News Notes: Mar. 19 – Apr. 2

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Daily Scripture Readings

Click the Bible image for readings.

Lent at First Lutheran

Wednesday Lenten worship services are held at 11:15 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., in the Sanctuary, through April 5.

Lenten soup lunch and family dinner. Meals and fellowship provide an opportunity for our congregation to gather together both around God’s Word and in community to share in faith with our neighbors. Join us for soup lunch or family dinners in Reformation Hall on Wednesdays through April 5. The cost for either meal is $5 per adult, $3 per child under 6. Menus are available at
• Noon Soup Lunches will be served from 12 – 1 p.m.
• Evening Dinner will be served from 5 – 6:15 p.m.

Bach B Minor Mass

Lenten Lectures on Bach’s B Minor Mass will be held on Sunday evenings, March 19 – April 9, 6 p.m., in the First Lutheran sanctuary. Join South Dakota Symphony Orchestra Music Director, Delta David Gier and others for a series of lectures on Bach’s monumental "B Minor Mass," four Sunday evenings during Lent. Click to earn more. 

Help us fill the Easter Garden. The congregation is invited make a donation for Easter lilies to decorate the chancel on Easter Sunday. You may share a plant to honor or remember loved ones, or give your gift to the glory of God. Your donation of $15 or more will purchase the beautiful Garden of Lilies for the Easter worship services. Look for forms at the sanctuary entrances or complete an order and payment online at Orders with payment received no later than Monday, March 27, will be listed in the bulletin on Easter Sunday.

Around the Church

Campus Appeal projects. Spring will be here soon and we wish to resume our Campus Appeal projects. We have the funds to complete the Dakota Avenue steps when the contractor starts spring concrete work and we are very close to having the funds to complete the wall and new sign project. Please prayerfully consider a gift toward the Campus Appeal Project if you have not already participated. Thank you again to all who have supported our much needed outdoor projects.

Spring cleaning. The Property Board is offering men, women and youth two opportunities to help spruce up the church and get ready for Easter Sunday. Invite a friend and join us on Saturday, April 8, from 8:30 – 11 a.m., or Monday, April 10, from 5 – 6:30 p.m. If you can help, please come! Bring a hand-held vacuum if you have one. 

Caring Ministries

Grieving with Grace sessions continue April 1 with the topic, “Depression and Other Complications with Grief.” Participants learn about the grieving process and to be gentle with themselves as they work through the grief of a loved one’s death. Sessions are held the first Saturday each month in the First Lutheran Gathering Room. Social time is at 9:30 a.m. and the session is 10 – 11 a.m. Led by Pastor Katherine Olson. Please join us for any or all of the sessions. May 6 – “Are We Changed Forever by Grief?” Questions? Contact Pastor Katherine, or 339-1983, ext. 214.

"Uninvited" Bible Study continues on Wednesdays through April 12, from 1 – 3 p.m., in the Gathering Room. The "Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely" study sessions include a DVD clip, whole and small group discussions, fun activities and fellowship with coffee and pastries to share. Don’t delay, sign-up today at the Information Desk and pick-up your free book and study guide.

Breast Health Education Night. Caring Ministries is offering an informational class Monday, March 20, from 6 – 7 p.m. with the Avera Breast Health Navigators in regards to breast health and prevention, how to connect with support groups within the community, and how you can help someone who is currently or has been fighting breast cancer. Everyone is welcome! Sign-up today at the First Lutheran Information Desk or call the church at (605) 336-3734.

Sad Isn’t Bad is a grief support program for children, adolescents and their adult caretakers who are experiencing the death of a loved one. The next sessions are Tuesdays, March 21 & 28 and April 4 & 11 at Our Savior's Lutheran Church at 5:30 p.m. Each session is preceded by a meal when all participants come together as community before splitting into age-level groups facilitated by certified counselors and social workers. For more information, to register, or make a referral,  please visit, or contact John Hegg, Sad Isn't Bad board member and facilitator, at, 339-2582, or Jana Elkins, Parish Nurse at

Think Pink! One woman in eight will receive a breast cancer diagnosis during her lifetime. It’s time to slow down and think about the future. The Avera Breast Center is helping to ensure women age 40 and older schedule their annual mammogram and understand that early detection is the key to fighting breast cancer and maintaining good health. The Avera Digital Mammography Unit will be at First Lutheran Church Wednesday, March 29. Call today and sign-up for an appointment, (605) 336-3734.

The Big Squeeze. Come on First Lutheran, help Jana help you become healthier. Will you assist me in getting a vast amount of participants for this year’s Big Squeeze Event? All you have to do is have your blood pressure read by Jana Elkins, our parish nurse, during April! Stop by the Trinity Room on Sundays, April 2 or 23, from 9 – 11 a.m, or her office on weekdays to have your blood pressure taken! Read about The Big Squeeze in April issue of First Word or online at


Ministry Team Leader Training. There will be volunteer leadership training on Monday, March 21, 6 – 7 pm. in the Gathering Room. Anyone interested in learning more about leading and recruiting members for a ministry team is asked to attend.

