3607 45th St, Two Rivers, WI 54241 office@sjtworivers.org (920) 794-7300

SJ COVID-19 UPDATE

St. John’s Lutheran Church & School

3607 45th, Two Rivers, WI 54241                                            (920) 794-7300

www.sjtworivers.org                                                office@sjtworivers.org

 

With the day by day, hour by hour, and minute by minute changes/updates regarding the Coronavirus, the question has been raised whether regular worship will be held at St. John’s. Sadly, due to recommendations from both our governor and the CDC, worship in the sanctuary at this time will NOT take place until further notice.  BUT, members of St. John’s, along with anyone else who wants and needs the Word of God will still be able to worship – just in different ways.

Matthew 18:20 says, “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” So, St. John’s encourages you to worship in small groups at home and/or invite others to worship with you.

St. John’s will still prepare, present and celebrate worship as scheduled. A preacher will preach and an accompanist will accompany. We will record, stream, and also publish those services to DVDs in order that our congregation can continue to be in the Word, even while staying home.  We would encourage each family to commit with another family, neighbor or household, to set a time weekly and meet together to worship using the live stream, rebroadcast or DVD.

Within the recommended size for gatherings, this temporary return to “house churches” would provide accountability, mutual encouragement and structure that would leave our congregation stronger for the “inconvenience.”  Members who have strayed away from our family will receive invitations to rejoin our fellowship, one invitation and one “house church” at a time.  Please invite one of the pastors to drop by your gathering and we will be pleased to bring you the sacrament.

These streams and rebroadcasts will begin already this Wednesday and Thursday, with our midweek Lenten services and regular Thursday night services. DVDs of this week’s worship will be available in the church office already this Friday, and continue to be available according to the same schedule.

With regard to other challenges at St. John’s in the light of this pandemic, soup suppers, hospitality treats and Easter breakfast have all been cancelled. Choir, Sunday School, and confirmation class will not meet until further notice. Confirmation Day and classes in preparation for it will be rescheduled.

Finally, the work of the church continues to need your monetary support.  You can continue to support St. John’s with your offerings by using the Givelify app, electronic bill pay from your bank, or mailing/dropping off offerings to the church office.

Please contact the church office, pastors, or Church Council members with any questions.

Jesus keep you all!
St. John’s Pastors and Church Council

2019 Outdoor Worship & Church Picnic

Make plans to gather for our Church Picnic and Outdoor Worship Service, Sunday, July 21st on the St. John’s Church and School grounds!  In this inaugural year of church and school at the same location, we’ll worship outdoors at 10:00 am, serve a potluck meal from the school commons and then head back outside to enjoy the food and fellowship.

The theme of our worship and fellowship this year will be “Welcome Home,” in line with our Synod’s emphasis on inviting and welcoming back those who have grown distant from our church family, worship, fellowship and ministries.  Please make an effort to personally invite a friend, relative, neighbor or someone who hasn’t joined us for a while to come with you or meet you for this special event.  In order to assure that every member receives a personal invitation, just as we did several years ago, for the next several weekends you will find a list of members who haven’t been active in our congregation the past year on the table in the fireside room.  Prayerfully consider signing your name behind theirs, and in doing so, noting them as your special guest and “invitee .”  Again, we’ll pray that every name is claimed and everyone receives a heartfelt and personal invitation to “come home” and celebrate with us the Lord who binds us together in our brokenness.

As mentioned above, there will be other changes this year as well.  With no park pavilion to shelter us, we’re looking for several members with 10×20 or 10×10 foot shelters to provide shade for those who need it.  Bring a dish to pass for the potluck meal, and if you like, a cake for the desert table.  Hot dogs, both skinned and skinless, and buns will be donated.  Water and lemonade will also be provided.  Bring your own soda or non-alcoholic beverages if you wish.  A free will offering will cover any additional expenses.  We’re excited to offer a family style picnic that everyone can afford!!

After the meal there will be a photo booth set up to record the day.  We’re looking for members to organize a kickball or blind man’s volleyball tournament.  If you’re into beanbag toss, ladder golf, horseshoes, croquet, whatever, bring them all along and enjoy each other’s company!  Our goal is to replicate a family picnic – just on a much larger scale!

But most important, this special weekend is about taking a moment to be reminded that in Christ, we are family – a family that will last for eternity.  We notice, care about and make time for each other.  So mark your calendar, put your name and prayers behind a church family brother or sister, and look forward and work toward the day Jesus will welcome all of us “home.”

Worship Videos Now Available

Worship Service video are now available by way our church facebook page.  You can expect weekly sermons to be posted to the page by Tuesday of the week following each weekly worship space.  Or contact the church office and if you’re local, we’ll get you a dvd of the entire worship service and a hymnal you can use at home to follow along and participate!

