Sunday 8:00 Worship Service

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April 21, 2024

Theme of the Day

Scripture frequently pictures spiritual care in terms of a shepherd watching over sheep. Even folks unfamiliar with shepherding are able to grasp the meaning. Sheep are helpless animals – an easy meal for predators. For sheep to survive, they need a shepherd who not only leads them to sources of food, but who also is willing to tangle with a pack of wolves. Jesus is such a shepherd. The resurrection reality is that our Good Shepherd is faithful, and he willingly laid down his life for his sheep.

Pastor Westendorf’s Welcome

Faith Statement by Logan Ellenson – Deuteronomy 31:8

Splendor and Honor – CW 625

1 Splendor and honor, majesty and power,
are yours, O Lord God, fount of ev’ry blessing,
for by your bidding was the whole creation
    called into being.

2 Praised be the true Lamb, slain for our redemption,
by whose self-off’ring we are made God’s people:
a priestly kingdom, from all tongues and nations,
    called to God’s service.

3 To the Almighty, throned in heav’nly splendor,
and to the Savior, Christ our Lamb and Shepherd,
be adoration, praise, and glory given,
    now and forever.


In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Confession and Absolution

We need a Good Shepherd, because like foolish sheep, we have too often sinned and strayed away from God and his Word. The Bible says:
“We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us have turned to our own way.”

The Bible tells us the hard truth about ourselves and our sins:
“There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.”

“Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.” 
“The poison of vipers is on their lips.” 
“Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.” 
“Their feet are swift to shed blood; 
    ruin and misery mark their ways, 
    and the way of peace they do not know.” 
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Thankfully, our gracious God doesn’t leave us sheep without a Shepherd. He sent us Jesus to save us: “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

When Jesus died on the cross for us, he paid the penalty for all of our sins. When Jesus rose from the dead, he won forgiveness and eternal life for all who believe in him. “The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” Therefore, as a called servant of Christ and by his authority, I forgive you all your sins in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Grades 3-5 – Good and Faithful Shepherd

The Word

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.

Prayer of the Day

Let us pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, you are the Good Shepherd who laid down your life for the sheep. Lead us now to the still waters of your life-giving Word that we may abide in your Father’s house forevermore; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

First Reading – Acts 20:28-32

  “Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them. So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.
  “Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.”

The Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Psalm 23 – Shepherd Me, O God

The children will introduce the Psalm. The congregation may join as they feel comfortable.

Shepherd me, O God,
  beyond my wants,
  beyond my fears,
from death into life.

1  God is my shepherd, so nothing shall I want,
    I rest in the meadows of faithfulness and love,
    I walk by the quiet waters of peace.    Refrain

2  Gently you raise me and heal my weary soul,
    you lead me by pathways of righteousness and truth,
    my spirit shall sing the music of your name.    Refrain

3  Though I should wander the valley of death,
    I fear no evil, for you are at my side,
    your rod and your staff, my comfort and my hope.    Refrain

4  You have set me a banquet of love in the face of hatred,
    crowning me with love beyond my pow’r to hold.    Refrain

5  Surely your kindness and mercy follow me all the days of my life;
    I will dwell in the house of my God forevermore.    Refrain

Second Reading – 1 John 4:1-6

  Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.
  You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood.

The Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Gospel Acclamation

I am the good shepherd; 
I know my sheep and my sheep know me.

Gospel – John 10:11-18

  “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.
  “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me – just as the Father knows me and I know the Father – and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life – only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

The Gospel of the Lord.
Praise be to you, O Christ!

The King of Love My Shepherd Is – CW 552

1 The King of love my shepherd is,
    whose goodness fails me never;
I nothing lack if I am his,
    and he is mine forever.

2 Where streams of living water flow,
    my Savior gently leads me,
and where the verdant pastures grow,
    with food celestial feeds me.

3 Perverse and foolish oft I strayed,
    but yet in love he sought me
and on his shoulder gently laid
    and home, rejoicing, brought me.

