Our Take on Purgatory, Pt. 2

Refining Fire

This is the concluding article on the Lutheran view of the Roman-Catholic doctrine of purgatory.   Continuing our look into the Roman-Catholic doctrine of purgatory, Rome teaches: All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death, they undergo purification, so as to achieve […]

The Lutheran Church and Purgatory, Pt. 1


This is our pastor’s newsletter article for the June 2016 issue of our congregational newsletter. Last month, we looked the body’s resurrection and the intermediate state of our souls being in heaven until Jesus calls forth our bodies on the Last Day. The Roman-Catholic Church also believes in an intermediate state of existence for heaven-bound […]

“Garage” Sale on Friday, May 13 and Saturday, May 14

Garage Sale

Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church is having a “garage” sale in our multipurpose room on Friday, May 13, from 8:00 A.M.-4 P.M. and Saturday, May 14, from 8:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.  We have lots of household items, clothes, antiques, and more. Extra Bonus: Our Ladies Auxiliary will have a bake sale and will serve lunch. […]

Action, Reaction… Overreaction?

Resurrection of the Body and Eternal Life

This is our pastor’s newsletter article for May 2016 on the resurrection of the body. We speak of this reality: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.  In Church history, however, this may be an understatement.  For what happens if you define yourself by what you are not, instead of who you are? […]

John 3:5, 16: Donna Defferding’s Funeral Sermon

Believe and Baptized

We face death as we face life—with our eyes fixed on Jesus.  We cling to the promises of His Word, which, when facing death, seem even more incredible and powerful.  We find one of our Lord’s most beautiful promises in John chapter 14: “In My Father’s house are many rooms; if that were not so, […]

How Religious Are We as a People?


This is our pastor’s article for the April 2016 edition of our congregational newsletter.   A year or so ago, my eyes took in a graph showing the “measure of aggregate religiosity” in the United States over the last 60 years.  The chart displayed a whiz-bang of statistics, which used computer algorithms to track a […]

Memorial Service for Irma E. Fey

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The memorial service for Irma Fey will be at 2:00 PM on Saturday, March 12, 2016 at Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church in Kimberling City, Missouri. Irma E. Fey, whose maiden name was Keil, was called home to heaven, dying here at the age of 93 on Saturday, December 12, 2015.  She was born […]

Church Cancelled for Feb 14, 2016

Icy road, 76 Branson West

Church is cancelled for Feb 14, 2016 because of a predicted glaze of ice on the roads during church-service times.  We recommend staying at home until afternoon when the roads are predicted to be free of ice.   Here is the weather advisory: Winter Weather Advisory in effect from midnight tonight to noon CST Sunday… […]

Our Focus During Lent: Final Words From the Cross

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This year, our midweek Lenten services and sermons will have this focus: Jesus’ Final Words from the Cross. Each “word” (sentence) will shape each midweek service, although every service will have a traditional, liturgical form.   Here are the Scripture readings and focus for each service: February 10: Ash Wednesday: “Forgive”: OT: Joel 2:12-19; Ep: 1 Jn 1:4-9; Gos: […]

It’s Not Either Or

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This is our pastor’s article for the February edition of our congregational newsletter. The longer I’m a pastor, the more I find that what we bring to the table shapes our understanding of Scripture and, thus, the faith, even more than what a Scripture passage may say! Let me give you a personal example. About […]