Elder, Usher, and Acolyte Schedules for February 2017

Elder and Usher Schedule

Date
8:00
Elder
10:30
Feb 5Daryle Schempp, Gene Fuller, Jeff Piper, Richard RossCraig CulpBrian Dirks, Theron Noth
Feb 12Craig Culp, Nathan KluenderMike FieldBud Kessler, Curt Kessler, Holden Lueck
Feb 19Ben Holland, Joshua Parry, Paul Gerike, Steve ParryNathan KluenderBryan Reichert, Marvin Huth
Feb 26Mike Field, Nathan KluenderRandy ReinhardtBrian Dirks, Greg McNeely, Mike Huth

Acolyte Schedule
Date
8:00 AM
10:30 AM
Feb 5Garett SheleyPastor/Elder
Feb 12Pastor/ElderJustin McNeely
Feb 19Lucas PiperPastor/Elder
Feb 26
Pastor/ElderJessica Isaac

Celebrating February 2017

Birthdays

2/3 Charles Nottingham
2/4 Betty Bier
2/4 Emily Field
2/6 Ryan Hitch
2/7 Cruz Kleiboeker
2/7 Toni Lueck
2/7 Jennifer Parry
2/8 Marvin Lester
2/9 Justin McNeely
2/10 Herbert Renken
2/12 Mollie Hitch
2/17 Nicole Galante
2/17 Cassandra Fortney
2/23 Luanne Huth
2/28 Lucas Schempp

Baptismal Birthdays

2/3 Cruz Kleiboeker
2/4 Mary McEleney
2/6 Cannon Kleiboker
2/8 Brian Hitch
2/8 Nicholas Hitch
2/9 Gregory McNeely
2/10 Tanner Hitch
2/14 Matthew Culp
2/16 Beth Mosier
2/17 Robert Hanner
2/18 Georgia Boriack
2/19 Kaitlin Culp
2/20 Travis Henson

Stewardship Corner February 2017

We’ve all heard that stewardship is giving to the church of our time, talents, and treasure. This alliterative trinity helps us see that giving is not just about money, but about our whole lives. For God has given us everything we have and enjoy as we confess in the meaning to the First Article of the Apostle’s Creed. And what we confess first among those is that God gives us “our body and soul, our eyes, ears, and all our members, our reason and all our senses.” Only then do we confess that he gives us material things. Thus the time, talents, and treasure trinity places before our eyes the fact that we are to give something of all of these things toward the mission of the church in thanksgiving for what God has provided. For everything we have and indeed everything we are comes from God’s fatherly divine goodness and mercy.

The problem with this alliterative trinity comes when we replace one little word with another little word—when we replace the word and with the word or. It is always written with the and, but when we read it, we read it with the or. Thus this quite helpful trinity, which extolled that everything that we have and are is a gift from God and which is to be pressed into the service of God in His church, turns into a trinity that we can pick and choose which of the trinity we use into the service of God. The giving of our time, talents, and treasure turns into the giving of our time, talents, or treasure.

Then the question arises: Can we give of our time and talents instead of our treasures? Or perhaps it is the other way round: Can we give our treasure and not of our time and our talents? But these are the wrong questions. The right question is, can we give of our time and our talents in addition to our treasure? Yes, indeed, we are called to give of all three. The things that God gives us are not to be pitted against one another. They are given to us and we are to press them all into God’s service for benefit of His church and our neighbors in need.

Thus we give all three. We give our treasure in the form of a generous, first-fruits, proportion of our income. We give of our time in generosity for the benefit of Christ’s holy church. We give of our talents in the same manner. Since God gave us all these things, we are called to give generously of all these things in faith toward Him and in fervent love to our neighbors.

For God has provided all these things to us. Out of His fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, He gives us each time, talents, AND treasures as a means to bless those around us. We serve our neighbors with these things, blessing them with the blessings in which God has blessed us. We give of our time, talents, and treasures to our families, our society, and to our church, our local congregations. And we do this because we know that we are not our own. Rather, we belong to God. We have been bought with a price—with the holy precious blood and innocent suffering and death of our Lord Jesus Christ. He gave everything—His time, His talents, and His treasure,—to have us as His own and to live under Him in His kingdom and serve Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence and blessedness. We have these things as gifts and blessings from God. Let us then press them all into service for the sake of His love—time, talents, and treasures together.

