St. John's Lutheran Church Logo

MAY 2023

Share This Newsletter:
facebook linkedin twitter email 


Introducing a new era of communication: St. John's digital newsletter.

Each month, you'll receive the latest updates from St. John's, right in your inbox. This new format will allow us to communicate and share information with one another in a more efficient fashion.

Pastor John Albers, Rev. John M. Albers

Ministry With God’s People

By Pastor John Albers

It is “good, right, and salutary …”

It is “good, right, and salutary …”
Those who have been an active participant in Lutheran worship for any significant amount of time will likely recognize this phrase and especially the three adjectives that begin the Proper Preface in the Divine Service.

Good, right, and salutary

“It is truly good, right, and salutary that we should…” are the words that remind us that giving thanks and praise to our God is not only helpful but a necessary activity, especially as we are preparing to consecrate the bread and wine of the Holy Communion as the body and blood of Christ.

I used those words in conversation with a brother Lutheran pastor the other day, but in a different sort of context. I ended up suggesting this to him as a criteria for making a decision on a particular course of action.  As in “I’m trying to decide if I should…” and then one thing led to another and I’m hearing myself saying, “Well, is it good, right and salutary to…”?

That’s when it occurred to me. Maybe this should be a criteria I use for plenty of other decisions, both for me personally and in my life as a pastor and leader.  When you take a moment to make a decision, consider the following:
  • Is it good? As compared to bad or even evil. Is it consistent with what God desires?
  • Is it right? As in according to God’s commands, leading to or at least consistent with the righteousness of God?
  • Is it salutary? That is, is it beneficial to you or to others? Or, in my case, does it contribute to the well-being of the entire congregation of God’s people? 
As with any standard, it has its limit. But the more I considered it, the more I came to the conclusion that nearly every decision I make could be judged by this criteria. But since our mission as God’s people is not necessarily to be successful when judged by the world’s standards but, rather to extend the ministry of the kingdom of God as the body of Christ, it does seem to fit.

Heavenly Father, help us, we pray, to seek always your kingdom and your desire. In the name of Jesus. Amen.

Peace and joy,


Worship Calendar

Several event names will be linked to additional information available
by clicking on the name of the event.

    Worship for the Season of Easter

    May 6/7 – Fifth Sunday of Easter
    • 6 pm & 8 am – Divine Service, Setting 1
    • 9:30 am – Connect Word and Song
    May 13/14 – Sixth Sunday of Easter
    Each service includes a prayer of Thanksgiving for Mothers
    • 6 pm – Evening Prayer
    • 8 am – Morning Prayer with Paschal Blessing
    • 9:30 am – Connect Word and Communion
    May 18 – Ascension of Our Lord
    • 8:10 am – Morning Prayer (with SJLS Chapel)
    • 6:30 pm – Divine Service (spoken)
    May 20/21 – Seventh Sunday of Easter
    • 6 pm & 8 am – Divine Service, Setting 1
    • 9:30 am – Connect Word and Song

    Worship for Pentecost and its Season

    May 27/28 – Day of Pentecost
    • 6 pm & 8 am – Divine Service, Setting 1
    • 9:30 am – Connect Word and Communion
    June 3/4 – Holy Trinity
    • 6 pm - Eighth Grade Graduation
    • 8 am - Divine Service, Setting 1
    • 9:30 - Connect Word and Communion

    Looking Ahead to this Summer

    • June 11, Feast of St. Barnabas
    • June 18, Father’s Day
    • August 27, St. John's Family Reunion

    Special Events in our Calendar

    Additional Opportunities for Worship Abound

    Additional Opportunities for Worship Abound
    Categories: Church Events

    The months of May and June provide several additional opportunities for worship and prayer.

    Mother’s Day Weekend, May 13/14

    Like last year we included a Prayer of Thanksgiving For Mother’s Day in our worship services the weekend of Mother’s Day. While it is not a church holiday, it is a day of thanksgiving that helps us remember a unique and precious gift of God! The prayer includes opportunities to light a candle for our mothers; those with us in worship, those still living but separated from us by distance, or those who have died. Don’t MISS IT!

    Ascension Worship, May 18

    Thursday, May 18, is the fortieth day of Easter, the day on which the church observes the Feast of the Ascension. We will gather for worship twice on that day. Our school chapel service will be moved to that morning. Congregation members are invited to this prayer service beginning at 8:10 am. The Divine Service for the Feast of the Ascension will begin at 6:30 pm.

    Armed Forces Sunday, May 20/21

    Scheduled as it is so close to Memorial Day, Armed Forces Day often doesn’t get the attention it requires. While Memorial Day focuses on those who made the ultimate sacrifice while in service to our country (e.g. died in battle) and Veteran’s Day focuses on any who have served, Armed Forces Day is focused on those who are ACTIVELY SERVING in one of the branches of the armed forces.

    While Pastor Albers would like to include additional events in the future, currently we will be including the names and information of any family member who is actively serving. Be sure to call the church office to update any information on your loved one who is serving.

