Paul believes that in Christ he has been made free from all human control, but instead of exercising that right to serve himself he gives that freedom away in order to preach the gospel free of charge. This call to living in Christian freedom for the sake of serving the other is at the heart of Christian community – non-consumerist relationships that live for the other, trusting in the love of the other, and fundamentally living in the self-giving love of God in Christ.

Readings and sermon were delivered by Pastor Aaron Mueller.

Order of service:

Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, Feb 4, 2024


Reflection on God's Forgiveness is from Isaiah 44:21-23
Psalm reading is from Psalm 147:1–11
Old Testament reading is from Isaiah 40:21–31
Epistle reading is from 1 Corinthians 9:16–27
Holy Gospel is from Mark 1:29–39

Songs and Hymns:

Christ Our Hope In Life And Death
Jordan Kauflin, Keith Getty, Matt Boswell, Matt Papa, Matthew Merker
© 2020 Getty Music Hymns and Songs, Getty Music Publishing, Jordan Kauflin Music,
Love Your Enemies Publishing, Matthew Merker Music, Messenger Hymns
Used with permission, CCLI license # 20286740
What Wondrous Love Is This
Text is from A General Selection of Hymns and Spiritual Songs, 1811
Tune is from Southern Harmony, 1835
Public domain
The Compassion Hymn
Text and tune by Stuart Townend, Kristyn Getty, Keith Getty
© 2008 Thankyou Music
Used with permission, CCLI License # 20286740
Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me
Text by Augustus M. Toplady
Tune by Thomas Hastings
Public domain
I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light
Text and tune: Kathleen Thomerson, 1934
© 1970, 1975 Celebration
Used with permission: LSB Hymn License #110001220
Oh, How Good It Is
Text and tune by Keith Getty, Kristyn Getty, Ross Holmes, Stuart Townend
© 2012 Getty Music
Used with permission, CCLI license # 20286740
Lord, Dismiss Us with Your Blessing
Text: John Fawcett
Tune: Henry T. Smart
Public domain


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Sunday, Feb 4:
Worship Service: 9 AM to 10:15 AM
Sunday School: 10:45 AM to 11:45 AM
Adult Bible Study: 10:45 AM to 11:45 AM
Youth Confirmation: 11:45 AM to 12:45 PM


MELHS Open House: 1 PM to 3 PM

Metro East Lutheran High School invites you to an Open House today, Sunday, February 4th. Stop by anytime between 1:00 and 3:00 PM to tour our campus, meet our teachers, chat with administrators, and get answers to all of your questions about the Knight life.

For more information, call the school office at 618-656-0043 or email

Discovering Christianity: 6 PM

If you’re interested in joining St. James, looking to learn more about the Bible and Christianity, or just want to hang out and talk about theology, let Pastor Aaron know.

Wednesday, Feb 7:
Men’s Bible Study: 6:30 AM to 7:30 AM


Youth Group: 6:30 PM to 8 PM
Ministry Spotlight – Altar Guild

The role of the Altar Guild extends far beyond creating an aesthetically pleasing atmosphere, encompassing a variety of tasks that contribute to the smooth functioning of worship services. One of the primary responsibilities of the Altar Guild is preparing and maintaining the communion trays and their contents. This task involves attention to detail and a deep sense of reverence. The Guild not only sets up the trays but also ensures their cleanliness.

In addition to communion preparations, the Altar Guild takes charge of adorning the narthex and the church entrance with thematic decorations. These visually appealing displays serve as a warm welcome for worshippers and create an atmosphere that reflects our St. James community. The Guild’s creative touch contributes to the overall ambiance of the church, enhancing the worship experience for the congregation.

They are also instrumental in preparing for special ceremonies, ensuring that every detail aligns with the significance of the event.

The work of the Altar Guild requires a collaborative effort, and they are always in need of more helping hands. Volunteers, whether able to commit to one Sunday a month or desiring a more involved role, are welcome to join the team. Nic Schatte, the contact person for the Altar Guild, can be reached at

Christianity and Islam – Craving Answers, Craving God Episode 84

As a Christian, what is your understanding of the religion of Islam? Both religions are descended from Abraham. What are the similarities and differences between Christianity and Islam? If you had a chance to witness your faith to a Muslim, how would you do it? That’s the topic of our most recent episode of Craving Answers, Craving God. Check it out!

Ministry Clarity – Intentionally Moving Forward with Mission & Ministry

St. James held a congregational ministry planning event/dinner late last year. Our discussion was led by Pastor Tom Eggebrecht from Lutheran Church Extension Fund. The purpose of this event was to present opportunities, previously defined by the Ministry Planning Team, that can help us bridge the gap between where we are now in ministry and where we want to be based on our Mission Pillars (Community, Healing, Restoration). This was a very successful event that provided great insight.

The Ministry Planning Team is now in the process of taking the information gathered at the event and using it to create a ministry plan for each of our three pillars. This is a very exciting process that should be completed by mid-Spring. At that time, it will be presented to the congregation for review/approval.

We encourage everyone to please: