Still Waiting – December 7, 2020

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:8,9

Still Waiting

Daily Devotion – December 7, 2020

Devotion based on 2 Peter 3:8,9

See series: Devotions

In the second to last verse of the Bible, Jesus says, “Yes, I am coming soon” (Revelation 22:20). This is his promise to return in great power and glory on the Last Day. But if Jesus says that he is coming soon, why have nearly two thousand years passed since he said it? What’s he waiting for? Today’s Bible passage answers that question by reminding us that Jesus is eternal.

Jesus views time differently than we do. To the Lord, there is little difference between a thousand years and a day because he does not view events in sequence. He sees them all at once. What is long for us is short for him. So it makes perfect sense for Jesus to say, “I am coming soon” and for us to still be waiting two thousand years later.

Think of the little girl who asks for help, and her dad says, “Just a minute!” For her, that minute is an eternity, but for dad, that minute is a second. It’s the same way with Jesus. He says that he is coming soon, yet he appears slow from our perspective.

But that is not slowness; it is patience. Every day that is not the Last Day is a gift of God because it means more time for the Word of God to spread and rescue sinners from eternal damnation. It gives the human race more time to repent.

Repentance is a change of mind that God works in people. When you repent, God changes how you think about sin so that you hate it rather than loving it. When you repent, God changes how you think about how you are saved from your sins so that you trust in Jesus rather than your own goodness.

Why hasn’t Jesus returned yet? What is he waiting for? He is patiently waiting to spread his Word so that many more people believe in him and are saved. What a wonderfully loving Lord!

Eternal Lord, bless the spread of your Word as I wait for your return. Amen.

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All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Welcome Gifts – December 6, 2020

Show us your unfailing love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation . . . Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.
Psalm 85:7,10

Welcome Gifts

Daily Devotion – December 6, 2020

Devotion based on Psalm 85:7,10

See series: Devotions

Christmas is a time for happy meetings and warm greetings. Dear friends visit from long distances. Family members come to our homes to celebrate. What a joy it is to see them! Could you imagine receiving such welcome guests with a disinterested nod or a cold stare? Of course not! We receive such guests with enthusiastic handshakes; with heartfelt embraces; with joyful kisses!

In the psalm verses before us today, the writer describes an anticipated arrival, too. Only he is not describing the arrival of dear friends or family members visiting for the holidays, he is describing the arrival of something far more meaningful in our lives. The psalmist says love and faithfulness have arrived—gifts which moved our God to carry out his plan to save us with unwavering devotion. He says righteousness and peace have arrived—gifts which allow us to stand before our holy and perfect God as holy and perfect ourselves, the barrier of sin that once separated us from him removed.

And notice the beautiful picture language the psalmist uses to describe the arrival of these gifts. They do not come with a disinterested nod or a cold stare. They are so excited to be here, they meet with a kiss! And why wouldn’t they? These are not just gifts from God that will stick around for the Christmas season and then leave us. These are gifts from God through which he has granted us salvation, and they are here to stay! For this is really what we see in the manger of Bethlehem, isn’t it? As we look into the infant eyes of our God made flesh, we see his love and faithfulness. We see the righteousness that brought us peace. We see the one who came to save us from our sins so that we could live with him forever.

What welcome gifts! They are so glad to be here, and we are so glad they came!

Heavenly Father, fill my heart today and always with the joy of knowing you sent the gifts of joy and peace to me in the gift of your Son. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Strong to the End – December 5, 2020

[The Lord Jesus Christ] will keep you strong to the end.
1 Corinthians 1:8

Strong to the End

Daily Devotion – December 5, 2020

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 1:8

See series: Devotions

By the summer of 1805, a man by the name of Lewis had had enough. For well over a year, he and his partner, William Clark, had been leading several dozen men across the western half of the United States. They had encountered all kinds of unexpected setbacks, brutal difficulties, exhausting stress. And over the past several weeks they had been struggling through an entire range of mountains until their energy level was gone.

