02/04/2022 - 11:00

With our Rejoicing Spirits style of worship, we are invariably seeking ways to encourage participation in liturgy with language of physical expression along with words. For this Lent and Easter (March and April in 2022), I can offer an opportunity for a worship experience that allows for lament and joy to be shared in a visible and meaningful expression.



Becky Elsbernd and Trinity Lutheran recently began Rejoicing Spirits. We asked Becky if she would be willing to put together a list of what they have learned over their year-plus experience of beginning Rejoicing Spirits. Here’s what she said:


“For it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13

“For we are God’s fellow workers, working together…” 1 Corinthians 3:9

What was God thinking? We are God’s Plan A, and there is no Plan B.

I love the story of the woman who moved into an inner-city metropolitan area. Next to her apartment building was an empty lot that had been abandoned for a long time. It was overrun with weeds, broken glass, and litter. It was an awful eyesore.


From Pastor John Gosswein

It was 20 years ago, the week of 9/11, that I was invited to lead a regular worship with the individuals I serve – persons challenged with a combined variety of physical and intellectual disabilities. The staff that accompanied the individuals felt we should ignore the news of the terrorist attacks: “The individuals needed to be shielded from these horrors. They wouldn’t understand, so we’re better to not bring it up.” One of them said, “We’re just turning off the news when anything comes up.”


New Hanover Evangelical Lutheran Church in Gilbertsville, Pennsylvania

From its Rejoicing Spirits Leadership Team:

“Rejoicing Spirits continues to lift the hearts of our Rejoicers and also our leaders during this pandemic. We continue to see that God is active in our lives through our Rejoicing Spirits community.

By Rev. Dr. Dave deFreese

Reverend Dave deFreese has been writing devotions for the Mosaic staff during the pandemic. We would like to share a recent devotion with you in hopes of bringing you encouragement.

“Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things ... and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9

Thank you for your ministry! We know these are unusual times and that many churches are still not gathering together for worship. We’d like to hear from you on what is working for you and your Rejoicing Spirits services during this pandemic.

Are you currently holding your services online or have you found another creative way to continue Rejoicing Spirits?

If you have developed worship guides or resources for an online service, would you be willing to share with others?

October is Clergy Appreciation Month and Mosaic’s theme is Thank you for lifting us up! Take the time to extend a thank you to your clergy for all they do for your congregation along with their support of Rejoicing Spirits. We invite you to say prayer for pastors today for Clergy Appreciation Sunday:

By Rev. Dr. Dave deFreese

As we begin a new year, let me offer an unusual blessing: “May God grant you the gift of holy discontent in the year ahead!”

Why in the world would anyone wish that, especially for someone they care for? Because it is a gift. To have holy discontent is to see need and to respond with hope. Holy discontent causes us to be fully alive to the struggles around us and to be motivated to make a change that is for the good. When we recognize injustice, God uses holy discontent to make the world we share better.


It is bittersweet to acknowledge that our partner, Rev. Dr. Jim Fruehling is stepping away from full-time service to Mosaic and Rejoicing Spirits. He has been instrumental in the work of Rejoicing Spirits since Mosaic took on the responsibility from Susan Crawford and St. Paul Lutheran Church in Exon, Pennsylvania.