P.O.Box 472 1720 N. 43rd Rd, Leland IL 60531 815-246-9890 stpetrielutheranchurch@yahoo.com Sunday Worship 9:30am Sunday School 10:45am Wednesday Bible Study 7:00pm

Favorite Hymns About Jesus: Onward Christian Soldiers

Favorite Hymns About Jesus: “Onward Christian Soldiers”    April, 2020

By Sabin Baring Gould

 Mr. Baring-Gould wrote “Onward Christian Soldiers” in 1864 for a large Sunday school class to march from their school to the church in another village of Yorkshire, England.  He needed a song to sing and march to on the” Whitmonday” holiday.

Mr. Baring-Gould sat up that night to write something himself for the festival.  Within about fifteen minutes, “Onward Christian soldiers” was penned with at least six verses.  Leaflets were quickly printed and the Sunday school class marched and sang to the church.

From that point on, the popularity of the song traveled to America.  Today, we are still stirred by the inspired words of “Onward Christian Soldiers.”  We realize afresh the privilege we have in sharing the story of the cross of Calvary!

“Onward, Christian Soldiers,

Marching as to war

With the cross of Jesus

Going on before!”


  1. Stories of Popular Hymns, p. 99,100, by K. Blanchard, Zondervan Pub. House, 1939


A Thought from Your Pastor

Church drawing

                                               A thought from your Pastor!

Philippians 3:10 That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death. 

1 John 5:20  we know that the Son of God has come, and he has given us understanding so that we can know the true God. And now we live in fellowship with the true God because we live in fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ. He is the only true God, and he is eternal life.

We don’t have to look far in America to meet a person from another culture. Those of us who have lived in the same culture all our life can’t imagine how difficult the transition must be: a new language, new money, new people, new customs, new almost-everything. The first day? Challenging! A year later? Gaining knowledge! Five years later? Still gaining knowledge!

It takes time and desire to learn new things. And the same goes for knowing God. The apostle Paul wrote that his chief goal in life was to “know [Christ]”-His power and His presence in fellowship. Paul spent his pre-conversion years learning the Old Testament and his post -conversion years getting to know the One to whom the Old Testament pointed. And how long did Paul imagine it would take—for the rest of his life!

Philippians 3:13-14 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.

He forgot everything else and made knowing Christ his rest-of-life goal.

Now that we are not getting out like we use to or even being able to go to church, I believe Snoopy has a great idea.


When you smell the roses also take time to get to know Jesus better.  Spend a little time to read the Bible and pray.  We will realize the more we are into His Word the worries of life will fade.  They may not be completely gone but they will fade.

Carolyn and I are praying that God will bless each of you and also keep you healthy, as we pray for you please pray for us also.

Pastor Gerry and Carolyn












Long & Short Prayers

Prayer must always be from the heart.  A short prayer is said before you eat or as you meet a friend unexpectantly at the store or at work.  The line of communication stays open between Jesus and you.

Longer prayers are necessary each day with Jesus to talk things through along with reading the Bible and devotions.  Most folks like to do that early in the day, but some do it at the close of the day.

Luke 6:12 states: “Now it came to pass in those days that (Jesus) went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.”  There may be a time when extra prayer is necessary to pray through a situation in your life or another person’s life.

Why should we pray?  Jesus cares.  He is God’s Son and He died for you, forgives your sins, rose from the dead and is alive!  He promises to be with you always.  He is as close as the mention of His name. Jesus is only a prayer away.

In Jesus’ Name.

~cms                                                                                                                                                             March 2020

Favorite Verse



 Favorite Verse                                                                                                                   February, 2020

Do you have a favorite verse that is meaningful or strengthens you through a
difficult time? Are the verse or verses a promise that help focus your
thoughts in the right direction instead letting you fall apart? God’s Word can
give you a clear path to change an old habit when you’re down in the “dumps”
and start a new road by letting the Word of God bring assurance and
hope. Sometimes, you have to say the verse several times along with a
prayer. Singing a familiar hymn can encourage your heart too. Just recently,
I was tempted to throw my hands up in discouragement. Then the Lord said,
“wait a minute – remember – what’s your favorite verse right now? — what’s
your favorite hymn? — keep going and remember – I am with you through
thick and thin …. (Hebrews 13:5: “for He said, ‘I will never leave you nor
forsake you.”)