Pastor’s Notes February 2017

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Did you ever stop to think that you have the United Nations hanging in your closet?  I recently did laundry and as I was hanging up my shirts I noticed where they had been manufactured:  Bangladesh, Honduras, Egypt, Hong Kong, Guatemala, and Mongolia.  These are all brand name shirts from Chaps, Geoffrey Beene, and Nautica.  It was a reminder once again of how our world is shrinking.  I wish I could trace back where just one of my shirts came from.  What an interesting story that might be!

The Lord has brought us to this time and place in history.  Instant communication.  World travel.  Much of the world knowing English.  Our recent international student from half way around the world in Indonesia had seen many more recent American films than anyone in our family.  Yes, it is a different world from when I would watch the Olympics growing up and the only people speaking the language I knew were the people from the United States.

While the world continues its rapid changes, the Gospel of Jesus Christ does not change.  We are blessed with so many opportunities to share the saving message of the cross and grace and mercy.  Because of weather delays the Lord opened up doors for us to do this last month.  I just sent an e-mail to the Hilbert’s, Lutheran Bible Translators in Botswana that made it there in an instant.  They say letters can still take up to two months!

While some doors may be closing in our country, many doors are being thrown open in other parts of this grand sphere.  People clamoring for the Bible and the message of a Savior.  Men and women who want to confess Jesus as Lord.  Children who want stories about the man who walked on water and healed the sick.  We continue our prayers for missionaries and others on the front lines doing this work.

What might the Lord be calling you to do?  Now where did I hang that shirt from Vietnam?

In Christ,

Pastor

Bulletin Announcements

January 22, 2017

THOUGHTS ON STEWARDSHIP:  Matthew 4:20:  “Immediately they left their nets and followed Him.”  Discipleship cost Peter and Andrew everything they had: they left their trade, their hometown, their families and they followed Jesus.  God has called us to the same discipleship – the same devotion, though the exact details of how that is lived out will vary.  The important thing is this: that we know that all we have is the Lord’s, to be used for His purpose, that we are His disciples, ready to follow where He leads.

THE ADULT BIBLE CLASS will be studying “Here We Stand: A Lutherans For Life Bible Study” this morning in the basement of the church at 9:15 a.m.

TODAY IN SUNDAY SCHOOL:  “Jesus Heals a Man Who Is Paralyzed” is the lesson for today. The miracle of healing the paralytic confirms that Jesus, the Son of Man, has authority on earth to forgive sins, and it confirms what the Son of Man chiefly came to do: deliver us and all believers from sin, death, and the power of the devil.  Consider discussing, “In addition to healing the paralyzed man, what else does Jesus tell him?  How has Jesus healed us from our sickness of sin?”

TODAY in conjunction with Sanctity of Human Life we will have a door Offering for Lutherans For Life.

TODAY is the deadline for items to be submitted for the FEBRUARY NEWSLETTER.  Mandy Kluender is our Editor for the church newsletter and any announcements you want to be published in the Newsletter should be submitted to her at mgkluender@hotmail.com or you may call her at (309) 838-9868.

NEXT SUNDAY, January 29th, is a fifth Sunday so Holy Communion will be celebrated in both worship services.

VOTER’S MEETING:  Next Sunday, January 29th, the Church Council has scheduled a Voter’s Meeting to follow the 10:30 worship service.  We will meet in the sanctuary to discuss and decide on options for our roof/brick and the leaking problem that comes with a heavy rain.

ADULT INSTRUCTION CLASS will begin on Monday, February 6th at 7:00 p.m.  The class runs eight weeks and lasts about an hour.  This class is designed for non-members who would like to learn more about the Lutheran Church and its teachings.  It is also a good refresher course for members.  If you know of someone you would like Pastor to invite please call him at (309) 838-0306 or email him at revbci@yahoo.com.

2017 OFFERING ENVELOPES:  Your 2017 Offering Envelopes are available on the cart that is located in the narthex.  We encourage everyone to pick up your envelopes!

PORTALS OF PRAYER:  The January—March 2017 Portals of Prayer are available on the book rack in the narthex.  Pick up your free copy today.

FELLOWSHIP HOSTS:  The sign-up for help with coffee/doughnuts is posted on the wall by the north stairwell.  We need an individual/family to sign-up each week to pick up the donuts and make the coffee.  If no one is signed up by Friday of each week, the order will be cancelled.  We thank everybody who continues to help with this part of our church fellowship.

