109 York Street, Gettysburg, PA 17325

The Messenger – Feb 2014

The Messenger – Feb 2014

 Click here to download a PDF version of the February 2014 – The Messenger

Update on Call Process

In the coming months, I will use The Messenger to keep the congregation informed as to the process we now travel in calling a new pastor.

 Our Interim Pastor Position.  When there is a pastoral vacancy our Synod helps a congregation find a person who will assist in carrying on the daily pastoral duties while the congregation explores options for a called pastor.  Our most immediate need is to employ an interim pastor.

Initially, there has not been such a person available.  Thus, I have already asked several pastors to help with weekend preaching; as well, I have spoken with several seminary students who may be willing to share some preaching responsibilities on given weekends.  As soon as a suitable interim becomes available, Council’s intent is to hire a person fulltime as we walk through our call process.

Calling a New Pastor.  I believe that as a congregation this is the perfect opportunity to take a close look at, not only who we are as a congregation, but how we can best fulfill our mission and serve this community into the future.  In my mind there is nothing we cannot bring to this discussion.  This is the perfect time to think “outside the box” in terms of our ministry, our staffing, our structures, our relationships with other Lutheran congregations, only to name a few!  Our Council will spend Saturday, February 15 on retreat to begin to explore these very questions.  Please remember your elected leaders in prayer on that day!  We will begin to compile information describing our history, our current ministry and our future hopes, as we then write a congregation profile which will be used to describe “who we are” to candidates looking for a new call.  I invite as much input as possible into writing this profile.   One of our outcomes from the Council Retreat will be to decide how best to gather this information from as wide a group of persons as possible.

As I’ve said many times, “Our God is always a God of new beginnings.”  This congregation has a long history of creative, healthy beginnings after the devastating fire in the late 60s; following the retirement of two pastors after many fruitful years of ministry; following staffing changes of various sorts these past ten years.  This time now provides yet another opportunity for us to open ourselves to the creative work of God, both individually and as a congregation.  This is a time for deep listening to each other, even as certain things will be more important to some persons than others.  We are held together by something deeper than our needs, wants and opinions, by Someone who calls us into this journey together.  Please, I want to be in dialogue with you along this journey!                                                              ~Pastor Mike

Worship Previews 

February 1 & 2 – Presentation of Our Lord

Worship Services:  Saturday at 5:30 pm and Sunday at 8:15 am and 10:45 am

Readings:  Malachi 3:1-4, Psalm 84, Hebrews 2:14-18, Luke 2:22-40

First Sunday Fellowship at 9:15 am; hosted by Boy Scout Troop 79 & Cub Scout Pack 79 & their leaders.

“Souper” Bowl and Food Donations for our local food pantries will be collected at all three services

this weekend by our Boy and Cub Scouts, under the auspices of Social Ministry Committee. 

Sunday School  from 9:30-10:30 am.

Sunday, February 2 we shall celebrate Scout Sunday as members of Boy Scout 79 and Cub Pack 79

serve as greeters and ushers at both Sunday services and collect for “Souper” Bowl Sunday at all services.

Tackle Hunger The national “SOUPER” BOWL OF CARING will be held the same weekend as the Super Bowl, Sunday, February 2nd.  St. James’ team has always scored big with their participation and this year, with the move and additional meals and expenses, we hope that the soup kettles will be filled.   Collections will be made after all worship services on Saturday and Sunday, February 1st and 2nd.  All checks should be made payable to St. James Lutheran Church – memo – Soup Kitchen.  Thank you for the continuing support of this mission, which is under the auspice of our Social Ministry Committee.  (We are applying for matching funds from Thrivent Financial.)

February 8 & 9 – Epiphany 5

Worship Services:  Saturday at 5:30 pm and Sunday at 8:15 am and 10:45 am

Readings:  Isaiah 58:1–9a [9b–12], Psalm 112:1–9 [10], 1 Corinthians 2:1–12 [13–16], Matthew 5:13–20 

Sunday School  from 9:30-10:30 am.                                                                                               

February 15 & 16 – Epiphany 6

Worship Services:  Saturday at 5:30 pm and Sunday at 8:15 am and 10:45 am

Readings:  Deuteronomy 30:15–20, Psalm 119:1–8, 1 Corinthians 3:1–9, Matthew 5:21–37

New Day Worship and Sunday School for adults from 9:30-10:30 am.

