St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church

147 Park Ave, Amityville NY 11701

A Member of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS)

Worship Opportunities

Thursdays at 7:30 PM
Sundays at 10:00 AM

Pastor's Message

A Few Pearls of Wisdom

“It was a brave man who ate the first oyster!” declared a poster at a restaurant I used to frequent in college. While many people find oysters delectable, I suspect the same number find them repulsive. As a teenager, I invited a friend over for dinner, and insisted that my mother fry oysters. I remember […]

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Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!

The Fab Four is a Beatles tribute band (We don’t say “impersonator” anymore, possibly because it suggests full-blown identity theft.)  An NYPD officer once gave me their Christmas album. It’s a wonderful piece of work—versions of 20 Christmas songs, each given the sound and style of a Beatles hit.  “Away in a Manger” sounds like […]

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The Revenge of the Co-Inky_Dink

A number of years ago I wrote a Messenger article titled “Co-Inky-Dink”. It was about various odd coincidences I have experienced in my life. (“Co-Inky-Dink” is how Popeye the Sailor pronounces “coincidence”). In this Messenger, I’d like to write a sequel to that article---because in the last few months I’ve experienced a whole slew of […]

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Luther and the Horror Film

I ran into an odd pattern a few years ago. It began one October when I was watching a few old scary movies from the 1930s. I noticed an actor named Irving Pichel—he played a homicidal psychopath in Murder by the Clock and the vampire’s assistant in Dracula’s Daughter. The name seemed vaguely familiar. When […]

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100 Days that Shook the World - September 2019

           Recently we have been engulfed by a flurry of notable 50th anniversaries.  Good grief, did all these things really happen in such a short span of time?  When you’re 13 (as I was in 1969), the time frame doesn’t seem as short; but when you’re 63, it seems like the twinkling of an eye.  […]

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Luck Be a Lady Tonight - August 2019

A few years ago, I was visiting a lady from our church (during what, alas, ended up being her final illness).  A nurse left the hospital room and called back to the church lady:  “Good luck!”  And the church lady said to me in a half-whisper:  “Lutherans don’t say ‘Good luck.’”  And that’s generally true.  […]

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A Lutheran Star is Born! - July 2019

One of the most popular recent movies was “A Star Is Born,” with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.  It’s amazing to think that this is the fourth time this story has been brought to the screen.  I don’t think that’s a record—“Dracula” has certainly been done more than four times.  Still, it shows that this […]

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An Effective Way to Avoid Anti-Semitism! - June 2019

The last year or so has seen an explosive growth of anti-Semitism.  Two terrible incidents of violence, in Pittsburgh and near San Diego, took numerous lives in synagogues.  In New York, the number of hate crimes against Jews has doubled. In Germany, presenting oneself as Jewish invites attack.  A German official advised Jews to stop […]

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They're Always Listening! - May 2019

Do you ever get the feeling that they’re always listening?  That our cellular phones are portals for people to monitor our conversations?             Who are they, anyway?  I’m not sure.  Advertising agencies.  Big corporations.  But one encounters enough anecdotal evidence to stoke the fires of paranoia:  Their ears are open to our conversations!             At […]

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It's Closer Than You Think! - April 2019

There are many disputes in the world over “holy places.”             In Turkey, there stands a building called Hagia Sophia—which in Greek means “Holy Wisdom.” It’s actually named after Jesus—who, in I Corinthians, is called “the power of God and the wisdom of God.” (I Corinthians 1:24).  This magnificent edifice was built to the Saviour’s […]

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Making a Fool of Yourself - March 2019

In a recent sermon, I paraphrased what St. Paul says in I Corinthians 14:23 as: “Don’t do anything in church that will cause a visitor to think: ‘These people are crazy.’ And I do try to live by those words. I try to present a worship service that is dignified and tasteful.              But I […]

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The Concept of Blasphemy is…Kinda Blasphemous! - February 2019

Most of us have some minor obsessions.  Mine include the Kennedy assassination, which, as I’ve often said, I see as the most formative event of my generation.  (When I saw that the Disney movie “Frozen 2” was coming out on November 22, 2019, I immediately wondered:  “Was Olaf the Snowman on the grassy knoll?”)  I […]

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Obsession Is Not Just A Perfume - January 2019

            Most of us have some minor obsessions.  Mine include the Kennedy assassination, which, as I’ve often said, I see as the most formative event of my generation.  (When I saw that the Disney movie “Frozen 2” was coming out on November 22, 2019, I immediately wondered:  “Was Olaf the Snowman on the grassy knoll?”)  […]

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Thanks for the memories! - August 2017

Did you see that movie where Sinbad played a genie? It was called “Shazam”. You didn’t? Me neither. Because such a movie was never made–it doesn’t exist. Yet...thousands of people swear that they have seen it. They have a vivid memory of watching this non-existent film. Researchers are quite puzzled as to why so many […]

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When the Saints Go Marching In - July 2017

I’m writing this immediately after our church’s celebration of the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul.  A few years back, we began commemorating this holy day on the closest Sunday (the date of the festival is actually June 29).  It’s the “name day” of our congregation (St. Paul’s), and it’s a good way to […]

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Looking Evil in the Face - June 2017

One of Lenny Bruce’s classic comedy routines is “Father Flotsky’s Triumph”.  A satire on prison films, it presents a riot in the penitentiary yard.  The leader of the rioters is a prisoner named Gus.  The warden is negotiating with Gus, to no avail (long before “Seinfeld”, all Gus says is “Yadda yadda!’) But then the […]

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The Future of Christianity - May 2017

“Predictions can be very difficult, especially about the future,” Yogi Berra famously said.  When I was a kid, they promised us flying cars.  (That was about 50 years ago!)  A few days ago, the news anchors were crying out: Finally!  We’re getting the flying cars!  And then they showed us a jet ski...that hovered.  Wait […]

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Famous Last Words - April 2017

Last January, a group from our church went to the Morgan Library to see an exhibit on Martin Luther.  In the library bookstore, I purchased two volumes-- a sumptuous coffee table book about the Luther exhibit, with photos and explanations of every item...and a modest, slender volume called Famous Last Words, about what well-known people […]

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March Madness! - March 2017

March is a welcome month.  While it does indeed “come in like a lion”–often bringing the most severe snowstorms of the winter–it also “goes out like a lamb”.  The weather begins to moderate, the days grow longer (especially since Daylight Savings Time got pushed back into March), and we joyfully embrace the coming of spring! […]

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Has Anybody Here Seen My Old Friend Martin? - February 2017

This month, we remember the day of Blessed Martin Luther’s passing–February 8.  Last month, we commemorated the birthday of another great Martin–Dr. Martin Luther King.  These two Martins have each had a great influence in my life.  From Blessed Martin Luther I learn the Scriptural truth that we are saved by grace through faith.  Our […]

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Fake News...and Good News! - January 2017

Alec Baldwin is dead! Clint Eastwood is dead! Susan Boyle is dead! Megan Kelly quit her Fox News show ON THE AIR! At least that’s what I read on the Internet... “Fake news” is a major discussion topic in politics these days.  Some even assert that fake news swayed the election.  To be honest, I […]

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