Thursday, August 26, 2021

A Note from Pastor Al - The Beehive

Our last stained glass window for this series is a beehive. In Christian tradition, the beehive is symbolic of the unity that exists in the Christian church via the faith that we have in the Cross-crushing power which Jesus wields as He dies to rescue his beloved (also called the Church, the collection of all believers of all times). 

Have you ever experienced this unity? It's an amazing reality that plays out in complicated environs amidst knotty relationships.  This unity exists even when believers don’t see eye to eye on routine per diem events. This unity prevails across centuries and weaves through cultural diversity and melanin gradations. 

One Bible teacher shared his own experience of this unity when he plodded off the plain in the far reaches of Africa. The climate did not match his home, his own attire was strange compared to the welcoming party from the local Christian congregation, and his speech was clearly foreign to all ears present. Yet in relief, he uttered, “Hallelujah [Praise to the Lord]” and the whole assembly repeated his praise BECAUSE they understood the faith from which it came and they had the same word, the same biblical truth, taught to them from their youth. “Hallelujah!”

There was instant unity. 

I think of this today as I ponder the message for this weekend from Ephesians 4. Here are just a few verses to help us tease out some devotional thoughts for today:

From [Jesus] the whole body, being joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows in accordance with Christ’s activity when he measured out each individual part. He causes the growth of the body so that it builds itself up in love. (Ephesians 4:16)

We are already “held together”. And there is further insight into the progression of this unity. We are both “joined” and “being joined.” We are a work in progress. This indicates that we are allowed the experience of unity already but have much more unity to look forward to. This conveys, as the verse points out, that Jesus will be causing further unity to be obtained. We are not a finished product yet.

I find that insight to be an encouraging thought. It is promising for us to hear this because of the reality of our differences and disagreements. There are no two people who exist on this planet who are in 100% agreement with each other. Even husband and wife who have encountered 50 plus years together, still have points of disagreement. This is the human endeavor.

Verse 16 shows us that Christ is active in us as individuals and as a group, to function like a beehive. To accomplish his will and his work - he does this through the body of Christ, the Church. He has a plan to take disjointed groups of the Christian experience and connect them for a greater good. That greater good is the building up of the body and the maturation of its members.

[Prayer] Lord, give us the wisdom to know the truth of this unity and also strive, with your power, to be more and more unified. May your name be given glory in this unification process! Amen.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

In-Person Worship-August 22, 2021

In-Person Worship-August 22, 2021 

Obituary - Walter (Wally) Bonitz

 Age 96, of Maplewood, Entered Eternal Life August 20, 2021,at The Shores of Lake Phalen Assisted Living.  Born, May 30, 1925 in Mellen WI to the late Albin and Martha (Schneider) Bonitz. After graduation from high school, he attended the former Dr. Martin Luther College in New Ulm, MN.  Upon graduation, he began teaching at St. John Lutheran School where he served as a teacher and eventually principal from 1946 -1964.  On August 21, 1948, Walter married Dorothy Stabenow.  Their marriage was blessed with two children, David and Cheryl.  The family lived in South Milwaukee, WI from 1964-1969 where Walter served as principal and eighth-grade teacher at Zion Lutheran School.  Upon returning to St. Paul in 1969, Walter worked for Brown and Bigelow till 1987 and then had a retirement job at O.I.C. helping students achieve their GED certificates. He permanently retired in 2005.   Survivors include his wife of nearly 73 years, Dorothy; son, David (Sandy) Bonitz; daughter, Cheryl (Edward) Holzhueter; granddaughter, Erin (Kyle) Riess and great-grandchildren, Katherine, Benjamin, Lucille, and Eleanor, and surviving nieces and nephews.  Funeral service, 11 AM Wednesday, August 25th at Christ Lutheran Church, 2475 – 17th Ave. E, North St. Paul, MN 55109 with visitation beginning at 10 AM until the time of the service.   Interment Evergreen Memorial Gardens, Mahtomedi, MN.     651-777-2600

Monday, August 23, 2021

Walter (Wally) Bonitz

 Long time member of St. John, and most current membership at Christ, North St. Paul, was called to his eternal home yesterday, August 20th. Please keep his wife, Dorothy, children David and Cheryl in your prayers. When there is information on arrangements, it will be posted on the blog.

