rules. I sincerely hope that with the switch to the “Yellow Phase” at least people will be able to see their elderly parents and loved ones! We will hold a Graveside Service for Doris next Monday, family only, at Whitemarsh Memorial Park. You can send a card to Charlene via the church office.

Attached is the material for tomorrow’s noon Bible Study.  We will read and discuss the 4th chapter of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. Here is the Zoom Invitation:

Mrs. B’s Children’s Hour will take place every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m., starting on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. For more questions, reach Diana at Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM;

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

Today is the birthday of Katie K. Happy birthday, Katie!!!

As always, be blessed and be safe!

Pastor Andreas Wagner

Tuesday, May 26

Good morning, dear church!

I hope you all had a nice, meaningful and enjoyable Memorial Day Weekend.  We are on to the last week of May and our governor has given us hope that the Philadelphia suburbs will move to the Yellow Phase by June 5. Bishop Davenport recommends at this point that churches may open, with proper safety restrictions in place, by the beginning of July. In a time when all days blend together and few things can be solidly planned, it is good to have some idea of timing, is it not? We will be ready for that time, but as I said on Sunday during our church social, we will only be in the “Promised Land” once we are fully in the clear, which is still too far out to even speculate about. This week we are reviewing our opening document in a small group and next week it will be up for council approval. After that, you will all get a letter from me describing what church will look like during that interim time. (It will be different.)

This morning I pondered Romans 12: 1-2, a passage that has always spoken to me loud and clear. It says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds…”  It was funny then when I reviewed the various speeches from our confirmation students. So many of them spelled it “conformation,” and I wanted to scream at them, “No, you are not being conformed! God is doing a much more beautiful thing with you. God is confirming your faith, giving you the ability to discern “what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Rom 12:2) We are constantly tempted to “conformation,” to adjust our life styles to what everybody does. If a majority of people doesn’t care about religion and faith, why should I? If everybody plays three sports at the same time, I need to do that too. I would even say that once upon a time, church was part of the conformation game, people going, because, well, everybody did. (It’s not what the gospel is about.) We could go on and on with the examples of conformation. It’s a thing! But Paul says it’s incumbent upon us to stop and think and pray and discern our lives and lifestyles. I guess God has given us a golden opportunity to do just that during these long weeks. And you will get another one of our confirmation speeches this week.

For now, let me introduce you to one of our college students. This is Katy G. (see picture), daughter and oldest child of Penny and Ken G. She is a very bright young woman and still on campus (albeit a pretty empty campus) in a PHD program at Penn State. Katy has this to share:

When I first received the email notice from Penn State saying that students were not to return to campus after spring break, I had an eerie feeling that this was only the beginning of a long journey. The month of March was a total whirlwind as I received multiple updates a day as Penn State transitioned to online classes and graduate research was slowly shut-down. As a PhD student, I anxiously received this information and immediately started questioning my productivity, my funding, my qualifying exams…. I watched as my entire timeline towards graduation shifted.

But despite the unsettled routine of graduate research as universities across the world tried to adjust to COVID-19, I have tried my best to continue a normal routine. I wake up, go to lab each day to change samples, work on my review paper, work-out, cook dinner (I’ve never cooked so much in my life!), and relax before going to bed. My stubbornness to maintain a sense of normalcy has been greatly rewarded as I have stayed happy and healthy. I get outside every day, I interact with a few close friends, and I have thankfully been able to continue my work as a graduate student with minimal interruptions.

One thing I’ve realized through this uncertain time is that it’s the little things in life that help us keep a positive outlook, raise our spirits, and keep a smile on our faces. We can Facetime family members; we can order take-out from Starbuck’s and sit on a bench with a friend and sip coffee; we can go on a Skype date, drinking the same Wegman’s wine from different homes. I’ve realized that it is all these little things in life that keep us going and allow us to enjoy life. I smile each day as I get up, walk outside the door, and make the most of each day. “

We are looking forward to this weekend’s big community wide food drive to benefit our local food banks. See attached flier.  We have been getting additional boxes for storage and I think Robin can still use one or two more helpers. You can reach her at alderfer@aol.com.

Mrs. B’s Children’s Hour will take place every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m., starting on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM;

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

As always, be blessed and be safe! Pastor Andreas Wagner

Monday, May 25

A happy birthday to Rob S. and Sharon S. today!

