Friday, December 29, 2017

Anticipating Worship (December 31)

First Sunday after Christmas/New Year's Eve


Worship Focus:  We live for Christ who gives us salvation, peace, and joy.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 45:20-25
Psalm 111
Colossians 3:12-17
Luke 2:25-40

Sermon Meditation:  Luke 2:25-35

Enter the New Year with Open Eyes
1.  To see the Child in the present
2.  To see the Child in the future

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, in mercy you sent your one and only Son to take upon himself our human nature.  By his gracious coming, deliver us from the corruption of our sin and transform us into the likeness of his glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


We will have a special service as we end one year and enter another year.  But the focus remains on the Christ born on Christmas Day.  Simeon and Ana saw him.  So do we.

See you in church at 9:30 AM.

Blessings in the New Year.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Christmas Worship

Christmas is a busy time.  Perhaps you have a lot to accomplish in a short time before gathering with family or opening of presents.

But take time to be in God's house and with God's people to celebrate the whole point of the holiday--the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

In the words of the angel, "Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord"  (Luke 2:11).

Our Christmas schedule is:

Christmas Eve:  9:30 AM
Christmas Day:  9:30 AM

Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Anticipating Worship (December 24)

Fourth Sunday in Advent/Christmas Eve


Worship Focus:  Jesus, the promised Son of David, rules an eternal kingdom.

Scripture Readings:
2 Samuel 7:8-16
Psalm 89
Romans 16:25-27
Luke 1:26-38

Sermon Meditation:  Luke 1:26-38

What a Child Is This!
1.  Because of the messenger's announcement
2.  Because of the mother's acceptance

Prayer of the Day:  Stir up your power, O Lord, and come.  Take away the burden of our sins and make us ready for the celebration of your birth, that we may receive you in joy and serve you always; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Christmas is a time for worshiping the Christ-child.  See you in church at 9:30 AM on Sunday.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Anticipating Worship (December 10)

Second Sunday in Advent


Worship Focus:  Prepare for Christ’s coming with serious and sincere repentance.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 40:1-11
Psalm 85
2 Peter 3:8-14
Mark 1:1-8

Sermon Meditation:  Mark 1:1

Look into the Manger Early with Mark

Prayer of the Day:  Stir up our hearts, O Lord, to prepare the way for your only Son.  By his coming give us strength in our conflicts and shed light on our path through the darkness of this world; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

This Sunday the Choir has prepared a number of extra songs for our worship.  It is Advent.  We continue to prepare for Christmas.  See you in worship on Sunday at 9:30 AM.

Anticipating Worship (December 17)

Third Sunday in Advent


Worship Focus:  Proclaim the good news of Jesus’ coming.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 61:1-3,10,11
Psalm 71
1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
John 1:6-8,19-28

Sermon Meditation:  Isaiah 61:1-3

Christ Is All You Need for Christmas
1.  Because of what he expresses
2.  Because of what he exchanges

Prayer of the Day:  Hear our prayers, Lord Jesus Christ, and come with the good news of your mighty deliverance.  Drive the darkness from our hearts and fill us with your light; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Christmas gets closer and our focus gets clearer.  See you in worship on Sunday at 9:30 AM.


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

St. John Christmas Services

Please join us at St. John to help celebrate the birth of our Savior:
Christmas Eve, Sunday, December 24th, 9:30 am
Christmas Day, Monday, December 25th, 9:30 am

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Midweek Advent Worship (Psalm 19:14)

Dear Advent Christians who await and anticipate the coming King,

I will give you a moment.  Think about your activities from day-to-day.  How would you describe your life?  I will give you some options.  Is it more about resting or more about rushing?  I can guess.  It can be pretty hectic, right?  For everybody.  Young and old.  Ask anyone.  It is just relative as to what is or who is “busy.”  But it is real.  We all feel it.

As we close out another year on the calendar, we can look back over 11 months now.  How would you depict your events from month-to-month?  It is the same, isn’t it?  Some are just more full than others—like April is for the accountant with taxes or June for the baker with weddings.  It can be harried.  And yet we continue to kid ourselves that things will slow down.  Maybe in January.  But in reality, there is always one more thing to do.  And then one right after that.

Now what about every day this month?  As Christmas creeps closer  (or better, races rapidly—19 more days, still double digits), there is more than enough to do—cooking or baking, decorating or wrapping—all in between school or work.  It can get frantic and chaotic.  All of that can ruin or even wreck December 25th.

So how do we stop it even though we can’t slow it down?  That is what Advent is for.  And this time together on a Wednesday evening.  We pause this night as we look at a prayer of David.

I would imagine as a shepherd boy, David had some quiet time every once in a while at night to look up at the heavens and the skies  (Ps 19:1).  He could reflect on the “the glory of God” and the “work of his hands”  (Ps 19:1).  God is great, making himself known in his creation.  But God is also good, making himself clear in his Word—giving us gifts like joy, light, and wisdom  (Ps 19:7-10).

As David reviews those things, he makes a request:  “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight”  (Ps 19:14).  He wants two specific factors to be acceptable like any of the Old Testament sacrifices  (Lv 1:3; 19:5).  You don’t give someone you love a present that is broken or busted.  (Not even if you are “re-gifting.”)  The same is true of any animal brought to the temple.  It would not be suitable if it was diseased or damaged.

And so we echo:
“May the words of my mouth … be pleasing in your sight”  (Ps 19:14).  That is, what is on our lips.  As we travel to the stable again this year, that may not be too tough.  We join in singing the familiar Christmas carols on playlists or favorite Christmas hymns in church.  Those are a blessing so that we are speaking the right things as they center our words on the message and meaning of this holiday—Jesus became flesh to live with us  (Jn 1:14; Is 7:14).  We can repeat as Mary magnified God when she learned that she would be the mother of Jesus.  “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior”  (Lk 1:46).  Jesus has rescued us from sin and Satan.  He has removed their threat.  For that reason we can confidently declare:  “Jesus is my Savior  (Mt 1:21)—born in the town of David for me”  (Lk 2:11).  He has come to bring peace to the world, to me—by living perfectly and dying innocently and rising triumphantly  (Lk 2:14).  All for us.
“May … the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight”  (Ps 19:14).  That is, what is in our heads—our thoughts and our contemplations.  As we trek to the manger, that might be trickier.  We sprint here and speed there.  Who has time to reflect—except on a long shopping list?  It seems almost that as soon as we sit down, we shut down.  But it is good to fill our heads, not with foolishness, but with fulfillment.  Mull over in your mind all of the many promises God made—the Serpent-Crusher, Immanuel, who would be born in Bethlehem to be pierced for our transgressions, the LORD our Righteousness  (Ge 3:15; Is 7:14; Micah 5:5; Is 53:5; Je 33:16).  All of them God kept.  We can imitate Mary also as she turned over all the events of that first Christmas evening after the shepherds paid a visit to the cattle shed  (Lk 2:19).

