May 2022
Peace Lutheran Church's
Monthly Newsletter

Please let the church office know if you are in need of prayers, pastoral visits
or anything else.
Please call (354-2774) or email ( )
Happy Easter! Alleluia He is Risen!

Some may be wondering why we continue these phrases, Easter Sunday has come and gone. And while that may be true, the season of Easter actually lasts for 50 days! We continue to celebrate this Easter event until the day of Pentecost on June 5th.

How does that change how we experience Easter in our lives, how we worship and praise these upcoming several weeks? Can we experience this time differently? Can we focus more intentionally on this Christ event and reflect on what Jesus has done for us?

Can we live in this moment, without thinking about the next event in the liturgical calendar? We live in this tension of believing in the Resurrection – that Christ died and rose again for our sake – and the reality of suffering around us, and living our daily lives.

In reality we are taught that we are to live all of our lives as Easter people. And what does that mean? It means we live as a people, all parts of Christ’s Body working together toward a single purpose: love. We are the church, the body of Christ in the world. In the midst of all that surrounds us, sorrows and joys, failures and successes, we live as a people who love one another. 

Jesus gave us the greatest command: to love the Lord, our God, with all our heart, all our mind, all our strength and to love our neighbors as ourselves. This is living as Easter people.

May you live into this Easter season with a new perspective, a lasting desire to let Christ be with you and in you!

Pastor Linda
A few snapshots from April
Palm Sunday's "The Week Before Easter" Pageant:
Maundy Thursday/First Communion:
Easter Vigil:
Easter Sunday:
Confirmation Class of 2022:
Senior High Lock-In:
4th - 6th Grade Servant Night:
Cleaning up Lebanon Cemetary!
(Begins May 29th)
9:00 a.m. Worship at Peace
10:30 a.m. Outdoor Worship
at Shores of St Andrew
(Beginning May 29th)
4th - LAST Wednesday for all programs: Kid's Club, 4th-8th Classes
Supper: Hotdogs & treats!
8th - Kids sing at 9am Worship
Muffins with Moms at 10am
15th - High School Senior Recognition Sunday

Upcoming Youth Trips:
Serve Boldly Deadlines- We are asking for families to begin to offer their commitment to our summer trips, so we can better plan our fundraising goals. We are asking for a $100 deposit per student per trip. The deadline for Serve Boldly Milwaukee is May 1st, and the deadline for Serve Boldly Nashville is May, 15th. While these deadlines are flexible, we would prefer deposits sooner than later. Please contact Quentin with any questions
Serve Boldly Milwaukee (June 18-25) $480: Students in grades 6-8 are invited on this joint Mission Trip between Peace and Faith Lutheran Churches. We will travel by van to Milwaukee, and then partner with Serve Boldly for a week long Mission Trip. Serve Boldly is an organization that will lead us in serving our neighbors and spending evenings exploring the beautiful and historic city of Milwaukee! 
Serve Boldly Nashville (July 15-24) $520: Students in grades 8-12 are invited on this joint Mission Trip between Peace and Faith Lutheran Churches. We will travel by van to Nashville, with a pit stop in Kansas City for day. Our fun day in Kansas City will include Worlds of Fun Amusement Park and authentic Kansas City BBQ supper. In Nashville, we will partner with Serve Boldly for a week long Mission Trip. Serve Boldly is an organization that will lead us in serving our neighbors and spending evenings exploring the culture of Nashville. This includes a stroll down the world famous Broadway Street.
Contact Quentin if you are interested!

You thought the first act was exciting... just wait!
Join Pastor Todd as we continue our journey through the Bible,
starting with the exile and
exploring the New Testament.

Choose from 2 times each week! 
starting May 11
starting May 12
(6 sessions in all!)
Peace Book Club:
Book Club Selection for

Such a Fun Age
by Kiley Reid


May 26th
10:00 a.m.
Fireside Room
All are welcome!
These books can be signed out from the office. Please contact Jane for further information!
We are looking forward to exchanging both conversation & laughs with our neighboring church family! Meet us at Goat Ridge Brewery (located at 17 Central Avenue West) downtown New London. Give us a call if you have questions.
Wine. Women. & Word.
Do you need to Relax, Unwind, & Laugh?

Join us for relaxation, h'ordevers & wine, and conversation of the Fruit of the Spirit. First Fruit is Love!

We will meet in various homes starting Tuesday, May 24th at 6:30p. Location still TBD.
(If you are interested in Hosting, contact Jane!)

