St. Paul's Lutheran Church

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July 23, 2023

8th Sunday after Pentecost

Sermon Notes for Sunday

  • Sermon Notes

    Sermon based on Matthew 16:13-20

    Today we hear about Peter’s confession of faith and how, like Peter, we are given the Spirit of Christ to confess the one true Christian faith boldly and confidently, and that even when we do not confess as we ought, our God and Savior continues to forgive, strengthen, and renew us so that we learn to confess His name before others.

Serving Schedule

This Week’s Servants

  • ELDER: Alan Marxhausen
  • Usher: Chad Calander
  • Reader: Sarah Marxhausen
  • Organist: Jane Marquardsen
  • Acolyte: Lauren F./Brantley F.
  • Sound Booth:
  • Altar Guild: Laurie Maurer
  • Fellowship: Sharon Moe

Next Week’s Servants

  • Elder: Alan Marxhausen
  • Usher: Jay Nelson
  • Reader: Landon/Lane Marxhausen
  • Organist: Sue Drury
  • Acolytes: Lane Marxhausen
  • Sound Booth: Waylon Dreyer
  • Altar Guild: Laurie Maurer
  • Fellowship: Kris M./Joyce M.

If you are unable to keep your scheduled serving day, please contact the church at least a few days before the service so there is time to find a replacement. Thank you!

Statistics for Last Week


  • Regular Offering: $1,596.54
  • Online Giving: $100.00
  • Non-Budget: $0.0
  • Memorial: $0.00
  • Scholarship: $65.05
  • Building Fund: $20.00


  • Worship Attendance: 55
  • Sunday School: n/a
  • Youth Group: n/a
  • Midweek Bible Study: n/a
  • Men’s Bible Study: n/a

Please make every attempt to have your kids in Sunday School each week, and your teens in Youth Group.

Important News & Announcements


Please ask Pastor if you would like a printed copy of the announcements. Thank you.

Stewardship Thought for This Week

Romans 8:18 – “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” It is very easy to get caught up in the present and lose track of our ultimate destiny in the kingdom of God. St. Paul encourages us to keep eternity in mind. This certainly has an application to our support for the Gospel — if we keep our focus on “the glory to be revealed” we will see our tithes and offerings in a new light.

Sunday School/VBS News

Children’s and Youth Sunday School is over for summer, but children and youth are always encouraged to attend adult Bible Study.  Instill a good habit of churchly participation!  Bring them to Bible Study.

This year’s VBS theme is “God’s Living Water,” and is about some of the times in the Bible where God used water to bring about wonderful things for His people. VBS begins Monday, August 14th and runs for three days. It starts at 5:30 pm with a meal and opening. There will be crafts, games, music, and lessons for children ages 5 and up. Please invite friends and spread the word! If you are able to assist this year, please contact Amy Foster, Pastor Carlson, or just call or email the church. We will have a VBS meeting on Wednesday, August 9th at 6:00pm

Summer Bible Study Opportunities

There is no time like the present to be in the Word, studying and growing in Christ.  To that end, we will continue to have our Thursday morning class where we study the Book of Concord.  As Lutherans, we believe the Book of Concord is a correct exposition of the Holy Scripture and thus it’s important we are familiar with it.  Join us Thursdays at 9:00 am and bring your Book of Concord with you.  If you don’t have one, speak to pastor about getting one for you.

Our final Adult Bible Study on the Lord’s Supper will be this Sunday. We will look at the practical side of the Lord’s Supper.

Men, join us Thursdays at 6:30pm for Men’s Bible Study. We are studying the Book of Romans.

Lifetree Café will begin in September!  Members are invited to attend, have great social time, and talk about some of the deeper things of the faith.

Morning Prayer @ St. Paul’s

Join us at the church or online every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 7:30 for morning prayer, a short service of responsive prayers, hymns, and readings.

Senior Social Day

Seniors, why not come to the church every 2nd Thursday at 10am for a time of good fun, fellowship and games, coffee and treats, and to meet other Milaca seniors? We’ve got a good group of people but would love it if you could come too! Bring your favorite board game or card game with you.

We will not have a monthly Newsletter during the summer months. Important announcements, schedules, and meetings will be printed/emailed in the weekly news.

Subscribe to the official newspaper of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod! Visit to get regular updates, notices, synodical news, and more!

Subscribe to the Minnesota North District e-News service! Visit to subscribe to regular emails, updates, and more!

Pastor Carlson has been publishing a regular devotion online and emailing it to subscribers. That’s right! This is a great way to start of your day in the Word and prayer. Simply go to or speak to Pastor, and you’ll start to receive a regular devotion in your email inbox.

Also visit and memorize a verse of Scripture a day!

The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, 68th Regular Convention is July 29 through August 3. Pastor Carlson, along with a lay delegate from our circuit, will be attending the convention and representing St. Paul’s and our circuit. The convention is in Milwaukee, WI at the Wisconsin Center/Arena.