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight”  (Ps 19:14).  That is a fitting prayer because of all of the distractions this time of year.  We feel obligated to attend this party or attempt this purchase.  Not that those things are wrong.  But we may have to make an intentional effort like the people making their way out to John the Baptist  (Mk 1:5).  It wasn’t easy to hike from Jerusalem to the Jordan—downhill there and uphill back, logging many miles in the round-trip process.  But away from the disturbances and disruptions, they could concentrate on the Lord’s messenger, confess their sins, and crave baptism for the sending away of all of their guilt  (Mk 1:4).  That was not a waste of time for them—or for us.  The same is true as we head with those men keeping watch over their flocks by night to see the baby wrapped in cloths and then to herald to all what they had seen and heard  (Lk 2:12,18).  We proclaim from our mouths what we have processed in our hearts.

We notice to whom this prayer is addressed:  “O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer”  (Ps 19:14).  He is …
The “LORD”  (Ps 19:14).  He is the changeless, ageless One whose mercy is continual and whose might is constant.
“My Rock”  (Ps 19:14).  Hannah called him the same thing  (1 Sa 2:2).  He is like a large boulder.  He is One we can go to who is a source of safety and security.  There is no one else that we can turn to who is bigger or no other to trust in who is better.  And each one of us can say, “He is my Rock.”
“My Redeemer”  (Ps 19:14).  Jesus has paid the ransom to set us free—not with gold or silver, but with his holy, precious blood shed on the cross  (Luther’s Explanation to the Second Article).  We belong to him as he claims us as his own, providing for us and protecting us.  Each of us can state, “He is my Redeemer.”

It is Advent.  But Christmas is coming.  We want to be ready.  Pray for appropriate Advent preparation with David’s plea.

We read from Psalm 19:14:
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.


December 6, 2017

Joint Meeting

The St John and Immanuel Hmong council members met on December 4 to discuss the ways that our congregations can work together as partners in the work of our Lord.  We currently have a joint VBS program with them, but there are many other ways that we can work together.

The first change that we would like your feedback on is combining our Adult Bible classes and Sunday school programs.  Pastor Voigt would continue teaching in English at 11:00 AM and Pastor Moua would conduct a Bible class in Hmong at the same time.  Our Sunday school programs would be combined and taught at the same time.

An agenda item will be added to our Annual Voters' meeting to discuss these changes and where the congregation would like us to go with any more changes.

We are planning another joint council meeting with Immanuel Hmong in February to discuss the member feedback and future events and activities (joint worship, mission festival, fun festival, evangelism outreach, facility maintenance).  Please speak to any of the council members to give us your feedback.

We ask the Lord for his guidance as we work to glorify his name and do the work he has commanded, "To make disciples of all nations."

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Midweek Advent Service (December 6)

On Wednesday evening, we will have our one midweek Advent service.  Before all of the busyness of the coming season hits, we will spend a few quiet moments considering God's Word.

We will look at Psalm 19:14:  May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Our focus will be:  Pray for Proper Advent Preparation.

Our worship is at 6:30 PM.  Come and take advantage of this special time.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Decoration Reminder

Tomorrow we will be decorating our church in anticipation of Jesus' birth.  These ornaments add to the importance and significance of the Advent and Christmas seasons.

If you can help, we will begin around 5:30 PM.

Thank you.

Anticipating Worship (December 3)

First Sunday in Advent


Worship Focus:  Be prepared because Jesus is coming.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 63:16b,17; 64:1-8
Psalm 24
1 Corinthians 1:3-9
Mark 13:32-37

Sermon Meditation:  Mark 13:32-37

Advent Means ...
1.  Waiting
2.  Working
3.  Watching

Prayer of the Day:  Stir up your power, O Lord, and come.  Protect us by your strength and save us from the threatening dangers of our sins; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


We begin a new year on the church calendar in preparation for Jesus' birth.  Come and worship him.  See you on Sunday at 9:30 AM.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Anticipating Worship (November 26)

Fourth Sunday of End Time—Christ the King


Worship Focus:  Lord, keep us joyful in our King!

Scripture Readings:
Ezekiel 34:11-16,23,24
Psalm 47
1 Corinthians 15:20-28
Matthew 27:27-31

 Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 27:27-31

"Hail, King Jesus"

Prayer of the Day:  Lord Jesus Christ, by your victory you have broken the power of the evil one.  Fill our hearts with joy and peace as we look with hope to that day when every creature in heaven and earth will acclaim you King of kings and Lord of lords to your unending praise and glory; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


This Sunday is the final one of the Church year.  We finish with the reminder that Jesus reigns and rules over all.  See you in worship.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Thanksgiving Eve Worship


We will join our hearts in worship on Wednesday evening as we give thanks to our God for who he is and what he does.

The theme of the service is:  "We praise our God with thankfulness."

We base our meditation on King David's prayer in 1 Chronicles 29:10-13.


David praised the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, “Praise be to you, O LORD, God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting.  Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours.  Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all.  Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things.  In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.  Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name."

We will see you at 6:30 PM tomorrow.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Special Sunday Service (November 19)

If you are on the synod’s monthly mailing list, you received the following newsletter segment by WELS Board for World Missions Administrator, Larry Schlomer, over the summer:

“I had no idea WELS was doing so much!” Have you ever had a similar thought?

WELS partners with over 700 congregations and preaching station outside of North America to help spread the good news of salvation through Jesus. Over 400 national pastors have been trained in our WELS world mission fields. There are 14 countries where new mission work is currently being explored. The Lord is using WELS in mighty ways as his gospel goes to work.

WELS members need to know that our missionaries and partners are reaching souls around the world so that more can join the celebration of the angels in heaven. And yet many are unaware of what God is doing in WELS missions.

One of the tools we use to get the word out is the WELS mission festival. Our missionaries and their families spread out to WELS congregations each year to lead celebrations of what God is allowing us to do together. As they preach and present, they connect you and many others to the work you support.

Out missionaries leave encouraged by the outpouring of love and support for their work. Our congregations are amazed at what God is doing. Most importantly, we are all invigorated to reconsider our role in the Lord’s Great Commission.

Brothers and sisters of St. John, we have a MISSION FESTIVAL opportunity this coming Sunday!

We are privileged to have our WELS Home Mission Administrator, Pastor Keith Free, coming to preach for us and give a presentation following worship in our normal Bible class timeslot. He will give an overview of Home Mission work around the United States.

You are encouraged to come. See you at 9:30 AM.

Immanuel Hmong Invites St. John Members

Immanuel Hmong will celebrate Hmong New Year and Thanksgiving this coming Sunday,
November 19th. St. John members are invited to worship and have dinner with them.
The worship service begins at 12:30 pm with the meal to follow. They will be dressing in
Hmong traditional attire.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Anticipating Worship (November 12)

The Second Sunday of End Time—Last Judgment


Worship Focus:  Lord, keep us mindful of the Judgment!

Scripture Readings:
Daniel 7:9,10
Psalm 90
1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
Matthew 25:31-46

Sermon Meditation:  1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

Encourage On Another about Judgment Day
1.  With caution
2.  With confidence
3.  With comfort

Prayer of the Day:  Lord God Almighty, so rule and govern our hearts and minds by your Holy Spirit that we may always look forward to the end of this present evil age and to the day of your righteous judgment.  Keep us steadfast in true and living faith and present us at last holy and blameless before you; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


As the church year comes to a close, we want to be prepared for Jesus to make a return.  We will do that together this coming Sunday.  See you at 9:30 AM.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Anticipating Worship (November 5)

First Sunday of End Time—Reformation Sunday


Worship Focus:  Reformation Realities—Old and New
                             Grace Alone.  Faith Alone.  Scripture Alone.

