Falling Into Formation as We Prepare for our 12th Annual Turkey Trot!

"So continue encouraging each other and building each other up, just like you are doing already." (1 Thessalonians. 5:11)

Have you ever had the opportunity to be a spectator at one of the iconic Blue Angel aviation shows? Last summer, we held our family reunion in Traverse City, and after all the reservations had been finalized, we were very excited to learn that the Blue Angels were scheduled to perform that very same weekend over the Grand Traverse Bay!

The Blue Angels are an elite group of highly skilled pilots that represent the Navy and Marines. This talented group performs an average of 70 aviation shows in 34 locations throughout the United State each year. During each show, the Blue Angels are known for flying six single seat F/A-18E Super Hornets. Each jet has its number on the back tail, with the Commanding Officer flying the Number 1 jet. Each stunt is carefully and meticulously calculated, demonstrating the masterful skills of each pilot. 

These jets fly at speeds of 700 mph, and during their famous “diamond formation”, four jets will be as close as 18 inches apart from one another, which leaves the audience wondering… "How can they be so close together and not lose control?”

One obvious realization is the amazing sense of trust, perception, and respect that each pilot has for the commanding officer, as well as each other. Each pilot has a keen sense of awareness and is carefully monitoring and watching over one other. They know and obey the established criteria, and when they get into formation, they demonstrate a powerful and impressive performance.

In a similar sense, when followers of Jesus unite and fall into formation to help others in His name, the results are often powerful and impressive as well. This Friday, we are very excited as we are anticipating a powerful reaction when 182 young disciples fall into servanthood formation to help victims of Hurricane Ian!

For the past twelve years, St. Matthew Lutheran School has hosted an annual "Turkey Trot" as an avenue for students to provide assistance during a critical circumstance or for those who are in tremendous need. Three weeks ago, our fifth grade held a very successful Bake Sale, and all proceeds were given to LCMS Disaster Relief. However, because the devastation in Florida is so horrific and the need is so great, this year's Student Council has selected to continue to help victims of Hurricane Ian to make them the recipients of this year’s Turkey Trot proceeds. Continuing with the theme of "Spreading SON-Shine Over Florida", the Student Council will host our 12th Annual St. Matthew Lutheran School Turkey Trot on Friday, November 18th. All funds that are raised will again be given to LCMS Disaster Relief, who is currently using these funds to provide meals, shelter, and building materials to those who were affected by Hurricane Ian.

Students in Preschool through Grade 8 are encouraged to collect pledges from family and friends for the number of laps or time that they will run during the Trot. Then, on November 18, all students will run (trot) around our school soccer field during a designated time of the school day (Preschool through Grade 4 will “trot” from 9:30 - 10:00 a.m. and Grades 5 - 8 will “trot” from 10:15 - 10:45 a.m.).

We are looking forward to partnering with LCMS Disaster Relief to assist them to carry out their mission of "Helping the hurting amid disaster". To begin this process, students can start by collecting pledges. Last week pledge sheets were sent home with each student. To obtain a new pledge sheet, please contact the school office.

As a special bonus, anyone raising over $50 will receive a free T-shirt with this year's "Love Is Everything We Need" logo on the front as well as our "Spreading SON-Shine Over Florida" logo on the back. (Please know that these shirts will be delivered two weeks after the Turkey Trot.) We are asking that students please bring their completed pledge sheets and collected funds to school on Friday, November 18. In addition, the fun in the “SON” will continue at the end of the day, when those students who run the most laps and the student that earns the most money will have fun turning each Student Council member into a human SUNDAE!

So, driven by this year’s school motto of "Love Is Everything We Need”, we are asking God to help us accomplish great things in His name, and we look forward to God blessing this effort to help us "Spread SON-Shine Over Florida"!

In His Love,

Mrs. Palka

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