Come as you are!
Questions? Contact Jane Wardell 320-354-0425
Mission Committee:
Missionary for A Day
Peace’s ELCA missionary is the Rev. Dr. Elisabeth Johnson. She serves as a professor at the Lutheran Institute of Theology in Cameroon, West Africa. Pastor Elisabeth has visited at Peace on a home visit, and she preached one Sunday at a Sibley Park service. In February, we introduced a new opportunity to support her ministry. Forms will be available in the church office and online where you can choose a date to sponsor her in honor of, or in memory of, someone or some event. A gift of $7.00 per day you choose will help with her support. Checks may be made to “Peace – ELCA Missionary.” Please keep her in your prayers.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Dates Sponsored May:

1st - In Celebration of Cooper's Birthday (Art & Brenda Wiese)

Funeral Committee:
The Funeral Committee would like to thank all the volunteers who have signed up to support this ministry in various ways. Please be aware that you may be getting calls from different people requesting your help and serving with different groups than before. Thanks for being such an important part of caring for our grieving families.
Altar Guild:
Yo and Trudie are looking for others to be an Altar Guild Team Lead for the 10:30 a.m. Summer services at Shores of St. Andrew. If you are interested in learning more or helping out, please call or text Trudie at 320-905-5204.
This show is open to all!! Invite your friends and neighbors! Tickets will be available Sundays in the Gathering Space and from office staff during office hours.
Lutheran Night at the Stingers- Sign up in the office for a combined night with Faith Lutheran Church at the Willmar Stingers on Tuesday, June 14th! The cost per person is $25 and includes all you can eat popcorn, pop, Green Mill salads, and unlimited pop and water all on a reserved patio on the 3rd base line, mere inches away from the players! Please sign up ahead of time, and make checks payable to Faith Lutheran Church. 
Summer Canoe Trip- Quentin is leading a canoe trip on one of the most family-friendly bodies of water in MN. We will start on the Shell River near Menahga, MN and flow into the Crow Wing River ending the trip north of Staples, MN for a total of approximately 30 river miles along the scenic Crow Wing River State Water Trail. Together we spend time canoeing, sleeping under the stars, worshipping God around the campfire, and so much more! The river is shallow and calm, perfect for the seasoned adventurers and new explores alike. All ages are welcome, there's always space in the middle of a canoe for someone to ride along if they're not ready to paddle yet! For those that don’t want to canoe, all our stops are vehicle accessible. They can travel by car along with us on our journey and camp with us at night!
Please see Quentin for more details.
Christian Service Day of Quilting
First Thursday of the Month in the Fellowship Hall
9:00 a.m.
ALL are welcome!

Here is the April Council Report. If you have comments or questions please contact me or other council members. Also, I apologize for not writing a March report but Jo Ann and I were busy enjoying the nice weather in Florida so I will use that as my excuse.

WELCOME: Most of you know that Jon Austvold, Melanie Netland and Mary Semmler have joined the council as new members. A big thank you to them for volunteering their time. Also a big thank you to retiring council members Mike Collins, Mindy Radabough and Rick Swenson for their years of service to Peace Lutheran.

FINANCES: I have some good news and some not so good news to report. First some not so good news. Our income did not quite cover expenses for the month of March. One big reason was the large gas and electric usage bill. As I’ve written before, with our church returning to full programming following covid, our expenses will increase. On the good news side we did receive the federal government aid that’s been given to eligible recipients as covid relief. A big thanks to Treasurer Gail Olson and our accounting firm Affinson of Willmar for pursuing this funding of which we were eligible. Once again, please give to Peace as you can afford. We do appreciate all contributions. Prays said for Peace are appreciated, too.

ELECTRICAL PANEL: Our church electrical panels are defective and in need of replacement. This will be expensive. Our building insurance carrier plus the electrical inspector have informed us that they cannot continue insuring our church building if the replacement work is not done. The Property Committee solicited bids and the council accepted the low bid from Regal Electric for $21,835. While this is an unforeseen blow to the budget, because of a generous donation to the church, we already have half of the money raised to pay for the project.

PROPERTY COMMITTEE: Speaking of the Property Committee, they have identified several areas of our church campus that will sooner or later be in need of repair. Areas are: church steeple, three courses of brick at parking lot grade back side of classroom area, the parking lot, exterior stucco at choir room bump out. Another item that would be an improvement to the church, if we could raise the money, would be an electrical information sign at corner of highway 9 and county road 40. This would replace the old manually attended sign that is there now. Things to think about going forward.

SUMMER WORSHIP: The outdoor summer church services will again be held at Shores of St Andrew Bible Camp starting Memorial Day weekend. We have also been asked to participate in the New London Water Days Mill Pond Community Church Service. More information will be coming as details are worked out.

STAFFING NEEDS: With covid hopefully on the wane, a committee has been set up to look at our program staffing needs. Committee members are Pastor Todd, Melissa Straus, Rick Swenson and Raelin Van Meter.

PEACE BUS: A request has been made that we restart the Peace Bus to give rides to church for those needing them. The council will work on this. One thing though, to restart the Peace Bus a group of volunteers drivers will be needed. Who is willing to volunteer their time some Sunday mornings? A volunteer coordinator will be needed to manage the project.

