Immanuel Lutheran Church
                     of Almelund, Minnesota


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Annual Meeting

Immanuel Lutheran Church Annual Congregational Meeting

Sunday, February 10, 2019, 10:30 a.m., following worship.

Annual Report Deadlines

Committee Secretarys Reports must be into the church office on or before January 27, 2019.

Committee Treasurers Reports should be submitted to the church office for the Auditing Committee on or before January 20, 2019. There is a box on Merries Desk for reports.

Deadlines are set so material can be out for pick up on Sunday, February 3rd, 1 week before our Annual Meeting. Thank You!

COMMITTEE REPORT FORMAT: All reports should be submitted typed and ready to copy. Reports are encouraged to be sent in by e-mail in MSWord if possible.

The church’s e-mail address is:

THANKS SO MUCH! If you need to have staff type your report please submit it to the church office by or before Jan. 27. Call Merrie if you have questions, 651-583-2340



January Newsletter

December Newsletter

Immanuel Lutheran's Young Adult Group

Birthdays for the Month                     Bible Study Opportunities
Thank You Notes and other Membership Notes
Community Events

Youth Group            Sunday School

Words from the Synod




Blood Mobile to be at Immanuel on Feb 21

More Details Click Here


Pastor Marla Amborn Office: 651-583-2340, Cell: 651-315-3354

Email: Please call Pastor Marla during office hours or email her if you or loved ones have pastoral care needs. In an emergency call her cell phone anytime, day or night.


Watch for it

Coming in January: A New Look to our Web Site




Final Offering Count of 2018 will be on Sunday, December 30. For your tax purposes, please get your end of year donations in by 10:30am on Sunday, Dec. 30 so your gifts can be counted and recorded on your 2018 giving statement. Thank you! Please plan to help with snow removal! Remember, when it snows at home, the church needs to be dug out too! Thanks for your help!

HANDICAPPED/SENIOR PARKING SPACES IN THE UPPER, NORTH PARKING LOT. Property Committee has designated spaces in the north lot to be reserved for handicapped parking and seniors. Safe access to the elevator is past the large front doors on the front of the church through the ground level access door. Please leave these spaces near the church for those who need them. Parking is available in the parsonage lot across from the church. Thanks.

Immanuel Prayer Chain. Please call Darlene Anderson at 651-583-3153 to start the prayer chain. Because Darlene uses a wheel-chair, please let the phone ring 10 or so times before hanging up. If there is no answer, please leave a message. Darlene will return your call. If you have email you can email to start the prayer chain as well. Her email address is: Also-Let her know if you would like to join the prayer chain!

Bring your aluminum drink cans to church for recycling on the First Sunday of each month! Raise money for church and save the world! Children are encouraged to get involved in this project!





A "Grand" Donation!

Immanuel Lutheran has been truly blessed with the generous donation of a five-foot Kawai baby grand piano. Many "thank yous" are in order in the acquisition of the piano which is a dream come true for the Wor-ship & Music Committee and a wonderful new addition to our Music Ministry.

Robin Chinander, sister of member Royce, has been un-able to play her beloved in-strument due to a condition in her hands that makes playing the tight piano action painful. Robin, who is a member or Trinity Lutheran in Lindström, frequently attends Immanuel services and was present for the Almelund Sampler held in October. She was so moved by the lovely music shared on that occasion, she decided to donate her grand piano, saying "I need-ed to see the piano where it belonged in a House of Worship! Immanu-el is the perfect home too! Playing both piano and organ for many years at my folk’s church in Wisconsin, my heart feels very warm that my piano is where it belongs in its new home!" Thank you, Robin!

Before the piano could be placed, the organ console had to be moved to its original position in the choir nook at the right of the sanctuary.

Thanks goes to Marlin Ness and Don Noyes who removed a portion of the choir risers to make way for the con-sole and thanks to Tracy Tolzmann and Allen Organ technician Jim Ben-son who relocated the organ a few days later. Jim rerouted the wiring un-der the sanctuary floor and reconnect-ed the instrument’s numerous cables. Jim also "tweaked" the organ a bit, adjusting it for its new locale.