Live Nativity Volunteer Sign Up – Link Now Active

“20 years of sharing the Good News to our Community”
click the link (button) to sign up to help below

Men’s “Bread & Breakfast” Bible Study Takes on Giants!

St. John’s men’s “Bread & Breakfast” Saturday morning Breakfast and Bible Study will be turning their attention the next several months to Max Lucado’s study of David’s life, “Facing Your Giants.”  With only Jesus’ life covered in more detail in the Bible, David’s life is a deep study into human and male brokenness, the ebb and tide of arrogance and humility, and a reminder of the power and peace of God’s presence and promises.  The group meets the first and last Saturdays of the month at Two Rivers Family Restaurant, from 7:30-8:30 am.  We order off the menu, enjoy God’s Word over our food, and are officially done in about an hour – although the fellowship often carries over into the parking lot long after.  You do not need to read ahead or even have a copy of the book to join us, or benefit from the study – but we think a copy of the book would be a blessing to you.  While we do have about 20 copies available in the church office for 11.50 a piece, you can also find them on amazon, google, barnes and noble, or even kindle and audio versions even cheaper.

Join us – and bring a friend.  Its a great way to start the weekend – and a great reminder that while we are all broken, God holds us together and helps us celebrate his strength together as Christian men!

Meet Our New Shepherd!

Steve Kruschel was born and baptized in Gregory, South Dakota, on March 25, 1983. His wife, Becca (Janke), was born a few weeks later in Wilmar, Minnesota, on April 21, 1983, and baptized on April 24. After Becca grew up in rural Iron Ridge, Wisconsin, and Steve grew up in Redwood Falls, Minnesota, they met and courted at Martin Luther College, New Ulm, Minnesota. Following graduation, Becca served as a teacher for one year in Japan, while Steve attended his first year at the Seminary. They married July 23, 2006. Steve served as a vicar in Lapeer, Michigan. After graduating from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in 2009, Steve was assigned to serve Grace Lutheran Church in Geneva, NE, and Trinity Lutheran Church in Grafton, NE. He served those congregations for 9 years.

The Lord has blessed Steve and Becca with five children: Adeline (10 years old), Timothy (8 years old), Benjamin (7 years old), Gabriel (5 years old), and Phineas (3 years old).

The Kruschel family thanks the members of St. John’s for calling them to serve in Two Rivers. Every member of the Kruschel family eagerly looks forward to serving the Lord with you all!

Weather Alert – April 15 Services rescheduled for Monday 6pm

In order to keep everyone safe, including our snow removal teams, worship services for Sunday April 15th have been rescheduled (in keeping with established policy) for Monday night at 6pm.  Stay home, stay safe!  And God bless!

St. John’s Reaches Out to Extend Preacher Call for 11th Time – And We’re Done!

Praying that the eleventh time would be a charm, the voters of St. John’s braved cold and ice to cast a unanimous ballot for Rev. Stephen Kruschel of Geneva, Nebraska to serve as associate pastor.  Pastor Stephan and his wife Rebecca have been blessed with five children, ages 10,8,6,5 & 3.  Pastor hails from Redwood Falls, MN and Rebecca from Iron Ridge, WI.  The couple met while studying at Martin Luther College in New Ulm, MN.  The Kruschels currently serve the dual congregations of Grace and Trinity Lutheran churches in Geneva and Grafton, NE, respectively.  In answer to our prayers, Rev. Kruschel has accepted the call to serve us in Two Rivers!  The family will finish up the school year (through the end of May) in Nebraska, and join us on the lakeshore the first week of June.  God bless your travels – and your ministry among us, Pastor & Becca!

Last Day for Cross+Men Conference Early Registration

Today’s the last day to take advantage of the $5 savings for early registration for the Cross+Men Men’s conference to be hosted by St. John’s on march 17th.  February 1st, the fee increases to $30 and covers all speakers, materials, food and fellowship as over 100 Christian men gather to learn to boast about nothing other than God in their lives – a skill that builds rather than tears down relationships between God’s people.  Check us out at http://www.crossmenconf.org and encourage the men in your life to join us!

Congregation Votes to Build New Worship Space

After more than 25 years of debate, planning and waiting, St. John’s voted overwhelmingly on January 2st to proceed with detailed construction drawings and groundbreaking on the church’s school site at 3607 45th Street in Two Rivers.  While the downtown structure will always hold a special place in our hearts, families and the history of our congregation, handicapped accessibility, plumbing, electrical and maintenance concerns made it clear that in order for the congregation to continue to reach out and serve others with the Word – as our forefathers made possible for us, change was inevitable.  Planned is a 1.8 million dollar structure, attached to the school and office building, to include worship seating for 225, handicapped accessible parking, seating and restrooms, a fireside room, multipurpose room and more.  Discussion at the meeting also included a targeted emphasis on refocusing on evangelism in our community, to our own former members and the rest of Two Rivers.