Bare Necessities

john-allen-2-webPastor John Allen
Interim Pastor

At the age of 24, Apsley Cherry-Garrard was one of the youngest members of Robert Falcon Scott’s Terra Nova expedition to Antarctica (1910-1913), in support of Scott’s dream of being the first to discover the South Pole. “Cherry” had lived a life of privilege and luxury. He fit well the description being “born with a silver spoon in his mouth.” But, there were no luxuries at all on this expedition. The men of the Terra Nova endured two winters of unimaginable hardship — living on the edge of survival. Strangely enough, Gerrard learned to appreciate the bare necessities of life. “The luxuries of civilization,” he wrote, “satisfy only those wants which they themselves create.”

During lent we are reminded of the luxuries we have and take for granted. These luxuries are not only habit forming, but they create a desire for more. The miracles of the smartphone we own make us wonder how much more awesome the next generation will be.  Lines form outside the Apple Store every time there is a new release, which we believe we can scarcely live without. Cherry Gerrard had to be removed from all of his luxuries before he appreciated the simple pleasures of existence. These forty days of life without some of the addictive luxuries of life might be enough to liberate us from the wants that our luxuries create.

Thoughts on Lenten practices

LindsayCowell2Lindsay Colwell
Youth Ministry Coordinator

The season of Lent is upon us again. Lent is a contemplative time. A time when we hear the phrase, “what are you giving up for Lent?” I have known people who have given up everything from chocolate to soda to smoking. It was never something I thought much about, as it was not a tradition that I was brought up with, and then the day before Ash Wednesday when I checked Facebook I noticed a post a friend of mine made. She said, “When did Lent become New Year’s 2.0?” That struck me as I have been trying to set my own Lenten intention. Is that what we have turned this season into? Just one more holiday that we enter into with good intentions, and then set aside when the restrictions become too difficult once we have made it only half way through the season? Perhaps, but I hope you will take a moment with me to consider a different way to approach Lent. Instead of viewing this season as another fly-by holiday, that we begin by celebrating with gusto and high expectations of ourselves that will just be set by the wayside later, perhaps we could simply set an intention to bring ourselves closer to God. Take 5-10 minutes every day for some quiet. Turn off your phone. Read a Bible passage. Do some yoga while you say the Lord’s Prayer. Quiet your mind by doing some coloring. Do anything that will shut out the world for a few minutes and allow you to talk to the God who made you. The God who loves you so deeply that he sent his Son to die for you on the cross. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Try it and see what happens. Let me know how it goes.

Join us for breakfast!

Confirmation group serving on March 19

On Sunday, March 19, the Sunday Confirmation Group will be serving breakfast in the Fellowship Hall 8:30 am –10:30 am. All proceeds will benefit their trip to confirmation camp this summer.

Palm Sunday Brunch & Silent Auction

Youth will be serving breakfast and hosting a silent auction on Palm Sunday (April 9) to raise funds for camp this summer. They are seeking items that can be donated to the silent auction. If you have an item to donate, you may contact Lindsay at or bring your item to the office.


Giving to St. John’s

Faithful giving to St. John’s Lutheran Church enables us to continue our ministry within our congregation, community, state, the wider church, and throughout the world.

Here are some ways to make giving easier:

  • Automated Giving – download the Planned Stewardship form to set up automatic recurring gifts to St. John’s from your checking account
  • PayPal or Credit Card – Use the button below to give online now (to pay with a credit card without using a PayPal account, see the link toward the bottom left of the page after clicking on the link below).

  • Donate by Searching or Shopping – Through Goodsearch, every search you make on your computer will earn a penny for nearly every search you do. Set Goodsearch as your browser’s default search engine and you’ll start racking up the pennies. Visit to read about additional ways – including shopping, dining out, and gaming – to earn contributions.
  • Shop – If you shop Amazon, sign up and shop at AmazonSmile and a portion of your purchase will go to St. John’s!

8th-12th Grade Retreat

Students in 8th-12th grade are invited to a retreat at Ironwood Springs Friday-Sunday, April 21-23 June 16-18 (note the date change!). Cost is $50/person and includes all meals, housing, challenge course, and zipline! We’re also looking for some adult volunteers to join us.

Stop by the Welcome Center for an application.

Order Easter Lilies by March 22

The confirmation students are selling Easter lilies to decorate the church building for Easter Sunday. You may purchase lilies – one for $15 or two for $25 – from any confirmation student. Proceeds from the sales will help pay for confirmation camp. Orders are due by March 22.

Interactive Prayer Stations

Everyone is invited to join us after Wednesday night worship during Lent for interactive prayer stations. Adults and kids alike can color, work with Legos, check out the blessing wall, and more changes to explore new ways to pray. Join us in the Narthex starting Wednesday, March 8 at about 7 pm (after worship).