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Hausvater: /HAUS-fah-ter/
noun (German)
1. Housefather.
2. Spiritually responsible head of household, including the housefather as assisted by the housemother.
>> Example: "As the Hausvater should teach it [Christian doctrine] to the entire family ..."
(Martin Luther, Small Catechism, 1529)

Jesus sinners doth receive;
Oh, may all this saying ponder
Who in sin’s delusions live
And from God and heaven wander!
Here is hope for all who grieve—
Jesus sinners doth receive.

Erdmann Neumeister was a Lutheran pastor and poet who lived from May 12, 1671 to August 18, 1756. His hymn “Jesus Sinners Doth Receive” is a great discussion guide for teaching repentance and forgiveness. When memorizing only a few stanzas, teachers may find stanzas one, five and seven most appealing. These three sum up the message of the Gospel quite clearly. Stanzas one and seven begin and close with the refrain—“Jesus sinners doth receive”—which is helpful when infants, toddlers or preschoolers are memorizing the words.

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Pastor Douglas Zahner serves at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Mayville, Wisconsin.

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