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Alleluia, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, Alleluia.
We sing these words as a part of our Sunday morning worship right before the Holy Gospel is read. And I was reminded again where these words come to us from John chapter six as we recently had this text for Sunday morning worship.
After a good portion of Jesus’ disciples were beginning to lose interest in following him – probably for multiple reasons – Jesus then turns to the 12 disciples who had been with him from the beginning and asks: “Do you also wish to go away?”
And Simon Peter, speaking on behalf of the group, says: “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” (John 6:68-69). And we, as the church, have added the “Alleluia” as a part of Peter’s confession, literally adding… praise the Lord, or, to God be the praise!
And I’ve been thinking about this response of Simon Peter as we approach what should be the “traditional Fall Kickoff” season come September. Traditionally the fall “Rally Day” is a time when we re-engage the program year of the church – Sunday School, Confirmation, a rise in worship attendance, the usual uptick in service and attendance at the church after summer’s “re-creation.”
But this September I sense things are a little different. Although we have been open all summer for Sunday morning, congregant worship; nevertheless, our worship attendance has lagged, and probably for good reason. The threat of COVID is still very real, and until we get a greater percentage of the broader population vaccinated, attendance at church for many is probably a very precarious proposition.
Moreover, I wonder, quite candidly, if after getting out of the habit of physically coming to worship on Sunday morning for over a year, that it might take a while to get back in the good habit of coming back to worship (not to mention getting the kids re-engaged in Sunday School!). And let’s be honest, with the threat of a COVID surge on the horizon particularly this time around as it targets our children, it’s hard to plan for anything!
And through it all we continue to sing, be it via Zoom, live stream, Facebook, or face-to-face: “Alleluia, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”
This September we continue to cautiously wade back to engage our mission and ministry. We will have a scaled back God’s Work/Our Hands Sunday (see the accompanying article in this issue of the September Voice). We have planned our Confirmation instruction with a hybrid contingency if needed (see the accompanying article). And using the Zoom tools at our disposal – together with our live stream capabilities – Pastor Kevin will be making himself available to young families for faith formation face-to-face (masks if needed) and/or via Zoom. God bless you all! Pastor Kevin
Our Savior’s Emergency Food Shelf — is open Wednesday and Friday, 1-2:30pm. Please consider donating to Our Savior’s Emergency Food Shelf as it continues to offer a life line to those individuals/families that find themselves in unexpected circumstances. Thank you and God bless.
Pastor Kevin to Supervise Pastoral Intern, Tauna Roth — Our sister churches in the ELCA, Holy Trinity and Faith Lutheran Church in Chisholm, are welcoming Luther Seminarian, Tauna Roth, who will serve as their Pastoral Intern for one calendar year beginning this September. As both Holy Trinity and Faith are without a Pastor, Pastor Kevin will serve as Tauna’s Internship Supervisor. Such an arrangement is referred to as an “Off-Site” supervising relationship. What this means is that Pastoral Intern Tauna’s focus for ministry training will be with Holy Trinity and Faith, while Pastor Kevin will be providing mentoring, support, and evaluation while she does this. Pastoral Intern Tauna Roth lives in Virginia, Minnesota, and she is a distance-learning student enrolled at Luther Seminary. Previous to her enrollment in seminary to become a Pastor, Tauna achieved a Masters in Old Testament at Luther Seminary, where she met her future husband, Erik Roth. Erik now serves as the Pastor at Our Savior’s Lutheran in Virginia, and Erik and Tauna have two children: Nozomi and Ronin. Erik and Tauna have served together as missionaries in Tokyo, Japan, and both of them bring that experience with them to parish ministry. Our Savior’s joins with Holy Trinity and Faith Lutheran in welcoming Pastoral Intern Tauna Roth to our Hibbing/Chisholm communities!
Council Meeting Highlights (August 10, 2021)
- Discussed the most recent St. Louis County Covid statistics and determined to strongly recommend masks during worship services and fellowship; a supply of masks will be provided in the Narthex. We will continue to track Covid numbers and provide further mitigations as needed.
- The General Fund is about $4,700 in the red as of July 31; we encourage individual stewardship and look for a turn-around in the fall. Quarterly statements will be mailed in October.
- For the next year, Pastor Kevin will be supervising a pastoral intern doing her internship at Holy Trinity (Hibbing) and Faith (Chisholm); OSLC incurs no financial responsibility for the intern
- Approved a pasty sale for September, subject to any safety protocols (e.g., Covid)
- Discussion continued on a new directory. After much research, our best option is to do photos locally, design in-house, and contract locally for printing. A committee will be formed.
- God’s Work, Our Hands is scheduled for 9/19; more to come
- Work on updating the Policy Manual continues; next meeting is 8/31
- The handrail at the Office outside entrance has been installed; thank you to Jim Perry and Furin & Shea Fabricating
- The new kitchen countertops being installed are beautiful; thank you to Rick and Kathy Koschak and the Oak Shop
The Columbarium at Our Savior’s offers perpetually endowed care for the remains of those who choose cremation. It is a place of peace, solitude, and prayer restoring the ancient practice of church burial. If you would like to learn more about the Columbarium, please make an appointment with Cindy in the church office by calling 218-263-7422. An optional payment plan is available.