    Day of Pentecost

    Our celebration of Easter comes to an end with the Festival of the Holy Spirit, the Day of Pentecost (May 28 this year). This is one of several baptism festivals in the church year in which worshippers will make an affirmation of their own baptism. While we do not have any young persons ready this year, the day will regularly include the Affirmation of Baptism (Confirmation).

    Church Updates

    Voter’s Assembly Approves Chapel Project

    Project Welcome 2.0
    At its meeting on April 23, the Voter’s Assembly approved plans to further update and renovate spaces in the church building, most especially in the chapel. The goal is to provide a space that can better serve the ministry of the church consistent with our current architecture and purposes.

    A multi-purpose space

    The chapel is rarely used, save for a funeral visitation and, in the past, a small wedding. Pastor Albers’ vision is a space that is more regularly used for worship and for numerous other purposes. Once the renovations are completed:
    • Special worship services that will likely include fewer worshippers such as Ascension Thursday, Thanksgiving Eve, or Christmas Day. Or if there is a snow emergency that will keep most folks at home, a service in the chapel for two dozen worshippers will be a perfect solution.
    • Funeral visitations and other gatherings for fellowship and prayer will be easier to host in the chapel. The current configuration is extremely limiting and not very hospitable for visitation and fellowship. Funeral visitations often “leak out” into the aisles of the Sanctuary. The new configuration will create a space that improves opportunities for human interaction.
    • Bible studies and meetings can be more easily hosted at tables that will often be set up in the back of the chapel, moving more and more meetings out of the school building where the use of space is limited.
    • Outside groups (such as a pastor’s conference, regional principal’s meeting, or community group) can more easily access the chapel for a gathering that often includes time for a prayer service.

    There are four (4) components to the currently planned renovations:
    • Repairs: Some of these repairs especially to the plaster have already been completed. But others can only be completed after other things are moved out of the way such as a large crack in the plaster behind the altar and new tubes for the lights. ($4,000)
    • Flooring: The current plan is to have a contractor remove and dispose of the old floor tile and then church volunteers will install new porcelain tile that matches the tile installed in the new narthex restroom. The total budget for this component is $17,500 but will provide a “50-year” solution that requires much less maintenance.
    • Seating: The pews will be removed and replaced with high-quality, permanent church chairs manufactured by New Holland Church Furniture (Holland, PA). This significant cost ($15,000) will provide furniture that “fits” the space and architecture while also providing much more flexibility in the way we use the space. There are two “sample” chairs in the chapel to “try out.” We will make our own fabric selection and the color and wood would match our existing pews. 
    • New Doors: A couple of church volunteers have a vision for some moveable oak panels to replace the current accordion doors. The goal is to create a new panel that looks like it could have always been in place. ($4,500)
    The total budget of $45,000 includes a “miscellaneous” category since a 70-year-old building is likely to present us with a few “surprises” along the way. 

    Providing for the Ministry we Share

    Providing for the Ministry we Share
    You can ditch the offering plate in favor of several other options in supporting the ministry we share.

    Everyone wants to help provide for the ministry we share with offerings or donations to help cover the cost of a particular thing. These days there are several ways to help provide these gifts:
    • A check in an offering envelope
    The “standard” is still a GREAT way to provide your financial support for the ministry we share. Most place their gift in an offering plate at worship and others use the postal service to send their offerings to the church.  If you don't have an offering envelope, be sure to contact the church office.

    • PAYPAL
    There is a button on the homepage of our website you can use to make a one-time or recurring gift using PayPal. Simply visit and scroll down to the button near the bottom of the page. 

    • Bill Pay (Pastor’s favorite)
    Most banks now offer online Bill Pay as a standard benefit with your checking or savings account. If you do most of your banking online, you can set up “St. John’s Lutheran Church” as a recurring (or one-time) payee and your offering will arrive at the church office in the mail (once a week or once a month, whatever is most helpful for you).

    • Electronic Transfer
    Many folks ... especially those who make other “non-traditional” gifts ... may find it easier to set up an electronic transfer of funds. If so, please contact the church office to get account information or to have your financial manager set up the transfer. This is especially attractive to folks who are making a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) from their Individual Retirement Account (IRA) in place of their Required Minimum Distribution (RMD). Speak to Pastor Albers if you would like more information about making this kind of gift.

    Cash gifts placed in the offering plate with no other designation (like any other gift received with no additional instructions) will always be placed in the General Fund and used to support ministry through St. John's. 

    School Board Leaders Needed

    A board of nine persons helps to supervise and set policy for St. John's Lutheran School. Three persons are elected each year to serve a three-year term. The next election will be at the Voters' Assembly in July.
    School Board Leaders Needed


    Project Welcome Update

    Our hope is that by Memorial Day all of the steps into the sanctuary will be functionally eliminated.
    Project Welcome Update

    Bible Studies

    WOW Spring Bible Study Underway

    WOW Spring Bible Study Underway

    “What the Women Saw”

    Women of the Word Study for May

    The Women of the Word study group on Wednesday evenings are continuing a study they began the week after Easter. "What the Women Saw" is a study that uses a series of video presentations and an accompanying study guide to help participants better appreciate the women whose names we know well, but whose lives may remain a mystery to us.

