The Second Sunday after the Epiphany
January 17, 2010
In you is gladness
Amid all sadness,
Jesus, Sunshine of my heart.
By you are given
The gifts of heaven;
You the true Redeemer are.
Our souls are waking;
Our bonds are breaking.
Who trusts you surely
Has built securely
And stands forever. Alleluia! (Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal 346:1)
Worship Focus: Witness the miraculous sign and believe
Order of Worship: Service of Word and Sacrament, p. 26
Hymns: 343, 82, 348, 369
First Lesson: Exodus 7:14-24
Pharaoh did not listen to the sign. He saw God's power turning water to blood but hardened his heart. As we witness Jesus' miracles, rejoice in what that sign means: He is your divine Savior.
Psalm 133-134, p. 115
Praise the Lord, for the blessings he brings.
Second Lesson: 1 Corinthians 12:1-11
Only the Holy Spirit can open our minds to confess that Jesus is our Lord as we witness his miraculous signs.
Gospel: John 2:1-11
Jesus first miracle.
At St. John’s we observe the biblical practice of “close communion,” since the Bible teaches that communing together is an outward sign of the inner closeness of faith that seeks to agree in all that the Bible teaches. Therefore, we ask that only those commune who are confirmed members of our church body and of those churches which have declared fellowship with us. If you have further questions about this, please talk with the pastor.
Thank you to the council men who have served faithfully for the past years: Richard Lubenow as Elder, Kerry Roth as Treasurer, Kevin Zeltwanger as Trustee. May our Lord continue to blessing us with faithful leaders.
WELS News Release on Haiti Earthquake:
WELS Committee on Relief is in the process of releasing a $25,000 grant to an international relief agency to help victims of Haiti's earthquake. The committee met Jan. 16, to discuss how to allocate incoming donations for relief efforts. Mr. Mark Vance, director of operations, says the committee will make a firm decision after members have had a chance to fully communicate with WELS contacts in neighboring Dominican Republic.
Among the possibilities are also releasing the incoming dollars to international relief agencies, or to U.S. government relief efforts, or to potential relief efforts undertaken by WELS contacts in the region. WELS has no official presence in Haiti, but Rev. Philip Strackbein, a member of the Latin American Traveling Theological Educators team, is based in Dominican Republic.
Strackbein reports that he felt the earthquake, but there were no injuries or damage to any structures in and around Santiago where he is based. He says about 10 of his students have relatives in Haiti; it's not yet known how those relatives fared. Strackbein is asking for prayers for their safety. You can read his full account on the WELS blogs.
Donations to the earthquake relief effort can be made online. Checks can be made out to WELS Committee on Relief. Designate Haiti earthquake and mail to:
WELS Committee on Relief
2929 N Mayfair Road
Milwaukee, WI 53222-4398
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans is matching donations from its members to WELS Committee on Relief and other Lutheran relief agencies $1 for every $2 donated—up to $1 million. For details, go to www.thrivent.com/helpinghaiti or call 800-236-3736 between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. CST, Monday through Friday. When prompted, please say “directory” then enter extension 83003.
Annual Meeting Notes: The meeting opened with prayer, roll call, and the reading of the minutes. The various reports that were given are in the Annual Report. The General Fund ended the year with a balance of $1,799.21. $11,520.25 was given to the WELS as our Congregational Mission Offering (CMO) for 2009. A suggestion was made that the elders call the voters before the quarterly meetings to encourage them to come.
Election results: Elder: David Paul; Treasurer: Gerald Hoffman; Trustee: Dick Smith
New Business: The voters discussed splitting the money-counting duties from the Treasurer position. For the next several months Kerry Roth will unofficially serve as money-counter. If this system works out well, the council can bring recommendations for By-Law changes to the 3rd Quarter Voters' meeting to make it official.
Forward in Christ was renewed for $315 dollars for 35 subscriptions.
Lenten and Holy Week evening service time was set at 7:00pm. Pastor plans to rotate Lenten preaching with Pastor Main of Morris and Pastor Andrus of Graceville. Easter breakfast starts at 7:30am and worship at 9:00am.
The following budget items were set for 2010
Congregational Mission Offering (CMO): $10,000
Lutheran Institutional Ministry Association: $500
Organist Salary: $3,240
Guest preacher: $80 + mileage up to $120
Pastor's Salary: $35,040 of which $4000 is designated as parsonage allowance
Pastor's Benefits: Parsonage, electricity, gas, water, sewer, garbage, same high deductible health plans as in 2009, $6,150 for Health Savings Account
Mileage reimbursement: IRS standard of $0.50/mile
The next quarterly meeting is tentatively scheduled for April 11, 2010 at 11:30am after worship. The council will meet at February 8 at 8:00pm, Elders at 7:00pm
January ushers: Scott Boettcher (capt.), John Jepma, David Paul, Delroy Thielke
January cleaners: Don & Janet Spencer, Bridget Joos
Today's Greeters: Barry & Sandy Nelson