Friday, December 22 Announcements

Come worship with us at 9:30. Join us in person or or watch our livestream Sunday morning on our YouTube channel , or view the service on the YouTube channel on Sunday, December 24. Pastor Heidi Williams will be preaching on Luke 1:26-38. Here is a devotion from God Pause:  Every time I hear Paul’s words in this reading, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances,” I want to say to him: “Really? That’s the best you could offer to the church in Thessalonica?” Perhaps, with me, you can think of many seasons of life where it was terribly difficult to rejoice and give thanks. And yet, I can also name days and seasons where laughter broke through grief and surprised me, a moment of clarity broke through disorientation, or a glimmer of light broke through the darkest night. Each time, I was reminded what joy and gratitude feel like and the ways they nourish and sustain me. Paul was writing to a community where suffering and loss and disorientation were not abstract ideas. Perhaps his encouraging words—and the Season of Advent—don’t dismiss pain, but invite us to acknowledge the hard things and in the same breath dare us to choose joy and gratitude in spite of it.

Upcoming Worship Helpers December 24, 9:30 am 
Greeters/ Ushers Chuck and Bonnie Fenimore
Reader: Ann Bartelt 
Sound/ Screen/ Streaming: Wayne Martens
Musician:  Georgine Bellamy
Counters: Nancy Schimmels
Communion Server: Debi Martens and Barb Kellogg
Communion Bread: Kim Patience
Acolytes / Crucifer: Marriah Allen  

Upcoming Worship Helpers December 24, 5:00 pm 
Greeters/ Ushers:  Marilyn Hansen and Brooke Davis
Reader: Cheryl Young
Sound/ Screen/ Streaming: Alexis Davis
Musician:  Clarice Blanchard
Communion Server: John and Kim Patience and 
Communion Bread: Kim Patience
Acolytes/ Crucifer:  

Upcoming Worship Helpers December 24, 7:30 pm 
Greeters/ Ushers Dan and Chris Madison
Reader: Ted Leonard 
Sound/ Screen/ Streaming: Wayne Martens
Musician:  Kiernan Blanchard
Communion Server: Debi Martens and 
Kara Ellingrod
Communion Bread: Kim Patience
Acolytes/ Crucifer:  Hendrick Aasen / Logan
Sunday Bible Study:  Bible Study will meet at 11:00 a.m. following morning worship in the front most classroom near the church office. During the class, we invite questions, comments, and connections, as we expand upon the readings from the worship service. 

Larger Bulletins & Kids Bags: The ushers will have large print bulletins available.  St. Paul has kids’ bags to engage your child during church.  They are hanging on hooks by the entry doors or see the ushers.

Blue Christmas Meditation. For many, Christmas is a very happy, joyous time. For some, it evokes sadness and worry. At St. Paul, we love all people, all throughout the year, and care for those who are facing depression, anxiety, guilt, and addictions. We offer to you this Blue Christmas Meditation as a quiet, contemplative way to connect with God as you struggle to navigate the holidays. May God’s promise be with you. Please use the attached link.

Not an official St. Paul member yet, but want to be? We would love you to have you join the St. Paul family.  Please contact Nicole Darling with details on how and when this can happen.

Giving Envelopes. Giving envelopes for 2024 have arrived and are in your mailboxes. If you don’t have one and give regularly, or would want one for anytime, please contact Lisa Vossekuil with a note in her mailbox or an email to

Holiday Schedule.
 Christmas Eve Day Service– December  24th @ 9:30am
 Christmas Evening Service– December 24th @ 5:00pm
 Christmas Evening Service– December 24th @ 7:30pm

ELCA Good Gifts. ELCA Good Gifts provide an easy way for you to make a real impact across the world. Your gifts help share the love of Christ one goat, water well or school uniform at a time. See the catalog on the usher’s table or use this link to make your order and spread the good news: ELCA Good Gifts 
Pastoral care.  Please feel free to contact our new Pastor, Heidi Williams, with any pastor cares you need.  Her cell number is 515-450-0490

God Squad and Confirmation. St Paul’s Christian Education program for children and youth meets Wednesday evenings during the school year. PK-6th graders gather in God Squad, and 7th and 8th graders meet in Confirmation with the Pastor. A free meal is served at 5:30; classes and activities are held from 5:50 to 6:50pm.  Food and monetary donations are welcome for the meal. Sign-up on Signup Genius to help in the kitchen.

Transportation Ministry. Transportation ministry is providing rides home mainly for outpatient surgery patients who cannot secure another way home. There is a clipboard in the back of the church if you would like to add your name to the volunteers. The need is occasional but so much appreciated. Questions? Contact Chris Madison (515-468-0051)

CRISP and MATURA Food Boxes CRISP and Matura are partnering again this year to provide food boxes for our families who are receiving gifts.  If you are interested in helping provide a food box please contact Theresa at MATURA.  Her number is 515-462-4704.  They will take donations of cash/check, gift cards or food to help complete the food boxes. 

Matthew 25: Ministries – Pill Bottle Donations. Matthew 25: Ministries is an international relief organization that supports medical missions. We can be a part of this by donating empty plastic pill bottles. All sizes, with plastic lids, are accepted. Please remove all outside labels. See the flyer at the church; the donation box is located near the mailboxes. Contact Kim Patience with any questions:

Matura Food Pantry: Our offering to the Matura Food Pantry is blessed the first Sunday of each month. Help us fill the shopping cart will non-perishable food, diapers, and even pet food. Checks made out to Matura Madison County or cash are also accepted.
St. Paul’s Trust Fund: The Trust Fund committee, elected by the congregation, supports mission projects ranging from national and international disaster relief, congregants’ mission trips, and camping scholarships for youth and children. Please contact Chair, Dick Anderson with any questions or suggestions for mission support at Please note that this is Dick’s new email.