On Tuesday, December 4th, Manny’s Piano Moving picked-up the grand from Robins home in Lindström and brought it into the sanctu-ary. The two movers knew exactly how to handle the large instrument — too large to fit in our elevator — so they carried it up the stairs. As one mover reattached the pianos legs, the other assembled the piano dolly which makes moving the heavy instrument much easier and safer when its position will inevi-tably have to be shifted. The used dolly was acquired at half the price of a new one, and a big thank you goes to Perry Lindberg who painted it in a "rush" job, making the dolly look brand new and ready just in time for the pianos delivery!

The piano rested at the front of the sanctu-ary to acclimate before being tuned by ex-pert piano technician Fred Meissner on December 11th. The piano made its debut at the all-congregation Christmas program on the 16th, and was dedicated on the 23rd. The piano will get a workout on Sunday, January 13th at the Citizenship Concert fundraiser for church organist Momoh Freeman. The program will be new but like Octobers Almelund Sampler and will feature numerous musical performances.

The "Choir & Music" Memorial Fund has provided the money for the dolly and organ services. A big thank you is ex-tended to all who have con-tributed to the fund over the years. An additional $770 is needed for a piano light and humidifier system (which helps keep the piano in tune), and fundraising is already underway. Donations to the Memorial fund, designated "Music," will be greatly appreciated to under-write this need.

The grand piano will truly continue to make "a joyful noise" here at Immanuel in Almelund!



Presidental Ponderings… by the Immanuel Lutheran Church Council President


Happy New Year to everyone! I hope you had a blessed Christmas!

Coming up on the Thirteenth of January is the citizenship concert for Momoh. Something that I didnt realize is that it is quite expensive to gain citizen-ship to America due to the fees involved to keep the process going. We all know this is a very worthwhile cause and will be an extremely enjoyable concert so please mark your calendar and make an effort to attend and donate to this fund-raiser.

We are starting the process of getting things ready for our annual meeting on Feb. 10 after worship. We still need some volunteers to fill the committee po-sitions so if you are willing to serve on a committee please let Pastor Marla or a member of the nominating committee know. Jeske Noordergraaf, Joanne John-son, John Sandberg, Dave Rue. Coming up with a workable budget is always very challenging and we ask for your prayers as we work on this project.

Going into the new year let us all try to rededicate ourselves to more faithful attendance and participating in Gods work.

Blessings to all!

Steve Peterson, ILC Council President



Dear Friends in Minnesota,

As we approach the end of 2018, I had an opportunity to meditate on God's love and grace that has happened to us, as ELCT-Iringa Diocese, in our relationship with our fellow brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ. I have seen how committed you are toward strengthening this established relationship and partnership. We feel so honored and privileged to walk and work together with you in any situation of life. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that who-soever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)

Thank you for holding us in deep prayer. It was not easy to reach this moment without your prayers, your encouragement, and all of the support you have committed for us. It is my prayer and hope that next year we will put more effort in praying for each other.

I am looking forward to seeing you once again in Iringa. Come one, come all. Karibu Sana. Yours, Bishop Blaston Gaville, ELCT-Iringa Diocese

The council approved the request for dollars to help the students of Itonya to continue their education. We need $750.00 total to continue helping students from our sister congregation in Itonya Africa! If you are interested in helping to pay toward the education of our brothers and sisters across the sea please note on your donation "Itonya Student Scholarships". Any amount will be well used for these giving opportunities! Blessings to you!

The Immanuel Library is open. Please feel free to browse and take the books that you are interested in reading! We have adopted the "honor system" for books you want to borrow, so no sign out or back in will be required. Just return the book when you have finished it so others can take it out. There is a basket marked book Return and also one for any book Dona-tion, if you feel inspired to donate a new/good used item to the library. Note that any donated or new material will be evaluated by the com-mittee for appropriate content. WHAT A SPLENDID WAY TO SPEND A COLD WINTER EVENING… READING A BOOK FROM YOUR CHURCH LIBRARY!