But now the worst was over, Lewis thought. Climbing ahead of his men, he was about to reach the top of the highest mountain pass. As he did, he had every reason to believe that when he reached the top and looked beyond, he would see only gentle, descending slopes leading all the way to the Pacific Ocean.

But when he got there, he received the shock of his life. As he stood on the top of that pass and looked beyond, he saw more mountains. Many more. Mountains as far as he could see.

Has that ever been you? Perhaps that is you right now. You have been struggling through mountains of difficulty only to look beyond and see more mountains. Maybe it’s the frantic crises at work that never seem to stop, financial troubles that never seem to end, cancer treatments that just keep coming, or a fear of loneliness that stretches as far as your eye can see.

But as you stand there and look at those mountains, there’s something else for you to see. It’s Jesus. He’s not beyond those mountains. He’s right by your side. He is not some Sunday school story. He is your living Lord, your best friend. For all the times you have doubted him, he has washed you clean in his blood. For all the times you’ve been afraid, he has been your champion. For all the times you’ve been weak, he has been your strength.

Lewis and his men completed their journey. You will too. You will because Jesus, your Savior, walks beside you. He will keep you strong. He will keep you strong to the end.

Lord Jesus, as I view the mountains I have yet to climb, help me to see that you’re right by my side. Deliver me from my fears. Be my strength. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Bulletin – December 6

The 2nd Sunday of Advent

Preparation for Christ’s Coming Means: Repent!

St. John’s & Emmanuel Ev. Lutheran Churches

Montello & Mecan, WI

December 5, 2020

4:30p.m. St. John’s  (Indoor)

December 6, 2020

8a.m. Emmanuel

10a.m. St. John’s

St. John’s  Ev. Lutheran Church
313 East Montello St. Montello, WI 53949

Emmanuel  Ev. Lutheran Church
W1568 Evergreen Lane Montello, WI 53949    
  WELCOME TO OUR CHURCH We extend a warm welcome to everyone viewing our recorded worship service today. The bulletin includes the complete order of service, hymns, psalm, Bible readings and announcements. For those without internet access to our website, DVDs and written sermons plus the bulletin are available.  Just phone secretary Ciara Neuhauser at the church office (608) 297-2866 or contact Pastor Zietlow (talk or text) at (608) 408-7830.

ONLINE SERVICE/PRINTED BULLETIN OR SPLIT SCREEN If you’re watching our worship services on-line and want to also follow along with the bulletin, you can just print the bulletin out and watch it together with the service. Or you can do a “split screen.” This means you would click the menu button on the top right corner of your screen, click “new window” and then open a second window to our website and recorded service page. Click “bulletin can be accessed here” and now you have two windows. Make each window half-size, so that you have a split screen–one side for the service and one side for the bulletin.

GOD’S WORD FOR TODAY Today’s theme: 2nd Sunday of Advent, Preparation for Christ’s Coming Means: Repent! The Second Sunday in Advent: God Provides Messengers and Means to Prepare Us For the End – God doesn’t leave us to flounder on our own in this world but prepares us for the final great event—Jesus’ return at the end. He sends his messengers to point out the reality of sin and its consequences, so we don’t drift into complacency. He sends his good news of salvation in Christ and connects us with him in baptism. What a change that should create in our focus for living!  
Pastor Peter Zietlow

P R E P A R A T I O N   F O R   W O R S H I P

We prepare ourselves to worship the one Savior God by expressing our humble repentance, offering our fervent prayers and singing our thankfulness of praise.

Please note: Worship Update Plans (Updated Nov.. 2020. bulletin pages  16) Beginning  (11/15) at the 10:00am St. John’s service,  the 55+ age restriction ended . Worshipers are kindly asked to maintain social distancing, refrain from singing, and wear masks that cover both mouth and nose.  Thank you for your consideration.


M: O Lord – our Maker, Redeemer, and Comforter – we are assembled in your presence to hear your holy Word. We pray that you would open our hearts by your Holy Spirit, that through the preaching of your Word we may repent of our sins, believe in Jesus, and grow day by day in grace and holiness. Hear us for Jesus’ sake. Amen.