To keep up with the convention timeline, to read the overtures, and to learn about the various candidates who will fill positions nationally, please visit LCMS National Convention – The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Also, please pray for safe travel for all who are preparing to head to Milwaukee in late July.

Prayer Requests

Tom LitfinGlen Hamann
Family of Bev LaurentGary Anderson
Gary Asher
The BemboomsLCMS National Convention
Please keep the prayer list updated by contacting the church via email ( or calling 320-982-6703. You may also speak to Pastor or an Elder. Anyone missing on this list? Let Pastor or an Elder know right away!

DAILY LUTHERAN CHAPEL SERVICE… You can listen to chapel services from Concordia Theological Seminary-Fort Wayne, IN live weekdays at 8:35 am Central and on-demand at and the Lutheran Public Radio mobile app.

The latest Issues, Etc. Journal is out!

Was the 16th-century reformer Martin Luther innovating or in error when he added the word “alone” to his translation of Romans 3:28: “For we hold that one is justified by faith alone apart from works of the law”? Pastor Will Weedon answers that question in his article, “Sola Fide—By Faith Alone.”

Also in this edition, Dr. Donna Harrison recounts God’s persistent call out of Catholicism, Scientism, Mysticism and Evangelicalism through His Word into the Lutheran Confession.

Click here to download the latest Issues, Etc. Journal for free.

Weekend Devotion

Prayer: Heavenly Father, keep us steadfast in Your Word so that we may not fall for the lies and deceit of the devil and bring discord to Your Church. In Christ’s name, Amen.

SCRIPTURE: “For there must in fact be divisions among you, so that those of you who are approved may be evident.” – 1 Corinthians 11:19

Discord is a deplorable offense among Christians because it puts them in the worst possible light and makes it impossible for them to steer clear of factions and heresies. Divisions are an offense to the world’s wisest and best who mock God’s church and discredit His Word when they see fighting and disunity amongst God’s children. They say, “Look at how they envy and slander and gossip about one another and eat each other up and spit each other out! How can their doctrine be true and the God they claim to worship be real if this is how they go on?”

Yet our Lord tells us that He did not come to bring peace but division, and Paul tells us that discord in the church is bound to occur. For wherever the Word of God has a foothold, there the devil will also be waging war against it. The devil uses factions and people — YES, the devil uses people to create discord. How does he do it? Paul tells us in early on in 1 Corinthians. It’s always about the teaching, that horrible cuss word of the 21st century Christian, “theology,” a word that has become taboo in the church because many in the Christian Church refuse to believe as God’s Word teaches. Many Christians today are very picky and choosy about what they will believe. They’ll believe some things in the Scripture, but not all things of the Scripture. They’ve allowed human reason to dictate truth rather than the Scripture to inform human reason, and this is much of the source of discord and division among Christians. This was the problem in the Corinthian church, the Galatian church, and even in the Thessalonian church. Human reason, opinions, and a lack of faith was getting in the way of God and His Spirit and people were questioning the very things they were taught by the Apostles.

And this is how the devil works. He introduces the age-old question, “Did God really say…” to every doctrine of God’s Word and brings confusion, chaos, and discord to the Church in the hope that people will get so disgruntled and disparaged by it all that they leave the church and the faith. It’s always been this way. There has never been a congregation full of such purity and unity where all its members believe the same about all things, not that they shouldn’t or that they shouldn’t strive to believe in unity, but because the devil is there waging against God’s Word, there will always be disagreements and discord.

As God’s people, we must guard against this fatal evil, the work of the devil to bring discord. And we do this by being in the Scripture. For confessional Lutherans, we have the Lutheran Confessions which help us by giving us clear statements of doctrine and theology from the Scripture so that we have a way of confessing what we believe in a consistent way. The reformers of the 16th century assembled the Book of Concord as a defense against discord in the church, to keep people unified and to ward off those false teachings and the teachers who teach them. But they were no fools. They knew the church would continue to suffer violence regardless of how clear our confession might be. Thus, we must always pray and be diligent, and we must believe that even amongst discord and obvious workings of the devil amongst us, God is still here, fighting and defeating Satan in the Church, in His holy kingdom.

This Week’s Activities

  • Lifetree Cafe planning Meeting Wednesday @5:30
  • Adult Bible Study this Thursday at 9:00 AM.
  • Morning Prayer, Tuesday & Thursday at 7:30am
  • Men’s Bible Study this Thursday at 6:30pm

Coming Events

  • LCMS National Convention, July 31st through August 3rd.
  • Vacation Bible School coming in August

“All things are produced from waters, and water was made by the Only-begotten, whose Father gave order and calls all men to be born anew by water.”

— St. Clement of Rome (AD 35 – 99)