A Prayer        

In the quiet sanctuaries of our own hearts,
let each of us name and call on the One whose power over us
is great and gentle, firm and forgiving, holy and healing …

You who created us,
who sustain us,
who call us to live in peace,
hear our prayer this day.

Hear our prayer for all who have died,
whose hearts and hopes are known to you alone …

Hear our prayer for those who put the welfare of others
ahead of their own
and give us hearts as generous as theirs …

Hear our prayer for those who gave their lives
in the service of others,
and accept the gift of their sacrifice ..
.

Help us to shape and make a world
where we will lay down the arms of war
and turn our swords into plowshares
for a harvest of justice and peace …

Comfort those who grieve the loss of their loved ones
and let your healing be the hope in our hearts…

Hear our prayer this day
and in your mercy answer us
in the name of all that is holy. The peace of God be with you.


– Austin Fleming

Sunday, May 24

Good morning Church,

I am very excited about our newest recording from yesterday, and I truly believe it is the best so far. You have to watch it! Lisa Miller went out of her way to pair recordings with images of our choirs, some recent, some from years past, as well as beautiful art work. It is Choir Sunday at St. Peter’s, and several members of our “grounded” adult choir participated in the recording for the service yesterday afternoon. There is a beautiful guest contribution from Kimberly A. (Stephanie and Tom’s daughter) who grew up at St. Peter’s and now is a professor for choral music at a liberal arts college in Michigan. She sings all four choral parts herself in her basement; they are blended together in the video. It’s quite a feat. Then we have some references for this weekend’s Memorial Day Celebrations. The postludes include taps, played by Alan B. on the trumpet and a rendition of “My Country tis of Thee,” again with images from veteran’s cemeteries and the like. As always, I would like to thank all who gave of their time and participated in the recording, and especially Kirsten for the selection of music and Lisa for a lot of extra hours to make this special.  And just to keep track: this is the 11th Sunday of the Quarantine. In our Liturgical Calendar it is the 7th and last Sunday of Easter.  This Sunday’s service will be posted no later than 9:00 a.m. this morning on our website and Facebook page. Enjoy!

At 11. a.m. this morning I invite you to join me for a Virtual Church Social. 

We thank you so very much for your ongoing support and your contributions. You can use the church envelopes and send them in or you can use the online giving option below, which is also featured on our website. THANK YOU!

Be safe and be well,

Pastor Andreas Wagner

Saturday, May 23

Good morning church,

I am going to keep it relatively short this morning. It’s raining here in North Wales, a nice soaking rain that waters the earth and saves me the job of having to get the hose out today. I don’t know about you, but I sometimes enjoy these rainy days on holiday weekends. They give you permission to read and take it easy, and I have been reading more and more about the life of one of my favorite (unofficial) modern day saints, Dorothy Day in recent weeks. I hope you too have things to enjoy besides doing laundry and taking care of family and house. Our dog incidentally hates water. If it’s raining she doesn’t even bother to look up from her cushion, unless she really has to go. When I get the hose out for a garden soaking, she will disappear as far into the yard  as possible, lest her pretty coat gets wet. She is a Bernese Mountain Dog with beautiful black, white and brown markings. I told her about our Blessing of the Pets Sunday (July 19), and she is fully on board. You know, she thinks she is the prettiest dog, but I am sure you will argue with her about that. Or not? Attached see Winter with my dad in October of 2018.

We are preparing a huge community-wide food drive for next weekend and Robin told me that she could use a few more hands. “More hands make lighter work,” she said. So, If you can help out with the processing of donations next weekend on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, please contact her. Robin has already placed fliers in various area grocery stores.  People at church have picked up fliers also given us a number of boxes for storage. Thank you all! I recently talked to the fire chief in North Wales and he is on board promoting this drive amongst his people. The whole purpose of this drive is to engage as many people in our neighborhoods as possible. Participating churches and donation sites next weekend: St. Rose, S. Peter’s, Sanctuary, Messiah, and Gwynedd Friends. We hope to give our various local food banks a big boost of food donations. Because we are focusing on that next week, there won’t be the usual Wednesday collection…

If you are wondering about re-opening scenarios, our council is finalizing a re-opening document that will apply once we are moving out of the dreaded red phase here in Montgomery County. I will send that to all of you after our June 1 council meeting, along with an invitation to a survey. It’s hard to know how people feel and what their comfort levels are these days and that survey will help us… I am going to host another church social this Sunday at 11:00 a.m., on an opportunity to see one another and also to ask questions and things like that. Come and join us!  Also, expect some special treats for our Choir Sunday church recording. More about that tomorrow morning!

