As I mentioned before, the Phillips family has always made this a special day. It had been just for us; then for the last two years, we opened our house to our church family to join in.
This year, since we have a "permanent" building, we moved our party there. Thank God, through my wife's sacrificially hard work and some terrific helpers (including the tireless Annette Christensen and her family), it was a terrific time. Here are some of the pictures.
We had a number of educational and fun games. One was a sheet of facts relating to the Reformation. Select adults had the answers and a bag of candy; the kids went around with their question sheets asking those adults ("What is a 'thesis'?"). When they got the answer, they got candy. Both learned!
Also, there was a game depicting Katherina von Bora's escape from the convent in barrels in 1523.
Then there was Luther's library. The kids could throw three bean bags. If they hit one of Luther's books, they lost a point. If they hit a heretical book, they gained one. Points translated to candy. (Say... do I see Your Best Life Now in there?)
Kids could also shoot some nerf arrows in the Thuringian Forest. (Do you know, my wife could not find bows and arrows with suction-cups! She looked everywhere. I think the Democrats outlawed them. Seriously. This is Kalifornia, after all.)
Meanwhile, though they tried, inquisitors could not get believers in God's free grace in Christ to recant.
Later, that scoundrel Johann Tetzel showed up hawking indulgences. He was very animated.
He actually made a few sales — until he was shooed off by Dr. Martin Luther himself.
Dr. Luther told the kids (you see King Josiah just to the left of the good Doctor) about his very different world, about his life, about his 93... no, 94... no, 95 Theses, about his translating the Bible, about the Diet of Worms. But particularly he was emphatic in telling them of his discovery that "the righteousness of God" in Romans 1:17 is speaking of "that righteousness by which through grace and sheer mercy God justifies us through faith."
Everyone seemed to have a wonderful time, and we were glad to be able to share, exalt the grace of God in Christ, and see so many smiles.