Thursday, January 31, 2019

Anticipating Worship (February 3)

Fourth Sunday After the Epiphany

Worship Focus:
      Jesus reveals himself as the prophet sent from God.

Scripture Readings:
       Jeremiah 1:4-10
       Psalm 19
       1 Corinthians 12:27 - 13:13
       Luke 4:20-32

Sermon Text:
       Psalm 19
       "Come and See God's Glory"

Prayer of the Day:
Lord God, you know that we are surrounded by many dangers and that we often stumble and fall. Strengthen us in body and mind, and bring us safely through all temptations; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Anticipating Worship (January 27)

Third Sunday After the Epiphany

Worship Focus:  Jesus reveals himself as the Lord's Anointed.

Scripture Readings:

Isaiah 61:1-6
Psalm 78
1 Corinthians 12:1-11
Luke 4:14-21

Sermon Meditation:  Luke 4:14-21

"Why Jesus Closed the Book"

Prayer of the Day:
  Almighty God, send your Son to proclaim your kingdom and to teach with authority. Anoint us with the power of your Spirit that we, too, may bring good news to the afflicted, bind up the brokenhearted, and proclaim liberty to the captive; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Divine Call Extended

A Pastoral Divine Call was extended to Pastor Brian Pechman at our call meeting Sunday, Jan 20.  He is currently the pastor for Risen Savior Lutheran Church in Pooler, Georgia.
His family includes his wife (Angela), and 5 children ages 18,16,13,10, and 8 years old.
His email is:

Please reach out to him and keep him in your prayers.

SAA Workshop Time Change

There has been a change in the SAA workshop time for Sunday, February 3rd. It is now
11:00 am-1:00 pm. The time for the Saturday workshop remains the same, 9:00 am-5:00 pm.
If you haven't already signed up you may do so on the sign-up sheet in the narthex.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Second Sunday After the Epiphany (January 20)

Worship Focus:  Jesus reveals his glory as Lord of all.

Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 62:1-5
Psalm 133-134
1 Corinthians 12:12-21,26-27
John 2:1-11

Sermon Meditation:  1 Corinthians 12:12-21,26-27
"UBU IB ME WE B1 in Christ"

Prayer of the Day:  Almighty God, you gave your one and only Son to be the light of the world. Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory, that he may be known, worshiped, and believed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and forever.

Congregation Meeting Lunch

There will be a lunch served at our Congregation Meeting on Sunday, January 27th, following worship. If you are able to bring a dessert to share it would be greatly appreciated. All members are encouraged to attend the meeting.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Taking Down Christmas Decorations

It's time to take the Christmas decorations down. If you could come on Saturday, January 19th, at 3:30 pm, your help would be greatly appreciated. There is the Game Night/Chili Cook-off that evening from 5:00 to 8:00 pm, so after the decorations come down and the work is done you can stay for an evening of good food and fellowship.
Hope to see you there!

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Defining St. John’s Path Forward - Update on SAA

Be a part of defining St. John’s direction by participating in the ministry self-assessment and adjustment (SAA) program. This program will help us answer three questions: 1) Why has God put St. John here? 2) Where is God calling us to go? and 3) How are we going to get there? Answering these questions as a church will help us work together towards a shared direction, and not individually heading our own way.
How can I participate?
You can participate in two ways:
1) Fill out the member Pulse survey. With only 14% of active members responding, we are well short of our goal of 80% participation. But there is still time! If you have not yet filled out the survey, please consider taking the time to provide your input. You can spend as little as 10 minutes or up to an hour depending on how much you comment. Spouses should each fill out a survey.
2) RSVP to attend the on-site session on Saturday and Sunday, February 2nd and 3rd. A WELS counselor will guide us through a discussion about our ministry and direction. The session will be a full day on Saturday 9AM - 5PM and two hours on Sunday after church. On Saturday, lunch and childcare will be provided.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How do I fill out the Pulse survey?
Go to and follow the instructions. For members without a computer, there are paper copies located in the church office.
When is the Pulse survey due?
Please complete the survey no later than Sunday January, 20th. Our counselor takes two weeks to review the survey results, a congregational profile prepared by our Council, and other information prior to the on-site session.
When is the on-site session? Will there be childcare?
The on-site session will take place on Saturday and Sunday, February 2nd and 3rd. The session on Saturday will go from 9AM to 5PM and the session on Sunday will start after the church service and last approximately 2 hours. Lunch and childcare are provided for the Saturday session. Infants are able to stay with parents if desired. Please RSVP here.
What can I expect during the on-site session?
On Saturday, our counselor will lead us through A Bible study, which looks at ten different areas of Gospel ministry: worship, outreach, discipleship, etc. After that, members will break-out in groups and come up with a list of things that a congregation in your community would want to do if they were going to be as zealous as possible about that area of ministry. This session will last from 9AM to 5PM with a break for lunch (to be provided).
On Sunday, we will meet after church and review the ideas from the break-out groups. Our counselor will have compiled the results and guide us through a process to define our direction and immediate next steps. This session will last approximately two hours.
For more information, watch this video about Living Savior, located in Asheville, NC, and their SAA experience.
Who will lead the on-site session?
Pastor Eric Roecker will be our counselor and guide us through the SAA program. Pastor Roecker serves as Director of the WELS Commission on Evangelism. Prior to this role, he served at Pilgrim in Menomonee Falls, WI and at Resurrection in Chesapeake, VA.
Should I attend both days (Saturday and Sunday), or just one day?
Members are encouraged to attend both days. Each day will cover unique material. The more people present, the better ideas we will generate, and the more impact we will have.
If you are unable to attend both days, it would still be beneficial to attend one of the days. For example, members who cannot attend on Saturday should still attend Sunday following church.
What can I do to prepare for the on-site session?
To prepare for the session, fill out the Pulse survey and come with an open mind and willingness to share your ideas. The survey gives you an opportunity to think out our ministry.
Why are we doing a ministry self-assessment and adjustment?
Our membership and church attendance has been stagnate or decreasing the last few years
and after closing the school, there was a sense of “now what?”
The Self-Assessment and Adjustment program (SAA) will help us answer the question “Are we doing everything that we possibly can to share the Gospel? This program will allow our congregation to define the direction God has called us to go.
What happens after the on-site session?
After the session, our counselor will go through the ideas generated by our members and the ministry areas we indicated could do better and compile the results, along with his thoughts, into a report. Most importantly, the report will include recommendations for us to consider.
After receiving the report, our leadership council will turn those recommendations into an action plan with achievable goals for our congregation to complete in 90 day increments. Our counselor will continue to support for 9 months following the session.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Anticipating Worship-January 13-The Baptism of Our Lord

Worship Focus:  Today's lessons show us the meaning of the name "Christ," the Anointed One.

Scripture Readings:
1 Samuel 16:1-13
Psalm 2
Titus 3:4-7
Luke 3:15-17,21,22

Sermon Meditation:  Luke 3:15-17,21,22
                                  Jesus Is For Real

Prayer of the Day:
Father in heaven, at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan you proclaimed him your Son and anointed him with the Holy Spirit. Keep us who are baptized into Christ faithful in our calling as your children and make us heirs with him of everlasting life; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

See you on Sunday at 9:30 am

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Chili Cook-Off & Game Night

Saturday, January 19
5-8 PM

A great way to warm up on a cold winter night to join together for fun and fellowship. Bring your best batch of chili and a go-with (dessert, side, etc.) along with your favorite board/party game. If you're interested in helping with setup, please see Jim Julian.