A nice thing about living in a big city is that we have access to all kinds of cultural foods. We have Mexican, Chinese, and Italian restaurants like everywhere else, but we can also find Japanese, Greek, Thai, Peruvian, German, Korean, Brazilian, and the list goes on and on. Each culture has its own unique food, and eating the food is a way to celebrate the culture.
That in a way is what we do here on Sunday mornings. Since our true homeland is heaven, our congregation celebrates our heavenly cultural identity by eating heavenly food. We do this whenever we receive Holy Communion. Eating this heavenly food helps us remember who we are. We are sinners forgiven by the very body and blood of Jesus Christ, which was given and shed for us for the forgiveness of our sins. This heavenly food not only reminds us of who we are, but it also reminds us of who our Savior is and what he has done for us. For this reason, this food not only reminds us of our cultural identity, it also creates it. For as often as we eat and drink the body and blood of the Lord, our minds are set on heavenly things, our thoughts are directed to the sacrifice of Christ, our faith in him is renewed, and our sins are forgiven. Eating the food of our heavenly homeland, we celebrate the fact that we will one day live with God for all eternity and share in the feast that never ends.
Pastor Bryan E. Drebes
Pastor Drebes attended Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri, beginning in 1997. He spent the summer of 1999 teaching English to Chinese middle school teachers in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China. He served a four-month vicarage at St. John Lutheran Church, Plymouth, Wisconsin, followed by eight months at Bethany Lutheran Church, Overland Park, Kansas. Pastor Drebes was ordained into the Office of the Holy Ministry at Zion Lutheran Church, Palmyra, Missouri on August 19, 2001, and installed as Associate Pastor of Bethany Lutheran Church, Overland Park, Kansas on September 9, 2001. He served Bethany for 14 years. Pastor Drebes accepted a Divine