In the list of appearances of the risen Christ which Saint Paul recounts in his First Letter to the Corinthians (chapter 15), the last one he mentions is Jesus’ appearance to none other than Paul himself. The story (recorded in Acts 9) is remarkable. As Paul (Saul, as he was known at the time) traveled the road to Damascus to arrest the “detestable” Christians and take them back as prisoners to Jerusalem, Jesus revealed Himself to Saul in a dazzling display of glory. He used His divine power to turn a rabid persecutor of the church 180 degrees in his spiritual life. Before this, Saul had done all he could to maneuver himself into right standing with God by his compliance to th Law. He did not realize this was a dead-end road. Now, by God’s grace, he came to regard his own moral goodness as worthless compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Jesus as his Savior and possessing the righteousness that comes through faith in Him.
It was with this amazing story of God’s love in Christ for wayward sinners in mind that the founding members of our congregation chose “Saint Paul” as their namesake many years ago. It has been the prayer of our parishioners ever since that the Lord may use our church as an instrument for spreading the saving message of the Gospel to others. Our church is located on Wadsworth Boulevard, a busy north-south artery of the west Denver suburb of Lakewood, with thousands of motorists passing by each day. With that in mind, our voters recently decided to purchase several “mission outreach banners,” each featuring a short-but-sweet Gospel message. We plan to display these banners at various times (for example, Easter, Christmas, and Reformation). We are praying they will catch the eyes of people passing by, that many may read and ponder the Gospel message, and then check out our church by attending a service. Perhaps the Holy Spirit will accomplish for their spiritual good what He did for Saul on the road to Damascus long ago.
Recently we at Saint Paul held a service commemorating the twentieth anniversary of the dedication of our worship facility. The service took place the afternoon of August 29, 2021 (our church building was dedicated to God’s glory i February 2001). Delwyn Maas, a former pastor of Saint Paul, served as guest speaker. In accordance with good Lutheran tradition, a festive meal was served afterwards in the downstairs fellowship hall, enjoyed by a large number of members and guests.
One other recent happening at Saint Paul: in a meeting of our Mary and Martha Ladies’ Group, a plan was initiated to share “Invisible Sunday School Lessons” with business establishments located in our area (at dry cleaners and hair salons, for example, as well as other businesses that will allow us to share the materials). Our church name, location, and website will be printed on the front page with an invitation to pay a Sunday morning visit. Extra copies will be made available to worship guests with young children, as well as to members, for sharing with friends who have little ones.
Each lesson contains a simple Bible lesson, picture, and prayer; with crayons for kids to use.
We pray the Lord may bless our efforts to share His life- giving Word, using it to work His conversion miracle in the hearts of those who do not yet know Him as the Way.
is pastor of Saint Paul Lutheran Church in Lakewood, Colorado.