I may think, “Well, okay, Jesus, I remember that you always stay close no
matter what! And, oh yes – I don’t always follow this thought pattern correctly
— so guess what?” ….. Jesus forgives me (1John 1:9) “If we confess our sins,
He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all
unrighteousness.” Also, our heavenly Father” has removed our sins as far
from us as the east is from the west.” Psalm 103:12. You can’t help loving
Him more every day for those promises!

So, how about you? As imperfect as we are, Jesus still loves us and is our
Savior when we ask Him into our hearts. The perfect Son of God died for our
sins, rose again and promises to come back at the resurrection – wow, we will
be with Him forever and ever. Each day is a new day and has it’s challenges.
If I can just remember, “He walks with me and He talks with me and He tells
me I am His own, And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other – has
ever known!” There it is – another song! Oh, aren’t those hymns great?

So, remember those Bible verses. Keep them close to your heart. Your
favorite verse may change and the number of verses may grow. Just keep
walking in the “shelter of His arms.”

Heavenly Father: Help us put you first in 2020 for nothing else matters but
your glory in our lives. May we start everyday with you. Forgive us our sins
and let us be your witnesses each new day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Matt 7:7


1950 Ford Pickup

1950 Ford Pickup

 By Paul Nash, Director of Home Missions, AFLC            January, 2020

“For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline,” 2Timothy 1:7

Floyd was a man who lived just a mile from where I was raised.  Floyd and his wife, Edna, enjoyed the simple life of farming, raising chickens, and life on the prairies of North Dakota.  Unable to have their own children, they enjoyed visits from the Nash family and we often got them to laugh along with our antics and jokes.

One day, Floyd came over to talk with me.  His trusty old 1950, Ford pickup with a Flathead V-8 was in trouble.  Floyd had replaced the distributor cap, the points and rotor, and even new wires and spark plugs; but it still would not start!   The engine was spinning over, but it wouldn’t start.  He asked me what to do?  Floyd replaced the battery and put on new cables from the battery down to the engine.  The engine was spinning over but it would not start.  He asked me what to do?  I suggested to Floyd that he put on a new fuel pump and filter.

Floyd went to town, got the parts, and put on the new fuel pump and filter, but the pickup would still not start.  At this point Floyd was exhausted and said, “Paul, here’s the title for the pickup you can have it.  I am tired of it.   I am frustrated, all you have to do is to figure out why it won’t run and the pickup is yours.”

Floyd’s mind was set and I wasn’t going to argue with him.  I thanked him for the offer and again started considering the options.  One day, I had my younger brother go with to look at the pickup.  While we were working on it, we realized the gas was not getting to the fuel pump!  The pickup hose in the tank had broken off and in spite of all the new parts; it couldn’t draw the gas up to the engine to run.

Aren’t we sometimes in the same position?  Do you ever find yourself unable to draw from the power that God wants to give us in our spiritual lives?  Usually, it’s because we haven’t taken the time and effort to spend time alone to feed our souls and cleanse our conscience so that we can be effective in running the race that Christ has put before us.

May I encourage you to make sure there are no roadblocks in your relationship with the Lord?  Are there broken relationships or besetting sins that are keeping God’s power from flowing into your life?  You have been designed to give honor and glory to the Lord, but you need His grace to be in His presence moving forward.

This true story was written by Pastor Nash who gave us permission to share this from one of his weekly newsletters, KNEE MAIL.  We sincerely thank him.                                                                                                                                                                                                     Lord Jesus: Help us to put you first in 2020 for nothing else matters but your glory in our lives.  Help us to start everyday with you.  Forgive us our sins and lead us to be your witnesses each new day.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen   ~cms

A Child Is Born

December 2019 Devotions

A Child Is Born


“For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given;  And the government will be upon His shoulder and His name shall be called, Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace .”

