Narrative Budget

Where Does Your Offering Go?

How each dollar of your 2018 general fund offering will be spent:

An emphasis on transition

In 2017 and into 2018, during our transition the interim pastors are teaching and directing the staff and congregation to renew and refresh leadership and ministry. This emphasis touches all areas of our ministry together, meaning our financial and human resources in all areas are fueling this investment in the future of St. John’s.

What is a narrative budget?

Our budget tells our story; what we value, what our priorities are, who we are.

Our budget is a theological statement; reflecting our understanding of what it means to be church, our beliefs about God, and our commitment to God’s redemptive mission.

It illustrates how we, as stewards of the resources God has entrusted to us here at St John’s, are being used to further the ministries of God’s Kingdom in this place and beyond.

Embedded in this narrative budget are some of the amazing stories of what God is doing in and through the people of St. John’s. It is just the tip of the iceberg – a few of the many stories of us growing deeper in our relationships with God and each other and living as God’s church in our world.

Our Vision Statement says it all: 
Loving God. 
Loving people. 
Serving others.

Worship & Music Ministry

Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. – Psalm 100:2

Worship is at the heart of who we are as Christians; praising God, giving thanks, offering our gifts, talents, and our lives to God in loving response to God’s grace, and being strengthened for ministry and service in the world. Our mix of traditional and contemporary worship elements touches people’s hearts and enables us to experience God during worship. Through our worship and music, we are fed body and soul and equipped to share God’s love in our daily lives.

Our 2017 worship and music ministry included:

  • 89 Sunday morning worship services and 49 Wednesday evening services with an average of 410 worshippers encountering God each week
  • Festival worship services for Christmas, Holy Week and Easter, and other holidays
  • The lives of 15 children claimed by God through baptism
  • An adult choir, handbell choir, and children’s groups contributing music to many worship services
  • Three bands enhancing worship on Wednesdays and Sundays
  • Pianists, organists, and other talented musicians contributing their gifts to our worship
  • Numerous volunteers, including an increasing number of children and teens, enriching our services by doing everything from altar set-up and sanctuary decorating to ushering and greeting during worship
  • Participating in God’s work through 4 weddings and 27 funeral services
  • Providing monthly pastoral leadership for mid-week senior worship services three local senior living facilities
  • Nurturing the lives of 30 children through weekly Creation Kids Preschool chapel

In 2018, 16% of St. John’s total budgeted expenses or 16 cents out of every $1 you give in dedicated to our worship and music ministry.

Discipleship Formation & Lifelong Learning Ministry

The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ. – Ephesians 4:11-12

Through prayer and study; in learning about the Bible and connecting God’s word to our lives, each of us grows in our knowledge and love of God and in our relationship with Christ and each other. Here at St. John’s we offer faith education and discipleship formation of children, youth, and adults to provide a path for each person to move along his/her own faith journey and to equip all of us to live as God’s people in our world today.

In 2017, our discipleship formation and lifelong learning ministry included:

  • Sunday school for 3-year olds through 4th graders involving 68 kids learning about God and Oasis Education programming for 66 3-year-olds through 4th graders on Wednesdays
  • 70 young people learning to define their own faith stories through a two-year confirmation program
  • 18 students and 6 adults challenged themselves physically and spiritually on a summer trip to Sky Ranch Lutheran Bible Camp for high wilderness backpacking
  • The opportunity for 58 kindergarten through 6th graders to see God in our world at Oasis Afterschool, a faith-based afterschool learning time
  • 41 5th and 6th graders participating in the “Club 56” educational program offered Sundays and Wednesdays to help this unique age group grow in faith
  • Providing 70+ neighborhood kids with a week of summer VBS, during which they experienced a God who loves them
  • 6 small Bible study groups gathering monthly as part of St. John’s Women of the ELCA
  • Approximately 100 young people celebrating milestones of God’s presence in their lives, including receiving bibles and high school graduation quilts
  • A week of devotions, fun, and fellowship for 19 middle school students in our Action Packed Day Camp
  • 25-30 high school students living into their faith through learning, fellowship, and service activities in youth group and through leadership in worship and children’s faith formation programs

In 2018, 25% of St. John’s total budgeted expenses or 25 cents out of every $1 you give is dedicated to our ministry of discipleship formation and lifelong learning.

