Easter Day
Sun­day, April 16, 6:30 AM & 9:00 AM
Sunday Worship Service
Sin­gle ser­vice at 9:00 AM
Midweek Lenten Series
Wednes­days, March 8 – April 5, 11:00 AM/6:30 PM
Sunday Worship Service
Sin­gle ser­vice at 9:00 AM
Palm Sunday
Sun­day, April 9, 9:00 AM
Good Friday
Fri­day, April 14, 7:00 PM
Holy (Maundy) Thursday
Thurs­day, April 13, 11:00 AM & 6:30 PM
Easter Day
Sun­day Wor­ship Service
Mid­week Lenten Series
Sun­day Wor­ship Service
Palm Sun­day
Good Fri­day
Holy (Maundy) Thursday
Open Arms Chris­t­ian Preschool
New Life Festival
Sat­ur­day, April 15, 10:00 AM
Easter Breakfast
Sun­day, April 16, 7:30 AM
First Sunday Eat and Greet
Sun­day, April 2nd, 11:30AM
Spring Congregation Meeting
Sun­day, April 30, 10:30 AM
The Eagle
Read this month’s newsletter.
The Eagle
Read this month’s newsletter.
New Life Festival
Easter Break­fast
First Sun­day Eat and Greet
Spring Con­gre­ga­tion Meeting
The Eagle
The Eagle

Bible Stud­ies at Saint John’s

Here are the Bible stud­ies cur­rently held at or spon­sored by Saint John’s.

Sum­mer Break!

Sev­eral of our Bible stud­ies take a break from their weekly meet­ings over the sum­mer. The Bread of Life (Wednes­days at 9:30 AM) and Woman-​to-​Woman (Wednes­days, 9:00 AM) Bible stud­ies and Sun­day School (Sun­days, 10:30 AM) will resume in September.

Sun­day School

The chil­dren hear New Tes­ta­ment sto­ries about Jesus and learn how He showed that He is true God. Sun­days, 10:30 AM, Sun­day School Class­room Wing. Chil­dren should grab a snack from the Large Fel­low­ship Hall and then head right up to Class­room 201 for games and crafts before Sun­day School Open­ing (which begins at 10:30 AM).

Mid­dle School Bible Study

Our mid­dle school youth gather for Sun­day morn­ing Bible study. Sun­days, 10:30 AM, Senior Youth Room.

Adult Bible Study

Fur­ther dis­cus­sion of the day’s lec­tionary read­ings. Sun­days, 10:30 AM, Large Fel­low­ship Hall.

The Psalms

Each ses­sion of this study focuses on one Psalm as an exam­ple of the psalm types — wis­dom, ascent, pen­i­tence, praise, lament, his­tor­i­cal and royal — show­ing how they express per­sonal and con­gre­ga­tional prayers and, most impor­tantly, how they pro­claim Jesus Christ’s mis­sion and pas­sion, res­ur­rec­tion and return.. Sun­days, 10:30 AM, Large Fel­low­ship Hall.

ChristLife Fort Collins Cam­pus Min­istry

Col­lege stu­dents, you are invited to get involved in this group spon­sored by Saint John’s Lutheran and Peace With Christ Lutheran; among other activ­i­ties, we hold a weekly Bible study here at Saint John’s while school is in ses­sion. Tues­days, 6:30 PM, Senior Youth Room. Visit the ChristLife Fort Collins Face­book group page for more information.

The­ol­ogy on Tap

Gather with your fel­low LCMS Luther­ans on the first Tues­day of every month for “real top­ics and real beer” as guest speak­ers present var­i­ous top­ics on the­ol­ogy and cul­ture. First Tues­day of every month, 7:00 PM, Grimm Broth­ers Brew­house (Love­land).

Woman-​to-​Woman

All women are invited to join the Woman-​to-​Woman Bible group in a study on spir­i­tual ful­fill­ment using a book by Michael W. New­man, “The Life You Crave; It’s All About Grace.” Wednes­days, 9:00 AM, Room 301. Child­care provided.