Sharik/Farseth Scholarship applications are being accepted – deadline is September 15th. Our selection criteria would include the following – Member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church; must have completed 1 year (minimum of 30 credits) of post-secondary education within the past 3 years (include transcript); volunteer activities in school, church and community; and, academic performance. Applications available in the office, via mail or e-mail.
3rd grade – You will receive a Bible and Sunday Morning this Fall
4th grade – Next Spring you will receive a devotional book
5th grade – Communion Classes will be held during Lent.
6th grade – Thank you for serving as an Acolyte when possible
7th-10th grades – Participation: 10 sermon notes, 10 hours of service
11th grade – As soon as plans for the Rite of Confirmation are made you will be notified. Continue to meet by phone or social distanced and complete your sermon note requirements
The new program year is upon us and we would like to share some details about Confirmation this year! All 7th-10th graders will have weekly Wednesday Confirmation classes starting in-person and most likely outside in September. We are planning to move to a hybrid model as it gets colder outside. We will be sending out emails with new information for this Confirmation schedule and news. — Confirmation classes begin September 15 @ 7:00p.m. at Our Saviors. — 11th Grade Confirmands: 11th graders who have completed the Confirmation program and are waiting to be confirmed this October. We will be emailing all information to you as well. Here are a few dates to mark on your calendars: Sept. 19 @5:30p.m.- Zoom meeting with Confirmands, mentors, and Parents — Oct. 6 Faith Statements due to Pastor Sarah — Oct. 27 @ 5:30p.m.-Rehearsal for Confirmation Sunday — Oct. 31 @ 11:00a.m.- Confirmation Sunday @ Our Saviors — Calling all new 7th graders– Are you wanting to be a part of the Confirmation program? Please let us know!
2022 ELCA YOUTH GATHERING — boundless – GOD BEYOND MEASURE — First Lutheran and Our Saviors are teaming up to attend the synod journey to the 2022 ELCA Youth Gathering. This is such a great opportunity for high school youth to attend. Here are the details: Dates: July 21-28, 2022 — Ages: youth who are in grades 8-12 in the fall of 2021 — Cost: $975 (you will not have to pay this much and we do not want any financial concerns regarding this trip. Talk to Pastor Sarah if you have concerns) Commitment: October 10th with a deposit of $150 to Pastor Sarah — Adult Leaders: if you are interested in helping lead this trip let us know! We are hoping that families will only have to cover the commitment deposit of $150 with fundraising opportunities during the year. The first fundraising opportunity will be at the end of September at First Lutheran’s garage sale where a portion of the money raised will go towards the trip. Questions? Come talk to Pastor Sarah and/or check out the ELCA Youth Gathering website for more information about what the gathering is https://www.elca.org/YouthGathering
Property Committee — Handrail at door 9: The handrail at the office door (9) is installed. Kitchen Countertop: The countertop for the handwashing sink in the kitchen is installed along with new faucets and drains. Years of wear and tear and many leaks caused some damage to the shelves under the sink. The damages and worn shelves are now replaced and we should be good for a while. Again, thanks goes out to Rick Koschak and the Oak Shop for the countertop and to Joe A. and Mike S. for faucet installation and shelf repair. Boulevard Tree Trimming: Low hanging branches have been removed from the trees on the North (22nd Street) Boulevard. Thanks Mike! We understand that the city has again begun boulevard tree trimming in town, beginning with the schools and church areas. Hopefully we will get all the boulevard trees trimmed before Winter. Close Closet Air Conditioner: As the Clothes Closet is an area which is a highly utilized area, there was an immediate need for an air conditioner. Fans just did not help, as the sun shines on the outside (East Wall) all mornings, virtually every day in 2021. A new A/C unit was purchased and installed in August. Thanks again to Joe A. and Mike S. The A/C unit cost is coming out of unbudgeted Building Maintenance Account. Mike Stavnes and Joe Arthurs Property Co-Chairs
OSLCW — Plans are to meet after church service the second Sunday of the month. Grab a cup of coffee and we will meet in the Chapel. PASTIES — On September 23rd we will be making pasties. We will limit each family to ten pasties as we are making only 400 at this time. The cost is $7.00. Prep will be on the 22nd following Bible Study. Order list will be in office staring on September 7th. Please be considerate of these changes. When picking up your pasties you will be required to wear a mask –no exceptions! Pickup will start around 11 am on September 23rd, SCHOOL KITS — Items need to complete the 125 bags we have are: 50-24 count boxes Crayola crayons, — 50 pencils sharpeners — 100 kids scissors, — 500 bic style pens ( five per kit ) — 125 – #2 yellow pencils unsharpened. (five per kit). —- 60 – 12 inch/30mm rulers. — 60 – 2” pink erasers. — Lutheran World Relief is very specific on items so all kits are the same. If you wish to donate cash please send to office or give to me and we will buy tax free with church number. Thank you and God’s blessings. Sue Schock FOOD SHELF and CLOTHES CLOSET — If you know of families in the Hibbing area in need of an emergency food box the Food Shelf is open from 1-2:30 each Wednesday and Friday. Our children’s clothes closet is well stocked with good used and some new clothing including shoe, boots and outer wear free to those in need in the Hibbing area. We also have children’s blankets available. Appointments are made thru the church office. BAZAAR — It seems that we will not hold a bazaar open to the public this year. In conversation with ladies from the Blessed Sacrament Parish they are not either. It seems prudent to possibly do two different “in House” sales one in October and one in November. Ideas being floated are in October a bread and canned goods sale. In November, hopefully Lefse and Christmas cookies will be sold after a church service on a Sunday. Discussion is on going with the COVID and its variants. We are being cautious of outside exposure so church may remain open for services and activities.