Thursday, August 19, 2021

SCLA Upcoming Events


Upcoming Events:

SCLA School Opening Service
Tues, Aug 31, 8:00a
Students and staff only. Limited attendance due to COVID.
Live stream.

Fine Arts Addition Dedication and Open House
Wed, Sept 15, 6:30-8:30p
SCLA Chapel and Fine Arts Addition, in-person.
RSVP here.

Homecoming Football Game
Fri, Oct. 1, 7:00

SCLA - Mattress Fundraiser

Is your current mattress leaving you drowsy? Is it time to replace your kids’ mattresses? Need new mattresses at your cabin? SCLA is partnering with CFS to bring name-brand mattresses to school on Saturday, November 20, for a one-day sale. We’ll have a showroom in the choir room, and professionals will help you pick out your perfect mattress at discounted prices. SCLA will benefit from a portion of the proceeds. Watch for more details!

SCLA Fine Arts Dedication

Join us for the dedication and open house of the new fine arts addition on Wednesday, September 15 from 6:30-8:30. The service will take place in the chapel followed by an open house with tours of the new front commons, band, choir, and practice rooms. Student musicians will share their talents with you in the new spaces. RSVP at

A Note from Pastor Al-link-Font Water & Descending Spirit

 A Note From Pastor-link

Encouragement from Pastor Al

 "O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise." // Psalm 51:15

SCLA Welcome New Faculty and Staff

 Welcome New Faculty and Staff

Join us in welcoming eleven new faculty and staff members for the 2021-2022 school year. These individuals are gifted in their areas of expertise and look forward to serving the SCLA student body. Installation for the new teachers is during the opening service on Tuesday, August 31 at 8:00 a.m. in the chapel. The service will be live-streamed on To read about the new faculty and staff, click here.

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Good Newsletter - August 2021


August 2021

Every so often our news will carry a story about a school struggling with the question of going to mandatory uniforms. It’s easy to understand the logic. Some of the most respected people in our society are those who wear uniforms.

Proponents of school uniforms could probably produce studies that show that students are more likely to respect themselves and each other when wearing uniforms, too.

On the other hand, we also hear stories about people bringing disgrace to the uniforms they wear: criminal charges against professional ballplayers, corruption in police departments, and sexual abuse by clergy. Examples such as these indicate that just putting on a uniform does not make a person better.

Listen to the apostle Paul describe a different kind of clothing: “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience” (Colossians 3:12).

Notice that Paul isn’t just describing a change in outward appearances. Nor is he suggesting that we can somehow will ourselves into better behavior.

We don’t earn the right to wear the clothes Paul describes. They come from being loved by God.

It all starts with the compassion Jesus had that moved him to lay down his life for the world.

Believing that Jesus loved us enough to die for us is what makes us one of his people. It also is what produces a change in our attitude.

As God’s dearly loved people, we want to reflect the kind of compassion Jesus showed. That is something that will be as plain to see as any uniform.

Real changes in our lives won’t happen just because we put on a district-mandated or color-coordinated outfit.

That clothing just changes us on the outside. The inner change begins when we are clothed with God’s love.

We hope you will visit us soon to learn more about God’s great compassion.

Upcoming Events at St. John

Worship Services: Sunday 8:30 AM
Adult Bible Study: Sunday 9:45 AM
Visit our website at
Call us at 651-771-6406

In Person Worship-August 8, 2021

If you were unable to worwship in person on Sunday, you may view the service at the link below.

In Person Worship-August 8, 2021 

A Note from Pastor Al - link - The Brazen Serpent

Encouragement from Pastor Al

 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life." // John 3:14-14

School Supplies

St John Lutheran is planning to discard all the school supplies in the school building.  You are invited to take what you can use from the school building free of charge.  We also have some textbooks that are about 10 - 15 years old.  The only exceptions are the desks, chairs, tables, and toys in the Kindergarten room.  The deadline is August 22.  If you need access, let me know.  Tony 612-306-5329

Thursday, August 5, 2021

A Note from Pastor Al - link - The Crown of Thorns, INRI


Note from Pastor Al - link

Encouragement from Pastor Al

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” // 1 Samuel 16:7