Happy New Year! With the start of a new year there will be new offering envelopes mailed to you. If you did not get envelopes by mid Jan. and want a box, please notify the church office or Mark Weslander, 651-431-8941.

You may have a different number in 2019 from what you had in 2018 so we ask that you discard 2018 envelopes at the end of the year. Please—Do Not use 2018 offering envelopes in 2019.

Thanks for your faithful giving!





As we continue in the "slippery season," the Church Council has asked that parishioners reserve the upper parking lot for our senior members who may find walking on icy, uneven surfaces a bigger challenge. Access to the elevator is made by crossing the sidewalk at the front of the church to the front SW door near the flag poles. This flat, level path will be salted and access is safer than walking on the sloping driveway behind the church. Remember, there is parking in the lot by the parsonage, too!

SNOW TIME! Yes it is that time of year again! Thank you to all those who helped out with December’s snow! When you shovel out at home the church needs you as well! -Thanks for helping Rick with this big job!!

MEMBERSHIP RECORDS are updated constantly—please let us know of changes in contact info for your whole family. We will keep these for use by our church alone. Contact Merrie with info in the church office. email: or 651-583-2340


The church building is open every day at 9:00 a.m. and is locked when staff leave the building. Merrie, our administrative assistant, is in the church office Mon., Tues., Wed. & Fri. until 4pm. If you need to be in the building when it is not open, contact Merrie for the Key Box combination located on the kitchen door, or to pick up a church key before you need it.


Tanzania Report from April Trout

(the St. Paul Area Synod staff person living in Tanzania)

Water - clean and safe water - is a gift from God.

I made a trip to Idete and Itonya today with Bo and Juli Skillman and the St. Paul Partners team to check on wells they have dug. In Idete Peter Mwakatundu made a minor repair - a new gasket - to get water flowing once again to the dispensary there. The doctor noted how cases of diarrhea have gone down since the well was installed.

We drove on to Itonya primary school where we were greeted by a large and enthusiastic crowd of kids who sang for us. The headmaster reported that the kids are less often sick with stomach problems now that they have a good supply of water for drinking and washing their hands.

And finally we reached the church in Itonya, where we dedicated the new well there - but only after a serious and lengthy discussion with the village water committee over collecting a yearly water fee from every adult villag-er in order to have funds to maintain the well. St. Paul Partners works hard to educate water system recipients that the well is a gift to them and that it now becomes THEIR responsibility to care for it.

Idete and Itonya are at the southernmost reaches of the Diocese, where the mountain scenery is breathtaking at every turn. I’m glad I made the trip.


Scholarships needed to support Secondary School education for students from Itonya. The average cost per scholarship is $400 and includes a 12.5% administrative fee. Last year Immanuel pledged $2200 and our companions awarded scholarships to 5 students. Our pledge for 2019 is due by Nov 1; please let Pastor Marla know as soon as you can (Nov. 4 if possible.) if you'd like to contribute. Funds will need to be turned in by Jan 1, when their new school year begins. Bega Kwa Bega Fall Festival Saturday, November 10, 2018 - 09:00am to 12:30pm Roseville Lutheran Church in Roseville, 1215 Roselawn Ave., W, Roseville, MN 55113. The Fall Festival is an annual celebration of our Bega Kwa Bega companion synod relationship with the Iringa Diocese of the ELCT. It is a morning filled with worship, fellow-ship, and learning. and will be organized around the Swahili verb 'Kujenga' (meaning 'To Build').

We Have a Name! MiChiLu

In recent months we have been meeting with other nearby congregations (Trinity in Lindstrom, Zion, Chisago Lakes Lutheran, and First Lutheran in Taylors Falls) to find ways we can work closer together to enhance the ministry we are doing. We now have a name – "MiChiLu" for Mid-Chisago Lutherans.

We Have an Event!