February 22 & 23 – Epiphany 7

Worship Services:  Saturday at 5:30 pm and Sunday at 8:15 am and 10:45 am

Readings:  Leviticus 19:1–2, 9–18, Psalm 119:33–40, 1 Corinthians 3:10–11, 16–23, Matthew 5:38–48

Prayers for Healing will be offered at the conclusion of all worship services.

Sunday School  from 9:30-10:30 am.


Thank You!  from Pastor Jeanette Leisk

It has been a bittersweet time these past several weeks as I have shared the news of my new call.  I am grateful for the years I’ve had in ministry with you all.  Thank you for the wonderful luncheon and sharing of memories.  I appreciate the many kind notes and cards and hugs and gifts and well-wishes I received!

I am especially thankful for the talented staff of St. James with whom I had the pleasure to work:  Pastor Mike, Tim, Sally, Mella, Debby, Katherine, Tom, Suzan, and Richard.  We have a dedicated and faithful Council and committees as well, and it’s hard to believe, but true that our meetings have included both work and friendship and laughter.

On my last day leading Child Care Chapel, I told the children that I was moving to be a pastor in another church and that I would miss them.  One of the girls spoke up and said, “But we’ll always be in your heart!” Yes indeed, they and you will always be in my heart.  I thank God for the honor of serving my first call at St. James and I invite you to visit Good Shepherd Lutheran in Alexandria, VA if you find yourselves in the DC area!                                                                                                                                                                                                 Blessings, Pastor Jeanette

                PARISH RECORDS


December 29, 2013             Marian F. Hege

January   2, 2014                   Robert C. Nordvall

January   3, 2014                   Ronald T. Heiges

January   6, 2014                   Luther A. Smith

January   9, 2014                   Treva K. Weikert

January 21, 2014                   James C. Hoak

January 26, 2014                   Florence D. Herring


February 28, 1959          Donald L. & Betty A. Howard – 55 years

Sacrament of Holy BaptismIf you want to have your child baptized, please contact Pr. Mike at either 334-2012 ext. 205 or [email protected].

Adult Discussion Class meets Sunday mornings from 9:30-10:30 in

Room 200, at the end of the main hallway. Judy Leslie is the contact.  Join us:

  • Feb.   2            –    “The Ethics of Athletics” led by Jim Wright
  • Feb.   9            –    “Slavery by Another Name Documentary” –  John Fisher
  • Feb. 16           –    “Slavery by Another Name – Part 2” with general discussion
  • Feb. 23           –    “Slavery by Another Name – Part 3” with general discussion

 Troubadours in Concert – Sunday, April 27 at 4:00 pm

The St. James Troubadours are back!  Messrs. Hill, Michael, Matsinko and Braband will present a program featuring music from BROADWAY!  Mark your calendars for what is always a musical event of note and watch for future announcements in The Messenger.


JANUARY COUNCIL REPORT – Claire Anderson, Corresponding Secretary

Congregation Council held its monthly meeting on January 22, 2014.


Interim Status: Pastor Allwein has met with Pastor Rob Blezard, assistant to the bishop, and learned that there are no interim pastors available in the Synod at this time.  To meet our immediate needs, Pastor Allwein has contacted the Seminary and found several fourth year Seminary students who are willing to preach on Sundays. Pastor Allwein reported that there are Eucharistic and Stephen Ministers who currently provide pastoral care to our shut-ins.  He asked Council to think broadly about other ways to address our pastoral care needs.

Visitation Pastor:  Council had a lengthy discussion on the immediate need for a Visitation Pastor.  Because the Congregation voted and budgeted for the position at the Annual Congregation Meeting, Council decided to initiate action. Council passed a motion requesting Pastor Allwein write and send a formal job description to the Personnel Committee for their February meeting.

Council Retreat: Council will meet on February 15th for a day-long retreat. The focus of the retreat will be to discuss the call process and begin a plan to generate a congregation profile from input from our members.  We will explore what are our ministry needs to reach our mission goals. Council read a letter from a member asking for a thorough analysis of human and financial resources.