Healthy Cooking Classes continue on the second and fourth Tuesdays from 6 – 7 p.m. in the Gathering Room. On March 28 Sanaa Abourezk returns to demonstrate Syrian breakfast recipes. Cooking Healthy classes are free but we ask that you register so the instructor has enough supplies on hand for the class. Please register for each class by calling the church office 336-3734, or visit

Feed the hungry. Feeding the hungry is a vital form of Christian service. First Lutheran partners with The Banquet to carry out this service. On Tuesday, April 25, FLC will prepare and serve the evening meal at The Banquet. Many individuals are needed to accomplish this mission: 6 – 8 people to help prepare the meal at 2 p.m., and 38 – 40 to serve and cleanup at 5:15 p.m.
This is a great opportunity for families or groups to help those in need. Anyone age 13 and up may work in the kitchen. Under 13 may work under the supervision of an adult in the dining room. Please contact Betty DeBerg and let her know you can serve, (319) 961-2227 (call/text) or

FREE Coffee and Prayer Drive-thru continues each Wednesday morning from 7:30 – 8:30. Just pull under the atrium canopy and have your choice of coffee, hot chocolate or bottled water. We will have a quick prayer to get your day started!

The end is near! Don't waste your dollars. Thrivent Financial members, you only have until March 31 to allocate any available Choice Dollars for 2016. Choice dollars can be given to FLC. Don’t let your dollars expire. Need help with this process? Please call Jeff Backer at 339-1983 ext. 209.

Women's Ministry

Women of First Lutheran – Please join us at WELCA. All FLC women are invited – come and bring a friend! Our monthly meeting will be held on April 6 at 12:00 noon in the Gathering Room. Pastor John will present information about the Center for Worship and Music in St. Paul. You are encouraged to wear a hat as we celebrate the history of the Easter Bonnet!

Children, Youth, Young Adults
and Families

Registration is open for summer camps!
Visit for more info. 

For Families

Open Gym, Saturdays 10:15 a.m. – noon. Bring your own ball. Unsupervised.

Scripture First. Classes on Sunday mornings from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Family Scripture First is offered at 10:40 a.m. in the Pentecost Room. Adult Education classes are offered during all hour long sessions. New! Saturday night Scripture First meets the second and fourth Saturdays, from 4 – 5 p.m., in the Gathering Room. Look for more information at

Kindergarten Ten Commandments Milestone is coming up on Sunday, April 2. Families are invited to attend a breakfast and learning time at 9:30 a.m. in Fellowship Hall followed by the 11 a.m. worship service. Please RSVP to the Youth & Family Office by Monday, March 27.

Vacation Bible School Planning Team is being formed for this year’s VBS – June 5 – 9. We need YOU and your planning skills! If you might be interested in being a part of this effort, please contact Children’s Minister, Heather Smith, at

For Moms and Children

MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meets on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. in the Gathering Room. Contact First Lutheran member, Katie Bossman, at 201-5718 for info. 

For Children

No Wednesday Night WOW for children during Lent. Families are encouraged to attend Lenten Worship from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

First Communion Classes for fifth graders and parents continue on Wednesdays, through April 5, from 5:30 – 6:15 p.m. in Fellowship Hall. Childcare is available for siblings K-4th grade in the Upper Room and birth  – age 4 in the Nursery. Fifth-graders will receive their first Communion  on Maundy Thursday, April 13 at the 7 p.m. worship service. 

Middle & High school

Sixth, Seventh & Eighth Grade Confirmation during Lent. All middle school youth are expected to be at Lenten Worship from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. Stop in the Welcome Center to sign in and pick up your Worship Reflection.

Scripture First for Middle & High School Youth meets on Sundays in Manos de Cristo at 9:30 or 10:40 – 11 a.m. (head to 9:30 worship and then come right after for Bible study OR…still be able to go to 11 a.m. worship.) Yummy treats will always be served! Learn the Scripture. Hear the Bible. Share the Scriptures.

Youth Group meets on Wednesdays from 7:30 – 9 p.m. in Manos de Cristo. Friends are always welcome! 

Ninth Grade Confirmation students are meeting with Marnie and Elias during Lent. Bring a rough draft of your Faith Statement. Postcards will be sent out to remind you of your date.

High School Senior Supper will be Sunday, March 19 from 5 – 7 p.m. in Manos de Cristo, for high school seniors and their parents. Qdoba will be served. Call Marnie, 339-1983 ext. 204, ASAP to reserve a seat.

Young Adult Ministry

4:12 Game Night & Appetizer Potluck. All twenty- and thirty-something adults are invited to join us on Sunday, March 26, from 5 – 8 p.m., in Manos de Cristo for some friendly competition and yummy food. Bring an appetizer to share. Childcare will be available. Please contact Marnie Dahle Backer for more information,
4:12 is Christian adults in their 20s and 30s experiencing ministries through a balance of fellowship, life sharing, spiritual growth and outreach. Invite a friend and come join us.