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This Week At Ascension

Called to create opportunities for all people to become devoted followers of Christ

May 12, 2024

Calling of the Apostles

Grace and peace to you my family in Christ,


This weekend is a special weekend because it’s Mother’s Day on Sunday.

While I recognize that not all of us have the experience of having a good and faithful mother, Christians have always recognized being a mother as one of the most important vocations to exist and worthy to be celebrated.

A good and faithful mother prays, teaches, and models what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.

This weekend we welcome Pastor Cynthia Berry, a faithful mother herself who will give us perspective on our gospel lesson in John where Jesus prays for his followers to stay focused and faithful… like a mother prays for her children. 




This Week In Adult ED:

Poems from the Heartland

May 12: Poetry Series, Part 2

Led by Pastor Jack Ledbetter, Professor of English, Emeritus

An actively published writer, Dr. Jack Ledbetter’s poems, stories and articles have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies. He will share his writing inspiration and poetry with us over two sessions in adult education.

These two sessions will feature: Poems of the Heartland and the people who plowed the dirt and fought the weather, but somehow managed to love the land and each other, thankful for short winters (sometimes), good children, a cow who refuses to go dry and a God from Whom All Blessings Flow.

Adult Ed May 19:

Reflections On Faith and Life, People and Places

Over the past twenty plus years, I have written many hymn texts, and I have also written reflections on places Jean and I have traveled or people we have seen.  I have previously shared my hymn texts with you.  Now I am pleased to have the opportunity to share these other writings in the hope that they will inspire you to see in a new way the things you experience in the midst of your daily lives.

I invite you to join me for the Adult Sunday School Class on May 19, where I will share with you the writings and the inspiration behind each of them.

Pastor Paul


Welcome Back Reverend Cynthia Berry

Pastor Cynthia Berry, who preached at Ascension last summer and returns this weekend, is a native Californian who grew up in Los Angeles. She is a mother of two young adults and is the daughter of Ascension members Allen and Lillian Carter.

Pastor Cynthia received a Master of Theology in Ministry with emphasis in youth and family culture, from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. She is an ordained minister with the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel.

Pastor Cynthia has worked over 25 years in the nonprofit sector, with the Breese Youth Center, World Impact, Rescue Mission Alliance, Prison Fellowship, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and New City Parish Network  in congregational settings, and ministry outreaches. She is affiliated with Lighthouse Church in Newbury Park, where she served on the Church Council, and led women’s ministry and Bible study small groups.

Continued. CLICK HERE.

VBS Registration Now Open

Pastor Search 

This space is dedicated to keeping our church community apprised of the transition activities as we seek an Associate Pastor and a Youth Director. We are guided by Jeremiah 29:11, leaning especially into “…to give you a future with hope…” knowing that God has a plan for One Ascension!

As a reminder, the Committee is available to the congregation and can be reached at 

Please continue to keep this process and the committees in your prayers, as we ask God to bring us the perfect candidates for our church.

Is there a pastoral prospect you would like to have considered? A promising candidate for Youth Director? Please make them aware of these opportunities and descriptions of the positions by sharing THIS LINK.   



Kudos to Dr. Wyant Morton, our amazing Chancel Choir, outstanding soloist Debbie Schaeffer, organist par excellence Margaret Ricci and the other musicians who contributed to last Sunday’s cantata. Your presentation of Haydn’s Missa Brevis was exquisite – a highlight of the year! For those who may have missed it, here is the complete Missa Brevis.

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(From Ascension Facebook)

A beautiful conclusion to our Women’s Monday Morning Bible Study for this school year, with Monday’s Spring Gathering with all the groups together! We thank all our leaders and each participant in this year’s study of the book of Acts. 

The women also donated $2,100 to our Ray of Life Solar Light Kits project for the people in Ukraine, as well as generously supporting Ascension’s Friday Food Pantry (as the group did each week).

We already have 51 women signed up for next year’s studies, first on the 12 apostles, and then the letter to the Ephesians. Others may sign up between worship services these Sundays in May. 

Pastor Steve’s closing words to the group, as he reflected on their study of Acts, were:

“And so dear Women’s Monday Morning  Bible Study –

​Thank you for being like the Bereans in your study of God’s written word.

​Thank you for being like Lydia, being generous and being a blessing to others.

​Thank you for being like Barnabas, an encourager to one another.

​Thank you for being people of prayer, lifelong learners, faithful witnesses, and world servants for Christ.

​My last word is a word that I’ve said to some groups already: 

​You’ve studied these 28 chapters of Acts this year.

​And now you are living out chapter 29.

​The Holy Spirit is continuing the Acts of the Apostles through you.

​God bless you through the summer, and we look forward to beginning again in the fall.” 

Thank You, Foundation Board of Trustees

We are grateful for our Foundation trustees, led by President Stefano Borzone, who met this past weekend to decide on scholarships and grants, and seek to make wise decisions for the best stewardship of the funds that you have given over the years. This past quarter has been highly positive for the Foundation’s investments, as you can see from the excerpt of Alan Baker’s report below. We thank them for their time and commitment on behalf of Ascension!

Paul Evenson, trustee, wrote in his report:

“Many people believe that our country, and our civilization as a whole, is descending to new depths, and they give us good reasons to struggle with. As followers of Christ, we live in anticipation of the coming of the new heaven and the new earth, and we have been enlisted in the continued ministry of reconciliation that God in Christ proclaimed. As a part of our ongoing education in our congregation, we will continue to hold up examples of ideas and programs that can inspire members of our congregation to think about how they would like their legacy gifts to make a significant Christian impact on our world.”