We will have three devotions based on the truths of the Bible restored through the Reformation.

- Grace Alone
Exodus 34:6,7
Ephesians 2:4,5

- Faith Alone
Genesis 15:6
Romans 4:1-5

- Scripture Alone
2 Samuel 7:25
Luke 24:27


Prayer of the Day:  Heavenly Father, our refuge and strength, pour out your Holy Spirit on your faithful people.  Keep them steadfast in your Word, protect and comfort them in all temptations, defend them against all their enemies, and bestow on the Church your saving peace; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


This year marks the 500th anniversary of Luther's posting of the 95 Theses  (October 31, 1517).  Our special worship on Sunday will commemorate the beginning of the significant event that allows us to appreciate our God.

See you at 9:30 AM.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Daylight Saving Time Ends

Day Light Saving Time ends Sunday, November 5th. Remember to set your clocks back 1 hour before turning in on Saturday night.


Thursday, October 26, 2017

Anticipating Worship (October 29)

The Twenty-first Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  Rejoice at the Lord’s feast!

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 25:6-9
Psalm 23
Philippians 4:4-13
Matthew 22:1-14

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 22:1-14

Come to God's Wedding Feast!
1.  Invited earnestly
2.  Dressed correctly

Prayer of the Day:  Grant, O merciful Lord, to your faithful people pardon and peace that they may be cleansed from all their sins and serve you with a quiet mind; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


It is a blessing to be in God's house with our fellow believers.  We support one another as the Lord strengthens us.  See you Sunday.

Reformation Concert (October 28)

On Saturday, a combined choir from area churches will present some of Martin Luther's hymns in a sacred concert.  There will also be organ pieces and congregational singing.  The time is 3:00 PM.

A reception with German deserts will follow.

Come and celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in this way.  We may take for granted the many songs that we sing regularly.  But we can be glad that we can praise God with our voices in music and embed key truths in our minds through melodies.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Anticipating Worship (October 15)

The Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  The Lord looks for repentance from us.

Scripture Readings:
Ezekiel 18:1-4,25-32
Psalm 25
Philippians 2:1-11
Matthew 21:28-32

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 21:28-32

Jesus Makes Us Think about Being a Good Son

Prayer of the Day:  Mercifully grant, O God, that your Holy Spirit may in all things direct and rule our hearts, for without your help we are unable to please you; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


We gather to worship our God together as his children.  See you Sunday.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Anticipating Worship (October 8)

The Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God saves sinners by the gift of his grace.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 55:6-9
Psalm 27
Philippians 18b-27
Matthew 20:1-16

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 20:1-16

It Is Fair!
1.  Because God is gracious
2.  Because God is generous

Prayer of the Day:  Lord God, you call us to work in your kingdom and leave no one standing idle.  Help us to order our lives by your wisdom and to serve you in willing obedience; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Come and hear about God's grace.  See you Sunday!

Friday, September 29, 2017

Anticipating Worship (October 1)

The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  The forgiven forgive.

Scripture Readings:
Genesis 50:15-21
Psalm 103
Romans 14:5-9
Matthew 18:21-35

Sermon Meditation:  Romans 14:5-9

We Live to the Lord
1.  In Christian liberty
2.  In Christian love

Prayer of the Day:  Lord, we pray that your mercy and grace may always go before and follow after us that, loving you with undivided hearts, we may be ready for every good and useful work; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


We look forward to gathering in God's house.  See you Sunday.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Christian Funeral for Bette Loose

For those who have not heard or as a reminder, tomorrow we gather at St. John to have the Lord remind us of the comfort of the resurrection.  Because Jesus lives, so does Bette.  And so do we.  That is what the Lord says.  He is the One who forgives our sins and forgets them  (Isaiah 43:25).

The service is at 11:00 AM.  There will be a visitation an hour before and a luncheon to follow.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Hurricane Relief Update

The people affected by the recent hurricanes - Harvey in Texas and Irma in Florida - are still in our thoughts and prayers.  We ask that the Lord continue to keep them in his care.

We set aside two Sundays to gather an offering to send to WELS Christian Aid and Relief to help with the aftermath of the destruction.  This organization supports the efforts of the local congregations and works with them to determine what is needed and to distribute it where it is necessary.

The total from the two weekends at St. John was $850.  That amount does not include some members who donated directly to the Synod Office.  Thank you to all for your generosity.  May our gracious God bless this effort.

Bette Loose's Funeral

The family of Bette has finalized the arrangements for her Christian funeral.  It will be Friday, September 29, at 11:00 AM.  There will be a visitation at 10:00 AM and a meal to follow.

We continue to give thanks that Bette knew the Lord.  He was her God and Savior.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Bette Loose

Yesterday afternoon the Lord called Bette to her eternal home in heaven.  We are thankful that God called her to faith and to himself.

There are many details that have to be worked through as of right now.  We will let you know more as those things become clearer.

We rejoice in the resurrection because our God has redeemed us.  We are his.  We hold on to that comfort for Bette and for us.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Anticipating Worship (September 17)

The Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  Christians serve their Savior with their lives.

Scripture Readings:
Jeremiah 15:15-21
Psalm 121
Romans 12:1-8
Matthew 16:21-26

Sermon Meditation:  Psalm 121

The Lord Protects the Pilgrim

Prayer of the Day:  O Lord Jesus Christ, preserve the congregation of believers with your never-failing mercy.  Help us avoid whatever is wicked and harmful, and guide us in the way that leads to our salvation; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


The Lord keep you in his care.  See you on Sunday at 9:30 AM.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Your Opinion Requested - Ministry Planning Efforts

The WELS offers a self-assessment and adjustment service to help in planning ministry.  The Church Council would like to know if you would like to pursue this program.  We want to lead St. John into the future under God’s blessings and seek your input.

Click the link below to watch a 3-minute video and indicate your preference.

Survey link.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Anticipating Worship (September 10)

The Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God’s people know God’s love.

Scripture Readings:
Exodus 6:2-8
Psalm 34
Romans 11:33-36
Matthew 16:13-20

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 16:13-20

Know the Right Answer
1.  About the Christ
2.  About the Church

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty and everlasting God, give us an increase of faith, hope, and love; and, that we may obtain what you promise, make us love what you command; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Blessings on your weekend.  The Lord give you rest both physically and spiritually.  See you in his house on Sunday.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Hurricane Help

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have certainly dominated the news recently.  We keep in our prayers all the people in the wake and in the path of these natural disasters, especially our brothers and sisters in the faith.  There has been some damage and destruction to churches and schools in those areas.

