Christ, The Good Shepherd

Love in Action

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

1300 Belt Line Road Collinsville Illinois 62234

618-344-3151 (Church) 618-344-3153 (School) 618-344-3378 (Fax)
Pastors M. Walther & P. Hemenway  Vol. 31  No. 6   June  2008


On Being a ‘Christian’

And the disciples were first called ‘Christians’ at Antioch. Acts 11.26

This summer I’m going to begin a sermon series that covers some of the basic things that should be important to all Christians. Knowing what it really means to be a Christian is one of the first things that will help us be the disciples that God wants us to be. Sometimes Christians linger in the outer orbits of the faith. They barely hang on to the essential changes that God has worked in their lives through His word. In this weakened state, Christians are poor witnesses to others. They miss out on many opportunities to serve in meaningful ways. Worst of all, they are susceptible to temptations that can really bring about a lot of damage to themselves and to others. But God is patient. He always encourages. Our baptismal promises show that God never leaves us and that every day is a new opportunity to live and grow in faith. I hope you will enjoy and benefit from the following topics…

  1. "Conversion" In this topic we’ll explore the mystery and miracle of how a person becomes a Christian.
  2. "Meditation" The first thing a new Christian begins and continues to do is to meditate on God’s word.
  3. "Prayer" The first disciples came to Jesus and said, "Lord, teach us to pray."
  4. "Righteousness" Sometimes Christians are afraid of this – Does Jesus want me to be a "holy roller"?
  5. "Serving" Jesus said, "It is better to give than to receive." Really? Yes, really!
  6. "Enduring" The world tries to avoid hardships. Christians understand the purpose of suffering.
  7. "Dying" Jesus teaches us not to be afraid. He has been there for us.
  8. "Eternal Life" A little knowledge of heaven can carry us a long way on earth.

When you look at a list like this, you have to admit, "It’s not a bad life… In fact, it’s a great life." Let’s see how God will make the most out of it for us and for others. Pastor Walther

New Sunday Bible Study: Prophets in a Pagan World

Perhaps you’ve seen the bumpersticker…

Coexist Bumpersticker

It is important that people of different faiths live and work together with mutual respect and tolerance. But for some people respect and tolerance means we must accept other beliefs as equally valid. How should Christians respond to the pressure the world puts on them to accept false beliefs and practices? Long ago the prophets Elijah and Elisha had to respond to this same challenge. Join us for a study of the life and times of Elijah and Elisha this summer during Adult Bible Study (9:15 – 10:15). Pastor Walther will teach this class in the School Cafeteria.

Youth Bible Study & Lunch
Tuesdays at 11:00 a.m.

Turn off the TV, put down the video games, pack up a sack lunch and join us for a special youth Bible study this summer every Tuesday. Pastor Walther will lead the youth version of "Prophets in a Pagan World" (above). Bring a sack lunch. Any youth going into 6th – 9th grades are welcome to attend. Our first class will be June 3rd.

Two New Bible Studies Added to Website

Two new Bible studies have been added to our church website: Creation and Evolution, and A Study of Denominations. The Bible studies include audio files, handouts, and Powerpoint programs. To find them, go to then to the "Education" menu in the blue box. Other Bible studies on the website include: The Book of Joshua and Christianity and Atheism.

Lutheran Women in Mission

Our meeting begins at 6:45 on June 5th. The program is a Bible/Scripture evening. It will be great fun while learning things about Scripture and enjoying the friendship of many ladies. This would be a great way to begin your summer! Check out the LWML website at

No LWML Meeting in July, but join us at the Church Picnic. Bring a pie to share with others.

Looking Ahead

Are you ready to be a Witness for the ROCK? The Southern Illinois District Convention will be held at Good Shepherd on September19-20. Plan now to attend.

Board of Congregational Life

Blood Pressure Screening – 6/07 & 6/08

Braille Workers – 6/12 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Retirement Dinner for Marie Wudtke – 5/25 from 11:45 a.m. in the GS Fellowship Hall.


Good Shepherd helps to deliver the Meals-on-Wheels in Collinsville on the first week of March, June, September, and December.  We are in need of some more volunteers to help with this effort.  If you would like to help, please leave your name and phone number with Jeanette Simpson in the church office or you can just call the church office @ 344-3151 and leave that information.