(Isaiah 9:6 NKJV)


Quote that verse as you go through the Christmas

Season. There are many things that take your mind off the reason for the season, but do they really need to distract you?

As you go shopping, decorate, bake, visit friends and enjoy all the activities for the holidays, just ask Christ to keep His birthday at the center of all these things.  As you enjoy your family, children or even grandchildren, remind them of how much you love them and how much the baby born in a

stable loves them.  Jesus protects them every day and He arose from the grave and promises to be in our hearts if we ask him.  Do you know folks who are miserable?  Well, life may not be fantastic all the time, but with Jesus it is worth it for we can know our eternal destiny.

Have a joyful, peaceful “Christ”mas.

We care so if you need a place to celebrate Jesus’ birth, visit us this December.
cms / St. Petrie

“The Letter”

Dear Friend,

If I were to write you a letter and share the most important thing I could ever tell you, it would be this.  Accept God’s Son, Jesus Christ, as your Savior today.  You have heard how He came to earth as a baby and grew up to be a man teaching others about God the Father’s love for each one of us.  Jesus even gave His life at the age of 33 for us on the cross for our sins, because He loves you and me.  He is the sinless Son of God.  But He arose victoriously 3 days later on Easter morn proving He was the Son of God.  He promises to always be with us through the power of the Holy Spirit.  When we die, we can know for sure that we will go to heaven and be with Jesus and those folks who have accepted Christ through the years.

So, my dear friend, I truly love you and care about you.  I know this letter is something to think about, but don’t put it off.  Today is the day of salvation.  Believe and put your faith in Jesus Christ.


Your Friend in Christ,

Put your name here


The Cross


The cross is the symbol of our Christian Faith.  Without what Jesus did by dying on the cross for our sins we would not have eternal life.  Being a good person or giving a large sum of money to help others or trying to live a moral life are fine things to do, but nothing you can do will be enough to assure you a place in heaven.  We have all sinned.  God sent His only son that whosoever believes in Him will have life forever.  God did not send His only son, Jesus, into the world to condemn the world but that through Him, we might be saved.  (from John 3:16,17) All those good deeds are fine and we will want to do them when we believe.  Most importantly, we want others to see their need to know Jesus and believe in Him as their Savior.

Have you thought you could get to heaven without the CROSS?  My friend, you are mistaken.  Come to Jesus.  His love is there for you.  Life is not perfect.  Ask Him to help you along this way in life and He will.  You have to believe in Him.  Please sincerely have faith in Him.

Call us at 815 246 9890.  If we aren’t there at that very moment, leave a message, and we promise to get back with you!

Your friends at St. Petrie Lutheran


The Hearer & The Doer

The Hearer & The Doer     September, 2019


James 1: 22-24 says:  But be doers of the word (Bible), and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.  For if one is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror.  For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.”


I forget to be a “doer” when my prayer and Bible reading time with Jesus are neglected and I try to do something in my own strength.  I get lazy or too self-sufficient.  I have forgotten Ephesians 2:8,9 where I am saved by grace and it’s a free gift of God and not of works lest any man should boast.  Jesus reminds me to look in the mirror of His image and be filled with His Holy Spirit to be a truly effective “doer.”


Verse 25 of James 1 completes the focus on Jesus whose death and resurrection for my sins personally gives me that eternal hope of heaven.

“But the one who looks into the perfect law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.”


September is the time for school to begin.  May it be your time to begin anew to “do” His will and learn to lean on Him for everything.




Trust In The Lord

Proverbs 3:5,6      July, 2019


“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and he will direct your paths.”


As we celebrate the birth of our nation this month, may we lean on the everlasting arms of Almighty God in our personal lives as well as offer prayers for our country.  As the old hymn by Helen Lemmel says, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus.  Look full in His wonderful face.  And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.”  Look to the Lord for the future and not just for quick fixes.


What really does matter?  Bottom Line – It’s Jesus Christ –embracing Him as your Savior and sticking close to Him.

He promises to always be with us!