June 1, 2020
On Monday, June 1, 2020 the elders conducted the monthly meeting, at which we reviewed the updated policies concerning church services in the state of Illinois. Beginning next Sunday, June 7, 2020, we will be conducting worship service at 10:00 a.m. Every attempt will be made to follow guidelines as published by the Illinois Department of Public Health. If you are part of a high-risk category, having health issues that preclude your attendance, please contact Pastor Kern, and he will plan to come to you for a visit. Your health and well-being should not be superseded by the sense of mandatory attendance. Our Bible Class and Sunday School will not begin again until a later date. The following steps will be taken, in order to meet guidelines:
Please understand this process is new to all of us. Some of what we do may appear to be totally "off-the-cuff." If there is something we can do to improve upon our service, please let us know. We pray that one day, these practices that impinge upon our fellowship as a congregation may be a memory of the past.
May 4, 2020
In a meeting this evening the Elders and the Pastor met, with the consultation of Diane Bertels (a nursing professional), and Rich Bertels (our congregational chairman) to discuss our ability to worship under the Illinois guidelines, and the possibility of receiving the gift of the Lord’s Supper once again. The governor in a recent statement found cause to exempt places of worship from a list of activities prohibited under the “stay at home” policies, while still leaving in place the ceiling of ten persons in any place at any one time. Face masks are mandated when the six-foot distancing is not kept.
While we appreciate the new ruling, that allows us to gather in small groups, we also recognize the restrictions are intended to keep our members, as citizens of the state of Illinois safe. That is after-all the purpose and cause of civil government, even as Martin Luther provides us in Catechetical instruction, regarding the Fourth Commandment.
The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper remains important to us, in the message of salvation it brings into our personal lives, both in this world and for life eternal. Nevertheless, it is not our action of attending the meal…the frequency of attendance over period, but rather the faith that our Lord assures us by way of His meal. Some may find a hunger for the Meal more frequently than another. We look forward to the time when we may be able to partake of His Meal in communion with each other, but for now we will do so in group sizes that will protect us from the virus.
Because of the limitation of the numbers to assemble at any given time, we will continue to distribute worship services by way of the internet, for those having the ability to do so. We have provided copies by mail for those who are unable to do so. The church will continue to be open for prayer on Sunday mornings from 9:00 a.m. through 11:00 a.m. Beginning immediately, opportunities to receive the Lord’s Supper will be made by appointment with Pastor Kern. Please contact him, by way of the parsonage/church phone at (618) 377-6221 or his cell phone at (618) 610-0669.
January 6, 2014
Views from church on December 22 with ice reflecting in the trees.
December 7, 2013
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Excerpt from Latest Newsletter
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The Corona Virus continues to threaten the health and well-being of our family and friends here, and in the world around us. Protestors are demonstrating against the unjust killing by the very person trusted to uphold justice for all, and to protect the public. As I write, a lady speaks on the news; she prays that peace will come about in order that her organization may resume their work, providing gift cards to cancer treatment patients. Her organization’s windows are boarded up to prevent vandals and looters from further damaging the building and offices in which the organization strives to support their beneficiaries. National Guard units have been activated to bolster those police forces, in their attempt to maintain some sense of peace. These scenarios take place in cities throughout the country today.
In another time, social distancing may not be a part of the language, nevertheless, diseases exist that leave as many questions as there are answers. Enough is known, that those who have the disease must stand their distance from those who do not. Perhaps out-and-out protest may not necessarily take place, but there is a faction that pushes an insurrectionist movement among the people. From time to time the military moves, to quell any such unrest.
One evening, a man is taken into custody by officials who utilize the law to their device. In the darkness of night, they deliberate as his life hangs in the balance. What they fail to understand, is that they are not really in control, as they might like to think. Still, they will turn him over to the military authorities, along with their false claims. The convening authority is confused by their demands, but on their continued insistence, he too relents to their demands, and allows for a sentence of death to be carried out. No justice here either.
The Son of God is executed at the hands of man! Still, if it were not part of the Father’s plan it would never have happened. To be sure, times as we are experiencing now will continue to occur till the end of time as we know it on earth. They happened in Jesus’ time on earth and will continue to happen as long as Satan influences the people and the world in which we live. God sent His Son, Jesus, to bear the consequences of our sin, and the sin of those around us. By His suffering, death and resurrection, we are saved, no longer bearing the consequence, because He has done that for us, and we can look forward to the time we will share with our Lord Jesus in heaven…thanks be to God! Amen.
In His grace,