Today, please keep Dave G. in your prayers. He was recently featured as one of our homebound members. He is at the Abramson Center right now, rehabbing from several falls, and it’s not an easy time, separated as he is from his wife and loved ones.  

I would like to promote the beginning of our online Children’s Hour with Mrs. B., every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Children Hour will start on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. For more questions, reach Diana at Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM; Your Contact: Diana Sundar.

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

As always, be blessed and be safe! Pastor Andreas Wagner

Friday, May 22

Good Friday morning, people!

Did you know? This is the beginning of our Memorial Day Weekend! In past times people would pack up their stuff and go to the shore or the mountains. There would be small lines at the gas stations. The grocery stores would lure us with specials for that famous barbecue and the liquor stores would do brisk business. At the end of the long weekend, on the actual Monday holiday, we would also remember that this is also a time to honor those who made sacrifices for our country and in many cases for our world. Well, this year, everything is a little bit different. The great summer season ahead of us doesn’t feel quite as great. Our backyards and neighborhoods have become more familiar to us, as have the people who live where we live. We are not constantly on the run.  And maybe we have a little bit of time this weekend to ponder the question: what kind of a country, what kind of a world would those who have given their lives in conflicts abroad want us to create? During the normal “run around” times that seems like such a deep probing question that it could only come from a pastor or a politician on a stump speech (both very suspect people, you know!). But in these times, it is an appropriate question for all of us to ponder. We are at a fork, I believe. What kind of world do we want to create? Will we take the environmental crisis of this century seriously and create a world that is sustainable? Will we realize that more is not always more, but often feeds into destructive behavior and a “machine-society”? Will we honor those who have given their lives with smart ways to use the freedom they fought for? During “normal times” most of us don’t have time to think about these questions. I hope we take the time now. Whether you agree with the young “Fridays for future” crowd that formed before the Corona crisis or not, they had something to tell us that they felt very passionate about; and if teenagers and young adults feel passionate about something other than the usual teenage passions, it is incumbent upon us to listen. What kind of world do we want to create???

Meet one of our young teenagers and confirmation “graduates” this year (see picture). This is Peter of course, my son and youngest child.  When we moved into our neighborhood he was still in his mother’s womb. When we came to the church, he was two years old, and I remember saying to the church crowd on the first Sunday that they should not expect him to be “Saint Peter.” How true!  Peter has built an impressive track record at church. In his earliest days he would often leave his finger prints on every glass door of the building. The cleaning person could hardly keep up. One Sunday, the kids were all dressed up in animal costumes and Peter decided at the last minute to be a bull with horns. Here was this kid with his pacifier in the mouth, walking around, showing his horns, and everybody was in stitches. He was not the easiest choir boy for Mrs. Grebe (now Allen); but then, I think she had a few of those. Peter has always been “blessed” with a strong confidence and a natural ease to talk to adults. Years ago, when we did the “Secret Pal” program and Cathy Simcox was his secret pal, and the kids and adults met at the end, she  said, “He is quite the conversationalist, this little guy!”  Well, let’s just say, he still likes to talk. And as a teenager he has not disappointed. He has kept us on our toes as parents. God knows, we are trying to keep up with his schemes and keeping him on the straight and narrow. (We love you, Peter!) Back in December, he managed to smash a window in the Fellowship Hall while playing volleyball outside, scaring the daylights out of our choir members. So, I have started to keep a tap on all the extra expenses so I can present it to him at some point later in life… In any case, it is sad for me that this is now the last of my children to be confirmed. I will miss those times we had together. We asked all of our confirmation “graduates” to reflect on their two years in confirmation.  Everybody wrote a speech and recorded it. I will share one per week. You can easily access Peter’s speech in the Vimeo link below.    

I would like to promote the beginning of our online Children’s Hour with Mrs. B., every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Children Hour will start on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. For more questions, reach Diana at Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM;

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

Today are the birthdays of Laura A. and Dick W. Happy birthday!!! 

As always, be blessed and be safe! Pastor Andreas Wagner

Thursday, May 21

Good morning, dear people!