If you would like to offer some assistance to help in the aftermath, but don't know how or where, St. John is planning to gather a special offering to send to WELS Christian Aid and Relief.  Please put your donation or check  (made out to St. John and a note in the memo line) in a separate envelope and drop it in the offering plate.  We will gather it this Sunday and the next.  We will combine it and send one check to the Synod office building.  Thank you.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

New Bible Class

Mr. Tom Koepsell is offering an additional Bible Study opportunity besides the normal Sunday time slot.  It will be on Thursdays at 4:30 PM.  The title is "Life of Abraham."  It starts this week (September 7).  If you are planning to attend, please add your name to the sign-up sheet on the table in the narthex.  Thank you.  And thanks to Mr. Koepsell.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Anticipating Worship (August 27)

The Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God comforts us with his powerful Word.

Scripture Readings:
1 Kings 19:9-18
Psalm 73
Romans 9:1-5
Matthew 14:22-33

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 14:22-33

Jesus Won't Let You Drown
1.  He comes with his merciful help
2.  He comes with his mighty hand

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more that we either desire or deserve.  Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you on Sunday!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

School Installations

As the new school year approaches, our former teachers are getting ready to step into their classrooms.  Their installations are set:
- Miss Cindy Lendt - 10:45 AM at Good Shepherd Ev. Lutheran Church  (Burnsville) on Sunday, August 27.  She will be teaching 3rd grade.
- Mr. William Scharf - 10:30 AM at Salem Ev. Lutheran Church  (Stillwater) on Sunday, September 10.  He will be teaching 7th and 8th grade.
We pray that the Lord who called them now guide them and guard them in their upcoming responsibilities.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Save the Date!

Saturday, September 23rd, St. John congregation will have a celebration of Pastor Voigt's 25 years in the ministry. Members of St. John are asked to provide food items: a main dish and a side (salad or fruit) for the pot luck meal. Dessert will be provided by the Anniversary Committee. Members who are able to assist with planning, set-up, clean-up, etc. are encouraged to contact the Julians as soon as possible. Look for an official invitation in your church mailbox for details.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Build on the Rock-VBS

Build on the Rock, our joint vacation Bible school (VBS) with Immanuel Hmong wrapped up on the 12th with many smiles. God certainly blessed our prayers and our efforts. We had many wonderful, smiling volunteers, gracious donors, your gifts of prayer, enthusiastic kids and beautiful weather, to make for a great event. There were 44 different participants during the 3 days.  An added bonus was the great opportunity to get to know many of our Hmong brothers and sisters on a working level. Much positive feedback along with some great ideas for improving on the next VBS were received.
Thanks to everyone who participated. All praise and glory to Christ our Rock, our Deliverer!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Anticipating Worship (August 13)

The Tenth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  True wisdom comes from the priceless treasure of God’s Word.

Scripture Readings:
1 Kings 3:5-12,15
Psalm 119:33-40
Romans 8:28-30
Matthew 13:44-52

Sermon Meditation:  Romans 8:28-30

We Know
1.  God's sure promise of good
2.  God's certain path to glory

Prayer of the Day:  O Lord, your ears are always open to the prayers of your humble servants, who come to you in Jesus’ name.  Teach us always to ask according to your will that we may never fail to obtain the blessings you have promised; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in worship on Sunday!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Facility Update

Our next-door neighbors, CLUES, contacted us recently.  They will soon be in a construction phase, tearing down the building next to them and putting up an addition.  They were curious about some classroom space in our school for their programs during that process.
There have been two face-to-face meetings with some representatives of the Church Council.  There is nothing definite yet as far as a proposal from them to us.  Obviously, there might be some questions and comments from us.  The Council and Trustees will continue to be in contact with them.  A lease arrangement might be a possibility, but some things have to be considered before it would come before the congregation.
This is just information at this point so you are not caught off guard and you are aware.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Anticipating Worship (August 6)

The Ninth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  With the Lord we have safety and security as we wait for God’s final harvest.

Scripture Readings:
Joel 3:12-16
Psalm 18
Romans 8:26,27
Matthew 13:24-30,36-43

Sermon Meditation:  Romans 8:26,27

Enter the Holy Spirit
1.  Who prays on our behalf
2.  Who prays for our good

Prayer of the Day:  Grant us, Lord, the spirit to think and do what is right that we, who cannot do anything that is good without you, may by your help be enabled to live according to your will; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in the Lord's House on Sunday!

Vacation Bible School (August 10-12)

Final VBS Update  “Build on the Rock”
Thanks to all our volunteers, donors, and prayer partners. Most of all, thanks to our gracious God for his hand of blessing. We have received everything we’ve requested for this week's VBS! There will be a set-up at noon Monday to get the building staged for our Build on the Rock construction site. You are welcome to come move tables and hang decorations. We have 36 children planning to attend. To God Alone be All the Glory!

NOTE to PARENTS:
Please use the parking lot and enter through the lower doors all 3 days. If you have invited friends/neighbors, please direct them to do so as well. Thank you.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

National Night Out - Tuesday, August 1st

St. John will be part of the annual National Night Out celebration, Tuesday, August 1st, in the upper Swede Hollow Park.  (It is right down the road from church.)
For a number of years we have been grilling hot dogs and giving them away.  We also set up a table and neighbors bring items to share.  It has become quite a tradition.

The fun begins at 6:00 PM.  There will be a band to entertain and visits from local fire and police departments.

See you there.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Anticipating Worship (July 30)

The Eighth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God’s Word produces growth.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 55:10-13
Psalm 65
Romans 8:18-25
Matthew 13:1-9,18-23

Sermon Meditation:  Isaiah 55:10-13

God's Word Brings about Growth
1.  There is that reason for his Word
2.  There is that result from his Word

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, we thank you for planting in us the seed of your Word.  By your Holy Spirit, help us to receive it with joy and to bring forth fruits in faith and hope and love; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in church on Sunday!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

National Night Out - Tuesday, August 1st

St. John will be part of the annual National Night Out celebration, Tuesday, August 1st, in the upper Swede Hollow Park.  (It is right down the road from church.)
For a number of years we have been grilling hot dogs and giving them away.  We also set up a table and neighbors bring items to share.  It has become quite a tradition.

The fun begins at 6:00 PM.  There will be a band to entertain and visits from local fire and police departments.

See you there.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Build Smart-Build on the Rock Vacation Bible School at St. John Lutheran

August 10-12, 2017, St. John Lutheran Church and Immanuel Hmong Lutheran Church will be hosting Vacation Bible School for students entering Kindergarten through grade 6.  The time is 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., here at 765 Margaret Street, St. Paul.  There will be Bible truths, songs, building challenges, Bible story skits, and much more.  Please register your child(ren) early.

Click here for the flyer and registration form.

Update: Vacation Bible School

Build Smart - Build on the Rock

Prayer Request...
  -  prayers of thanks! God continues to bring forward the volunteers needed for advance preparations as well as for leading the event. A music coordinator, another teacher and a wood-cutter have stepped forward!  Thanks be to God also for this great collaboration opportunity with our brothers and sisters of Immanuel Hmong.  It is such a blessing to be working together.
  -  please continue to pray that God would supply what is needed to his glory - especial kids (and their parents) with hearts ready for the Good News.
Who can you invite to this event? Any child going into Kindergarten through grade 6 is welcome!!  Forms are in the narthex on the table to the right of the stairwell as well as on the blog.