4 In death’s dark vale I fear no ill
    with you, dear Lord, beside me,
your rod and staff my comfort still,
    your cross before to guide me.

5 You spread a table in my sight,
    a banquet here bestowing;
your oil of welcome, my delight;
    my cup is overflowing!

6 And so through all the length of days
    your goodness fails me never;
Good Shepherd, may I sing your praise
    within your house forever!

Pastor Frick’s Sermon – John 10:11-18

The Good Shepherd Dies and Lives for His Sheep

Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
        maker of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
        who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
        born of the Virgin Mary,

        suffered under Pontius Pilate,
        was crucified, died, and was buried.
    He descended into hell.
    The third day he rose again from the dead.
    He ascended into heaven

        and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.
    From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
        the holy Christian Church,
            the communion of saints,
        the forgiveness of sins,

        the resurrection of the body,
        and the life everlasting. Amen.


O Lord, our Shepherd and Guide, our Staff and Song, lead us, guide us, be with us, and take us to dwell in your house forever.

Keep watch over us, and keep us watchful for all dangers to body and soul. Strengthen us in the green pastures of your Word. Refresh us with the quiet waters of your peace.

Build us up in the Word of your grace and prepare us to reach out to those who do not know you, to gather new sheep into your fold and restore the wandering, that together we follow your right paths.

Lord our Shepherd, in you we lack nothing. 

Chief Shepherd, bless all who serve as shepherds, feeding your lambs and sheep. Guide and shepherd them, feed and nurture them so that they can care for your people, seek, guide, correct, and restore them.

Lord Jesus, you came to seek and to save the lost. In mercy look on those who are wandering, who are weak or struggle in faith. Move your people with your seeking love to reach out to them, call them back, and strengthen them.

Seek out the troubled and the wandering, and anoint them with the healing oil of your love. Heal those who are sick. Comfort and assure them, even in the darkest times, that they need to fear no evil, for you are with them.

O Sovereign and Almighty Lord, bless all your people and all your flock. Give peace, help, and love to us, your servants, the sheep of your fold, that we may be united in the bond of peace and love, one body and one spirit, in one hope of our calling, in your divine and boundless love; for you are the great Shepherd of the sheep, Jesus Christ our Lord.


I Am Jesus’ Little Lamb – CW 804

1 I am Jesus’ little lamb;
ever glad at heart I am,
    for my Shepherd gently guides me,
    knows my need and well provides me,
loves me ev’ry day the same,
even calls me by my name.

2 Day by day, at home, away,
Jesus is my staff and stay.
    When I hunger, Jesus feeds me,
    into pleasant pastures leads me;
when I thirst, he bids me go
where the quiet waters flow.

3 Who so happy as I am,
even now the Shepherd’s lamb?
    And when my short life is ended,
    by his angel host attended,
he shall fold me to his breast,
there within his arms to rest.


Lord Jesus Christ, Shepherd of the Church, in the waters of Baptism you have given us new life, and at your table you nourish us with the food of salvation. Lead us along safe paths through the darkness of this world, dispel the terrors of death, and bring us at last to your house, where you dwell with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in heaven,
    hallowed be your name,
    your kingdom come,
    your will be done
        on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
    as we forgive those
    who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
    and the glory are yours
    now and forever. Amen.


The Lord bless you and keep you.
  The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you.
    The Lord look on you with favor and give you peace.

Jesus, Tender Shepherd, Hear Me – CW 793

1 Jesus, tender Shepherd, hear me,
    bless thy little lamb tonight;
through the darkness be thou near me,
    watch my sleep till morning light. (Refrain)

When I’m troubled and afraid
I will trust in thee and pray.
Jesus, tender Shepherd, hear me,
    bless thy little lamb tonight,
    bless thy little lamb tonight.

2 All this day thy hand has led me,
    and I thank thee for thy care;
thou hast clothed me, warmed and fed me,
    listen to my evening prayer. (Refrain)

3 Let my sins be all forgiven,
    bless the friends I love so well;
take me, when I die, to heaven,
    happy there with thee to dwell. (Refrain)

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