July 15, 2016
WELS Angels MC Chapter 1 – Hastings, MN – July 10, 2016
WELS Lutherans on motorcycles, what is this world coming to? And “WELS Angels”??
The idea and name had been knocking around in my head for a few years along with another name “The Holy Rollers.” Both had their own individual charm, but in the end “WELS Angels” won out – with my apologies to a more infamous motorcycle club.
Had Garrison Keillor written this, I’m sure there’d be a number of stodgy old Lutherans mounting some sort of motor scooter for their first organized ride. They’d be wearing leather helmets and goggles and would have a picnic basket with a red and white checkered tablecloth strapped on the back ready for a quiet ride down river to look at the scenery – straight out of Lake Wobegone.
That’s not exactly what I had envisioned but neither was a ruthless gang of bikers ready to terrorize Sunday afternoon.
The whole idea never got off the ground until it came together around the concept of a group of friends sharing God’s Word together.
Our congregation has been enjoying a Summer Ministry Series on “Windows to the Word” – a look at our stained glass windows and the Bible stories and messages told there. As part of sharing our ministry with others, it was suggested that members consider hosting a small group ministry that would take a deeper look into the sermon preached on Sunday. What an opportunity!
My suggestion was for everyone who likes to ride, we’d take a trip down the Mississippi to Wabasha on the Minnesota side, and then north back to Hastings on the Wisconsin side of the river.
I planned stops in Lake City for our Bible study and in Wabasha for lunch before returning home.
Despite the threat of bad weather, seven of us hit the trail for a time of sharing together. For me, our study of God’s Word had special emphasis as we met together on the shores of the Mississippi in Lake City. As we sat together, we shared the Christmas story as told in Luke, the topic of the sermon “Christmas in July” that Pastor Jon had shared earlier that morning. Until you’ve had the opportunity to do it, you can’t realize how fulfilling it is to study God’s Word together and the application it has for your life.
Everyone had something to share that day and God’s Word brought us all just a bit closer together as there was a realization that we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. God’s Word speaks to all of us and to share it together is an amazing thing to do. You’re not just listening to someone preach, but you’re sharing your own connection to the Word as you read and listen to it together.
In the end, God blessed us with good weather. We enjoyed an excellent meal at “Slippery’s” in Wabasha and topped it off with ice cream when we returned to Hastings.
Not quite stodgy old Lutherans on motor scooters; just great friends and fellow Christians enjoying the ride.