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Zion Evangelical
Lutheran Church
     November, 2020
Table of Contents
A Prayer of Thanksgiving
October Council Meeting Minutes
ZWIC Meeting Minutes
Worship Committee Meeting Minutes
Prayer Requests
November Church Helpers
Sunday School News 
Church & Area Happenings
October Financial Report
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A  sincere, heartfelt thank you to all members, family and friends of Zion for the love and encouragement and continued support of this beautiful church.  
Thank you to all prayer warriors who continue to lift up our family of faith in prayer as we  continue to love and serve our Lord and each other with open hearts and minds as we begin the new year.  God's Blessings continue........

Our attitude about prayer has often been characterized by saying, “well, all we can do now is pray!”  Prayer is not the hopeless act of desperation.  Prayer is a gift that God has given to us as a means to approach the throne of grace with confidence – like that of a child coming to her parents sharing concerns, victories, defeats and every part of life.  It is an opportunity to express the deepest heartache and the greatest joy.  Prayer is a conversation between the Creator and the created....and the conversation began with God, for us, in Christ Jesus.
Day One:  January 5:   This day is focused on confession.  We have made our lives, our relationships – and even the church- in our own image.  We confess that the church belongs to Jesus and not to us.  We gather to lay down our pride, our sin and our agenda and ask the Lord of the church for forgiveness, which He gives freely and with mercy.
Day Two:  January 6:  This is a day of petition.  Pray for your congregation, for the leaders, for those who carry out ministries, for the Sunday School, for the Confirmation leaders and students, and for those leading small groups.  Pray for those in hospital and nursing home ministries.  Pray for all those connected to our church that they might know God's redeeming love for all in Christ.
Day Three:  January 7:  This is a day for vision.  Pray that the Holy Spirit will again move through the hearts and minds of leaders and pastors, that God's vision for His church might be revealed and fulfilled.  This is a time of prayer for renewal, revival and encouragement.  Pray for God's vision.
Zion Lutheran Church Council Meeting
December 2, 2020 – 6:30 PM
Council Members Present:     Walter Strebe, Carol Brown, Jake Ferg, Ashleigh Ferg,                                                                                                 Jerry Suehs, Cindy Levezow
Council Members Excused:   Jesse Knudsen
Others in attendance:              Jane Suehs, Pastor John Hielsberg,  Esther Schmidt,
Paul & Patricia Hirte, Diane Beyer, Nancy Rasmussen
The meeting was called to order by Council President Walter Strebe at 6:30 PM.
The opening prayer was led by Pastor John Hielsberg.
Motion by Jerry Suehs, second by Jake Ferg to approve the agenda.  Motion carried.
The secretary’s report was reviewed from the December newsletter.   Motion by Jerry, second by Jake to accept the secretary’s report.  Motion carried.
Open Forum
The ZWIC offered to take care of the Christmas sacks for the children at the Christmas eve service.
Suggestion was made to put up cameras in order to keep track of  who is coming and going and what is being brought in or taken out of the church.
We discussed also that everyone should sit far enough apart in church during church services to keep a 6 foot distance.   Ashleigh will find signs to post around the church and a note will be put in the bulletin.
Old Business
The new storm windows will be put on in the spring.  Walter talked with a gentleman that suggested waiting due to difficulty working with the glass in cold weather.   He will get a quote in the spring.
The parsonage walk thru has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns.
Discussion about the terms of the Council Members and if we could present to the congregation at the December 13 congregational meeting a plan to “freeze” the Council until possibly July.  Diane and Nancy explained the terms of the Council members as stated in the constitution.   We will suggest a semi-annual congregational meeting in July.
Motion by Jerry to present  to the congregation at the December 13 congregational meeting that we “freeze” the current Council until a July congregational meeting,  by extending the current Council members’ terms  in order to continue to work toward a resolution of  the current  financial issues of the church.   Second by Jake.   Motion carried. 
Carol shared an update on the call committee.   We currently have 4 people signed up and would like to find at least one more member to volunteer for this committee.
Three letters were handed out to review that will be sent to Tedd Lees regarding vacation pay; and  two individuals  regarding the mask fund.    Discussion continued regarding different options to deal with other parties involved.   Ashleigh will do revisions and get the letters ready to have the Council sign so they can be sent in December.