P:     We light two Advent candles remembering Jesus who came in history. He came into a world of sin and death.

C:    We remember Jesus who came as the promised Messiah.  John the Baptist prepared the way of the Lord.

P:     We hear his call to repent.

C:    We light two Advent candles as a sign of our repentance and desire for renewal.

P:     Come, Lord Jesus, be our guest.

C:    Through your Word and Spirit may our souls be blessed.

Two Advent candles are lit.

Please stand.

CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION                 O Jesus, Lamb of God, You Are

*Responsive scripture with Christian Worship 27.

P:  Dear friends, let us approach God with a true heart and confess our sins, asking him in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to forgive us.

Stanza 1 (soloist)

O Jesus, Lamb of God, you are

My comfort and my guiding star;

I come, a sinner, trustingly

And bring my many sins with me.

C:  O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger or discipline me in your wrath.  My guilt has overwhelmed me like a burden too heavy to bear.   I am bowed down and brought very low; I groan in anguish of heart.  I confess my iniquity; I am troubled by my sin.  O Lord, do not forsake me; be not far from me.  Come quickly to help me, O Lord my Savior.  (selected verses from Psalm 38)

Stanza 2 (soloist)

O Lord, my sin indeed is great;

I groan beneath the dreadful weight.

Be merciful to me I pray;

Take guilt and punishment away.


Stanza 3 (soloist)

Saint John the Baptist points to you

And bids me cast my sin on you,

For you have left your throne on high

To suffer for the world and die.

P:  Because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive in Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace you have been saved.  In Jesus you have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.  (Ephesians 2:4-5 & 1:7)

C:  We have been brought from death to life.  Sin shall not be our master, because we are not under law, but under grace. (Romans 6:13-14)

Stanza 4 (soloist)

Help me to change my ways, O Lord,

And gladly to obey your Word.

While here I live, abide with me,

Then take me home eternally.


P: Stir up our hearts, O Lord, to prepare the way for your only Son. By his coming give us strength in our conflicts and shed light on our path through the darkness of this world; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Please be seated.

T H E   W O R D

The Lord Jesus speaks to us in Scripture reading, preaching and song.

OLD TESTAMENT LESSON                       Isaiah 40:1-11

(today’s sermon text is underlined)

Summary: Prepare the way for the Lord

Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.  Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.

A voice of one calling: “In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.   Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.  And the glory of the LORD will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it.  For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”

A voice says, “Cry out.”   And I said, “What shall I cry?”

“All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field.  The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the LORD blows on them.  Surely the people are grass.  The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.”

You who bring good tidings to Zion, go up on a high mountain.  You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, “Here is your God!” See, the Sovereign LORD comes with power, and his arm rules for him. See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him.  He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.


*For your personal devotion at home.


I will hear what the Lord proclaims: peace to his people.

You showed favor to your land, O LORD;*

you restored the fortunes of Jacob.

You forgave the iniquity of your people*

and covered all their sins.

Show us your unfailing love, O LORD,*

and grant us your salvation.


I will listen to what God the LORD will say;*

he promises peace to his people, his saints.

Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,*

that his glory may dwell in our land.

Love and faithfulness meet together;*

righteousness and peace kiss each other.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son*

and to the Holy Spirit,

as it was in the beginning,*

is now, and will be forever. Amen.


EPISTLE LESSON                                                                                2 Peter 3:8-14

Summary: The Lord wants everyone to come to repentance

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.  The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness.  He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.  The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare.

Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.  That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat.  But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness.

So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.

 VERSE OF THE DAY                                                                                Luke 3:4, 6

P: Alleluia! Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. All mankind will see God’s salvation. Alleluia!

Please stand.

GOSPEL LESSON                                                                                     Mark 1:1-8

Summary: John the Baptist prepares the way for the Lord

The beginning of the gospel about Jesus Christ, the Son of God. It is written in Isaiah the prophet: “I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way” {Mal. 3:1}– “a voice of one calling in the desert, `Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.'” {Isaiah 40:3}

And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothing made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message: “After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

Please be seated.