Youth Groups

5th and 6th grade youth have the gym on June 1st so come prepared for a group favorite: dodge ball. On June 15th we will have our annual pool party. This year it will be at the home of Jeff and Donna Baker: 4210 Rodin Ave., Swansea. Youth group will be from 6-8 P.M. that night and we will have hot dogs and chips! Please talk to your friends about carpooling. Let Mrs. Walther know if transportation is a problem. Maps will be available that morning in the church narthex.

F.A.I.T.H. – We Want You!!! …in attendance at the 1st annual F.A.I.T.H. float trip on the scenic Black River – July 29-31 – 3 days – 2 nights – 1 Fantastic Adventure!!! Registration forms available in Church office & Sr. High youth board (by Fellowship hall) – contact Julie Wrigley at 345-2713 or Church office at 344-3151 for more information. Registration deadline is June 15th. (All Sr. High Youth & Graduated 8th Graders Eligible)

Lunch Bunch

On June 17 we will meet at  the Collinsville Bandanas at noon for lunch. Bring a friend and join us.  Call Wilma Mitchell (345-7123) or Mary Preuss (288-9525) by June 15 so that we may inform the restaurant how many are coming.

Preschoolers painting


Mothers of Preschoolers – The MOPS monthly meeting is on summer break, and taking its place are the following fantastic Friday outings for May and June:  5/30 (Highland PBJ Festival 11:30-1), 6/6 (Woodland Park 9-12), 6/13 (STL Zoo South entrance 9-12), 6/20 (Highland PBJ Festival 11:30-1), 6/27 (Troy Tri-Township Park at Barney 9-12).  Bring kids, lunch, sunscreen, etc.  MOPS invites all Good Shepherd moms to join us for these outings – for more information, call the Church office.  See you there!

Woman to Woman Radio

Woman to Woman can be heard of KFUO AM 850 at 9:30 a.m. on Saturdays or go to to listen at your leisure or to sign up to receive the show titles each month automatically. May 31 Redirecting Out of Control Kids, June 7 Change Now; Here’s How, June 14 You Are Your Father’s Daughter, June 21 Take a Load Off, Part 1, June 28 Take a Load Off, Part 2.

LCFS Golf "Fore" Kids Charity Outing

You are invited to attend Lutheran Child & Family Services of Illinois’ 17th Annual Golf "Fore" Kids Charity Outing on Friday, June 13th, at the Governors Run Golf Course in Carlyle. The outing will begin at 9:30 a.m. with registration & includes 18-holes of golf, contests, raffle prizes, a social hour & more. Reservations can be made by visiting, call Fran Presta at 708-488-5558 or email All proceeds from this year’s event will support children’s services in Southern Illinois, including adoption, foster care, counseling & Southern Thirty Adolescent Center. Posted

2008 VBS Logo

Vacation Bible School

Friendship Trek VBS is full of fun! Come hike the Friendship Trek Trail as we explore Bible stories, take Bible challenges, make crafts, eat yummy snacks, play fun games, sing awesome songs, and more! Fill out the registration form in the narthex. When you return the form to the box in the narthex, please take a CD of the songs out of the box. VBS will be held July 14-18 from 8:30-11:30 A.M. Classes are for those students who will be 4 by Sept. 4 through those entering 8th grade. Questions? Call the church office at 344-3151.

Many volunteers are needed for a successful VBS. We need people to help with publicity, with crafts, with registration, with babysitting (the children of the workers), with set up, with power point, and to be Circle Guides What’s a Circle Guide? Pick up a job description in the narthex by the sign up sheet! Call Carol (344-3151) with any questions.


Outreach Opportunity

Vacation Bible School is a great way to introduce area children to Jesus. It costs about $15 per child to run a successful program. Anyone who would like to help defray those expenses can leave their donations in the "Friendship Trek" tin on the table in the narthex. Checks can be made out to GSLC with VBS on the memo line if you would like it to be noted on your giving statement. Thanks for your support. Posters for VBS can also be picked up in the narthex if you know a business willing to display one.

Adult Bible Class

"Circle of Friends" will be a special 5 week Adult Bible Class on Wednesday mornings at 9 a.m. in the fellowship hall. Led by Vicar Yearyean, the class will focus on how friends reach out, love, give, care and share by following the example of Jesus. The class will meet June 4, 11, 18, 25 and July 9. Babysitting will be available.