2013 Budget: Council unanimously accepted the monthly reports submitted by Office & Financial Manager, Mella DeNoma. Finance Chair, Tom Young reported a year-end deficit of (-$11,200.53) in the operating budget. St. James met the $81,640 budgeted Synod faith commitment, gave an additional contribution of $34,000 in March, and allocated the Christmas offering of $9,514 to the Synod.  Synod contributions for 2013 totaled $125,154.

Audit Committee:  Council will proceed with the outside audit with the Sturgill and Trostel Firm to review our books for 2013.

Youth Committee:  Council passed a motion from the Youth Committee approving the Fastnacht Fundraiser on Sunday, March 2nd and Tuesday, March 4th.

Columbarium NewsCouncil members shared the news that 11 Columbarium niches have been sold and 30 people have made a pledge; however, there are a few spots left.

Council thanked Sally Hoh for her enthusiastic outreach to all youth, especially for making the Sunday evening youth groups fun for youth and their friends.    Council also recognized Tom Bender for his attention to all the little details in preparing and cleaning up for Pastor Jeanette’s luncheon and also for Wednesday MS/HS Breakfasts.  Thank you Sally and Tom!


Mission Fund Benefits Healthy Options of Adams County – Submitted by Claire Anderson

This month we are recognizing Healthy Options of Adams County which has received money from the 2013 Mission Fund, made possible by the generosity of members and families of St. James. The Healthy Options Program (formerly called the Fair Share Project with a pilot program in 2011)  is a food voucher program that enables families to purchase food from the Adams County Farm Fresh Markets during June through September. The program is directed towards families living in the food gap (between people who qualify for food stamps and people who are able to sustain their food budget) to provide them with an increased ability to purchase healthy, fresh foods.  The program, which can be found at http://www.adamsfoodpolicy.org/healthyoptions.html, is an affiliated task force of Healthy Adams County (http://www.healthyadamscounty.org/).  (Kathy Gaskin is the Executive Director of Healthy Adams  County.)  There is a nice front-page article on the Healthy Options program in The Gettysburg Times issue of Saturday, April 20, 2013.


Fastnacht Preparation & Sale – $6 per dozen

St. James has a wonderful history of providing meaningful opportunities for our children and youth to grow in their faith and serve God!  Workcamp has been a life-changing week of service to hundreds of youth over the years.  During the summer of 2013, 19 of our middle school and high school youth served in West Virginia and New York repairing homes of low income individuals who were blessed by the work the youth completed and by the relationships formed during the week.  The Fastnacht Fundraiser has been a significant source of funding for this ministry.  The youth and their families are grateful for your support!

The Fastnacht Fundraiser has also become an outreach tool for St. James Church!  We sold approximately 1,100 dozen fastnachts last year to individuals, businesses and churches!  Again and again, we heard how much this ministry is appreciated by folks as they prepare to enter the season of Lent.

The order form is located below.  Please pre-order fastnachts!  It is extremely helpful to know ahead of time what the demand will be so we can order enough supplies and sign up workers!

In addition to your fastnacht orders, we are also looking for volunteers to help make the fastnachts!  Youth Ministry Committee members, youth and their parents are committed to this fundraiser, but we simply cannot prepare 1,100 dozen fastnachts without help!  Please consider spending a few hours with us. The hours aren’t particularly convenient, but the fellowship is wonderful and the results are worth the sacrifice!  You don’t need to be an award winning baker.  We will find a job for you!

If you are willing to help or have additional questions, please contact Youth Minister Sally Hoh at 334-2012 ext. 207 or e-mail [email protected] or fill out the form below.  Thank you!

Fastnachts will be available for pick up on Sunday morning from 8 am to noon and on Tuesday morning from 5:30 am to noon.  Again this year, we will offer the “drive-by-pick-up” in the alley behind the church on Tuesday morning so there will be no need to get out of your warm vehicles!

This fundraiser benefits youth attending workcamp this summer as well as the National Youth Gathering in Detroit in 2015!  Checks should be made payable to St. James Lutheran Church – memo: Fastnachts.

