Immediately after the misery of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky. And at that time all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. He will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other. (Matthew 24:29-31)
Did you pay any attention this past week to the Chinese rocket booster that fell into the Indian Ocean? Much of the booster disintegrated as it entered into earth’s atmosphere, but still large portions of it did come crashing down to earth. Scientists weren’t sure where it would land—and if it would have landed in a highly populated area, the casualties would have been catastrophic—and many people were afraid. Praise the Lord that it landed in the Indian Ocean and everyone was safe! But NASA scientists weren’t too thrilled about the entire ordeal, calling the Chinese irresponsible for their design of the rocket booster since they put many lives at risk. This event has caused a large discussion of the amount of “space debris” up in earth’s low orbit—dead satellites and other items that could crash into each other and cause more of these events in the future.
This whole ordeal reminded me of what Jesus says in our verses above. There will come a time—the Last Day, when things will fall from the sky—and there will be absolutely no avoiding it! The Sun will burn out, the moon will no longer reflect the sun’s light, and the stars will fall from the sky. No, they will not come crashing down to earth and kill all sorts of people, but something much worse will happen to unbelievers—and much better for believers. Christ is going to return to judge the living and the dead!
Did you notice how the unbelieving world will react at this time? In our verses above we read that the nations of the earth will mourn. Why will they mourn? Certainly, they will mourn the loss of their world; but their mourning will be much more than that. They will mourn because when they see Jesus, they will know that they were wrong about him and they will spend the rest of eternity suffering in hell.
When Jesus comes with the trumpet call of God in his full glory, everyone will know that he truly is the eternal God and the Savior of the world! While unbelievers will mourn, believers will rejoice. Jesus will send his angels throughout the world to gather the elect. And you are the elect! God has chosen you in eternity to be saved. And so, he brought you to faith through the waters of baptism and kept you in that one true faith. On the Last Day, he will gather you along with all believers in him together and then he will take all of us to dwell with him in heaven forever!
Last week, many were afraid that a rocket booster might fall on them. As the sun and moon grow dark and the stars fall from the sky, the world will tremble in fear and mourn. But believes will rejoice! For at the time our Lord will come to take us home, and we will be with him in the New Heavens and the New Earth forever.
Pastor Andrew Frey
You have probably heard by now that Pastor Frey has accepted his call as the campus pastor at Nebraska Lutheran. Pastor Frey’s last services here at St. John will be June 20th and 21st.
Special Voter's Meeting:
Sunday May 16 at 9:15 am, we will have a brief special Voter's Meeting as we discuss how the congregation will proceed in calling to replace Pastor Frey. Please join us for this special meeting. (Bible Class will meet immediately after this meeting).
Women of Faith and LWMS:
Tuesday May 11th at 1:00, all the women of St. John are invited to our monthly Bible Study and LWMS meeting. Our Bible Study will be on the "Amish". Please join us for this great opportunity for Bible Study and fellowship.
Men’s Study will be meeting next Tuesday, the 18th at 9:00am. We’ll study the same thing as Women of Faith: the teachings of the Amish. Please plan on joining us if you are able.
Updated Covid Procedures
On Monday our council decided it was time to return to the children’s quiet bags. They will be hanging up underneath the bulletin board by the Pastors’ offices, if you are comfortable taking one for your child, please do so! The council has also decided that the time is right for the ushers to return to dismissing the congregation from the front instead of from the back of Church. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
New Hymnal Committee
Our New Hymnal Committee will be meeting this Wednesday at 6:30pm. We forgot to put this meeting in the bulletin so we pray all our committee members will be able to join us.
On Sunday, May 2 in the 10:30 service, we had our Confirmation service where these young people made their public confession of their faith. Please keep these young men and women in your prayers.
- Lyla Magdelynne Beyer
- Will James Harris
- Adam Lyle Helmrick
- Grace Elaine Lankow
- Autumn Rae Lemke
- Joshua Nolan Mathe (private confirmation May 1)
- Lydia Kate Merrick
- Carlee Marie Olson
- Abby Marie Presteen
- Zachary James Siebers
- Mitchell Lee Volkman
William Joseph Volkman was confirmed at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Appleton and Connor Jacob Kempf was confirmed at Mount Olive Lutheran Church, Appleton.
Worship Service Through Your Phone:
If you know someone who does not have the Internet and would like to still listen each week to our Worship Services, please let them know that you can now receive our weekly worship services by dialing 1-920-212-3625 each week and you will be able to listen to our Sunday morning Worship Service. Each week the service will become available to listen to each Sunday after 10:30am and you can listen to these services at any time during the week. If you have any questions, please call Church. Presently, we have about 3-5 people who are making use of this wonderful tool to hear God's Word.
Pastor Frey is leading a study on the New Testament book of Colossians at 9:15 on Sunday mornings. Join us as we look at this important letter which highlights the person of Christ and his work of salvation.
Pastor Gartner is leading a study on, "Luther’s Small Catechism – A Study of The Apostles’ Creed, Baptism and Holy Communion" on Monday mornings at 8:00 and Tuesday evenings at 5:30. Martin Luther wrote the Small Catechism to help assist Christians in their learning the basic truths of God’s Word. Please join us in this Bible Class as we seek to strengthen our faith as we use Luther’s Small Catechism to refresh our knowledge about The Apostles’ Creed, Baptism and Holy Communion.
If you would like to receive a recording of these Bible Classes, please contact one of the Pastors and we will send you the link for these recordings.
We will continue to live-stream our services and post our worship folders online. We will be recording our Sunday 8:00 am service which means you can watch anytime after 8:00 am on Sunday morning. If you need any help accessing these resources, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
You can find our worship services at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCsQs-LDzlHE1NTjOaVaQ2A.
You can find a bulletin for each Worship Service so you can follow along here: https://stjohncenter-my.sharepoint.com/:f:/g/personal/pastor_frey_stjohn-appleton_org/EqetvOMWflhLsfsLRcDkxSgBL2cnYkpiuk8Klh7d-r_XQg?e=07dSma.