Still appreciated would be...
  -  A kitchen server -- The snacks are being planned an purchased by a generous member who works during the day. We are looking for someone who could simply follow the plan on paper and serve/clean up each day.
  -  A flier -- Would you be willing to create a joint flier (with both St. John and Immanuel Hmong info) to be handed out to participants, encouraging them to "Build on the Rock", Jesus, and join us for services?
  -  4 dozen flat suckers/lollipops
  -  milk for snack time
  -  monetary donations of any size are welcome to offset costs (Place in offering place, marked "VBS". Any funds received over the costs of the program will go into evangelism fund or the general fund.)
 If you would like to commit to purchasing an item on this list, please let Tamara Julian know. She is also eager to answer any questions you have. Set up date is Monday, August 7. Event is Thursday-Saturday, August 10-12 (9 a.m. - noon.)

Friday, July 21, 2017

Anticipating Worship (July 23)

The Seventh Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God gives us real rest in Jesus.

Scripture Readings:
Exodus 33:12-23
Psalm 145
Romans 7:15-25a
Matthew 11:25-30

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 11:25-30

Jesus' Invitation Is Real
1.  With a word of praise
2.  With a word of promise

Prayer of the Day:  God of all power and might, you are the giver of all that is good.  Help us to love you with all our heart, strengthen us in true faith, provide us with all we need, and keep us safe in your care; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in worship on Sunday!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

What Every Member Should Know...about VBS

What every member should know about Vacation Bible School:
Please put this event on your prayer list. Ask God to provide kids with hearts open to His sweet gospel as well as His hand of blessing on all our planning and work. Jesus our Rock is too
wonderful to keep to ourselves!
Looking for someone to purchase and cut 3-4 dozen (approx. 9"x4") pieces of plywood.
Donations welcome, but funds are available. (See Tamara)
We need an individual to teach one or two songs to the kids. CD is provided! Sign up in the
narthex as our "Music Coordinator." (Sounds fancy, doesn't it?)
Other helpful donations include:
        + 4 dozen flat suckers/lollipops
        + 5 dozen 9 oz short plastic cups
        + gray or silver sculpey oven bake clay 12-16 oz. (less than $10 at Walmart.com)
        + milk for snack time
        + monetary donations to offset costs (Place in offering plate, marked "VBS")
Volunteers age 12-101 are needed to make this year's VBS a success! Event is from 9 am—noon, Thursday through Saturday Aug. 10-12, but there are also opportunities to
help in  advance of the event. Contact Tamara Julian with questions, donations or to
volunteer.
INVITE your friends, co-workers and neighbors to send their kids!

Registration for Vacation Bible School extended! Parents who wish to register for VBS may still do so, even though the sign up date has passed. Final numbers and ages would be appreciated as soon as possible for planning purposes. Details are on the forms in the narthex as well as on the printable forms on the blog.

Vacation Bible School

Build Smart-Build on the Rock Vacation Bible School at St. John Lutheran

August 10-12, 2017, St. John Lutheran Church and Immanuel Hmong Lutheran Church will be hosting Vacation Bible School.  The time is 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., here at 765 Margaret Street, St. Paul.  There will be Bible truths, songs, building challenges, Bible story skits, and much more.  Please register your child (ren) early.  
Click here for the flyer and registration form.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Anticipating Worship (July 16)

The Sixth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  A follower of Christ has a new life of peace.

Scripture Readings:
Jeremiah 28:5-9
Psalm 89
Romans 6:1-11
Matthew 10:34-42

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 10:34-42

Jesus Describes a Worthy Disciple

Prayer of the Day:  O God, you have prepared joys beyond understanding for those who love you.  Pour into our hearts such love for you that, loving you above all things, we may obtain your promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you on Sunday in worship!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Call Update

Pastor Voigt has announced that he has returned the call to serve the saints at Abiding Word in Maineville, Ohio.  We now press onward in Christ to work on and work through the challenges and changes at St. John.  We are confident the Lord goes with us to bless us.

Please keep your Brothers and Sisters in your prayers as they await the man whom the Lord of the Church has in mind for them.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Anticipating Worship (July 10)

The Fifth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  Confident of God’s powerful protection, Christians confess Christ.

Scripture Readings:
Jeremiah 20:7-13
Psalm 31
Romans 5:12-15
Matthew 10:24-33

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 10:24-33

Christain, Confess Christ
1.  Fearlessly
2.  Faithfully

Prayer of the Day:  O Lord, our God, govern the nations on earth and direct the affairs of this world so that your Church may worship you in peace and joy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in worship on Sunday!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Anticipating Worship (July 2)

The Fourth Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God shows his love for us by making us his own.

Scripture Readings:
Exodus 19:2-8a
Psalm 100
Romans 5:6-11
Matthew 9:35-10:8

Sermon Meditation:  Romans 5:6-11

Rejoice about Reconciliation
1.  In the present
2.  In the future

Prayer of the Day:  O God, Protector of all the faithful, you alone make strong; you alone make holy.  Show us your mercy and forgive our sins day by day.  Guide us through our earthly lives that we do not lose the things you have prepared for us in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you in worship on Sunday.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Letter from Miss Cindy Lendt

Dear members of St. John,

Three weeks ago I received the divine call to teach 3rd grade and coordinate school music at Good Shepherd Lutheran School in Burnsville, MN. Many of you took the time to talk with me about the call and pray for me, and how can I thank you enough for that? How can I thank you enough for being the people God put in my life for my first eight years in the ministry?


Now I am very excited to say that with our Savior’s guidance, I am accepting the call to serve at Good Shepherd. Please pray that God blesses this new adventure. May God’s grace be with his people at St. John, at Good Shepherd, and throughout the world! To God be all the glory.


In our Savior’s Name,



Cindy Lendt

Friday, June 23, 2017

Congregation Meeting Sunday

The semi-annual congregational voters meeting will be held Sunday, at 11:00 am, in the
Fellowship Hall — Agenda items are (1) approval of a budget for the next fiscal year, including our tuition agreement with neighboring schools (2) ratification of appointments for secretary and cemetery board vacancies.  We will also be asking our members for input on the future use of our school building.  A light lunch will be provided.

Anticipating Worship (June 25)

The Third Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  Out of mercy, God changes hearts of sin against him to hearts of love for him.

Scripture Readings:
Hosea 5:15-6:6
Psalm 119:97-104
Romans 4:18-25
Matthew 9:9-13

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 9:9-13

Watch the Doctor Work
1.  As he calls
2.  As he cures

Prayer of the Day:  O God, the strength of all who trust in you, mercifully hear our prayers.  Be gracious to us in our weakness and give us strength to keep your commandments in all we say and do; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you on Sunday in worship.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Join us Sunday in the Fellowship Hall!

Please join us in the Fellowship Hall following worship
for light refreshments and to say goodbye to
two of our church families that will be moving and leaving
St. John, the Grabitskes and Roachs. Also to thank them
for their many years of service at St. John





Congregation Meeting

The semi-annual congregational voters meeting will be held on Sunday, June 25, at 11:00 am.
Agenda items are (1) approval of a budget for the next fiscal year, including our tuition agreement with neighboring schools (2) ratification of appointments for secretary and cemetery board. vacancies.  We will also be asking our members for input on the future use of our school building.  A light lunch will be provided and we are asking members to bring a dessert to share.


