Pastor's Weekly update
St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church
421 East Avenue
Red Wing, MN 55066
Sunday: 8:00 & 10:30 a.m.
Monday: 7:00 p.m.
Dear members and friends of St. John’s,
Funeral details have been set for Jan Olander, whom the Lord called home to heaven on Saints Triumphant Sunday (Nov. 19). The funeral will be next Wednesday (Dec. 6) at 11 am with a visitation beginning at 10 am and a lunch to follow. May the Lord bring comfort to the Olander family as they mourn her loss and celebrate her victory in heaven.
A look at the upcoming week:
• Laudamus Ensemble Practice at 9 am
• YPS Church Decorating and MOA mini-golfing, meet at church at noon
• 1st Sunday in Advent
• The sermon looks at Genesis 6 - He Comes to Judge and to Save
• Little Blessings Preschool will sing at the 10:30 service
• Bible Class at 9:15 am - New Class - Between the Testaments - more info below
• Children's Christmas Service Rehearsal at 9:15 am
• No Worship at 7 pm
• LES Committee at 7 pm
• Mom's Bible Study at 8:15 am
• Worship Committee at 9:30 am
• Special Communion at 4 pm
• No Bible Class at 10 am
• Olander Funeral at 11 am (Visitation at 10 am, lunch to follow)
• Public School Catechism Class at 3:45 pm
• Midweek Advent Service at 7 pm - LES Grades 6-8 sing
• Christmas Choir Rehearsal at 6:30 pm
New Sunday Bible Class - Between the Testaments
How God Prepared the World for the Coming of his Son
It's only the turn of a page as you move from the Old Testament to the New Testament, from Malachi to Matthew. But with that page turn comes 400 years of history not recorded in the sacred text. We've become so accustomed to it, that we hardly give it a second thought. But the world of the Old Testament is worlds apart from the time we find as we enter into the New Testament era. Though not essential to an understanding of New Testament teaching, this period provides the Bible student with a better understanding of the forces that shaped the time and the nation into which our Lord came. Learn about the origins of the synagogue, and the Pharisees and the Sadducees; the role of the rabbi and the scribes, how the festival of Hanukkah came about, how the Roman Empire came to control Palestine, and why so many people in Jesus’ day looked for a political messiah rather than a Savior from sin. The family of the Herods will also be covered. Throughout it all we will see the guiding hand of God shaping history, so that “in the fullness of time” he might give us his Son. Come join us on Sunday mornings, starting December 3, and let this study shape your Advent and Christmas celebration.
Lord's blessings on your weekend,
When Your Teen Stops Talking
Sometimes I think half the battle of parenting is not to take anything too personally. When your teenage boy goes quiet, for instance, it’s usually not about you.
It can be a hard adjustment, though, because wasn’t it just last week when he was sitting in the kitchen, going on and on while you were browning the ground beef? I once listed everything my 11-year-old son talked about in a 20-minute stream-of-consciousness deluge, at which my only requirement was to nod and grunt. His oration included palindromes, peristalsis (which is why you can drink milk upside down), how his arms were getting stronger (so adorable), and the middle name of Harry S Truman. (It’s “S,” by the way. I know this because he told me.)
But then the chatterbox morphs into the one grunting, and you panic a little: Why doesn’t he talk to us anymore? Is he in trouble? Does he hate us?
What I learned is this:
Now it’s possible that a teenager’s silence is a warning sign. If he’s hiding in his room all the time or is exceptionally surly, he may be struggling with something bigger than he can handle—a traumatic breakup, guilt over a sin, an Instagram situation that exploded, some kind of violence, even depression or substance abuse.
- A bit of silence is normal. Teens are supposed to grow up and separate from their parents. Part of that is talking to you less often.
- Asking a million questions does not work. Even though you just want him to know you’re interested in his life, it can come off as prying and controlling.
- It sometimes works to ask about a friend: “So why isn’t Riley going out for choir this year?” That can lead to an actual conversation—about other friends, Riley’s pool party three weeks ago, and maybe even the girl he’s had his eye on. (Mission accomplished.)
- Respect his privacy. Don’t share the news about that girl he has his eye on with your book club.
- Don’t make everything a teachable moment. If he tells you he’s going to skip college and take his garage band on the road, just say, “Okay!” Chances are, he’ll figure out how dumb that is all on his own. But if you shut him down now, the next time he has a big dream or crazy idea, he won’t bring it to you.
- Have adult conversations about adult topics at the dinner table—the latest political question, a home budget issue, something you saw at the store that made you uncomfortable. Let everybody weigh in. Treat all responses, even the immature ones, with equal respect.
In this case, although he’s silent, he’s actually crying out for help, and you need to be the parent. Search his room. Check his social media. Ask another adult he trusts—an uncle or teacher—if something’s going on that you should know about. If the situation warrants, talk to a counselor with him.
But that’s the exception. Usually a little silence is just part of your teenager’s individuation—growing up and separating himself from you. (This is the goal, remember? We don’t want to be doing their laundry when they’re 23.)
If you give him respect and love and space, he’ll know he can come talk whenever he wants to. You’ll be browning the ground beef some evening, and suddenly he’ll feel the need to tell you—everything. Whether he’s 11 or 17 or 30, just nod and let the boy talk.
Written by Laurie Gauger-Hested for Heart-to-Heart Parent Conversations (forwardinchrist.net)