HYMN 11                                                Comfort, Comfort All My People                                      

*Sung by soloist.

SERMONETTE                                                                                      Isaiah 40: 1-8

“Get Ready for the Lord of Glory!”

  1. Listen to his gracious comfort
  2. Prepare his desert highway
  3. Believe his everlasting Word


*For your personal devotion at home.

I believe in God, the Father almighty, maker or heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day he rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty. From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

Please stand.


*Read by responsively. Intercessory prayers listed on page 12.


*Spoken by congregation.

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.


P: Blessed Lord, you have given us your Holy Scriptures for our learning.  May we so hear them, read, learn, and take them to heart, that being strengthened and comforted by your holy Word, we may cling to the blessed hope of everlasting life, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


P: Brothers and sisters, go in peace. Live in harmony with one another. Serve the Lord with gladness.

The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you.

Then Lord look on you with favor and + give you peace. Amen.

Be seated.

CLOSING HYMN 702                                               Prepare the Royal Highway

*Sung by soloist.

Songs are reprinted under #A-722228. Scripture is taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® (NIV ®). Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of International Bible Society.


December 6 – December 12

Sun.8:00 a.m.Emmanuel Worship
 9:00 a.m.Emmanuel Council meeting
 10:00 a.m.St. John’s Worship
Mon.9:00 a.m.Pastors Circuit Study Club at St. John’s school gym
Tues.6:00 p.m.St. John’s School Board meeting
Wed.3:30 p.m.Emmanuel Advent Devotion
 6:30 p.m.St. John’s Advent Devotion
 7:15 p.m.Bible Information Class at St. John’s (pastor’s office)
Sat.4:30 p.m.St. John’s Worship (indoors) with communion
  Next week’s theme:-  December 13, 2020 3rd Sunday of Advent: “Prepare Your Hearts and Proclaim the Good News of Christ’s Coming”  
8:00 a.m.   Emmanuel Worship with communion
10:00 a.m.St. John’s Worship with communion
Church News   INTERCESSORY PRAYERS (read by pastor) – For those hospitalized, ill, shut-in and facing trials: Jim & Caryl Bassett, Pat Bornick, Glenn Buchholz, Bob Buehrens, Darlene Burrough (Judy Fandrey’s niece), Gene & Sharon Crook, Liola Crown, Reinold Eckelberg, Ken Elmer, Mike Farrell, Kelleen Grucza (Judy Fandrey’s daughter), Louise Hillmer, Jerry & Darlene Hunter (Bonnie Chapman’s parents), Wesley & brother Xzander Jahr, Ellie Kendall, Geri Kerl, Julie Klawitter, Betty Kozlowski, Robert Lederer (Jackie & Jeanne Buchholz’ father), Jenell Mann, Lilly Mann, Delvin Mittelsteadt, Barbara Petrick, Al Pompa (Pete & Lucy Laun’s brother-in-law), Karen Radke, LuAnn Reber, Jeff Reimer, David Scharf, Roxanne Schmanke, Doris Smith, Carol Stempniak, Jennifer Strauss, Dixie Wagner, John Wildt, Harold & brother Paul Wuerch – (added this week: ) – After an election  

GET FREE MEDICATION, FRIDGE, AND GUN LOCKS! St. John’s is partnering with Marquette County Healthy Communities Healthy Youth (HCHY) in their fall campaign emphasizing the need to secure what can be dangerous to children and others. To assist families, HCHY will have available, at no charge, medication lock boxes, refrigerator locks (where alcohol is stored in quantities), and gun locks. At St. John’s we have one of each of the three types of locks available for you to view. You may sign up for whatever you can use. Delivery will be at church. These items are available to all Marquette County residents at no charge, so spread the word. Members and friends can request these items. Let’s do all we can to keep our children from harm’s way. Sign up in the linkway, with Ciara or using the Google form.  