New Business
The 2021 budget was presented for review.  
Nancy offered to continue doing the Secretary job, but would like to begin getting paid in 2021.    Money budgeted for the paid positions was discussed and will be adjusted.
Thank you to the finance committee for putting together the budget.  Motion by Jerry to accept the budget proposed and present it to the congregation for approval, with adjustments.   Second by Carol.   Motion carried.
The outdoor flood lighting in front of the church does not work.  Faith Technologies rewired the church, years back.  Ashleigh will call Ryan who works with Faith Technologies to ask about what to do.
Thank you to Paul and Patricia Hirte for the volunteer service doing the yard work around the church and parsonage.
Chris Roehl and Jim Hass will be  asked to do the snow removal during this snow season.
Salary for the audit done by the  Treasurer will be determined after the first of the year.  Esther has been doing a full audit of the 2020 finances of the church.    We discussed moving forward with an outside certified audit.   For now, the treasurer will be paid at least the regular salary.   After the first of the year, an hourly pay for the extra audit work will be discussed.   Motion by Cindy to pay Esther the regular treasurer pay from when she started as Treasurer, second by Ashleigh.  Motion carried.  
The Audit Committee is currently Buzz Jossie and Ashleigh Ferg.   (Cheryl Hass resigned).   With Ashleigh being on Council, she should not be on the Committee.    Ashleigh will continue to help until new people are found.   The request for volunteers will go in the bulletin.
The Worship Committee has worked to prepare for the December 20, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Services.    Volunteers will be  needed for all of the services.   Rehearsal for Christmas eve service will be Saturday, December 19 from 9 until noon.
Discussion about the Scrip Account and whether we should continue offering Scrip.  We will ask the Women’s group of the church if they would be interested in taking over the administration of the Scrip account.
Treasurer’s Report was presented for approval.  Esther requested having paper bills sent from Solarus.  Motion by Cindy, second by Carol to go back to getting a paper invoice and paying the bill by check.  Motion carried.   Thank you to Pastor John for picking up the batteries for the church’s smoke alarm system.   Motion by Jerry, second by Jake to approve the Treasurer’s report.   Motion carried.
Motion by Jerry, second by Cindy to adjourn.  Motion Carried.
We closed with the Lord’s Prayer.
Next Council meeting will be on January 6, 2021 at 6:30 PM.
Submitted by Nancy Rasmussen
Zion Ev. Lutheran Church
December 13, 2020
Congregational Meeting
Meeting called to order by President Walter Strebe at 10:16 AM.
Walter explained that money raised by the church at the Symco Thresheree was deposited into the general fund and sent to “Lucy” and “Compassion For Africa” without approval by the Council.  
Tedd Lees was paid for 2 weeks vacation after he quit in August, also without approval by the Council.   His contract ended in May, 2020 and he was previously paid (2019) for two weeks vacation during his one year contract period.     Mr. Lees will be sent a letter to reimburse the church.
Documents from the church office were shredded by former employees and members of the church.   
Money was raised through the church by sewing masks.   That money was deposited and most of it was spent without the Council's knowledge and (according to the Manawa Police Chief) would classify as a Class C Felony citation should the Council pursue charges.   Letters will be sent to those individuals responsible for reimbursement of those funds ($12,650.00) before legal action is taken.
Questions regarding this “Mask fund”:    
  • Do we need to hire an attorney?    An attorney will be hired if needed according to the responses received from the letters sent.
  • Why isn't former treasurer receiving a letter?   Former treasurer will be involved if legal proceedings are commenced.
  • What about items missing from the church?    Will be addressed if legal action is needed.
  • Request to “freeze” the current Council positions until current events are closer to resolution.   
  • Will individuals involved continue to be voting members of this church?   The Council has discussed a suspension of membership until restitution is made to the church.
Motion by Kory Klemm, second by Norris Brown to move forward with sending letters to those involved and then  proceed with legal action if needed.  Motion Carried.
Motion by Paul Hirte, second by Jane Suehs to freeze the current Council members until a semi-annual congregational meeting is held in July, 2021.   Motion Carried.