People Reading Books

Christian Book Club

The Christian Book Club continues the Mark of the Lion trilogy by Francine Rivers. This month we are reading the second book, "An Echo in the Darkness." New readers are always welcome to join us. We meet on June 16th at 7 P.M. at St. Louis Bread Company in Collinsville.

Annual Facility Use Scheduling

All organizations & boards, please turn in your written request for building usage in order to plan the Master Calendar to Marty Hoffman in the church office.  Deadline is June 15.

Home Bible Study Groups

All the Home Bible Study groups are invited to a family potluck in the fellowship hall on Friday, June 6th at 6 P.M. Each family is asked to bring a side dish or desert. As usual: Come for Food, Fun, and Fellowship!

Sunday School and Bible Classes

All Sunday School and Bible Classes continue throughout the summer. This summer, students in Sunday School will be looking at different journeys taken by God’s people and how God used these journeys for His purposes. "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen." 2 Peter 3:18 (NIV)

GSLS Projector Project

Good Shepherd Lutheran School is trying to raise funds to put multimedia systems in all our classrooms. Each system costs around $2,000 and we have 20 classrooms to equip. Please consider donating to our Projector Project. We need to raise $40,000 and anything you can give will help us get closer to that goal. See the attachment.
Thank you again to those who donated to the Good Shepherd Projector Project during the school auction. Your support is always greatly appreciated.

Cartoon - Pastor and Boy

Official Acts

Baptisms (Children): Trevor Lee Klemp, Riley Scott Hatfield, Ryan Patrick Romanik, Sean Michael Romanik

Funeral: Daniel E. Dervalis, Sr.

Souls: 1,685                                         Comm.: 1,381

Ask the Pastor

One of the questions I am most frequently asked by people in our congregation is, "How can we get connected with other members of the church?" This is a great question and is one of the most challenging aspects of being a member in (and one of the pastors of) a church the size of Good Shepherd. I would like to take this time to point out a few different ways in which members can become more familiar, get to know, and hopefully develop friendships with other members. Fellowship is very important to the life of a church and we want to encourage and promote a community where the members lift one another up as fellow Christians. Here are some ways that might help you become better connected here at our church:

  1. When you see someone you don’t know in church, introduce yourself to them. I know it sounds simple, but it is very effective in meeting people as well as promoting a friendlier climate here. People really take note of this when they are visitors and it might be the determining factor in whether or not they come back to the church. I have spoken to a number of people who have been members here for years but who have noted that they were not greeted very warmly by others upon first visiting. However, I know how difficult it can be greeting people. I have never had an easy time just walking up to people and saying hello, especially in church. What if the person I am greeting as a visitor has been a member here longer than I have?! I would be kind of embarrassed! But as I think about this scenario more and more I have come to this conclusion; "So what?!!!" Who in their right mind is going to get mad at me for being nice to them? Scenarios like that shouldn’t worry us. The situation that should give us pause for concern is the one where somebody visits us and decides not to come back because we weren’t friendly.
  2. Get involved in one of the many groups we have here at Good Shepherd. If you look at the calendar of events at the church, there is always something happening here. Get involved in a home Bible study, or the Lunch Bunch, or the choir, or join a board to help facilitate the life of our church. There are a variety of ways that can help you get connected.
  3. Having made point #2, another question I am asked frequently is, "Are there any groups made up of people that are closer to my age?" While we haven’t filled all of the generational gaps quite yet (our goal is to do so within the next six months), we have begun one new group here at church that is focused on young adults ranging in age from mid-twenties to mid-thirties called "CROSSroads." I think the mission statement helps sum up the goal of the group. It states, "CROSSroads is a new group formed to help serve Good Shepherd's young adults.  We hope to foster relationships with one another and a deeper relationship with our Lord through fellowship, activities, and Bible study.  It is our prayer that this group will strengthen and encourage individuals in their faith, assimilate them within the church, and motivate them for outreach in their personal communities and the world." Some of the activities scheduled for the summer are a May barbeque, a June Gateway Grizzlies game, a July pool party, an August miniature golf outing, and a September bike ride on the Katy Trail to some of the wineries in Missouri.
  4. Congregational Connections Activity Book. I am very excited about this way of getting members connected. A young member of the congregation, with the desire to meet other members at Good Shepherd, created this method of doing just that. Here’s how it works: As you open the book you will see (on the left hand side) sheets with a blank space reading "Activity" at the top and contact information listed below. On the right hand side of the book are pages that have already been filled out with activities and contact info for people who want to participate in this particular activity. So, say you enjoy rock climbing; you would go to the book, grab a new Activity sheet and put the activity at the top of the sheet and your contact info in the appropriate place. Other people who share this similar interest could then check the book, see the activity and your name with it, and contact you to go climbing together. The same method applies for basically anything you care to do. One of the aspects that I like about the Activity Book is that it helps to "cross-pollinate" members of all ages because it connects people with similar interests rather than people of one particular age group.
  5. Helping Hands. This group has a more serious tone to it. It will be operated under the Congregational Life umbrella and Pam Meister will serve as the "go-to" person for this group. The premise of "Helping Hands" is that we minister to those who have experienced some kind of personal difficulty and could use some, well, help. This could range from providing meals to someone who has just gotten home from the hospital, helping out with rides to doctors appointments or counseling resources to connect people with grief support groups and the like. It is our goal that we have a group that is deliberately organized to administer help to the church community, and beyond, when a crisis or something serious occurs to a member.