It is still cool-ish here in our neighborhood. We have turned the heat off, but in the mornings there is a certain chill in the air – that coming from a person who is too warm most of the time! Despite the chill, people all around us are getting very creative these days. I just read the instructions for the Wissahickon High School graduation car parade, two or three pages of instructions for the first of its kind event. The school had to become creative, the police are involved, and several local churches and businesses offer their parking lots for spectators to view the “spectacle.” I have one graduate in this year’s class. Sam, after all that he’s been through over the last three-plus years, will finish high school with his regular class. That is no small miracle, just like the fact that he is walking again and taking some shots on the basketball hoop. Last year around this time he was mostly in bed. Last fall he could only “walk” from the car to the school by leaning heavily on my shoulders to get his scooter from the Nurse’s office. Thank God he is on the mend! And thank you all for your prayers. Many of you have told me, “I am praying for him every day!” Thank you all! For all others who are looking forward to creative graduation ceremonies this year, please don’t forget to send a picture of your graduate to Jenn Bodolus (dfm@stpetersnorthwales.org). We are planning to involve several of the graduates in our service recording for June 14 and we will put together another picture show for that Sunday as well.

Yes, we are getting very creative around here. You will find special touches for every Sunday service that we record. Yesterday, I spoke to Pastor Charles Quann from Bethlehem Baptist Church, the largest (mostly) African-American church in our area. I was wondering how they are coping. The presence and power of choirs is so incredibly important in the black church. Yet, singing in close proximity, singing in larger groups is strictly verboten these days and considered risky behavior, as we are still in the grip of this virus.  As expected, it’s not an easy for Pastor Quann and his large flock, and we will include them in our prayers this Sunday. But since we are all becoming VERY CREATIVE, I asked him whether he would participate in one of our recordings, and not surprisingly, he said yes! So we will probably feature a Sunday in July with Pastor Quann and a recording of his huge African-American choir, the recording coming from the ancient times of B.C. (before  Corona Virus).  I will start adding brief descriptions to the services we are planning in my calendar at the end of each email. We will be VERY CREATIVE!

Meet Ashley and Kevin D. (see attached picture). They participated in our virtual new member orientation on May 9. Kevin grew up at St. Peter’s, and his two adult children Kevin Jr. and Keira were both confirmed here. Since he had been inactive for a while, Kevin decided to attend the orientation together with his second wife Ashley. They got married last year (I believe it was last year) and now have a cute little baby, named Charles Lawrence D. The family includes Dominic, Ashley’s son from a previous relationship. Dominic is eight years old, and we have enjoyed his presence at our Spark sessions. Kevin works for the North Penn School District in the Maintenance Department but spent much of his time on baby duty at home during the school closings. Ashley is as essential as a worker as they come. She is a nurse working at one of the local hospitals, and she is extremely careful when she comes home from work. We want to welcome Kevin, Ashley, Dominic and baby Charles into our community!  A Baptism had been scheduled for baby Charles earlier this month. We hope that we can do it in a small family setting outside in our Baptismal Garden when the restrictions are lifted in the not too distant future.

Today, I ask your prayers for Diane Z., one of our Stephen Ministers. She was diagnosed with cancer a few months ago and initially asked me not to “make a big deal out of it,” in typical Diane fashion. In fact, she described her “little problem” as no more than a toothache. It was a little bit tougher than a toothache, it tuned out, but she is doing well and taking an oral chemo drug as a precaution after having had surgery earlier this year. Please say an extra prayer for her today. She does so much for other people. And yes, she graciously gave me permission to let you know and invite your prayers. Thanks, Diane! Blessings and healing to you!     

Later today is our weekly Bible Study, always on Thursdays at noon.  Everybody is welcome to join us.

I would like to promote the beginning of our online Children’s Hour with Mrs. B., every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Children Hour will start on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales.

Today are the birthdays of Erica W., Eun Y., and Karin W. Happy birthday!!! 

Today is also the Baptism Day of Hailey H. Happy Baptism Day!

As always, be blessed and be safe!