FASTNACHT ORDER FORM  –  Sunday, March 2  &  Tuesday, March 4

Name ____________________________________              Phone __________________

Email ____________________________________

  Quantity Ordered ___________@ $6.00/Dozen              Amount $______________

PICK-UP TIMES:  (please specify date and time so your fastnachts are fresh and ready for you!)

  ___Sunday, March 2 (8 am – 12 noon)                            pick up time _______________

  ___Tuesday, March 4 (5:30 am – 12 noon)                    pick up time _______________


TO VOLUNTEER!   Please contact Sally Hoh or drop this off in the church office. Thank you! Name/Phone/Email________________________________________________________                                                             

(please circle one or more time frames to help)         

Sunday, 4 am – 8 am;                  Sunday, 8 am – 12 pm;

 Monday, 5 pm – 9 pm;               Monday, 9 pm – 1 am;

 Tuesday, 1 am – 5 am;               Tuesday, 5 am – 9 am;               Clean up, 9 am – 11 am


February 2014 – Children & Youth Ministry – We Are The Church!

I am the good Shepherd.  I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father.  And I lay down my life for the sheep.  I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold.  I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice.  So there will be one flock, one shepherd.       John 10:14-16

During January and February, our youth groups are focusing on the “THE” part of We Are The Church.  Muslims and Jews worship the same Creator we do.  We are all children of the same Heavenly Father.  How do we share the Good News of Jesus while also respecting and supporting all the children of Abraham?

Please pray for the 9th Grade Confirmation Class on retreat at Camp Nawakwa from February 21 to 23!

Please pray for the 8th Grade Confirmation Class on retreat in Washington, DC from February 28 to March 2!

Vacation Bible School will take place July 13 to 18 at Christ Lutheran Church!  We’ll have our kick off on Sunday evening and the program will run from 9 – 11:30 am on Monday through Friday.  Please mark your calendars!

Elementary Youth Group 

There’s room for more children on Wednesday afternoons!  If you would like information, please speak with Sally Hoh or Tim Braband.

3:30 – 4:15 pm  K-2nd grade in the Youth House               (3rd-5th grade Jubilant Choir in the Choir Room)

4:15 – 5:00 pm 3rd-5th grade in the Youth House              (K-2nd grade Alleluia Choir in the Choir Room)

Fastnachts! This is our biggest fundraiser of the year to support youth attending workcamp this summer and the National Youth Gathering in Detroit next summer!  Please support us two ways!  Place your orders to guarantee fresh and delicious fastnachts available for pick up Sunday, March 2 from 8 am to noon or Tuesday, March 4 from 5:30 am to noon.  Please sign up to help prepare the fastnachts!  Please speak to Sally Abma or Sally Hoh if you can help or fill out the form included in The Messenger!  It is our expectation that youth attending workcamp/NYG are actively involved in Youth Group and/or Sunday School as well as service projects and fundraisers!  Especially this one!  If you have any questions about the Fastnacht Fundraiser, please see Sally Hoh!

High School Reading Group with Pastor and Mrs. Foltz will meet at 5:30 pm on Wednesdays: February 12, March 19 & April 9!

All Middle School and Senior High youth are invited to Wednesday Breakfasts at 6:45 am at the Youth House! (Remember that if school is delayed, breakfast is also delayed.)

MS & HS Youth Group

Youth in grades 6 through 12 are invited to join us for Youth Group and Koinonia Choir on Sundays!  Friends are always welcome!

Middle School Youth Group                       5:15 – 6:30 pm

Koinonia Choir (6th-12th grade)                6:30 – 7:30 pm

High School Youth Group                            7:30 – 9:00 pm

NO Youth Group or Koinonia Choir on Sunday, February 2!

You can read The Messenger on our website at www.stjamesgettysburg.org or pick up a copy in our gathering area at the church.   As of July 2014 we will no longer be bulk mailing The Messenger.    If you would like to receive this by regular mail, please sign-up in the gathering area.  (We will continue to mail to all home communicants).  If you would like to receive The Messenger via e-mail, you can also sign-up in the gathering area or you can subscribe on our website.

The Messenger will next be mailed Wednesday, February 26th.  All church-related articles must be sent to [email protected] before Saturday, February 15th.