Kristine Hein requested permission to reboot the church's electronic sign.   No guarantees on the outcome.   Everyone agreed to power down the sign and try setting up again.   Kristine Hein would also like to purchase the Microsoft software for the church to use and count the cost as a contribution for tax purposes.   All agreed.
Thank you to everyone who decorated the church for the Christmas season!
Motion to adjourn by Jeff Suehs, second by Norris Brown.   Motion Carried.  (10:55 AM)
Submitted by:   Nancy Rasmussen
Sunday School  & Catechism Class News
The Sunday School program will (tentatively) resume in September, 2021.   Any questions, please contact Jane at (920) 596-2123 or leave a message at the church (920) 596-3275 or contact a Council member.  
Catechism classes will resume (following the Christmas break) on January 13, 2021 at 5:30 PM..

ZWIC MEETING December 20, 2020
The meeting was called to order by Esther Schmidt.
The secretary’s report was read.  A motion was made by Elizabeth and seconded by Patti to accept the minutes.  Motion carried.  We received a thank you card from Betty Ball for the Guideposts subscription.
The treasurer’s report was given with a balance on hand of $2,868.24.  Thanks to Thrivent for the Thrivent Action Team funding for the supplies for making rosettes.
Old business:  Thank you to all who helped with rosette making and buying.  A very successful endeavor.
Patti volunteered to purchase the items for our Christmas children’s bags to be given to children on Christmas eve and Christmas day.  Thank you so much Patti!
New business:  Are there any ideas for projects we can do in 2021?  We discussed making quilts.  We will tentatively start this project this winter.  We discussed the absence of the quilting frames we have had for many years.
The election of officers was held:  A motion was made by Diane to nominate Esther for president, seconded by Patti.  Motion carried.  Carol made a motion to close the nominations, seconded by Diane.  Motion carried.
A motion was made by Diane to elect Patti as vice president, seconded by Carol.  Motion carried.
A motion was made by Esther to elect Diane as secretary, seconded by Patti.  Motion carried.
A motion was made by Diane to elect Sheila as our sunshine person, seconded by Elizabeth.  Motion carried.
Due to our church annual meeting in January, we will not have our regular monthly meeting that month.  Our next meeting will be February 21, 2021.
A motion was made by Sheila and seconded by Patti to adjourn.  Motion carried.  We closed with the Lord’s Prayer.
Diane Beyer, Secretary

Worship Committee Minutes
December 16, 2020 – 6:30 PM
The meeting began with prayer.  We discussed who would be available to volunteer for the Christmas Services.     The costumes, props, candles, and hopefully everything we need for the services was found in the basement and ready for Christmas week. 
Christmas sacks for Christmas eve are being prepared by the ZWIC.   We are going to request that they do less candy,and maybe some smaller tokens or a bag of chips.   Also, request to do the sacks without peanuts, so that any allergies can be avoided.  
Christmas decorations and trees will be taken down on Saturday morning, January 9 at 8 AM.
January Worship Services – We discussed a return to using hymnals and communion cups and wafers?    We will discuss with the Council at their January meeting.
The next Worship Committee Meeting will be on Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at 6:30 PM.
Closed with the Lord’s prayer…..
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Please keep the following people in your prayers:
Allen (Butch) Wegener,  The family of Forest (Butch) Kreklow, Todd Klemm, 
Ken Niemuth,  Tracie Carrick, (daughter of Elaine Zuge), Dale Marcott, Betty Ball, Renee Graichen,  (sister to Darla Graichen),  Dan Froding,  Eileen Mittelstaedt,  Buzz Jossie, the family of Cookie Jossie, the family of Pastor Roger Nielsen, the congregation of St. John's Lutheran Church, Baldwins Mill,  Dan Pomeroy, and all those affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Readers:                                                                 Altar Guild:
January 3:   Kristine Hein                                        Jane Suehs
January 10:   Diane Beyer                                        Nancy Rasmussen
January 17:  Norris Brown                                      
January 24:  Esther Schmidt                                   Money Counters:
January 31:  Kristine Hein                                       Jerry Suehs
                                                                                Cheryl Severson
A sincere thank you to our volunteer church workers!