CHURCH DIRECTORY: What are your thoughts on a new church directory? This is a long tabled (before covid) project. Should the directory be a physical booklet or in digital form? Make your thoughts known to the council, pastors or the church office. The council will see what suggestions we get, if any, and proceed from there.

NO AUGUST REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING: Instead of having a regular council meeting in August, the council decided to use our meeting time for a retreat. Instead of jumping from one business item to the next as happens at regular council meetings, we will use the time for more in-depth discussions at a place away from the church.

This concludes my April council report. Thanks for taking the time to read it.
Cliff Gesellchen Council President
2022 Church Council                                                                                     
Cliff Gesellchen, President -
Kevin Acquard -
Jon Austvold -
David Feist -
Margaret Knisley -
Melanie Netland -
Gail Olson -
Carol Roverud -
Mary Semmler -
Jennifer Stone -
Melissa Straus -
Raelin Van Meter -
We welcome new members through Baptism:
  • Theo Benjamin Ervin (4/17/22)
  • Declan David Hentges (4/24/22)
Thank you Loren Hjelle & Jim Van De Reit for volunteering time, strength, & know-how, hanging these altar displays from Trinity and Lebanon churches (the churches that merged 50 years ago to become Peace!). Be sure to check them out in the Youth Sanctuary!
In memory of Bill Miller, this piano was recently dedicated at Bethesda North Point in New London.
"Lessons Learned in Jamaica" by Heidi Haagenson
May 21st 10:00am - 12:00 pm
Peace Lutheran Fellowship Hall

Sunbeam Boys Home in Jamaica has been part of Peace's outreach in missions for years. This book highlights past experiences and lessons. This is an informal come-and-go event with a short presentation and a few readings. Author, Heidi Haagenson, will be available to sign books.
(Daughter of Jason & Ann Winge Johnson)

Graduation Open House
Sunday May 29th | 1:00 - 4:00 pm
13308 195th Ave NE, Hawick
If you would be interested in helping others get to church, please check the box in your pew book or let our office staff know!!
Click on the links below for the Birthdays and Anniversaries for this month!
Please note: the Peace Staff Meetings are on
Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m.

Other Important Dates Coming Up!

  • 1st - 11:30 a.m. Kingdom Tales Rehearsal (Sanctuary)
  • 3rd - 2:30 p.m. Dinner Theater Crew Meeting (Fellowship Hall)
  • 5th - 9:00 a.m. Peace Quilters' Christian Service Day
  • 8th - 9:00 a.m. Kids Sing! at Worship
  • 8th - 10:00 a.m. Muffins with Moms (Fellowship Hall)
  • 11th - 1:30 p.m. Divine Drama....Act II (Youth Sanctuary)
  • 12th - 6:00 p.m. Divine Drama....Act II (Youth Sanctuary)
  • 12th - 6:30 p.m. God on Tap (Goat Ridge)
  • 15th - 9:00 a.m. High School Senior Recognition Day
  • 15th - 11:30 a.m. Kingdom Tales Rehearsal/Costume Check/Tech
  • 17th - 5:30 p.m. Executive Committee Meeting (Fireside Room)
  • 17th - 6:30 p.m. Church Council Meeting (Fireside Room)
  • 18th - 1:00 p.m. Prayer Shawl Meeting
  • 18th - 1:30 p.m. Divine Drama.... Act II (Youth Sanctuary)
  • 18th - 6:00 p.m. Peace Choir Rehearsal (Sanctuary)
  • 18th - 7:00 p.m. Kingdom Tales Rehearsal Run (Sanctuary)
  • 19th - 6:00 p.m. Divine Drama.... Act II (Youth Sanctuary)
  • 21st - 10:00 a.m. "Lessons Learned in Jamaica" Book Signing Event (Fellowship Hall)
  • 22nd - 8:00 a.m. Peace Choir Rehearsal
  • 22nd - 7:00 p.m. Kingdom Tales Rehearsal
  • 23rd - 6:00 p.m. KINGDOM TALES DINNER & SHOW
  • 24th - 6:00 p.m. Stewardship Committee Meeting
  • 24th - 6:30 p.m. Wine Women & Word (at TBD)
  • 26th - 10:00 a.m. Book Club Discussion on "Such a Fun Age"
  • 26th - 6:00 p.m. KINGDOM TALES DINNER & SHOW
Staff Email addresses:

Pastor Todd:

Pastor Linda:

Jane Wardell:

Quentin Markfort

Lindsay Freeland

Gail Olson

Mike Lagergren
Contact Us:
100 Fourth Avenue SW, P.O. Box 286
New London, MN 56273
Phone: (320) 354-2774