Bread of Life

All are invited to join our dis­cus­sion of the Gospel of Matthew. Wednes­days, 9:30 AM, Small Fel­low­ship Hall.

Youth Con­fir­ma­tion

Two-​year con­fir­ma­tion instruc­tion, or cat­e­ch­esis, for stu­dents in sixth grade and above. This class pre­pares youth for the rite of Con­fir­ma­tion, the recep­tion of the Lord’s Sup­per and full mem­ber­ship of this con­gre­ga­tion. Wednes­days, 5:156:30 PM, Room 302. If you have any ques­tions about Youth Con­fir­ma­tion, please con­tact Pas­tor Nettleton.

Adult Instruc­tion Class

This course, taught by Pas­tor Net­tle­ton, cov­ers the basics of Chris­tian­ity and the Lutheran faith; any­one inter­ested in join­ing Saint John’s or look­ing for a “refresher” course is invited to attend. Wednes­days, 7:00 PM, Room 302.

Men’s Break­fast Bible Study

All men are invited to come enjoy break­fast and an inter­est­ing group Bible study on the Old Tes­ta­ment prophet Hosea. Fri­days, 6:30 AM, The Egg & I restau­rant (2809 S Col­lege Ave).

Con­nect

This women’s Bible study meets in mem­bers’ homes once a month for a book club-​style study; their cur­rent book is “Unan­swered: Last­ing Truth for Trend­ing Ques­tions” by Jere­miah John­ston. Monthly evening meet­ings at var­i­ous loca­tions. Call the church office for cur­rent con­tact information.

The Church Library

If you haven’t vis­ited the library lately, please plan a stop! We have a great col­lec­tion of resources: Bible study, inspi­ra­tion, his­tory, ref­er­ence and fic­tion, all avail­able to check out. Take an inter­est­ing book home for a while for study and con­tem­pla­tion. Room 302. Browse or search the library cat­a­log at www​.StJohnsFC​.org/​l​i​b​r​a​r​y.

Are you involved in a Bible study at Saint John’s? There are plenty of oppor­tu­ni­ties to study the word through the week. Join one of these groups!

Saint John’s Library is Grow­ing in Time for Spring

Look­ing for a new book to read? In March, the library at Saint John’s will be adding 27 titles to its col­lec­tion. Take a moment and stop by to view the new books along with the books in the “Pastor’s Rec­om­men­da­tions” sec­tion of the library. Also, par­ents and grand­par­ents inter­ested in books per­tain­ing to Easter should take a look at the Easter books located in a tote on the top shelf of the bookcase.

Also grow­ing in the library is the cir­cu­la­tion count. Over fifty titles have been checked out since the library was inven­to­ried, cat­a­loged and orga­nized using spine clas­si­fi­ca­tion book labels.

To pique your inter­est, here are short reviews of two of the new new books found in the sec­tion marked “Pastor’s Recommendations”:

Luther the Reformer — The Story of the Man and His Career, Sec­ond Edi­tion

James M. Kit­tel­son and Hans H. Wiersma. For thirty years, Kittelson’s auto­bi­og­ra­phy on Luther (Luther the Reformer) pre­sented a “highly respected, com­plete chrono­log­i­cal pic­ture of Luther”. For this sec­ond edi­tion, Hans H. Wiersma “has made an out­stand­ing text even bet­ter. The research is updated and the text is revised through­out, with images, bib­li­ogra­phies and time­lines to enhance the expe­ri­ence. It’s a great vol­ume, greatly improved.”

Being Lutheran

A. Trevor Sut­ton. In an excerpt from the book cover, Rev. Tim Niek­erk (of Salem Lutheran Church) states, “Whether you are a life­long Lutheran, a Chris­t­ian strug­gling in a plu­ral­is­tic world or just some­one seek­ing answers about who Jesus is, this book is well worth the expe­ri­ence of reading.”

Both books are new addi­tions to Pas­tor Nettleton’s picks for the con­gre­ga­tion. You can find them on the shelf labeled “Pas­tor Recommendations.”

Joyce Hart vol­un­teers every Wednes­day in the church office and has been cat­a­loging and man­ag­ing the church library.