THE LUTHERAN HOUR:  “Our Foolishness, His Faithfulness” is the topic for next Sunday.  The sermon text will be from 1 Corinthians 1:18-31.  Many consider Christ’s cross to be just so much foolishness.  That is the worst foolishness of all.  Reverend Dr. Ken Klaus is the speaker.  Hear this Sunday’s message on the Lutheran Hour on WGN (720) at 6:00 a.m.; WJWR (104.7 FM) and WJWR (90.3 FM) both on Sunday at 3:00 p.m.  Also, if you can receive Lincoln, IL radio station WLLM (1370 AM) the program is broadcast two times on Sunday at 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.  Tune in!  You can also listen to The Lutheran Hour on your personal computer at RealAudio, www.lhm.org.

PRAYER CHAIN:  If you have a prayer request please submit them by email to Mary Anne Kirchner at makirchner@yahoo.com or you may phone a Prayer Request to Mary Anne; her cell phone# is (309) 532-2582.  The Prayer Request box is on the table in the narthex for any written requests.

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Bulletin Announcements

January 15, 2017

THOUGHTS ON STEWARDSHIP:  John 1:29: The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”  The Israelites of old offered a lamb to God at Passover so that death might pass over them and do no harm.  Over those long centuries of sacrifice, did they understand that this was actually God’s gift?  That God would be the true Giver of the Lamb?  Truly, we can never out give God: for all that we have is His.

THE ADULT BIBLE CLASS meeting at 9:15 a.m. this morning will study “The First Rosa – Teacher, Confessor, Church Planter”.  It tells the story of LCMS member Rosa Young and her work to bring the Gospel to different parts of the church in the southern part of the United States.

TODAY IN SUNDAY SCHOOL, the lesson is “Jesus Heals Many.”  Through many miracles, Jesus shows us His power over sin.  Ask your children to tell you, “Who did Jesus heal?  What were some of the sicknesses the people had?”  Talk about sin—yours, theirs, and the world’s—and how Satan holds the world in bondage, causing sickness and death.  Assure them that Jesus is the Holy One of God, who defeats Satan and frees us from his hold, granting us eternal life in paradise. Emphasize that Jesus has power over sin and sickness, saving the lost by His death and resurrection.

POINSETTIA PICK UP: You may pick up your poinsettias TODAY following the 8:00 a.m. or 10:30 a.m. worship services. There are plastic covers on the coat rack at the north end of the narthex which you may use to protect them.  Thank you for your participation in decorating our Church for the Christmas season.

THIRD FRIDAY MOVIE NIGHT IS BACK!  This coming Friday, January 20th at 6:30 p.m. we will show the movie “THE FINAL SEASON”.  It is a true story of an underdog coach and the team that must defend their legacy against insurmountable odds.  The high school baseball team in Norway, Iowa is led by legendary Coach Jim Van Scoyoc.  When talk of a school merger gets serious it threatens to rob them of their 20th State Championship.  “The Final Season” will inspire and entertain everyone.  Join us for a great movie, good food and great fellowship.

LIFE SUNDAY:  One week from today, January 22nd, will be Life Sunday.  We will have a special Order of Worship that day and also take a door Offering for “Lutherans For Life”.

NEXT SUNDAY is the deadline for items to be submitted for the FEBRUARY NEWSLETTER.  Mandy Kluender is our Editor for the church newsletter and any announcements you want to be published in the Newsletter should be submitted to her at mgkluender@hotmail.com or you may call her at (309) 838-9868.

VOTER’S MEETING:  On Sunday, January 29th, the Church Council has scheduled a Voter’s Meeting to follow the 10:30 worship service.  We will meet in the sanctuary to discuss and decide on options for our roof/brick and the leaking problem that comes with a heavy rain.

2017 OFFERING ENVELOPES:  Your 2017 Offering Envelopes are available on the cart that is located in the narthex.  We encourage everyone to pick up your envelopes!

PORTALS OF PRAYER:  The January—March 2017 Portals of Prayer are available on the book rack in the narthex.  Pick up your free copy today.

FELLOWSHIP HOSTS:  The sign-up for help with coffee/doughnuts is posted on the wall by the north stairwell.  We need an individual/family to sign-up each week to pick up the donuts and make the coffee.  If no one is signed up by Friday of each week, the order will be cancelled.  We thank everybody who continues to help with this part of our church fellowship.