CHRISTMAS FOR KIDS  Come drive through the St. John’s parking lot  on Friday, December 18 from 6-7 pm! There will be lots to look at: Christmas lights, carolers, and MORE!
ADVENT DEVOTIONS This Wednesday, December 9! Please join us at Emmanuel 3:30pm and St. John’s at 6:30pm. Please also see special holiday worship schedule on bulletin page 18 for future Advent and holiday worship services.

SATURDAY WORSHIP  Come worship with us on Saturdays at St. John’s  at 4:30pm indoors. All are invited. Please bring a mask and practice social distancing. We take everyone’s health and safety seriously so please remember that we are still encouraging a 50 person maximum and to kindly practice social distancing.

HOLY COMMUNION Communion is offered at both Emmanuel and St. John’s on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month and at St. John’s on the Saturdays  following those Sundays sing   “continuous flow” and “pew communion” distribution methods. Private communion by request is also available from Pastor Zietlow or an Elder at church or at your home.  


Church News cont’d…  

NOTE FROM ST. JOHN’S–PRINCETON REGARDING THE 12/16 6-7PM CARRY-OUT DINNER FOLLOWING THE JOINT ADVENT SERVICE AT ST. JOHN’S PRINCETON There has been a slight change as far as the menu goes for the meal. We will be serving BBQs with Cheesy potatoes and a lettuce salad. There are three areas that we will need volunteers. The first is that we will need volunteers to bake desserts. We are planning on 150 dinners, so we would need 150 desserts/bars. We will also need help preparing the meal. We will be making the meat and potatoes the night before (Tuesday, December 15th) at 6:00pm in the school cafeteria.  And the final thing we need volunteers for is serving/packaging on the night of. Please let me know if you are able to help and in what areas you can help. Thank you so much for considering volunteering. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or suggestions via email <> or call or text me at 920-960-2006.
Tiffany Bargenquast  


School news  

UPDATED SCHOOL COVID POLICY If a student or teacher tests positive, the entire school will move to two weeks virtual education. When parents who have not been in the school test positive, the school leadership will assess absences due to illness or quarantine as necessary for the health and safety of our student body and families. If a classroom or the entire school needs to go virtual, it will be for a period of two weeks.  

VIRTUAL LEARNING St. John’s school and Little Lambs will resume physically tomorrow, December 7.  

FREE MEAL SIGNUP FOR SCHOOL FAMILIES ONLY Hello School Families! Please find the link on our school Facebook page to sign up for free meals for next week 12/8. Pick up is on Tuesday from 4:30-5:30p at the public school. Even if we are physically in school, you may still signup. Breakfast and lunch included!    

God Provides Messengers and Means to Prepare us for the End

The Second Sunday in Advent – Series B

God’s Word for Today

God doesn’t leave us to flounder on our own in this world but prepares us for the final great event – Jesus’ return at the end.  He sends his messengers to point out the reality of sin and its consequences so we don’t drift into complacency.  He sends his good news of salvation in Christ and connects us with him in baptism.  What a change that should create in our focus for living!

First Lesson (Isaiah 40:1-11)

  1. How will the people receive “double” for all their sins?
  2. Who is the “voice of one calling in the desert to prepare a way for the Lord?”

Second Lesson (2 Peter 3:8-14)

  • “With the Lord a day is like a 1000 years and a 1000 years like a day.”   What does that have to do with this reading?
  • Knowing that the Lord will come suddenly and destroy the earth, what change should be evident in our lives?

Gospel (Mark 1:1-8)

5.    What was the focus of John’s baptisms?

6.    “He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit?”  What was to be different?