Fellowship & Pastoral Care Ministry

For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am among them. – Matthew 18:20

Our ministers, staff, and volunteers offer ongoing support and care in times of illness, bereavement, or other need. We also gather for fellowship and celebrate with those in our midst. Turning caring into action is a priority for St John’s, as we seek to enable each person to feel the love of God in times of both joy and sorrow. Moreover, as we care for and gather with each other, we all richly experience God’s love in our own lives.

Our fellowship and pastoral care ministry includes:

  • Frequent pastoral visits to hospitals and nursing homes to care for those recovering from illness or surgery
  • Regular visits by pastors and our lay spiritual care team to our homebound members bringing communion and community connection
  • Providing premarital, bereavement, and other personal counseling – and sometimes simply a listening ear
  • Written and online newsletters and other communications to keep all families in the loop
  • Wednesday pre-worship suppers and coffee fellowship on Sunday mornings
  • Supportive gatherings for people who have lost loved ones

In 2018, 12% John’s total budgeted expenses or 12 cents out of every $1 you give is dedicated to our fellowship and pastoral care ministry.

Ministry of Outreach & Community Presence

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me. – Matthew 25:35

As Jesus’ disciples, we live our faith in the midst of our everyday lives – at school, at work, at social gatherings, wherever we find ourselves during the week. Corporately, as the church, we also participate in God’s Kingdom work beyond our walls – in our local neighborhoods, throughout our country, and in places around the world. Our commitment to God’s mission also includes our support of the Southeastern Minnesota Synod and the ELCA nationally. In addition, throughout the year we reach out beyond our budget to provide support and funding for special projects as needs are identified.

Our 2017 ministry of outreach and community presence included:

  • Welcoming nearly 1,900 friends to our annual Lutefisk dinner which, in turn, funds synodical mission support
  • Weekly “globe offerings” for international, national, and local, such hurricane relief, Lutheran Campus Ministry, and school supplies for local children in need.
  • Hosting community events such as the free Family Fun Night, free Easter Egg Hunt and Halloween party for kids, and a Brat and Pie dinner with free entertainment
  • Funding and packing over 596 shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child to share God’s love with children worldwide
  • Our Food for Friends backpack program providing nutritious supplemental food weekly to 64 Headstart-Grade 4 students, 22 middle school students, and 7 high school students.
  • Sponsoring Karen Anderson serving as an ELCA missionary in Chile
  • Partnering with Pastor Mioche with visits and monetary support to build schools, educate kids, and enhance communities in Haiti
  • Supporting Siyama Lekomolo, a student at the MaaSae Girls Lutheran Secondary School in Tanzania.
  • Making approximately 221 quilts and collecting school and personal care items to be distributed worldwide by Lutheran World Relief
  • Helping families around the world improve their lives by purchasing life changing gifts from goats to school supplies to microloans through ELCA Good Gifts
  • Confirmation kids who are making a difference packing care packages for college students, cooking meals for homeless youth in Rochester, baking treats for the Dorthy Day House, helping with projects to prepare for worship, and making fleece blankets and breakfast bags for the Ronald McDonald House
  • Supporting members of the wider community through crisis counseling in times of need, participation in KM Ministerial activities, and supporting youth by attending their competitions and performances
  • Providing pastoral support and food and gas cards to people in need who stop by the St John’s office

In 2018, 15% of St. John’s total budgeted expenses or 15 cents out of every $1 you give is dedicated to our ministry of outreach and community presence.

Building & Property

You should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace. – Peter 4:10

In order to engage in our ministries, we need a physical infrastructure that is safe, upto-date, well-kept, and inviting. Our building and grounds are resources entrusted to us by God to provide the setting for worship, fellowship, and faith formation. It is also home to our Creation Kids Preschool throughout the year.

Our building is also a great place to entertain our neighbors as we welcome a variety of outside activities throughout the year, such as a community garden, a number of boy scout and girl scout troops (and special scouting events like the recent Eagle Scout award ceremony for six local youth, addiction meetings, the TOPS weight loss group, and many others.

Our 2017 building and property ministry included:

  • Installed a new fire pit for social and worship gatherings, an Eagle Scout project
  • Custodial and insurance costs
  • Heat, light, and other utilities
  • Property improvements and maintenance costs (including grass cutting and snow removal)
  • Mortgage payments

2018, 32% of St. John’s total budgeted expenses or 32 cents out of every $1 you give is dedicated to maintenance and upkeep of the building and property God has entrusted to us.

Past Narrative Budgets