I hope these suggestions will encourage people to deliberately get out and get connected to others here at Good Shepherd. God bless us that we can love each other as Christ has loved us and that we can enjoy the fellowship we have with each other as members of the Church of Jesus Christ. Pastor Hemenway

GSLS Class Openings 

Good Shepherd Lutheran School has been offering a "quality Christian education" and will be celebrating its 25th anniversary next year. We have openings in the Kindergarten classes and other grades. If you are interested or know of someone who would be, please contact the school office for more information about a Christian education. 344-3153.


Parent Reading to ChildrenQuality Christian Education

If you are looking for a quality Christian education for your child, please consider coming to Good Shepherd Lutheran School. We would like to share with you some of the important things that are unique about our school.

We feel especially blessed to have this school to teach God’s word in everything we do. There are many activities to look forward to next year in Kindergarten.

We start each day by listening to God’s Word and praying together led by students from each class throughout the year. We also honor our country by reciting the pledges as a school. Every day we have a

special Jesus time which includes singing, telling a Bible story and prayer. We use a variety of methods including puppets, visual aids, and books to tell the Bible stories. It is so exciting to see the students share their faith in their Savior.

We begin the school year by going through and introducing the letters of the alphabet. We do a special project to reinforce each letter. Throughout the year, we will review each letter sound and by the end of the year your child will start blending letters to make words so they can read. Twice a week your child will participate in Physical Education. They can chose to take Spanish or German which will be once a week. There are also some more activities that your Kindergartener will be involved in. They will go to the library each week to check a special book out to take home to read. Later in the year, on Fridays, children will take turns taking home a book buddy. A book buddy is a puppet or a stuffed animal that goes along with the book.

School wide every Thursday we have the opportunity to worship as a school family which includes singing songs of praise to God. Kindergarteners are honored to sit next to an upper classmen during chapel. They become closer to them throughout the year when the upper classmen come to help us do special activities in our classroom.

We integrate technology in the classroom each week by going to the computer lab and also using the classroom computers for educational games to reinforce what we are learning.

The students have many chances to socialize with their friends during learning center time. Some of the centers we do are: listening, computers, reading, housekeeping, building, writing, sensory table (math and science), games and puzzles, and art.

We spend some extra time around each holiday to learn about them. For Thanksgiving we study the Native Americans and eat popcorn. For Christmas we studied the candy cane and how it reminds of Jesus. For Easter we enjoyed reading and opening the Resurrection eggs, which reminds us of Jesus’ death and resurrection.

One week in March we honor and celebrate National Lutheran Schools Week. This week includes special dress days and lunches to go with our theme for each day. Within that week we celebrate Grandparents and Special Friends Day and the students have an opportunity to share their talents with everyone.

Your child will be involved in two musical productions, the Christmas concert and the Kindergarten Graduation program. Together we will go on three exciting field trips: Grant’s Farm, The Magic House, and Dairy Queen.

There are still openings in Kindergarten for the upcoming school year. We encourage you to tell others about our school and the activities we do. With prayerful consideration we hope to see you in the fall.  God’s Blessings.  Mrs. Wudtke and Miss Hohenstein




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