  1. God was not going to punish them twice as hard as they deserve.  Instead they would receive “double” grace – much more blessing than any one could expect.  This is not something that can be earned, but what we inherit by his free grace –  a full forgiveness we don’t deserve.
  2. The Lord makes it clear (Mtt 3:3, Mk 1:3 and Lk 3:4) that this is pointing ahead to the person of John the Baptist.  He was the voice who preached stern and pointed law to the people to prepare their hearts with repentance.  And he was the one who preached the sweet gospel as he pointed out the “Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”  This is the good news we are also to shout out to people – a word that will outlast worldly “experts.”
  3. We are bound to clocks and passing schedules.  But God is not restrained by time, which he created for us.  He sees and knows all things as if they were “now.”  The end of the world may seem like a long ways away for scoffers, but God sees it clearly as “today” and patiently opens opportunities all over the world to come to repentance and avoid perishing eternally at that time.
  4. It should be evident in our lives that we are looking forward in Christ to the transition into heaven.  Every effort should be made to be at peace with God realized by faith in Christ.  Every effort should be made to live lives that represent the holiness he has destined us for.
  5. John baptized with a focus on the reality of our sinfulness and the forgiveness God gives us in the Lamb of God – Jesus.  This is the same focus you hear from Peter on Pentecost as he sets the pace for our baptisms.

6.  Although true baptism always carries the Holy Spirit’s presence, Jesus carries the full authority to send the Spirit in a miraculous way as was first evidenced at Pentecost.  It is Christ the gives baptism its power.

St. John’s Lutheran Church, Montello & Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Mecan

Worship Updates – November 2020


  • Saturdays @ 4:30 pm. Everyone is welcome to attend!
  • Sunday @ 8:00 am  Emmanuel sanctuary (Emmanuel members)
  • Sunday @ 10:00 amSt. John’s. Beginning  (11/15) the 55+ age restriction ended. ALL are welcome.
  • Online worship services continue and are found at 

Providing a safe worship experience is a high priority for the leaders in our congregations. Christ’s love also compels us to consider the needs of others before our own. In humility we want to protect the health and safety of our bodies and of others. Because the virus continues to spread, and because of the science regarding singing and speaking, the following policies will be continued:

  • Please use the hand sanitizer upon arrival at the worship service.
  • Masks will be worn at all indoor services. Masks are available at both churches.
  • Designated seating will be provided indoors to provide for social distancing.
  • Services will be shortened to a length of approximately 40 minutes. 
  • The congregation is asked to not sing. A soloist will sing the hymns and any liturgical responses.
  • Continuous communion will be practiced on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays/Sundays of each month. Family units are encouraged to commune together. 
  • The congregations should exit the sanctuary from the back at the end of the service, taking all belongings including the bulletin along with them. 
  • The sanctuary will be cleaned and sanitized between services.

**We will abide by any state or local mandates that may change any of these policies

As we hold firmly to the truths of scripture, we know that God continues to keep his promises to us. He has promised the wonderful spiritual blessings of forgiveness, life, and salvation. He has not, however, promised that things will always remain the same. In the words of our synod president, Mark Schroeder, “we recommit ourselves–as individuals, as congregations, and as a synod–to the mission that God has called us to carry out, trusting that he will bless us in that work.” Let us work together as we move forward as a congregation. Let us help, support, and encourage each other as we gather around God’s Word. 

Question or Concerns?  Contact your Elders or Pastor

Emmanuel Elders:

Darrell Buchholz (608) 215-7871, Wayne Stelter (608) 494-0068

St. John’s Elders:

Jerre Duerr (608) 697-8706, Jay Eisermann (608) 297-8171,

James Wachholz (608) 369-4006, Pastor Pete Zietlow (608) 408-7830

ST. JOHN’S & EMMANUEL HOLIDAY WORSHIP SCHEDULE 2020   December 9     Advent Devotion    
Emmanuel 3:30 p.m.     St. John’s 6:30 p.m.
December 16     Advent Devotion    
Emmanuel 3:30 p.m.        
Joint at St. John’s Princeton 6:30 p.m.
December 23     Emmanuel Children’s Christmas     Emmanuel 6:30 p.m. December 24     School Christmas Eve     St. John’s 4:00 p.m.
December 25     Christmas Day     St. John’s 9:00 a.m.
December 31     New Years Eve.    Emmanuel 3:30 p.m.

