Thursday, January 02, 2020


St. John’s Lutheran Church

109 Maple St. Burt, Iowa|Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod


Pastor: Rev. Thomas Cowell                              Secretary: Rosann Shipler

Pastor’s Cell: 319-464-5548                                  Church Office: 515-924-3344  stjohnsburt.or

Pastor’s Email:          Church Email:               


January 5, 2020


O God, by the leading of a star You made known Your only-begotten Son to the Gentiles. Lead us, who know You by faith, to enjoy in heaven the fullness of Your divine presence; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.




Today, January 5                              

   8:00 a.m.        NO S. School/Adult Class  

   9:00 a.m.        Divine Service (Epiphany) (C)                                    

   10:00 a.m.      Mission Presentation

   11:00 a.m.      Soup Luncheon


Wednesday, January 8

    6:00 p.m.      Religion School


Thursday, January 9

    6:30 p.m.      Elder’s Meeting


 Sunday, January 12

   8:00 a.m.        Sunday School/Adult Class

   9:00  a.m.       Divine Service (C)

  10:00 a.m.       First Quarter Council Meeting

 2:00-5:00 p.m. Cowell Epiphany Open House


  Friday, January 10

    Commemoration of Basil of Caesarea,   

    Gregory of Nazianzus, & Gregory of Nyssa, 

    the Cappadocian Fathers



Organist Today: Marcia Hanna                     Ushers for December: David Haase, Jeff Schutjer & 

                                                                                                                     Larry Behnkendorf 

Acolyte: Kenna Hatten & Taylor Parsons    Elder for January:        Tony Hatten

Greeters Today: Donna & Melvin Haase   Greeters Next Week:   Barb Schroder & Gabby Kelly


Adult Bible Study - Our Sunday morning adult Bible study class is discussing the benefits of meditating on the six chief parts of the Catechism through Scripture and prayer.  We’ll be using the book The Lord Will Answer: A Daily Prayer Catechism.  A copy of the book will be provided for everyone to use. 


Mission Presentation - Unfortunately, Pastor James May had an unexpected and unavoidable schedule conflict come up, and is not able to join us this Sunday.  However, Pastor Cowell will lead a presentation after church on Pastor May’s mission organization, Lutherans in Africa, as well as the mission work of the Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod as a whole.  


Soup Lunch for Lutherans in Africa - Join us in the church basement for a soup lunch after our mission presentation today.  The freewill offering for the lunch will go toward the mission work of Lutherans in Africa. 


Installation of Officers - All new and returning council members will be installed during the service on January 12th.


Council Meeting - We will have a council meeting after church on Sunday, January 12. Voter’s Meeting will be held on Sunday, January 19.


Annual Report:  The end of the year will be here soon! If you’re responsible for a report for the annual yearbook, it can be emailed to the church office at - or bring it to the church office.


Usher, Greeter, Acolyte Sign-Ups - On the back table are sign-up sheets for greeters, ushers, and acolytes to give you an opportunity to sign up for a spot that works for you.  Feel free to sign your name on more than one line! 


St. John’s Flocknote - As a new Church Year begins now would be a good time to review your St. John’s text message and email options!  See the Flocknote information sheet on the back table for the types of communication you can receive through text or email.  You can sign up or change your options yourself from the instructions provided, or if you fill out the sheet and leave it at the church office we are happy to sign you up or make changes for you. 

- Also note that there is a new Flocknote option this year called “St. John’s Volunteers.”             

  Sign up for this option if you would like to receive messages from St. John’s about 

  volunteer opportunities within our congregation, partnership, or community. 


Cowell Family Epiphany Open House - You are invited to continue your holiday cheer at the Cowell house on January 12 from 2:00-5:00 p.m.!  Once you’ve finished celebrating Christmas with your family, you’ll have this opportunity to celebrate Epiphany with your church family.  The Cowell’s live at 609 E Kennedy St. in Algona. 




Strengthening Marriage Workshop - The Iowa District West Education and Family Life Committee is hosting a marriage strengthening workshop for all married couples on Saturday, February 8th from 9:00-2:00 at Trinity, Algona. This workshop will benefit both those who are recently married to those who have been married for many years. Toni Larson, Licensed Counselor from Lutheran Family Service will lead us through a time to grow in communication skills, understand how God has uniquely designed man and woman, and lead you in focusing on your relationship. Morning refreshments and lunch are provided, as well as childcare if needed.  The cost is $40 per couple (paid the morning of the workshop). Register by Feb. 3rd at:  


Did You Know: No matter your age, you can keep dreaming. What dream has God placed on your heart for your walk with Him in this new year? “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C.S. Lewis   

Lutheran Family Service is Iowa’s only Recognized Service Organization (RSO) by the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS) for Pregnancy Support, Adoption Services, Family Wellness, Mental Health & Marriage Counseling. Find help at


LECTIONARY SUMMARY (Epiphany of Our Lord)


Isaiah 60:1–6; Ephesians 3:1–12; Matthew 2:1–12


The Lord God Is Manifested in the Incarnate Son

The Feast of the Epiphany centers in the visit of the Magi from the East. In that respect, it is a “Thirteenth Day” of Christmas, and yet, it also marks the beginning of a new liturgical season.  Where Christmas has focused on the Incarnation of our Lord, that is, on God becoming flesh, the Season of Epiphany emphasizes the manifestation or self-revelation of God in that same flesh of Christ. For the Lord Himself has entered our darkness and rises upon us with the brightness of His true Light (Is. 60:1–2). He does so chiefly by His Word of the Gospel, which He causes to be preached within His Church on earth, not only to the Jews but also to Gentiles (Eph. 3:8–10).  As the Magi were guided by the promises of Holy Scripture to find and worship the Christ-Child with His Mother in the house (Matt. 2:5–11), so does He call disciples from all nations by the preaching of His Word, to find and worship Him within His Church (Is. 60:3–6).  




Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article V: Love and Fulfilling the Law, para. 140-141

Daniel proclaims to [King Nebuchadnezzar] many things about the only God, the God of Israel. He converts the king not only to give alms, but much more, to have faith. For we have the excellent confession of the king about the God of Israel, "There is no other god who is able to rescue in this way." Therefore, in Daniel's sermon there are two parts. One part gives a commandment about the new life and the works of the new life. In the other part, Daniel promises the forgiveness of sins to the king. This promise of the forgiveness of sins is a truly prophetic and evangelical voice. Daniel certainly meant that the promise should be received in faith. For Daniel knew that the forgiveness of sins in Christ was promised not only to the Israelites, but also to all nations. Otherwise, he could not have promised to the king the forgiveness of sins. For without God's sure Word about His will, a person has no power to claim, especially when terrified by sin, that God ceases to be angry. In his own language, Daniel speaks clearly about repentance and even more clearly brings out the promise, "Break off your sins by practicing righteousness, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the oppressed." These words teach about repentance. They direct the king to become righteous, then to do good works, to defend the miserable against injustice, as was the king's duty.