    What the Women Saw

    "Do women matter to the kingdom of God?

    Jesus was surrounded by both men and women during his ministry on Earth. He saw, valued, and cared for women, and he still does today. Each one of us has a significant role.

    Through this six-session study, you will discover who Jesus is through the unique perspective of women in the Bible. As you study the lives of Mary, Martha, Mary Magdalene, and others, you will learn from their faith and failures and be reminded that Jesus cared for and valued the women he was surrounded by. He equipped them, listened to them, walked with them, healed them, and empowered them. And he does the same for you now."

    Take a look at the video trailer for the series:

    Click here to view media.

    Regular Study Opportunities at St. John's

    Regular Study Opportunities at St. John's
    There are currently three regularly-scheduled bible study opportunities at St. John’s:

    Sunday Morning Adult Bible Study

    A group of a dozen or so adults joins in a study on Sunday mornings following worship at 10:45 am. Pastor Albers is leading the group through a survey of the Acts of the Apostles.

    Women of the Word

    Women of the Word began a new study on April 12. Take a look at their detailed plans:  WOW Spring Study Plans

    Men’s Bible Study

    “The Church is Born” will be the topic for the Men’s Bible Study at 8 a.m. Saturday, May 13, in the church basement. Men: bring your coffee and join us. We’ll get a head start for our weekend.  If you have thoughts, email Roland at or call 573-768-1401. The study concludes by 9:30 am.
    Mark Jerndt

    Growing in Christ:

    Devotions to Strengthen Your Life with God

    By Mark Jerndt

    What is Essential to You

    What is Essential to You
    Our lives tend to resemble that tuna casserole dish that the wife lovingly prepared for her husband, but missing the essential element: tuna!  If Jesus Christ is not first in our lives – at the very top of the list of ingredients, we are missing the essential.

    Eagle Updates

    Don’t miss this latest news from St. John’s School

    The faculty and staff of St. John's Lutheran School are busy leading students into a great future: Math Competition, improved assessment results, Career Day, and more!
    Don’t miss this latest news from St. John’s School

    Breaking News from Indianapolis

    Breaking News from Indianapolis
    The faculty and staff of St. John's Lutheran School are busy leading students into a great future: Math Competition, improved assessment results, Career Day, and more!

    Our School's Calendar

    Some events may be linked to additional information available
    by clicking on the event.

    Important May Dates

    Important May Dates:
    May 8-12: Staff Appreciation Week
    May 8 & 15: Coding Club for students
    May 9: School Board Meeting at 6:00 pm
    May 10: Spring Musical: Jailhouse Rock at 10:00 am & 6:00 pm
    May 12: Happy Mother's Day
    May 15: Bremen Field Day at St. Paul's Lutheran
    May 15: N.E.S.T. Meeting at 3:30 pm
    May 17: No Chapel
    May 18: Ascension Day Chapel with the congregation at 8:10 am
    May 26: Pre-Kindergarten Graduation at 9:30 am
    May 26: Kindergarten Graduation at 1:30 pm
    May 28: No School-Memorial Day
    May 31: Student Awards Ceremonies at 9:00 am (K-2) & 10:00 am (Grades 3-8)
    May 31: St. John's Field Day at 12:30 pm
    June 3: Eighth Grade Graduation at 6:00 pm

    Looking ahead

    Summer Save-the-Date:
    • July 25: Back to the Nest Information Day from 1:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m
    • August 17: First student day of school
    • August 27: St. John's Family Reunion

    Student Stories

    Student Council and Code Club

    Student Council and Code Club

    Student Council

    The Student Council is planning a service project on May 8th for the school where they will be helping to decorate the stage and props for the upcoming school play.  They discussed the items that they need to make and brainstormed different ideas.  

    Coding Club-STEM

    CODE CLUB is coming back to St. John’s this May!  Grades 5-8 will meet on Mondays after school until 4:00 pm, and grades 2-4 will meet on Mondays from 2:30-3:30 pm.  Students will work at their own individual level and create their very own games, apps, or websites (with parental permission).  We will be using, a nonprofit that just wants all students to have access to computer science at no cost.  On May 22,  there will be an Hour of Code, a special culminating project for the coders. The Code Club invitations will be sent home in mid-April.  

    N.E.S.T. Update

    NEST News

    Volunteers needed for our End-of-Year Celebration!

    NEST has planned an End of Year (EOY) Celebration for students on Wednesday, May 31st.  We will have a picnic-style lunch with NEST Volunteers assisting.  NEST members will be grilling hot dogs and leading fun "field day" styled events that will start at 12:30 pm.  Families are welcome! There will be a final planning meeting at 3:30 pm on May 15th for all who would like to assist in our festivities.  VOLUNTEERS are welcome to attend.  More information will be coming on a date for the planning meeting.
    NEST News
    St. John's Lutheran Church Logo
    facebook twitter linkedin 
    Subscribe | Unsubscribe | Manage your subscription
    111 Kingsbury Ave, La Porte, IN 46350
    Email Marketing Powered by MailPoet