Anticipating Worship (June 18)

The Second Sunday after Pentecost


Worship Focus:  God wants us to hear his Word of truth.

Scripture Readings:
Deuteronomy 11:18-21,26-28
Psalm 78
Romans 3:21-25a,27,28
Matthew 7:15-29

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 7:24-27

Be the Right Kind of Hearer
1.  Hear confidently
2.  Hear consciously

Prayer of the Day:  O God, you rule over all things in wisdom and kindness.  Take away everything that may be harmful and give us whatever is good; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


See you Sunday.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Concert Countdown

Musician Chris Driesbach will be with us in two days.  He is on the calendar for Sunday night for a 7:00 PM performance.  Along with singing catchy tunes, he shares his personal story.  It is interesting how the Lord has brought him to this point.  Come and hear.

Divine Call

Last night Pastor Voigt received a Divine Call to serve at Abiding Word Ev. Lutheran Church in Maineville, OH.

These are interesting times for St. John.  We are all aware of it.  But we also need to keep in mind that the Lord of the Church is still on the throne.  He is in control.  And he hears our prayers.  We then continue to pour out our hearts to him.

If you have any questions or comments, please speak to Pastor Voigt.  It is important to be open and honest throughout the process.

We entrust our lives into the Lord's loving hands knowing that his timetable is the best.

Anticipating Worship (June 11)

The First Sunday after Pentecost—Holy Trinity


Worship Focus:  Our triune God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—has all power.

Scripture Readings:
Genesis 1:1-2:3
Psalm 150
2 Corinthians 13:11-14
Matthew 28:16-20

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 28:16-20

The Triune God Wants to Be with You
1.  That includes a great claim
2.  That includes a great commission
3.  That includes a great comfort

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God and Father, dwelling in majesty and mystery, filling and renewing all creation by your eternal Spirit, and manifesting your saving grace through our Lord Jesus Christ:  in mercy cleanse our hearts and lips that, free from doubt and fear, we may ever worship you, one true immortal God, with your Son and the Holy Spirit, living and reigning, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Sunday after Pentecost!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Bill Panek Funeral

The Lord called Bill Panek to his heavenly home early Tuesday morning.  We rejoice in Jesus' resurrection.  Because Jesus lives, Bill lives.

Bill's Christian funeral is at St. John on Tuesday, June 13, at 11:00 AM.  There will be a visitation an hour before and a light luncheon to follow.

We remember the Paneks in our prayers at this time.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Divine Call Update from Mr. Scharf

Dear Friends,

The Holy Spirit has led me to accept the divine call of Salem Lutheran in Stillwater to serve as upper-grade teacher.

Serving the Lord at St. John for the past three years has been a great blessing and privilege for me. Closing our school has brought much emotion and anxiety for all involved. 145 years of God’s grace and blessing is an extraordinary legacy. Let’s all keep Jesus’ promise in the forefront of our minds, when he says, “Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Paul wrote to the Philippian Christians in chapter 1:3-6, where he said “I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” I think Paul’s words are very fitting for the members of St. John. Nikki and I so appreciate your many kindnesses during our time here. Even more important to us is the special bond of faith that we share in the Lord.

We will continue to pray for St. John, that the Lord uses his people to further his kingdom and consider new ways to share the Good News of our Salvation.

Humbly serving the Lord Jesus,

William A. Scharf

Letter from Miss Cindy Lendt

Dear members of St. John,

I wanted to let you know that on Sunday I received the divine call to be the 3rd grade teacher and school music director at Good Shepherd Lutheran in Burnsville, MN. I will be praying and thinking very hard about both of the calls God has put before me - this one and the one to Immanuel Lutheran in Arizona. Please keep me in your own prayers. May God continue to bless his ministry!

Your sister in Christ,

Cindy Lendt

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Letter from Miss Cindy Lendt

Dear members of St. John,

I want to let you know that Friday evening I received a call. Immanuel Lutheran Church in Taylor, Arizona, is opening a new school for the fall of 2017 and has called me to teach kindergarten to 2nd grade. The congregation would also be very appreciative to have another organist and a called worker who can communicate in Spanish.

Please pray that our Lord would guide my deliberation as I consider whether or not my God-given abilities are a good fit for this call. Please also pray that God would bless Immanuel Lutheran’s final preparations for their new school. May the good news of our Savior continue to strengthen us and spread to many others!

Your sister in Christ,

Cindy Lendt

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Acknowledgement of St. John Teachers and Staff

After the service this coming Sunday, we will have a reception in the Fellowship Hall to acknowledge their faithful service to the school.  They have been a blessing to us and we want to show our appreciation.

Since Miss Lendt will be in the wedding of a good friend on Sunday afternoon, she won't be able to stay after church.  So that we don't miss saying thank you to her, we will take the opportunity to do that at the school picnic on Friday at Indian Mounds Park  (10 Mounds Blvd.).  All are invited.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Anticipating Worship (May 28)

The Seventh Sunday of Easter


Worship Focus:  The risen and ascended Christ lives to care for us with his power.

Scripture Readings:
Acts 1:1-14
Psalm 8
1 Peter 4:12-17; 5:6-11
John 17:1-11a

Sermon Meditation:  1 Peter 5:6-11

Look at God's Hand
1.  Powerful to rely on
2.  Powerful to rejoice about

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, your Son our Savior was taken up in glory and intercedes for us at your right hand.  Through your living and abiding Word, give us hearts to know him and faith to follow where he has gone; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Easter!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Ascension Service (5/25)

Church, Dom, Window, Stained Glass, Church Window

Tomorrow the Church celebrates Jesus' return to heaven 40 days after his exit from the grave.

We have the opportunity to join some area churches for a special service to recall that important event.  St. John's in Minneapolis is hosting ascension worship tomorrow at 7:00 PM.  Prof. Paul Koelpin from Martin Luther College will be the guest preacher.

Happy Ascension Eve!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Divine Call Received - Mr. Scharf

Dear Friends,

I am writing to inform you that I have received a divine call to serve at Salem Lutheran School in Stillwater, to serve as upper-grade teacher for one year. I ask for your prayers on my behalf, that the Holy Spirit would now guide my thinking and deliberations, so that I may serve in whatever way is pleasing to the Lord.

Serving the Lord Jesus,
William A. Scharf

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Memorial Day Service

Elmhurst Cemetery will hold its annual Memorial Day service at 9 a.m. on Monday, May 29, 2017.  There will be a welcome, readings, and music.

Decorating Veterans' Graves


At 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 28, children are invited to help decorate veterans' graves at our cemetery, Elmhurst. This won't take long and we will work together with our brothers and sisters from Crown of Life. Let David Grabitske know if you and your children will help.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Anticipating Worship (May 21)

The Sixth Sunday of Easter


Worship Focus:  We confess the risen Christ with glad obedience to his commands.