*No age restrictions at holidays services.
*Regular service times continue:     
Saturday St. John’s 4:30 p.m. – All are welcome (Please note: Dec. 26 & Jan. 2 – No worship)     
Sunday Emmanuel 8:00 a.m. – Emmanuel members only     
St. John’s 10:00 a.m. – All are welcome, no age restrictions.  
*COVID-19 safety guidelines continue…please wear masks, practice social distancing & use sanitizer.    
AttendanceEmmanuelSt. John’s
11-28 5
St. John’s Altar Committee December 2020Diane Eisermann & Dolores Cotte
Welcome To Our Visitors!
Please Sign Our Guest Register Find & Like us on Facebook
Visit our website link:
Pastor Peter Zietlow: (608) 408-7830, E-mail: Little Lambs Director & Teacher Mrs. Lynn Sellnow: 616-826-0816
K, 1st & 2nd Grade Teacher Ms. Shelley Myers: 920-285-7554
3rd-5th Grade Teacher Ms. Katlynn Tindall: 262-352-7021
Principal & 6th – 8th Grade Teacher Mr. Larry Sellnow:  616-822-6689, Email:
Church & School Secretary/Office Ciara Neuhauser: (608) 297-2866 Church & School Address/Mail: 313 E Montello St, Montello, WI 53949 Church & School E-mail:
Altar Lady: Elaine Kelm: (920) 344-0025  

Sleeping At Your Post – December 4, 2020

[Jesus said] “Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come.”
Mark 13:33

Sleeping At Your Post

Daily Devotion – December 4, 2020

Devotion based on Mark 13:33

See series: Devotions

Falling asleep at your post is one of the worst offenses a soldier can commit against his brother’s-in-arms. Throughout history, there have been severe punishments for someone falling asleep while on guard duty. Such a mistake could lead to people dying and battles lost. Falling asleep at your post has always been worthy of punishment by the military.

Are you sleeping at your post in your life of faith? Have you failed to keep watch over the spiritual lives of you and your family? Maybe you have gotten so caught up in the weekend tournament scene that you and your family have not been to worship in longer than you can remember. Or maybe you have spent so many nights binging Netflix shows that you have failed to keep up with your Bible reading. Or maybe, you had a bad church experience in the past and have drifted away. You always told yourself you would come back to the church, but as time has passed you just have not gotten around to it.

Falling asleep at our post in our spiritual lives is a risky proposition. The stakes are even higher here than in the military. Eternal lives are at stake. If we neglect our spiritual lives, we put ourselves in danger of missing out on the eternal life that God has won for us in Jesus.

Thankfully, Jesus never fell asleep at his post. He was alert. He was always vigilant in living as our substitute and Savior. Jesus lived a perfect life in our place, died on the cross to take our sins away, and assure us that salvation is ours. Through faith in Jesus, we are saved from our lack of readiness. In him, we have eternal life.

This same loving Savior encourages us to be alert in our lives of faith. So be on your guard! Get back into the Word. Find time to get into God’s house and grow in your faith. You and your family will receive eternal benefits as you stay alert.

Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for your vigilance in earning my salvation. Help me always to be on alert, that I may stay in faith and reach everlasting life with you. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Strong to the End – December 3, 2020

He will also keep you firm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Corinthians 1:8,9

Strong to the End

Daily Devotion – December 3, 2020

Devotion based on 1 Corinthians 1:8,9

See series: Devotions

“I don’t know how much more I can take.” Have you heard anyone offer that sentiment lately? Many of us are ready for 2020 to be over. No doubt about it, this year has presented many challenges: Covid-19. Natural disasters. Anxiety, depression, and stress are at dangerously high levels in society. Throw in political chaos, and it has been a year unlike any other.

How are you going to make it? Can you survive anything more? At the risk of piling on, there is no guarantee that 2021 will be better. In fact, it could be even worse. How are you going to make it?

Certainly not on your own. We are all so full of weakness, fear, and worry. We are so inclined to doubt, stress, and despair. We do not have sufficient strength to go it on our own, no matter what we may try to tell ourselves. Our supply of strength is severely limited and cannot possibly hope to get us through the challenges of this world.