Ref­or­ma­tion His­tor­i­cal Reflec­tions: Edu­ca­tion and the Cat­e­chisms

The Ref­or­ma­tion was about edu­ca­tion as much as it was about reform­ing the church. Luther’s edu­ca­tion, ulti­mately a Doc­tor of The­ol­ogy degree, began with his father’s deter­mi­na­tion to see Mar­tin succeed.

As a result of Luther’s insis­tence on “faith alone” and after years of con­tro­versy, he observed the reli­gious chaos in the churches of Sax­ony, Ger­many, due to the lack of Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion. Luther, in the Intro­duc­tion to his Small Cat­e­chism: “The deplorable con­di­tion in which I found reli­gious affairs dur­ing a recent vis­i­ta­tion of the con­gre­ga­tions has impelled me to pub­lish this Cat­e­chism. … The peo­ple have no knowl­edge of … Chris­t­ian doc­trine, and many of the pas­tors are igno­rant and incom­pe­tent teach­ers.” These “deplorable con­di­tions” moti­vated Luther to write the Large and Small Cat­e­chisms and pub­lish them in 1529.

Luther rec­og­nized the need for urgent edu­ca­tional improve­ment and reform. There were no pub­lic school sys­tems. Teach­ing was often lim­ited to the chil­dren of the wealthy. Luther wrote that for Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion to flour­ish, par­ents must nur­ture their off­spring in the teach­ings of the Bible. Luther knew that, in order to carry out this respon­si­bil­ity, suit­able mate­ri­als were needed.

Luther wrote the Cat­e­chism because of the absence of any effec­tive learn­ing tools avail­able to preach­ers and teach­ers and the absence of any read­able texts avail­able for the Ger­man par­ents. In Luther’s view, edu­ca­tion was cru­cial to the advance­ment of the Gospel. He believed scrip­ture to be the basis of edu­ca­tion for believ­ers, who are saved only by God’s grace through faith. He is often quoted as hav­ing said “I am afraid that the schools will prove the very gates of hell, unless they dili­gently labor in explain­ing the Holy Scrip­tures and engrav­ing them in the heart of the youth.”

The Lutheran Church — Mis­souri Synod believes that Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion is cru­cial to the advance­ment of the Gospel and that Scrip­ture is the basis of Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion for believ­ers saved only by God’s grace through faith. The LCMS uses the Cat­e­chism as its basic Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tional text because Luther based the Cat­e­chism on the foun­da­tion of Christ’s inspired word, the Bible. The Cat­e­chism is a sum­mary of the truths of God’s word and the basis for the doc­trine and the beliefs of the LCMS. The LCMS believes that the Cat­e­chism should also be used as a prayer book for indi­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies in their med­i­ta­tions each day.

The Cat­e­chism is used in con­fir­ma­tion instruc­tion because it has the six “wheels” — the Ten Com­mand­ments, the Apos­tles’ Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, Holy Bap­tism, Holy Com­mu­nion and Con­fes­sion — that enable the doc­trine of Lutheranism to be moved into the hearts and minds of all people.

The LCMS is a respected leader in the field of Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion. We place great empha­sis on instruc­tion in the Word, rec­og­niz­ing this as one of the most effec­tive ways of reach­ing out boldly with the Gospel. The LCMS and the Rocky Moun­tain Dis­trict sup­port many Lutheran edu­ca­tional insti­tu­tions. As of 2013, there were 1,285 Early Child­hood Cen­ters (not con­nected with a school), 880 ele­men­tary schools, ninety junior/​senior high schools, nine uni­ver­si­ties and two sem­i­nar­ies. Within the RMD in 2015, there were 36 Early Child­hood Cen­ters, 26 Early Child­hood Ele­men­tary schools and one High School.

This year, 2017, is a year pre­cious to all Luther­ans: the 500th anniver­sary of Luther’s blessed dis­cov­ery of the Gospel and his rebel­lion related to the beliefs and cel­e­bra­tions of the Roman Catholic Church. This arti­cle is part of a monthly series cov­er­ing top­ics and his­tor­i­cal events lead­ing up to Octo­ber 31, 1517, the date of the post­ing of the 95 The­ses on the Cas­tle Church doors in Wit­ten­berg, Ger­many. It is repub­lished, with per­mis­sion, from the Rocky Moun­tain Dis­trict, LCMS.