Scripture Readings:
Acts 17:22-31
Psalm 66
1 Peter 3:15-22
John 14:15-21

Sermon Meditation:  Acts 17:22-31

Attend a Meeting in Athens
1.  It is about the present
2.  It is about the future

Prayer of the Day:  Father of lights, every good and perfect gift comes from you.  Inspire us to think those things that are true and long for those things that are good, that we may always make our petitions according to your gracious will; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Easter!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Celebrating our School Staff!

Sunday, June 4 - following the 9:30 a.m. worship service.

We would like to acknowledge our wonderful teachers and staff who have worked so hard for St. John Lutheran School and have been such a blessing to our children. To say thank-you for their dedication and service, there will be a reception in the Fellowship Hall on Sunday, June 4 immediately following worship. If you would like to help with this event, please contact Caroline Wales.  You can call the church or school office if you don't have her number.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Did You Know?


Did you know that of our 29 students in grades K-8, 14 of them take piano lessons from our “in-house” music teacher? That’s half of our student body! Mrs. Julie Balk, a member of our sister congregation, Christ Lutheran in North St. Paul, conducts lessons during the school day several times a week. Next week Wednesday, her students will be offering a recital in our church basement. God be praised for bestowing his gifts on our next generation!

“I will sing & make music to the Lord.”  - Psalm 27:6c



Anticipating Worship (May 14)

The Fifth Sunday of Easter


Worship Focus:  God’s Word about the risen Christ makes us God’s people.

Scripture Readings:
Acts 17:1-12
Psalm 33
1 Peter 2:4-10
John 14:1-12

Sermon Meditation:  Acts 17:10-12

Be a Berean
1.  With the right attitude
2.  With the right action

Prayer of the Day:  O God, you form the minds of your faithful people into a single will.  Make us love what you command and desire what you promise, that among the many changes of this world, our hearts may ever yearn for the lasting joys of heaven; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Easter!


And Happy Mother's Day!

St John Youth Summer Camps are now enrolling!

Girls basketball camp will be June 27-29  from 6-8 PM
Boys basketball camp will be July 11-13  from 6-8 PM
Boys and girls soccer camp will be July 18-20  from 6-8 PM

Registration forms are on the table in the Narthex.  Invite your friends and neighbors to join us.
A joint VBS with Immanuel Hmong is scheduled for August 10-12 from 
9 AM to noon each day.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Transitioning to Crown of Life and Christ Lutheran Schools

 Dear Parents,
The St. John Church Council is committed to helping our school families as they move forward and transition to a new school. There have already been informal conversations, a good meeting, and multiple emails with Crown of Life Lutheran School and Christ Lutheran School. They have us in their thoughts and prayers. Christian unity is a beautiful thing. Let’s not overlook that at this challenging time. Both schools want us to know that they want to offer Christian education without causing financial burdens or membership changes.

As soon as the specific information becomes available, we will share that with you. Thank you for your patience.

The crucified, risen, and ascended Lord still sits on his throne in heaven, reigning and ruling.

St. John School

Sunday, May 7, 2017

St. John Lutheran School to Close at the End of this Year

At a special meeting today, the voters of St. John Lutheran Church voted to close St. John Lutheran School at the end of this school year. We praise God for the 145 years of Christian Education at St. John! This was a very difficult decision that did not come easily and was not taken lightly. This issue has been on the minds and hearts of God's people for several years. This closing is not a failure, but an opportunity for St. John to refocus its mission and vision for the future.

St. John Lutheran Church intends to offer financial support to its member families, as they consider other Lutheran schools. Specifics will be discussed and information will be shared with families as soon as it becomes available. 

Christian education is available for all of our St. John students at Christ Lutheran School in North St. Paul, Crown of Life Lutheran School in West St. Paul, and St. Croix Middle School in West St. Paul. The faculty and staff of St. John will help families as they consider these new schools.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Special Voters Meeting

On Sunday, May 7th, following worship, there will be a special voters meeting to decide the future of our school ministry.  We have had 2 open forum meetings to gather input from our members and now this issue needs to be decided by the voters. We ask you to pray that God will lead us in the direction He has planned for St. John.

Little Lights to sing (May 7)

The Little Lights children will sing "I Am Jesus' Little Lamb" for our worship service this Sunday, May 7. We will meet in the music room at 9:00 to line up and practice. The children will sing the hymn at the beginning of the service and then sit with their families. Please contact Hollie Grabitske with any questions. Thank you for your help and support.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Anticipating Worship (April 30)

The Third Sunday of Easter


Worship Focus:  The risen Lord lives to bring hope.

Scripture Readings:
Acts 2:14a,36-47
Psalm 67
1 Peter 1:17-21
Luke 24:13-35

Sermon Meditation:  Luke 24:13-35

Pray for Heartburn!

Prayer of the Day:  O God, by the humiliation of your Son, you lifted up this fallen world from the despair of death.  By his resurrection to life, grant your faithful people gladness of heart and the hope of eternal joys; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Easter!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Anticipating Worship (April 16)

The Resurrection of our Lord—Easter Sunday


Worship Focus:  Alleluia!  Christ is risen!  He is risen indeed!  Alleluia!

Scripture Readings:
Jonah 2:2-9
Psalm 118
Colossians 3:1-4
Matthew 28:1-10

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 28:1-10

Don't Be Afraid at Easter
1.  Go ahead and worship
2.  Go forward and witness

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, by the glorious resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ, you overcame death and opened the gate to eternal life.  Grant that we, who have been raised with him through baptism, may walk in the newness of life and ever rejoice in the hope of sharing his glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit be dominion and praise now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Easter!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Celebration of Ministry 2017 - Pastor Voigt's 25th Anniversary

It is not too late to support Pastor in his 25th ministry anniversary retreat in San Antonio.
To date,St. John has received about $400 toward the $1700 needed. (A letter with more detail was left in your church box in February.) If you have it in your means and your heart, your special offering to St. John should be marked "Celebration of Ministry 2017." You are also encouraged to pray that this retreat would be a safe, refreshing, renewing blessing for the Voigts - and all our WELS Pastors in attendance.

Open Forum Summary

The church council secretary compiled all the comments and suggestions from our first congregational open forum  (April 2).  If you would like a copy of the document, you can pick one of them up.  They are on the table in the entrance of church.  If they are all gone, we can easily make more.  Please speak to the church secretary to request one in that case.  Included is the preliminary report from the recent visit of the consultant, Mr. Paul Hartwig.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Movie Presentation of a Return to Grace: Luther’s Life and Legacy

Crown of Life Ev. Lutheran Church will be hosting the new Luther movie at AMC Showplace Inver Grove 16 on Wednesday, April 26, 6:30-8:20 pm.  Tickets are $9.00 and can be purchased through a link on the Crown of Life website.  Please go to  www.crownoflifemn.org.

Anticipating Worship (April 9)

The Sixth Sunday in Lent—Palm Sunday


Worship Focus:  Rejoice!  Christ, the King, comes to us to bring us salvation.