Trustee Alan Baker reports:

“The financial markets had another very strong quarter through March of 2024, and the Foundation investment portfolio increased significantly. The total value of the investments as of March 31, 2024, was $1,721,806 up from $1,629,948 on December 31, 2023.”

Mission Statement of ALC Foundation

“The Foundation provides financial support for Ascension Lutheran Church congregation, community, and global/synodical needs in a manner that is separate and apart from those expenditures normally funded by the annual operating budget of the church. The key areas are conservation of principal in investments, grants, endowments and scholarships, loans to the church, provide financial management education, and promote stewardship of church members’ personal finances.”


News Briefs

Pentecost Sunday Coming Up

May 19 is Pentecost Sunday and Confirmation. Don’t forget to wear red.

Calling All Graduates and Families of Graduates!

We are planning a congratulations tribute to all of Ascension’s sons and daughters who are completing graduation milestones in education this year — and WE DON’T WANT TO LEAVE ANYONE OUT! Families, we need your graduating student’s NAME, SCHOOL, COLLEGE DEGREE, if applicable, and a PHOTO. or drop off your information at the church office.

Save the Date

Our Congregational Meeting will take place June 23 at noon. 


The Ascension Hot Meals Ministry, led by Tania and Barry Disselhorst, provides meals on the third Tuesday of each month. It is simple to join in helping to feed the homeless and families in need in Thousand Oaks. Sign up now to help May 21.

The Chosen Book Two Study

Book Two: The Chosen 40 Days With Jesus is a great devotional for the Easter Season, taking us from this week to Pentecost. If you want to really follow Jesus and “The Chosen” disciples, delve into this devotional with Ruth Rarick during these 40 days. Call me or text me- 360-204-0529. — Ruth Rarick

One solar light kit and water purification kit, including shipping and delivery to Ukraine, is $150.

For more info or to puchase,  CLICK HERE. 

Fair Trade: The Very Merry Month of May 

Everyone is invited to join us in this very merry month of May for Fair Trade fun! 

Fair Trade Lane will be open  Sunday, May 19 (10-11:30 AM). If you haven’t yet checked out the transformation of Fair Trade Lane, now is a great time to do so!  We’ve got baskets lined up on the top shelf ready to make your shopping fun and easy. 

Fair Trade Wine & Snack Tasting Event. Saturday, May 18 at 2 PM in Camarillo.  We’ll be learning about a line of Organic, Fair Trade & Sustainably produced wines from Argentina and tasting them too! We’ll also be learning about and tasting some of your Fair Trade favorites (chocolate, cheese, nuts & snacks) from Fair Trade Lane.  There will be a few delicious surprises too!  Lots of fun and fellowship round out the line-up for a great afternoon.  All costs for this event will be covered by a participation fee of $25.00 per person  – no church or ministry funds will be used for this event.  Participants must be 21 years of age or over. For questions, or to RSVP, send a note to us at .  Space is limited. When you send us your RSVP, please give us your contact information and the names of those included in your sign-up. We’ll keep a waitlist once the sign-up list is filled. 

Upcoming Memorial Services

Dick Ruwe

May 11 at 2 PM

Don Meyer

June 1 at 2:30 PM

Dr. Allen Leland

June 8 at 11 AM

Fellowship, Friendship and a Faith Lift:

Ladies, Come Join Us for Bible Study!

What happened to Jesus’ disciples? How do we break down barriers that separate us from God and each other and best live out our faith?

If you join us for our next Women’s Monday Morning Bible Study starting in September—and we really, really hope you will—you’ll learn the answers to those questions and a lot more.

We’ll kick off our new Bible study year with our Fall Fellowship Gathering on Sept. 16. Succeeding weeks will find us immersed in a 10-part study on “The Twelve Disciples” by Douglas Connelly.

The study, with some lively commentary, promises to be not only informative, but useful. We will, notes Pastor Steve, “learn about the uniqueness of each of the original 12 disciples, and how their faith and witness (even in death), can empower us to live faithfully and fully for Christ today.”

Then, in January, we will delve into noted theologian John Stott’s study, “Ephesians: Building a Community in Christ.”  Paul’s letter to the Ephesians is often called “the gospel of the church,” but it is much more  than that.

“Paul’s letter to the Ephesians is filled with rich details about Christ and His Church (chapters 1-3), and then profound words on how we are to live this Christian life (chapters 4-6),” Pastor Steve says. “Each chapter will bless you!”

Stott’s 12-part study, which is highlighted by his powerful Biblical insights, will take us to the beginning of May.

Would you like to join us? If so, sign-up sheets (and more information) will be available at tables on the east patio between services every Sunday in May. Cost is $30 for BOTH books, payable at sign-up. If you need a little help, scholarships are available. Please contact Pastor Steve.

Don’t miss the blessing!

In Case You Missed It…

In Need of Prayer

Click here for this week’s Prayer List


This Week

Acts 1:15-17, 21-26
Psalm 1
1 John 5:9-13
John 17:6-19

Next Week

Acts 2:1-21
Psalm 104:24-34,35b
Romans 8:22-27
John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15

Our Prayer

We pray that you may once again meet the Risen Christ through the Word and Sacrament ministry, and through the fellowship of this family of faith.

If you do not have a church home, we would like to invite you to worship with our Ascension family again.

All people who are baptized and believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are welcome to receive the Sacrament of Holy Communion.

May God bless you in your worship!

Pastors Tim Delkeskamp and Steve Herder

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