MiChiLu will be hosting an event at First Lutheran in Taylors Falls on Saturday, November 24 from 2 to 4 called "Getting Ready for Jesus." In contrast to the materialistic cultural focus on presents, decorations, and holiday food, this will be a day of preparing our hearts to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Getting Ready for Jesus will be held on the same day as the Lighting Festival in Taylors Falls sandwiched between a 1 PM puppet show at the United Methodist Church and 4:30 PM community Advent Vespers service.

The event at First Lutheran will be set up with stations for people to come and go and participate in as much of this at they’d like to. MiChiLu needs help preparing for and hosting the craft stations, providing snacks, and making music.

Some of the craft stations will be:

Making Yule logs/Advent wreaths

Making mangers out of popsicle sticks

Making paper Advent chains with names of people to pray for each day during Advent

If you’re willing to help, let Pastor Marla know. If you’d like to come and participate, put it on your calendar – its free, fun, and open to all. You’re welcome to bring fam-ily members or friends for this fun day in preparation for the birth of Jesus.




Blue Christmas Service at Zion Lutheran Church This Blue Christmas service is especially for people who are struggling through the Christmas Season. December 21, 7:00 p.m. at Zion Luther-an, 28005 Old Town Road, Chisago City, MN 651-257-2713. The public is invited. Refreshments will be served after the service.

Family Pathways Foodshelf—end of year giving campaign.

BY YOUR SIDE; 40 years of being there!

Please bring your non-perishable food donations to the grocery cart in the Narthex on Sunday, December 2! Your help is appreciated! If you would like to give a financial donation you can put it in the offering plate with a note on the envelope designating it to Family Pathways Foodshelf. $10 feeds a family of 4 for one week. Thank you!




Naomi Circle is again collecting children’s pajamas and women’s personal items for the Refuge. In the past they have been extremely grateful for this and our Circle wants to say thank you to all of you who have given so generously to this and are hoping you will want to continue to contribute to this project this year.

There will be labeled boxes in the gathering area and we ask that you have your gifts here by Sunday, December 9th. Thank you and blessings to you for caring and sharing.

-Naomi Circle Members

For sleepless nights and first steps, we give you thanks. For children from the next county and children from around the globe, we give you thanks. For doubts about parenting and outpourings of love, we give you thanks. For healthy and whole children and children with special needs, we give you thanks. For patience and understanding, we give you thanks. For birth mothers and adoptive mothers, we give you thanks. For judges, social workers, therapists and doctors, we give you thanks. Most of all, for having adopted us as your own children, O God, we give you unending thanks. Amen.

This message is adapted from Living from the Heart of God: A journal for life’s stages, published by Women of the ELCA in 2007





My Girl Scout Troop #56332 is working on a Bronze Award which we earn by helping people in the community. We would like you to donate books to our book drive this summer and we will have a bin in the Gathering Area to help us with this. We are collecting used books to use for a book group we are starting at the Chisago Library, possibly called Book Marks - make your mark higher on a book. Through this group we plan to read to some kids and help other kids to read and get better at reading. We are collecting books to use in the book group for ages 3-11. We have decided to collect books for all ages as well to give away to shelters and senior groups. So if you donate books to the book drive, you are not only helping me and my troop, you'll be helping the kids in our book group and others around the community as well! Thank you, Kaitlin and Girl Scout Troop #56332




YOUR PICTURES! we would like to see your photos of our ministry! As you are involved with things at church or with people from church please submit pictures to the church office or Pastor Marla’s email! Snap a pic and send a jpeg and a description of the photos!! Thanks!




Reading the Bible is important. Reading the Bible is a big deal! Whether we’re reading it alone or in community, whether we’re hearing it in worship, engaging in group Bible study or doing personal daily devotions, reading the Bible is important for our relationships with God, neighbors and ourselves.

The Bible is the primary way God’s Word—Jesus Christ—is revealed to Christians. In fact, Martin Luther referred to the Bible as the manger in which Jesus lies, for it delivers the good news of salvation through Christ, the faith we need to trust this good news, and the guidance we need to respond to this good news as disciples.

This message is an excerpt of "Reading the Bible for love" by Laurie A. Jungling in the April 2018 issue of Gather magazine.