Ref­or­ma­tion His­tor­i­cal Reflec­tions: Luther and the Bible

1503 … Luther, age twenty, had not seen a Bible before. His reli­gious edu­ca­tion was based on writ­ten Bib­li­cal com­men­taries. It was only at Erfurt Uni­ver­sity that he dis­cov­ered a Bible, chained to a table. Luther found the Bible very intrigu­ing and spent a great deal of time read­ing it.

In 1521, in the Wart­burg Cas­tle, Luther began the trans­la­tion of the New Tes­ta­ment into Ger­man. He fin­ished it in 1522, with the help of Philip Melanchthon. In 1534, he, along with sev­eral friends, com­pleted the trans­la­tion of the Sep­tu­agint, the pri­mary Greek trans­la­tion of the Old Tes­ta­ment, to Ger­man, enabling the entire Bible to be pub­lished in German.

Luther had com­plete faith in the inspired nature of scrip­ture and in its com­plete and absolute inerrancy. He ascribed the entire Holy Scrip­ture to the Holy Spirit. Luther often ago­nized over the dis­re­spect that humans had for the Bible and, even more impor­tantly, the mis­in­ter­pre­ta­tion of the Scrip­tures by the Roman Catholic Church.

In the intro­duc­tion to his Old Tes­ta­ment trans­la­tion, Luther wrote, “These are the Scrip­tures which make fools of all the wise and under­stand­ing, and are open only to the small and sim­ple, as Christ says in Matthew 11:25. There­fore dis­miss your own opin­ions and feel­ings, and think of the scrip­tures as the lofti­est and noblest of holy things, as the rich­est of mines which can never be suf­fi­ciently explored, in order that you may find divine wis­dom which God here lays before you in such sim­ple guise as to quench all pride. The Bible is the cra­dle wherein Christ is laid.”

Scrip­tures are God’s tes­ti­monies about Him­self. The Holy Spirit is the cre­ative author of the Bible and the writ­ers sec­re­taries in ser­vice to the Lord. The Holy Spirit speaks with pur­pose and author­ity. The inspired Word, in the Bible, gives us the assur­ance of salvation.

The Lutheran Church — Mis­souri Synod pro­fesses that the Bible is the word of God, not the words of mor­tal humans, and that the Holy Spirit uses the Bible to com­mu­ni­cate God’s word. “Luther­ans teach (and believe) that the Bible is the inspired, true and reli­able rev­e­la­tions of the tri­une God … and that this rev­e­la­tion clearly shows how God res­cues human beings from the curse of sin and death.” 1

The Bible reveals God’s Law — the Ten Com­mand­ments — and the Gospel, the Good News of for­give­ness and sal­va­tion. The Bible is the foun­da­tion for every­thing that we in the LCMS believe, teach, con­fess and prac­tice because the Bible is the inspired, Christ-​centered word of the Lord.

  1. What Luther­ans Teach

This year, 2017, is a year pre­cious to all Luther­ans: the 500th anniver­sary of Luther’s blessed dis­cov­ery of the Gospel and his rebel­lion related to the beliefs and cel­e­bra­tions of the Roman Catholic Church. This arti­cle is part of a monthly series cov­er­ing top­ics and his­tor­i­cal events lead­ing up to Octo­ber 31, 1517, the date of the post­ing of the 95 The­ses on the Cas­tle Church doors in Wit­ten­berg, Ger­many. It is repub­lished, with per­mis­sion, from the Rocky Moun­tain Dis­trict, LCMS.

Ref­or­ma­tion His­tor­i­cal Reflec­tions: The Sacra­ment of Holy Bap­tism

On Novem­ber 11, 1483, the day after his birth, Mar­tin Luther was bap­tized in the Roman Catholic church of St. Peter and Paul in Eisleben, Ger­many, on the feast day of St. Mar­tin of Tours. Hence his name, Martin.

