What’s New With YOU?
Updates from congregations around the church of the Lutheran Confession
“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The past few years have brought several changes to Peace with God Lutheran Church. We have had a change of worship schedule, moving from Sunday morning service to Saturday afternoon, and finally to our current worship time of 9:30 A.M. on Saturday mornings. It’s certainly not ideal, but this flexibility has allowed us to share a full-time pastor in a tri-parish setting with two other CLC congregations (Morning Star of Fairchild, Wisconsin, and Trinity of Millston, Wisconsin). And although it is a different worship schedule, our small group makes it work, with many members traveling from a distance to do so (one family lives three and a half hours away!)
The congregation has seen some changes in membership as well. Over the past three years, there has been an increase in membership through a few transfers from other CLC congregations, along with an adult instruction confirmand. Also, a longtime member of the congregation was transferred to his heavenly home in March of 2020.
In September 2020, Peace with God’s pastor, Richard Kanzenbach, accepted a call to St. Luke’s Lutheran Church of Lemmon, South Dakota. Retired CLC Pastor John Schierenbeck of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, was then called to serve the group as vacancy pastor. On December 5th, 2020, Pastor Chad Seybt was installed as the new pastor of the tri-parish.
Most of the outreach efforts from the congregation come in the form of person-to-person conversations with friends and family members. Pastor Seybt brought with him numerous copies of his COVID devotion booklets to help his members share God’s Word, and the hope it brings, with those affected by the pandemic. For those unable to make it to Saturday worship, Pastor Seybt makes his sermons available via email in audio and print forms, along with the weekly bulletin. These have been shared by congregational members with friends and family, and they have been well received.
Although Peace with God is a small congregation of only about fifteen members, they are a faithful group, with pre-COVID worship attendance often near 100%. And although post-COVID attendance is not yet back to where it was, the pandemic has only increased their determination to find ways to stay connected with God’s Word and with one another. As one Peace with God member said, “I guess we were prepared to weather this pandemic. COVID, distance, alternative church space could not impede the delivery of His message. Nice try though! For such a small group, blessings abound!”
“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:1). This passage is where our small congregation on the mighty Mississippi River gets its name. However, “peace with God” is not just a clever name or wishful thinking. As the passage from Romans says, it’s what we are immeasurably privileged to have through our Lord Jesus Christ! In such uncertain and chaotic times, what a joy and blessing it is to know that Jesus’ blood and righteousness overcome the chaos of our sin and bring us into a state of peace with the holy God of heaven! How refreshing! How peaceful! It is this sweet peace with God that we gather to hear and learn more about every week at worship. If you are ever in the Onalaska area, we’d love to have you join us!
Chad Seybt is pastor of Morning Star Lutheran Church in Fairchild, Wisconsin, Trinity Lutheran Church in Millston, Wisconsin, and Peace with God Evangelical Lutheran Church in Onalaska, Wisconsin.