State of the Parish
“They came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. 47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 49 And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart. Get up; he is calling you.” 50 And throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. 51 And Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” And the blind man said to him, “Rabbi, let me recover my sight.” 52 And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way. Mark 10:46-52
These words have been chosen to set a tone for us at St. John for the next two years, as we prepare for a significant review of our ministry in Wabaunsee County. In 2020, we will be 150 years old. That is an anniversary to celebrate! Our “soul care” is for people who need a Savior, and we show them Jesus Christ. He is God’s Son, who entered our broken world as He became human, and which He redeemed by shedding His human blood. As it was in the beginning, is now, and will be until the return of Christ, people are dying. They lie, cheat, steal, and bad-mouth their neighbors and family. They are evil. They deserve to die for their sins – and that is God’s clearest analysis of our human nature.
But He has paid a ransom price to release us from our captor. The very human body and blood of Jesus Christ has paid the debt of our sin. That is God’s most surprising answer to our sin. We have the promise of eternal life, because He lived and died, and lives again. Jesus Christ is our hope. St. John Lutheran Church exists to tell others about Him, and is organized to lead others to the one who restores sight, life and purpose.
This Annual Report is a way we take a look at the functioning of our church in the community. It looks at our activities and quantifies them. It shows our directives, and explains them. By God’s grace, it shows Jesus Christ and our faith in Him. It reveals the working of people who serve Christ, and who fulfill His mission and our mission statement: “A family united by faith in Jesus Christ, gathering around God’s Word and sacraments, to reach out in Christ-borne love and Christ-like concern, in ministry to each other and those without Christ”
“What do we see?” and “What do others see?” are big questions before us. We want others to see Jesus. We want to see Jesus, too. Jesus’ first disciples were asked that a long time ago, and they led others to the Savior (see John 12:20-26.) As you look through the pages which follow, the reports you will see show God at work, and help us to see Jesus.
Thanks to everyone involved for all service offered to our Lord Jesus Christ, and for the reports which follow. They show our identity in congregational life. They show some of our successes and reveal where we may yet grow in service to our Lord. I pray that this encourages us to offer our best to the Lord in this coming year here at St. John Lutheran Church. May God lead us, help us, and bless us. Our 2020 Vision: It’s still about Jesus!
Includes: Baptisms, Received Into or Removed From Communicant Membership, Vital Statistics of our Congregation,
Attendance Record, Participation in the Sacrament of Holy Communion.
Includes: Cemetery Superintendent's Report, Memorial Gift Suggestions, and Highlights from Voter's Meetings and Activities