THE LUTHERAN HOUR:  “Word of the Cross – Power For Life” is the topic for next Sunday.  The sermon text will be from 1 Corinthians 1:10-18.  To the world, Jesus seemed to be a loser.  He suffered what all would consider defeat in order to win a new life for you.  Reverend Dr. Gregory Seltz is the speaker.  Hear this Sunday’s message on the Lutheran Hour on WGN (720) at 6:00 a.m.; WJWR (104.7 FM) and WJWR (90.3 FM) both on Sunday at 3:00 p.m.  Also, if you can receive Lincoln, IL radio station WLLM (1370 AM) the program is broadcast two times on Sunday at 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.  Tune in!  You can also listen to The Lutheran Hour on your personal computer at RealAudio, www.lhm.org.

PRAYER CHAIN:  If you have a prayer request please submit them by email to Mary Anne Kirchner at makirchner@yahoo.com or you may phone a Prayer Request to Mary Anne; her cell phone# is (309) 532-2582.  The Prayer Request box is on the table in the narthex for any written requests.

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Bulletin Announcements

January 8, 2017

THOUGHTS ON STEWARDSHIP:  Matthew 3:15:  But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”  The reason God sent His Son into the world is to fulfill all righteousness for us, to do what we could not do. So here Jesus plunges Himself into our sins and soaks them up in His baptism, so that in our baptism we might be cleansed and renewed. The whole of Jesus’ life, everything He did and said, was one great offering to the Father in our stead to fulfill all righteousness for us.

THE ADULT BIBLE CLASS meeting at 9:15 a.m. this morning will study “The First Rosa – Teacher, Confessor, Church Planter”.  It tells the story of LCMS member Rosa Young and her work to bring the Gospel to different parts of the church in the southern part of the United States.

TODAY IN SUNDAY SCHOOL, the lesson is, “Jesus Calls Disciples.”  Jesus preached, taught, and healed, and He called His first disciples to do the same.  The children learn that Jesus chose ordinary, sinful men to follow Him and be His disciples.  In Baptism, Jesus chooses us to be His children. Underscore that in Jesus’ forgiveness we find peace and favor with God, whose Word testifies repeatedly and consistently that Jesus is His Son and our Savior.  Ask your children, “Through whom does Jesus continue His saving work where His Word is preached and His Sacraments are administered today?”

TODAY is our monthly door Offering for our Seminary Student Jeremy Hercamp.  Jeremy is a student at Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, IN and is completing his studies this winter/spring and will receive a call into the pastoral ministry in April.  We will also have Jeremy preach and conduct Adult Bible Class sometime in spring.  A Christmas letter from the Hercamp’s is posted on the bulletin board outside the church office.

POINSETTIA PICK UP: You may pick up your poinsettias TODAY following the 8:00 a.m. or 10:30 a.m. worship services. There are plastic covers on the coat rack at the north end of the narthex which you may use to protect them.  Thank you for your participation in decorating our Church for the Christmas season.

THIRD FRIDAY MOVIE NIGHT IS BACK!  On Friday, January 20th at 6:30 p.m. we will show the movie “THE FINAL SEASON”.  It is a true story of an underdog coach and the team that must defend their legacy against insurmountable odds.  The high school baseball team in Norway, Iowa is led by legendary Coach Jim Van Scoyoc.  When talk of a school merger gets serious it threatens to rob them of their 20th State Championship.  “The Final Season” will inspire and entertain everyone.  Join us for a great movie, good food and great fellowship.

LIFE SUNDAY:  Two weeks from today, January 22nd, will be Life Sunday.  We will have a special Order of Worship that day and also take a door Offering for “Lutherans For Life”.

2017 OFFERING ENVELOPES:  Your 2017 Offering Envelopes are available on the cart that is located in the narthex.  We encourage everyone to pick up your envelopes!

PORTALS OF PRAYER:  The January—March 2017 Portals of Prayer are available on the book rack in the narthex.  Pick up your free copy today.

FELLOWSHIP HOSTS:  The sign-up for help with coffee/doughnuts is posted on the wall by the north stairwell.  We need an individual/family to sign-up each week to pick up the donuts and make the coffee.  If no one is signed up by Friday of each week, the order will be cancelled.  We thank everybody who continues to help with this part of our church fellowship.