Pastor Andreas Wagner

Wednesday, May 20

Good morning church,

Meet Rachel N., one of our college students and recent graduates (who will also be featured on “Graduation Sunday”). I have always known Rachel as a very smart and quiet girl. She was in one of my confirmation classes. Her family joined St. Peter’s shortly after I became pastor at the church. Both of her parents are of Vietnamese descent. Like many other Asian people that I know they try to help us by giving us an American name that we can easier remember, in this case, it’s Rose and Mitch (Thank you for being so thoughtful!).  Rose actually was born in Vietnam and experienced those difficult war-torn years back in the early ’70s. Maybe some of you remember our special Basic session called “God in the Refugee Camp,” when she shared with us some of her childhood memories, fleeing from her beautiful home, first to Thailand, to a refugee camp, and finally to the United States where her family was sponsored by people from a Lutheran congregation. It sheds a light on the importance of our church’s work with refugees. So many times we can’t fathom the hardships that lead one to leave their home behind and the hardships that lie ahead of them in the camps and the uncertainties that go with it. Only those who have experienced it can truly relate. Rose married Mitch who was born into a large Vietnamese-American family in the Easton area. Mitch is an IT specialist and works for that German company, Siemens. They have two daughters, Rachel and Sarah, who will graduate from North Penn High School this year. But back to Rachel, always the quiet one, – she tends to get overlooked and as a true introvert, she is mostly fine with that. As with all of our current college students, I was wondering how she is dealing with the vastly different experience pressed upon her by this quarantine. She writes:                  

“I have recently graduated with a B.S. degree in pharmaceutical science at Temple University. I just finished my first year at Temple University School of Pharmacy, and I still have three years until I graduate. I moved back home once quarantine started and classes were shifted online. Quarantine has affected both my social and academic life. Since I am home, it is obviously not possible to hang out with friends, but we still keep in touch through face time. Academically, there were both pros and cons to being back at home. There were fewer distractions, but I also found it harder to stay motivated and focused on my studies. It took some adjusting, but everything has been fine so far. Besides school, I am currently working as a pharmacy tech at CVS Pharmacy, and am still working during this quarantine. There have been new safety procedures implemented, but besides that, work proceeds normally.  My goal in the future is to work in the clinical setting, and I have recently been accepted as a pharmacy intern at Temple Hospital.

Thanks! Hope everyone is safe and healthy! Best, Rachel.”

I am starting to feel like an underground church! For the last ten weeks we have only been able to connect via telephone, email, social media and video conferences.  And yet, our ministries continue in so many ways. Our staff is working on special themes and motifs for every single Sunday so that hopefully it remains interesting and relevant for your lives. This coming Sunday we will feature choir members from St. Peter’s. It’s Choir Sunday! The following Sunday, May 31, is Pentecost and we will make a co-production with our friends in Puerto Rico. You will also get some Spanish sounds in that service. I spoke to Pastor Sharon Rios-Concepcion yesterday. They are ahead of us in terms of opening, but the decisions are not any easier. Just like we, they have been mostly relegated to their homes, and in that close-knit community where church, friends and family lines all blur together that has to be difficult. Pastor Sharon was immediately on board and excited to do a co-production. It will be a lot of fun!

Please don’t forget that today is food collection day, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. You can drop your bags of food donations right onto Lisa’s truck in the parking lot. Next week we will forego the Wednesday collection in favor of the bigger weekend collection sponsored by various North Wales churches.  I have attached the flier again. This major drive will run every day from Friday, May 29 until Sunday, May 31 from 7:00 a.m. in the morning until 7:00 p.m. at night and benefit various local food pantries. If you can help with the moving of donated groceries and goods, please contact the church.

Our seven confirmation “graduates” have been slowly turning in their confirmation speeches and are now in the process of recording them. I will introduce you to them, one every week. We don’t know yet when we can have their confirmation ceremony and what form and shape it will take. For now, we have a tentative September date.  But in the meantime, I will introduce them to you, which is one of the advantages of the quarantine really. You get to hear about more church members and who they are than you would during “normal” times unless you are an extrovert and people person. Expect the first confirmation speech to be shared later this week via Vimeo link.  (I could not attach a file that large to an email.)                    

Our Devotional Book Project is off to a good start. I have received eleven finished pieces already, and we are on our way to completing almost one hundred devotional texts based on scripture for this year 2020. Later this year I will begin sharing some of these amazing reflections from St. Peter’s people once a week in my emails. The goal is that we will publish a Book of Devotions written by the people of St. Peter’s with a reflection of scripture for every day of the year. It’s a three year project with a total of 20 people involved. 

Here is the invitation for tomorrow’s Zoom Bible Study, based on Galatians 3 (see attached material).  

St. Peter’s North Wales is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting. ALL are welcome. Contact the church for information.

Time: May 21, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

I would like to promote the beginning of our online Children’s Hour with Mrs. B., every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Children Hour will start on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM; please contact the church for information.

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales

Today is the birthday of Shirley F. Happy birthday, Shirley!!! 