Why was he bap­tized the day after birth? At the time, the infant mor­tal­ity rate was sixty per­cent. In addi­tion, the ques­tion still lin­gered: what hap­pens to a baby who dies before being bap­tized? It was the belief in Luther’s days that a dead infant, not bap­tized, might for­feit heaven.

Luther pro­claimed that Holy Bap­tism, one of seven present-​day Roman Catholic sacra­ments, was one of only two truly Holy sacra­ments insti­tuted by Christ, the sec­ond one being Holy Com­mu­nion. The oth­ers, he pro­fessed, were only rit­u­als and good works, void of the path to grace and sal­va­tion. Luther, in the Large Cat­e­chism: “For it is deter­mined that what­ever is not faith avails noth­ing nor receives any­thing. … Bap­tism, how­ever, is not our work, but God’s.” Augus­tine wrote in Con­tra Faus­tum, Book XIX, acce­dat ver­bum ad ele­men­tum, et fit sacra­men­tum: “When the Word is joined to the ele­ment [water] it becomes a sacrament.”

In his Small Cat­e­chism, Luther writes, “Bap­tism is not sim­ple water only, but it is the water com­pre­hended [included or together] in God’s com­mand and con­nected [com­bined] with God’s word.” He goes on to say, “If I am bap­tized, I have the promise that I shall be saved and have eter­nal life both in soul and body. … Bap­tism is a trea­sure which God gives us and faith grasps … a trea­sure com­pre­hended (included) and offered to us in the Word and received by faith.”

A per­son can believe although he is not bap­tized. But if one were not able to be bap­tized he is nonethe­less not damned pro­vided that he believes the Gospel. Bap­tism is use­less with­out faith.” That is, the gift of eter­nal life, result­ing from Bap­tism, is not a gift that God gives those who do not pro­fess faith in Him, Our Lord and Sav­ior Jesus Christ.

You and I are Luther­ans because we accept the illus­tra­tions, expla­na­tions and writ­ings of Dr. Mar­tin Luther — not as sub­sti­tute teach­ings for the Bib­li­cal Word of God, but for their basis in the Word of God. We in the LCMS believe that bap­tism works for­give­ness of sins, res­cues us from death and the devil and gives eter­nal sal­va­tion to all those who believe this as the words and promises of God declare. As Christ our Lord says:”Who­ever believes and is bap­tized will be saved, but who­ever does not believe will be con­demned” (Mark 16:16).

The doc­tri­nal state­ments pub­lished by Synod regard­ing the bap­tiz­ing of infants who die before being bap­tized include, in part, the fol­low­ing: “(1) There is some basis for the hope that God has a method, not revealed to us, by which He works faith in the chil­dren of Chris­tians dying with­out Bap­tism; the same is not true of chil­dren of non-​Christians. (2) Bap­tiz­ing still­born chil­dren is not sanc­tioned, Bap­tism is for the liv­ing only.”

The LCMS does not believe that Bap­tism is absolutely nec­es­sary for sal­va­tion. Mark 16:16 implies that it is not the absence of Bap­tism that con­demns a per­son but the absence of faith. How­ever, we dare not despise or will­fully neglect Bap­tism; it is com­manded by God. It is not con­sid­ered a rit­ual but a pow­er­ful and mirac­u­lous means of grace by which God grants faith and the for­give­ness of sins. We believe that infants and adults should be bap­tized and not denied bap­tism because of infancy, youth or age.

This year, 2017, is a year pre­cious to all Luther­ans: the 500th anniver­sary of Luther’s blessed dis­cov­ery of the Gospel and his rebel­lion related to the beliefs and cel­e­bra­tions of the Roman Catholic Church. This arti­cle is part of a monthly series cov­er­ing top­ics and his­tor­i­cal events lead­ing up to Octo­ber 31, 1517, the date of the post­ing of the 95 The­ses on the Cas­tle Church doors in Wit­ten­berg, Ger­many. It is repub­lished, with per­mis­sion, from the Rocky Moun­tain Dis­trict, LCMS.