Thankfully, God promises to keep us strong. He has sent Jesus to save us and strengthen us. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection give us the salvation we need and the assurance that God really does love us and care for us. In Jesus, we find forgiveness and peace. In Jesus, we find the strength to keep going and the hope of a better future in heaven.

God proved his love and care by keeping his promise of a Savior. He will keep his promise to strengthen us through his Word. How are you going to make it? Only through God and the strength he provides. Put your trust in Jesus and daily find strength through his Word. Make God’s Word a regular part of each day, and then, no matter how long this goes, God will keep you strong to the end.

Dear Lord Jesus, I cannot do this on my own. Help me to trust in your Word of promise. Keep me strong to the end. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Trust that God Has a Plan – December 2, 2020

Yet you, LORD, are our Father. We are the clay; you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.
Isaiah 64:8

Trust that God Has a Plan

Daily Devotion – December 2, 2020

Devotion based on Isaiah 64:8

See series: Devotions

Do these words from the prophet Isaiah make you uncomfortable? The picture of the potter and the clay is not how we normally look at life. We don’t want to think that we are being molded by someone else. Rather, we like to call the shots. We like to believe that we are in control. We would much prefer that others bend to our will rather than the other way around. Deep down, there is a stubbornness in each of us. We have a certain idea of how things should go. When someone has other ideas, we tend to dig in our heels and push forward with our own thing, regardless of the damage it may cause.

To such stubborn hearts, God speaks. He says that we have it all wrong. God wants to work on us. It is his will that matters, not ours. He wants to form us and mold us to his will. Too often, we fight God’s working in our lives.

Thankfully, Jesus never stubbornly fought against God’s will. He was always more than ready to serve in whatever way the Father called him to serve—even when that meant going to die on the cross for sins he had never committed. Imagine if Jesus had dug in his heels and stubbornly fought God’s plan for him! We all would be in eternal trouble. Instead, we rejoice to know that Jesus submitted to the Father’s will and earned our salvation through his life, death, and resurrection. Jesus was perfectly willing to serve us as our Savior.

That same loving Lord seeks to form you and make you a blessing to others. God will continue to work on you and mold you as you read and hear his Word in the Bible. Isn’t it exciting to think about what he might make of you!

Dear Father in heaven, you are the potter, I am the clay. Help me to willingly serve you in my life as you mold me into the humble servant you want me to be. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Humanity – December 1, 2020

The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.
Genesis 6:5


Daily Devotion – December 1, 2020

Devotion based on Genesis 6:5

See series: Devotions

Our society bombards us with the idea that all people are inherently good and that humanity will eventually move past its difficulties. Humanity is held up as the one thing that can save us all. Movie after movie continues to tell us that good will prevail over evil and that we should trust in the goodness of mankind.

But is that reality? If mankind was inherently good, why do we continue to have so much war, murder, and crimes like rape and human trafficking? If people all have some good deep down in their souls, why is there so much yelling and screaming? Why can we not all calmly discuss our differences and work together?

The reality is no one is inherently good. The Bible says it is quite the contrary. We read in Genesis—and throughout the Bible—that mankind is inherently sinful. Our thoughts and desires are inherently sinful, not inherently good. We are by nature selfish and greedy. We want our way and do not want to listen to anyone else, let alone listen to what God has to say. That certainly is not news that anyone wants to hear, but it is true.

The good news is that there is someone who was inherently good. His name is Jesus. He is the only man to have ever walked this earth without a sinful nature. Jesus was better than good. He was perfect. As our substitute, Jesus lived a perfect life in our place and died on the cross to pay for our sins. He died and rose again to guarantee that our sins would be forgiven and that we could have the gift of eternal life in heaven. Through faith in Jesus, we have a desire to live for God and to do what is good out of love for him.

Dear Jesus, thank you for taking my sins away and for being my perfect substitute. Filled with your love, help me to desire what is good. Help me to serve you today. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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