As always, be blessed and be safe! Pastor Andreas Wagner

Tuesday, May 19

Good morning church,

Today I meditated on a passage from Luke 19 where the character Zacchaus says, “Lord, I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.” How many of you have heard that story in church or in Sunday school? It features a man who was rich, not very well-liked in the community, and collaborating with the Roman occupiers. He was met with hatred. After he makes this statement, which was not in any way forced on him, Jesus proclaims that “today salvation has come to your house.” It is one of the great stories found in the gospel of Luke. Most Bible stories are told in several of the gospels, but not this one. Two things I find worth noting and meaningful for all of us:  Number one, “salvation” is not a purely religious thing. In this case, it was about a man doing right in his community and people making peace with him. Number two, most people have an innate sense of what is right and wrong, and when they come to the proverbial fork in their road, they know exactly what to do, just like this guy. He had an awareness that he could and should help the “less fortunate” in his community. He also knew deep inside that he had cheated on some people. It was time to make up. In the past, salvation has often been portrayed as a thing between you and God, or you and Jesus, but the truth is much more complex. In the same way, as the cross is a meeting of a vertical and a horizontal beam, salvation is about both our relationship with the power that created the universe and our fellow people. Jesus’ teachings are very consistent in that both aspects of life belong together. The greatest commandment is not simply about loving God, but also about loving your neighbor.

Which brings me to the wonderful community food drive put together by our local churches for the last three days of May (May 29/30/31). Attached is the flier that we are all using. If you have a color printer at home, it will be easy for you to print and share it with some of your neighbors. I will also ask Lisa to leave a box with copies outside of the church under the roofed entrance where people can get them. They will be ready for tomorrow’s food drive and after that. The intent behind this major initiative is, of course, to give all of our local food pantries a big boost as demand for food has increased exponentially. More people are out of work. More people are in need. But we also want to increase the pool of donors and the pool of people showing goodwill in the community. People of faith are often at the forefront of charity because it is built into the teachings of all meaningful religions that I’m aware of. Giving is part of living your faith or ‘salvation’ (see above). The times and locations for drop off are all listed in this flier. Most churches are open all three days from 7 in the morning until 7 at night, including ours.  If you can help us on any of those three days with a few trips to the church to bring the food into the fellowship hall, please contact the church.  Thank you all!  (By the way, as you will see on the flier, monetary donations to the food banks are just as welcome…)

In the attached picture, please meet Evelyn K., one of our homebound members with her daughter Pam and two more generations of girls. Evelyn joined our church a number of years ago along with her daughter, son, and daughter-in-law. As for so many people, aging has not been easy. I met her as an energetic retiree who was always full of spirit and joy. She lived with her husband  Bill K. Sr. in Lansdale. A few years later they had to leave the house where they had lived for probably half a century and had raised four children and move to a care facility.  Evelyn was developing dementia and she was no longer safe at home. The decision was incredibly difficult for her husband and children but it was the right one. She and Bill Sr. moved, and Evelyn’s health and memory continued to decline, even with great care. She was recently diagnosed with COVID 19. And here is what’s difficult for me when I hear these stories and pray for people like Evelyn. I am not sure what is worse for her, being afflicted with THE VIRUS or the social distancing from her family whom she still recognizes at this point. I really can’t tell you which is worse, but frankly, I am leaning toward social distancing as the tougher of the two for Evelyn. I know it’s a struggle for a number of families with aging parents. So far, her symptoms are not that bad. I ask you to please keep not only Evelyn and Bill Sr. but their extended family in your prayers.  It is not an easy time for them.  And if you are one of the other families affected in a similar way, may God bless you today!

I would like to promote the beginning of our online Children’s Hour with Mrs. B., every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Children Hour will start on June 7. We encourage our families with young children to take advantage of this interactive program and to tell your neighbors with children about it.    

Also, please don’t forget the Red Cross Blood Drive on June 8. Specific precautions are being taken and have been described in recent emails. For more questions, reach Diana at

Drive Details: Date: June 8th, Times:  2 – 7 PM; Contact the church for more information.

TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, PLEASE GO TO WWW.REDCROSS.ORG, ENTER SPONSOR CODE St. Peters North Wales or CLICK ON

Today is the birthday of Riley G. Happy birthday, Riley!!! 

Today is also the Baptism day of Austin H. Happy Baptism Day!

As always, be blessed and be safe! Pastor Andreas Wagner