Newsletter Contents

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Changes in Church, Prayer Chain, Sunday School, Nursery, “Pub Theology”, Spaghetti Dinner, Cemetery Plots, College Survival Care Packages, Lenten Schedule


Changes you might notice in the church


If you have stopped and looked around the church building before or after service you might have noticed some recent changes. I believe it’s worth pointing them out and explaining them:

  1. What’s with those two boxes? Well, one of them is our Lost and Found Box. If you think you may have left something in the church that’s the place to look! The other is a Hymn Request Box. If there is a particular hymn you are dying to hear write it down and put it in the Hymn Request Box and that way Tom, the Worship and Music Committee, and I will know!
  2. Does the Bulletin Board look different, or is it just my imagination? The bulletin board has been reorganized into sections—ELCA, New Jersey Synod, Community, and St. Stephen. This should make it easier for people to find the particular information they are looking for!
  3. I smell paint! The Property Committee has been touching up the education wing. They’ve painted the doors, the radiators, and the bathroom stalls.
  4. Ah, pastor, we appear to have too many crosses in the sanctuary! You may have noticed there is a cross, a hammer, nails, paper, and pencils, on the Pulpit side of the church. For Lent we are asking people to write down concerns and burdens and nail them to the cross. Then on Easter Vigil we will burn these pieces of paper—reminding us how Jesus took our burdens with him to the cross and transformed them in his resurrection.
  5. Why did our font turn into a sandbox? The sand in the baptismal font is a physical reminder for us of Jesus and the Israelites in the desert for forty days, and a reminder that we are dust and to dust shall we return. Also, in the early church Baptisms did not occur during Lent, because it was a time to prepare for Baptism. Having a font clogged with sand forces us to wait with eager longing for the coming baptismal waters.
  6. I noticed there are postcards in the back of the church. Yes, there are. Please take one, or more, and send them to people you would like to see in church. The postcards are pre-stamped and contain information about our Lenten services.



            We would like to start up a prayer chain, if you would like to be a part of it please give Linda Nietman your phone number to contact.  If you know of anyone who is in need of prayers at any time please let Pastor Chris and Linda Nietman know.  Linda’s phone number is 908-403-8163.



Have you walked by any of the Sunday School rooms on a Sunday morning when Sunday School is going on?  Our children are having fun and learning a lot about God and his people.  And they seem to be really enjoying all that they do.

Our 1st through 3rd grade students have started to be ushers in church.  They are doing a great job, be patient with them and their parents as they learn what they need to do.

Next is our 4th through 6th grade students learning how to be acolytes.  We have asked the older acolytes to help us teach them how to do this important job.

And make sure you are in church on February 26th, our children’s choir will be singing a new song.  They have been working hard to do a great job and every Sunday they are singing their hearts out.

Remember our children are the future of St. Stephen, we want them to be a part of everything now.



We would like to have a nursery during the church service again.  There will be a sign-up sheet in the narthex if you would like to help us out.  You don’t need to have a child in the nursery in order to help, just enjoy some quality time with the young children.  It is hard for the young to sit through a full church service so we would like the children to go to the nursery class after the children’s sermon until it is time for communion.  If you would like, we will have some stories you can read to the children or possibly a craft to give you something to do with them.  The more people who sign-up for this program the less times you will have to be in there.  Pastor Chris does post his sermon every week on the website, so you can still read it during the following week, this way you wouldn’t miss anything.  Please consider signing up to help.  This is another opportunity to help the congregation.


“Pub Theology” with Pastor Chris

Where:  Flanagans, 2501 Plainfield Ave., So. Plainfield

When:  March 6, 2012 – 8:00 – 9:00 PM

Topic:  What is?

This is an informal gathering for fellowship,

refreshments and discussion.  It’s open to the public,

so bring your friends and neighbors.


All-You-Can-Eat Spaghetti Dinner

Free-Will Offering will be taken.  Suggested Donation:  Adults $5.00, Children $2.00

All proceeds will go to the St. Stephens Scholarship Fund

Includes beverage & dessert

Sunday, March 11, 2012

  5:00 – 7:00 PM

  No Reservations Needed


St. Stephens Lutheran Church

3145 Park Ave.

So. Plainfield, NJ 07080

(908) 757-4474


Cemetery Plots Available


The church has deeds for several cemetery plots at Graceland Memorial Park in Kennelworth.

They are available to any member for just a transfer fee.  See Orvie Hoffman if interested.


College Survival Care Packages


The Social Ministry Committee would like to send out College Survival Care Packages to our college students before final exams this spring and in the fall as school begins.  We need to know who our college students are and where they are going to school.  Parents please fill out the College Survival Care Package form for your student.  The form is included in this newsletter.

Monetary donations are needed to help make this a successful project.  If you would like to contribute please talk to Dale Morin or Kathy Cortese.


College Survival Care Packages

Student’s Name:  _____________________________________________________


Birthdate:  _______________       Age:  _____      College year:  ________________


College Attending:  ___________________________________________________


Address Care Package should be sent to:








Lenten Schedule

St. Stephen Lutheran Church

3145 Park Ave., South Plainfield, NJ 07080

  • Wednesday Lenten soup supper (6pm) and Vesper Service (7:15pm) on February 29th, March 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th
  • Maundy Thursday—April 5th at 7:30
  • Good Friday—April 6th  at Noon and 7:30pm
  • Easter Vigil—April  7th 6:30pm
  • Easter Sunday—April  8th 10:30am