THE LUTHERAN HOUR:  “Looking for God?  Look to the Lamb” is the topic for next Sunday.  The sermon text will be from John 1:29-42.  Jesus’ love, suffering, sacrifice, and triumph are all expressed in that most precious of titles: The Lamb of God.  Reverend Dr. Gregory Seltz is the speaker.  Hear this Sunday’s message on the Lutheran Hour on WGN (720) at 6:00 a.m.; WJWR (104.7 FM) and WJWR (90.3 FM) both on Sunday at 3:00 p.m.  Also, if you can receive Lincoln, IL radio station WLLM (1370 AM) the program is broadcast two times on Sunday at 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.  Tune in!  You can also listen to The Lutheran Hour on your personal computer at RealAudio, www.lhm.org.

PRAYER CHAIN:  If you have a prayer request please submit them by email to Mary Anne Kirchner at makirchner@yahoo.com or you may phone a Prayer Request to Mary Anne; her cell phone# is (309) 532-2582.  The Prayer Request box is on the table in the narthex for any written requests.

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Stewardship Corner January 2017

Celebrating New Years is a celebration of the past and the future. We take stock of the past with thanksgiving and sometimes even relief (that it’s over), and we look to the future in the hope and anticipation and perhaps even worry of what it holds.

The point is that New Year’s celebrations remind us of who we are as opposed to who we would like to be; what we have done in comparison to what we want to do. It reminds us of our accomplishments, but mostly it reminds us of our failures. What we’ve lost. Who we’ve lost.

New Years is our own version of Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol. And we all play Scrooge. We are visited by the ghosts of our pasts, presents, and futures.

St. Paul writes: “The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. As it is written, ‘He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.’ He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way for all your generosity, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God” (2 Cor 9:6–15).

St. Paul tells us that the Lord of all will both supply and increase what you need to give to the church for its work in and for the world. He tells us that this work that God is doing in us will enrich and bless us in every way and through this it will produce thanksgiving to God. With this in mind, here is some practical advice to help you take stock of your giving of years past, which will help you to change what needs to be changed, improved, or done away with altogether.

First, attend the Divine Service to receive God’s gifts of forgiveness, life, and salvation. If you’ve not been faithful in attending worship to hear the preaching of God’s Word, to receive forgiveness, and feast of the rich food of our Lord’s body and blood for the eternal benefit of your body and soul, then repent and come to receive the gifts God freely gives. God doesn’t want your money. He wants you—all of you (Matt 22:20–22).

Second, pray for the Lord’s help. Your right as a Christian is to speak with your Father, the King of all creation, freely through His Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ. Go to the throne of grace and ask for strength and wisdom to follow His bidding faithfully (John 15:1–16).

Third, consider what the Church is and what the Church does. The Church is a mercy place. It inhales the mercy of the Father by the death, resurrection, and ascension of His Son through the preaching of the Gospel and the Sacraments. It exhales this mercy in love toward the neighbor. You are a member of the Church, of God’s family. Thus, you are not only a recipient of God’s mercy, but a bearer of that mercy for the life of the world. You spread that mercy in showing mercy through the generous giving of your income to support the work of the Church in and for the world, as the Israelites did in the Old Testament (Lev 27:1–34).

Fourth, take stock of your current giving in light of the New Testament’s teaching on supporting the work of the Church. Are you giving of your first fruits, taking it out of your paycheck first, or does God get what’s left over? Are you giving voluntarily and cheerfully? Are you giving proportionally and generously? The Old Testament required a tithe, ten percent. The New Testament gives freedom to be generous, to give more for the Church’s work. Are you relying on God’s promise to provide and increase what you need to do His work? If your answer is no to any of these, repent. If God gave you His only Son, will He not provide for you all things, even physical things? Trust Him, His Word, and heed it.

So, don’t let your past define your future. Rather, commit for the year a generous proportion of your income, which is God’s gift to you for this body and life.

Celebrating January 2017

Birthdays

1/1 Carin Henson
1/2 Nicholas Hitch
1/4 Bud Kessler
1/6 Donald Gronert
1/6 Mary McEleney
1/9 Cathy Cloyd
1/9 Robert Hanner
1/19 Nancy Thomas
1/20 Gregory McNeely
1/20 Beth Mosier
1/28 Linda Dirks
1/31 Jill Holland

Baptismal Birthdays
1/1 E. F. Bud Barnett
1/1 Charles Nottingham
1/1 Shirley Potter
1/2 Chloe Hitch
1/11 Jacqueline Kwasny
1/12 Jessica Isaac
1/21 Bud Kessler