Justin Kollmeyer's blog

Mental illness and There Is Hope

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Today I write to you about an important new ministry that is present and active here in Fayette County. This ministry is “There Is Hope.” Its founder and leader is Fayette County resident Pastor Gary Taber, who is quick to tell us that his passion for this ministry comes from personal experience within his own family. What I will do here today is share with you what Pastor Gary presents as he talks about the growing and vital need for this ministry. Read More»

Heaven is for real

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The book and movie Heaven Is For Real is the true story of Colton Burpo, the four-year-old son of a small-town Nebraska pastor. After surviving emergency surgery, he begins talking about being able to look down and see the doctor operating and his dad praying in the waiting room. He also describes being in heaven, seeing God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, and meeting long-dead family members. Read More»

Separation of church and state?

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The First Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America is simply and completely as follows:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Read More»

God bless nurses!

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For a long time I’ve wanted to lift up and honor some of the most important contributors to our society, and particularly these contributors right here in our own Fayette community. Well, now’s the time. God bless nurses! On a personal note, this year my own young wife celebrates her 40th consecutive year of being a working registered nurse. To her and to all nurses we extend our honor, appreciation, and gratitude.
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Church camp

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One of my favorite events of ministry within the life of our church is our annual trek with kids and youth to summer church camp. We go to our Lutheran camp near Asheville, N.C., in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. It is appropriately named Lutheridge. Many church denominations have camps in that same area.

As you read the Citizen today, I am blessed to be in the middle of our week at Lutheridge right now. Having come here with campers for over 30 years, I can give you an almost exact account of our week, even though I’m writing this before we leave. Read More»

Another ‘biggie’

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Christmas and Easter. The “biggies,” right?

Well, what about the event we will “celebrate”tomorrow, which happens to be the 40th day after Easter?

Yes, it was 40 days after Christ’s resurrection that He ascended back into heaven, the event we call “The Ascension.”

News flash: it’s a “biggie,” too.

Bishop John Bradosky of our North American Lutheran Church shared an intriguing reflection on Christ’s ascension and its meaning for us today, the bulk of which I will pass on to you here with his blessing. I have had to edit and omit some portions to fit this column. Read More»

Examine the evidence

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We people of faith talk a lot about faith. You know, believing things we cannot see with our human eyes and cannot prove by scientific data. One of our favorite Bible passages is “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 KJV.

But as we come away from the glorious celebration of Easter, I have two questions. One, is it really true that Jesus rose from the dead? And two, do we believe just because we have “faith,” or is there truly “evidence” that he actually rose? Let’s take the second question first. Read More»

Headline: Fayette teens do good things again!

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The headline this past week in both the Citizen and even in the AJC said something different from this headline above. We pray for the young man and his family from that event last week as they sort through the tragedy that apparently occurred between a teen nephew and his uncle right here in Fayetteville. The headline read, with paraphrase, “Fayetteville Teen ‘does a terrible thing.’” Read More»

Come with me to Ash Wednesday service

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Come with me into the sanctuary tonight for the Ash Wednesday Service, the start of Lent. Read with me two important bulletin notes which help set the appropriate spiritual mood and atmosphere for this service and this season.
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Why ‘Snow-mageddon’?

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“Snow-mageddon.” That’s what many tagged our horrific encounter with the snow, ice, and traffic fiasco of last week. Do you know why this word is invented for such events and where it comes from? Well, let me put on my “theologian’s hat” and take us through some pretty intriguing and often controversial territory. I am not an expert on this topic, but here is how I understand it.

The original word is Armageddon, a name occurring only once in the Bible and designating the place, Mount Megiddo, where the last great epic battle of the ages, good vs. evil, will take place (Revelation 16:16). Read More»

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