Scripture Readings:
Zechariah 9:9,10
Psalm 24
Philippians 2:5-11
Matthew 21:1-11

Sermon Meditation:  Psalm 24:1-10

Welcome the King of Glory
1.  Who brings wonderful blessings for us
2.  Who deserves joyful praises from us

Prayer of the Day:  We praise you, O God, for the great acts of love by which you have redeemed us through your Son, Jesus Christ.  As he was acclaimed by those who scattered their garments and branches of palms in his path, so may we always hail him as our King and follow him with perfect obedience; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Lent!


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Opportunity to Help!

We have become aware of a woman on the East Side who could use some baby items for a newborn girl. If anyone has a small donation of used items they are done with and are willing to contribute, or if you would like to purchase a small package of diapers or other consumables, please notify the church office by noon on Friday, as we need an accounting of the items. Donations should be dropped off in the church office by church time this Sunday. Questions can be directed to Tamara.

Letter from Cindy Lendt

Dear members of St. John,

Four weeks ago I received a divine call to teach at St. John’s in Neillsville, WI. I’ve been deliberating where I can serve best, either here in St. Paul or in Neillsville, and with the Lord’s guidance I’ve reached a decision. I’m returning the call to teach at St. John’s in Neillsville.

I asked you to include me in your prayers, and I want to thank you for that and for the time many of you took to talk with me. Please keep on praying. Ask God to bless the spread of the Gospel in Neillsville, here in St. Paul, and throughout the world.

In our Savior’s Name,

Cindy Lendt

Friday, March 31, 2017

Anticipating Worship (April 2)

The Fifth Sunday in Lent


Worship Focus:  Christ makes alive and gives life.

Scripture Readings:
Ezekiel 37:1-14
Psalm 116
Romans 8:11-19
John 11:17-27,38-45

Sermon Meditation:  John 11:17-27,38-45

Yes, Lord, I Believe You
1.  Because of your promise
2.  Because of your power

Prayer of the Day:  Eternal God and Father, help us to remember Jesus, who obeyed your will and bore the cross for our salvation that through his anguish, pain, and death we may receive forgiveness of sins and inherit eternal life; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Lent!

Open Forum


Hopefully by now, you have read the letter (in your church box) from the elders regarding the open forum on Sunday, April 2.  Everyone is encouraged to make plans to attend. Between now and April 2,  please commit this matter to regular prayer, confident of God's grace. Then come hear the ideas of others and share your own thoughts for the future of St. John. To God be the glory!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Open Forum

 Hopefully by now, you have read the letter (in your church box) from the elders regarding the open forum on Sunday, April 2.  Everyone is encouraged to make plans to attend. Between now and April 2,  please commit this matter to regular prayer, confident of God's grace. Then come hear the ideas of others and share your own thoughts for the future of St. John. To God be the glory!

Open Forum

Hopefully by now, you have read the letter (in your church box) from the elders regarding the open forum on Sunday, April 2.  Everyone is encouraged to make plans to attend. Between now and
April 2,  please commit this matter to regular prayer, confident of God's grace. Then come hear the ideas of others and share your own thoughts for the future of St. John. To God be the glory!

Anticipating Worship (March 26)

The Fourth Sunday in Lent


Worship Focus:  Christ’s selfless service leads to our selfless service.

Scripture Readings:
Hosea 5:15-6:3
Psalms 42-43
Romans 8:1-10
Matthew 20:17-28

Sermon Meditation:  Matthew 20:17-28

Jesus Explains Life
1.  The Christ serves
2.  The Christian serves

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, we confess that we deserve to be punished for our evil deeds.  But we ask you graciously to cleanse us from all sin and to comfort us with your salvation; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Lent!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Lenten Service - Repent: Turn to Jesus


We will gather for worship again tomorrow for our fourth midweek Lenten service.

We will go to the Garden of Gethsemane with Jesus.  We will consider the sleeping disciples and the suffering Savior.  The devotion is based on Mark 14:32-38.  The thought is "turn to Jesus when you face temptations."

Remember that we have two opportunities to gather with one another and around the Word - 4:30 PM and 6:30 PM.  There will be a meal in between.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Anticipating Worship (March 19)

The Third Sunday in Lent


Worship Focus:  As the Light of the world, Jesus gives spiritual sight.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 42:14-21
Psalm 143
Ephesians 5:8-14
John 9:1-7,13-17,34-39

Sermon Meditation:  Isaiah 42:14-21

There Is Light during Lent
1.  It is bright
2.  It is right

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, look with favor on your humble servants and stretch out the right hand of your power to defend us against all our enemies; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Lent!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Did You Know?

Did you know that St. John Church belongs to an organization that is specially designed to inform women of our church about our home and world mission work and gives them an opportunity to support it in various ways?  The organization is LWMS, Lutheran Women's Missionary Society.  It is a national group. Our local chapter is made up of about 40 participating WELS congregations in this area and is called the St. Croix Circuit. Every confirmed lady of St. John is automatically a member of LWMS by virtue of her membership at St. John. The LWMS holds two rallies a year in this St Croix River area, one in April and the other in October.  It also sponsors a huge national rally every June, somewhere around the U.S. You have probably noticed envelopes in your mailbox from time to time with LWMS stamped on it. Twice a year we give our ladies an opportunity to fund the LWMS mission work in this area and internationally. (The most recent Home Missions gift went to Hmong Evangelist Training, and the World Missions donations went to East Asia Project.) St. Croix LWMS circuit thanks you for those past gifts and urges all of us to consider contributing at any time. If you are interested in knowing more about LWMS, or interested in attending the spring rally (on April 22) please speak to our congregation's representatives, Jean Rindal or Jean Koepsell. You can also go to www.lwms.org.
** There were LWMS offering envelopes included in last Sunday’s service folder, please return them with your gifts by Sunday, March 26th. Thank you.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Encouragement

All St. John members are asked to check their boxes in the church narthex for an important letter from the Elders.  It addresses our current situation.  There needs to be openness and honesty.

Please read this in preparation for the first of our open forums.  That will be on April 2 after worship.  We are addressing the issues by learning from one another and leaning on our God.  The Lord of the Church will bless us and keep us.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Spring Ahead!

Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday, March 12th. Remember to set your clocks
ahead 1 hour before turning in.  Spring Ahead!

Anticipating Worship (March 12)

The Second Sunday in Lent

Worship Focus:  Faith trusts all of God’s promises which are meant for all.

Scripture Readings:
Genesis 12:1-8
Psalm 121
Romans 4:1-5,13-17
John 4:5-26

Sermon Meditation:  Genesis 12:1-8

Follow Your Father's Faith
1.  As you listen with attention
2.  As you live with action

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, you see that we have no power to defend ourselves.  Guard and keep us both outwardly and inwardly from all adversities that may happen to the body and from all evil thoughts that may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.


Happy Lent!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Letter from Miss Cindy Lendt

Dear members of St. John Lutheran,

On Sunday I received a divine call to teach at St. John’s Lutheran School in Neillsville, WI. The school is in need of a teacher for grades 3-5 who can also be in charge of the music program. I will spend the next few weeks considering where I can best serve God next school year with the talents he has given me, either here in St. Paul or in Neillsville. Please pray that God blesses me with his guidance and wisdom during this time. To him be the glory!

In our Savior’s Name,
Cindy Lendt