White Elephant Sale We have begun accepting new donations. Contact the Church Office to make arrangements to have donations picked up and/or delivered to the storage facility. Right around the corner is the 2022 WES Sale date is April 23, 2022, mark your calendars. Mike Stavnes, WES Committee Member
“YOU MATTER” PROJECT—–At any given time, about 750 children in St. Louis County are in foster care. Some of these children live temporarily with foster care families and some with grandparents or other relatives. Many of these children find themselves in this difficult situation without any of their belongings. Volunteers on the Iron Range have formed an organization called “YOU MATTER” to address this need. They purchase items and fill backpacks with necessities appropriate for each child. Each child also receives a blanket or quilt and a message of encouragement. Since December of 2020, these volunteers have assembled and delivered 267 backpacks. As one of our GOD’S WORK / OUR HANDS activities this Fall, we will be contributing to this project. Our Savior’s will accept donations of children’s socks, underwear and pajamas beginning on Sunday, July 25th. ITEMS MUST BE NEW AND IN THEIR PACKAGING. YOU MATTER serves children from 0 – 18 years of age. Donations may be dropped off at the church office or placed into the hamper in the church narthex. We will conclude this project on September 19th at our GOD’S WORK / OUR HANDS Sunday service. For more information you may leave a message for Pam Rundell @263-7422.
Would you like our congregation to pray for any issues, problems, or health concerns you have? We believe in the power of prayer and know that our petitions are heard and answered. Please call the church office at 218-263-7422 and we will pass your request on to the Prayer Chain.
Please Read our New Bylaws and Constitution
Welcome to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church (OSLC)! Upon entering, you will notice the beautiful sanctuary with stained glass windows depicting parables of Christ and the large crucifix hanging above the altar. Friendly congregational members will greet you, and as you sit in the pews, our music will fill your soul! We have an active Temple Choir and also a worship band for a more contemporary sound. Music is emphasized within each service, and the sermons will speak to your heart and feed your soul while creating a deeper relationship with God.
Our church’s mission is A Community transformed by Christ, to be Christ in the World. We invite you to join us to become “the hands and feet of Christ”. Our ownership of this mission is shown in outreach through our Food Shelf, Clothes Closet, Habitat for Humanity, and God’s work. Our hands. Sunday. The Food Shelf is open on Thursdays and Fridays from 1:00-2:30. Our clothes closet can be accessed through appointment only by calling the church office.
Our worship service provides opportunities for you and your family to grow in your Christian faith. Children of all ages are welcome during worship and are invited to join Pastor Kevin for a Children’s Message each week. After service, during the school year, children may attend Sunday School while you enjoy coffee, goodies and fellowship with parishioners downstairs. We partner with First Lutheran (another ELCA church in Hibbing) in our Confirmation and Youth Ministry, as well as some congregational worship and seasonal events through the year. Baptism and First Communion are joyous events which precede Confirmation. Students in grades 3-11 are involved in our Confirmation program. Youth have opportunities through our church to participate in Bible camps, vacation bible school, BWCA canoe trips, national youth gatherings, church services…. On average, OSLC sends over 70 youth to Bible camp each year.
OSLC has a long and rich history of service to the community of Hibbing and the world. Both young and old participate in potluck dinners, Lutefisk suppers, pasty bake fundraisers, the fall bazaar with much of the profits benefiting ministries such as the Salvation Army, Lutheran Social Service, local Bible Camps, and worldwide missionary support.
For over 60 years, we have held the White Elephant Sale in the spring, which provides clothing, furniture, appliances, sporting goods, tools, bicycles, and many other items for inexpensive prices to our community and the surrounding communities.
OSLC is a “community safe space” offering the use of our facilities to Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Lutheran Social Services, Advocates for Family Peace, among others.
OSLC was formed in 1903 by Norwegian immigrants under the name “Tabor” with 23 members. It officially became known as Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in 1904. The church held a groundbreaking ceremony in July of 1952 with the cornerstone of our present church laid in October of that same year.
Please call our church office with any questions you may have. Our staff is pleased to help you!