From the last page of our pew Bibles here are some Bible readings that you may want to look at this month

God’s Promises of: Love—Matthew 10:30-31; John 3:16; John 15:9, 13; 1 John 4:9

Forgiveness—Luke 15:3-7; Acts 10:43; Ephesians 1:7; 1 John 1:9

Salvation—Matthew 1:21; Acts 16:31; Ephesians 2:8; Hebrews 7:25 Peace—John 14:27; Romans 5:1-2; Ephesians 2:14; 2 Thessalonians 3:16 Joy—John 15:10-11; John 16:22; Romans 16:13; 1 Peter 1:8 Blessing—John 1:16; John 10:10; Romans 8:28; Ephesians 1:3 If you or someone you know doesn’t have a Bible, please take one from the pew!



Letter from a Sponsored Student Luiangilo Secondary School

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Thank you for your continued support of secondary education in the Iringa Diocese of the ELCT. By working shoulder to shoulder with your companions in Iringa you are helping to equip a new genera-tion of leaders in Tanzania. Here are words of thanks from our 3 sponsored students. -The BKB Scholarship Team

Lutangilo Secondary School P.O. Box 523, Iringa January 23-24, 2018

Taranta Kikoti Dear Sponsor, I hope your fine and in my side am fine and I continue well with my studies. My name is Taranta Iaudosy Kikoti am a form two at Lutangilo Secondary School.

The aim of this letter is to say thank you for your sponsorship God be with you, and in my life I have dreams that after accom-plishing my studies I want to be a nurse. This is my dream and for long time I like much to play to sing and to dance also to do oth-er exercise for my body health, dear sponsor am praying for God that can help me to reach my goals and God be with you in your different jobs and works because I see you help to me. Thank for that: GOD BLESS YOU IN OUR LIFE. BE BLESSED. Your faithful Taranta Kikoti

Lidia Mbangile Dear Sponsor, It is my hope that you are fine. I am fine too and I’m well with my studies.

I am to say thank you for pane (paying) me money for school fees for this year. For my heart am feeling happy, also I want to say thank you for your good heart. God bless you because you pane me school fees for the year 2017 to now 2018. So I say thank you for all to sponsor student. God bless you for all your life.

Your Loved Lidia Mbangile.


Salome Mpogole

Dear Sponsor, I hope that your fine, but also myself am ok! The aim of writing this letter is to say thanks for sponsoring me since I was at form one up to form three and I hope that you may sponsor me up to form 4. In a help of God.

And I hope that I will study hard in order to achieve my goals. And after my studies I want to be a teacher. Because I’m studying hard may you God help you in your life and he will increase your years in the world in order to help another people.

Your beloved Salome Mpogole



CHURCH NURSERY MINISTRY: If you Staff it They will Come! – (or so we hope)

A team of six people have volunteered to staff our nursery during Sunday worship. Starting in January the nursery was staffed each week, making it more welcoming for young families to attend worship. A big thank you to those who have volunteered. Please spread the word to those who have children of nursery age that they are welcome and invited to be part of our worship each week – and their kids will be well cared for.

Nursery Update…

The Nursery Volunteers will be available beginning at 9:15 each week. We’re stocked up with new toys and eager for young visitors. You are welcome to bring your small children to the nursery.

-Pastor Marla

When donating books to the Church Library please be sure to put your donations into the large basket in the Library and do not put books directly on to the shelves. The Library committee must take a look at them before they are put in our library. Keep Reading! Thanks!

Join us in the choir…

We need all the help we can get!


The YOUNG ADULTS group discussed a variety of possibilities moving forward – Bible studies on topics of interest at times that work, a summer camping weekend, a church baseball team, putting faith to work through a service project. This is a time to put your ideas forward and shape the direction of this group to meet your needs as this group is in its formative stages. Come and be part of it. Anyone who is confirmed and in their late teens, 20s, 30s, or 40s is welcome. Families are welcome. Singles are welcome. Friends are welcome. If you have ideas for an event or want more information please contact Matt Carlson at 651-247-2437 or


Endowment Fund








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