Furniture Ministry: St. Paul collects and gives home goods, furniture, and appliances to those in need. Contact Lisa Vossekuil (920-979-0304 or about any donations. Monetary gifts are also appreciated for our storage units.  The Furniture Ministry needs able bodies to help with picking up and delivering furniture on a Saturday morning (usually 9;00 – 10:00 a.m.).  Willing workers should contact Lisa ( or Jim Nelson. ( to let them know availability. Please note that this is Jim’s new email.  

Pool of Siloam: Pool of Siloam is St. Paul’s local benevolence program that provides monetary support for those in need of such things as gas money or car repair, rent or mortgage assistance, and utility bills. In partnership with local agencies (CRISP, Matura, and Crisis Intervention), we annually serve over 100 individuals, including children. All giving to the Pool of Siloam is matched by an anonymous donor. Offerings to this program can be indicated on your giving envelope or online giving form. 

LifeServe Blood Drive: St. Paul hosts the community LifeServe Blood Drive every fourth Tuesday of the month. We are known for our home-baked goods and appreciate your donations of cookies and bars. Please bring them to the church by noon the day of the drive December 26, 2023 is the next scheduled blood drive.

Call for Cookies.  Cookies are always needed for Sunday morning services and the monthly blood drive.  They can be store bought or home-made and can be dropped off at anytime.  Jim asks that the cookies for the monthly blood drive be home-made.

Pictorial Directory: The Church Directory is in!  Please contact Cheryl Young at 515-770-5806 or the church office if you have signed up to purchase any. The cost is $5.00 per booklet. If you did not sign up, we do have extras available at $5.00 a copy. You may get one at worship service or contact the office by email, phone 515-462-4270 or stopping in.  Also an updated picture directory is now online on the church website. To access names and contact information from our online directory Servant Keeper, see Lisa Vossekuil or contact her at  Are you a new member or need to update your information?  Please take a few minutes to complete the online form or pick up a paper copy at the usher table and turn it into the office.

Call Committee Activity.  Bishop Current’s office has provided us with an easy to follow four step process for use by call committees. The four steps are:
1 Leave-taking – Saying goodbye
2 Preparation – Formation of the call committee, Workshops and Ministry Site Profile.
3 Discernment – Identifying potential candidates, Interviewing candidates, Council recommendation and Call.
4 Walking Together – Installation, Check in at 3-6-12-18 months, One year review

The Call Committee has completed step two and is currently in a season of discernment as we interview candidates. This season may last a few months or longer.  In order to protect the confidentiality of candidates, no specific information can be shared about who is being interviewed or when the interviews are planned. However, once the Call Committee decides on a primary candidate that name is submitted to the Congregational Council, who then makes preparations for a Congregational Meeting. A two-thirds vote of the congregation calls a pastor.
The Call Committee invites you to pray with us.
Almighty God, giver of all good gifts, you have given us grace to make our common prayer to you. Direct us Lord God, in this time of transition as we join in one prayer together. Grant to us in this time of searching, courage, patience, and vision and use us , we pray, as you will, but always to your glory and the welfare of your people. Guide our decisions as we do the work of calling a pastor. May we receive a faithful servant who will care for your people and equip us for our ministries. Through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ Amen

Prayer Chain: St. Paul has a group dedicated to the power of prayer. If you have a prayer request for the Prayer Chain, please share it with Twila Seibert (515-462-1505) or Ann Bartelt ( or the church office.  

St. Paul Choir. Choir practice is held Wednesday evenings at 7:10 pm. Everyone is welcome to spread the good news through our music ministry. Questions may be directed to Sue Hansen, choir director, 515-468-0137. 

Got Time? Got Talent? We Want You! We have a variety of opportunities available where you can showcase an existing talent or pursue an interest you have.  Do you have finance or organizational skills, like to show your concern for others, can teach others, or know your way around building maintenance?  All of these skills can be put to use on various St. Paul committees that need our time and talent. So, if you want to give back to our church, please contact the office and we’ll help find a way you can make a difference!   

Upcoming Worship Helpers December 31, 9:30 am 
Greeters/ Ushers Needed and Needed
Reader: Amanda Turnquist
Sound/ Screen/ Streaming: Needed
Musician:  Needed
Counters: Lisa Vossekuil and Steve Dick
Communion Server: Needed and Needed
Communion Bread: Needed
Acolytes/ Crucifer: Blake Acton  

Worship Service Helpers/Volunteers Needed!  If you are able and
willing, we need your help in returning our 9:30 service to “normalcy.”  It’s important that all of the positions be filled. Worship team members Debi Martens is available for any “training” you may want.
3 Easy ways to sign up:
Use SignUpGenius! It’s easy to access at this link and will even send you a reminder of your commitment. 
Volunteer Kiosk: We have clipboards on the kiosks in the entryway for you to sign.
Call the Church office at 515-462-4270.


Church office phone: (515) 462-4270
Church office email:
Pastor Heidi Williams: (515) 450-0490