Church & Area Happenings 
A sign-up sheet is on the table in the back of the church to sign up for Reading the scriptures during worship services and for ushering.    If you  sign up to read, please pick up the 2020-2021 church year liturgical schedule readings by the sign up sheet.  The schedule contains the scripture for each Sunday of the church year (Nov. 29, 2020 – Nov. 21, 2021).  Ushering will include lighting the candles and extinguishing candles following worship.
Thank you to A. Sturm & Sons Foundation for their generous gift of $5,000.00 to Zion Lutheran Church.   The letter from the Foundation is posted on the bulletin board in the church entryway.  It reads in part:  “We share His blessings with our prayers that all may come to know Jesus Christ through your ministry.  May the Lord continue to bless you, your congregation, and grant unto you His peace and love throughout the coming year.  Wishing you a Blessed Christmas & a Healthy New Year,  A. Sturm & Sons Foundation.”
Thank you to everyone who volunteered for the Altar Committee and the Money Counting Committee for 2021.  The schedule for 2021 will be in the Annual Report.  THANK YOU!!!
Thank you to everyone who helped decorate the church for the Advent/Christmas season.   We will be taking down Christmas decorations on Saturday, January 9 beginning at 8 AM.  
Praise God for all volunteers in the church!

The poinsettias decorating the church were given in loving memory of:
Therese Niemuth by the Ken Niemuth Family;
Clarence and Elsie Strebe by the Arleigh Strebe Family;
Paul and Marie Heise by Ron and Joanne Heise

Memorials given in memory of Mary Ann “Cookie” Jossie
$20.00 given by Mike Prill & Megan Pethke.
$100.00 given by Steve & Tammy Pethke.
$35.00 given by Walter & Elizabeth Strebe.
$20.00 given by Zion Women in Christ.
$25.00 given by Gary & Ruth Schoen.
$25.00 given by Richard & Jennifer Mursau.
$25.00 given by Karen Klegin.
Bible Study will resume on Monday, January 18 at 6:30 PM.   Please join us as we study God's word.
An afternoon Bible Study will begin on Wednesday, January 20 at 1 PM.  If possible, we would also like to use this afternoon time to begin a quilting project. 
The annual  congregational meeting will be held on Sunday, January 17, 2021 following the Worship Service to conduct the annual business of the church.
Zion Lutheran Church is hoping to fill the Janitor position at the church this month.   Normal cleaning takes 4 to 5 hours a week and can be done on your own schedule.   The Council will discuss this position at the January 6 Council meeting.   Please contact Walter Strebe or leave a message (596-3275) with the church office as soon as possible if you have any questions.
The Worship Committee is sponsoring another food drive for the Manawa Area Food Pantry along with the annual Hygiene Drive for the Foundations for Living in Waupaca.  Items can be dropped off  beginning on Sunday,  January 17.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Zion Lutheran Books, December, 2020 – Payments & Deposits                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
Date    Check #                                              Amount          Deposit           Balance
11/23   BALANCE                                                                                          $6,350.07
11/23   15335 Wild Vine (confirmation)        $  77.00
11/29   15336  US Postmaster (stamps)           110.00
11/29   DEPOSIT                                                                    $  880.00
11/29   15337 Nancy Rasmussen
            (Office and cleaning supplies)               75.13
11/29   Ron Nyhouse (Supply pastor)   150.00
11/30   DEPOSIT (Interest)                                                             .18
11/30   EFT Deluxe checks                              184.47
11/30   Ledger adjustment                                                            99.20
12/02   15339 Carol Brown                              230.87
12/02   15340 MaryAnn Jossie                         184.70
12/05   EFT Solarus                                          102.84
12/06   15341 Carol Schnur (Supply pastor)    150.00
12/06   DEPOSIT                                                                        900.00
12/07   15342 Cardmember Service
            (Finalweb Corp-Oct/Nov)                      42.00          
12/13   15343 Mary Fiane (Supply pastor)      150.00
12/13   DEPOSIT                                                                    1,685.00        
12/14   15344 USPS (3 certified letters)            20.85                                   $8,436.59
12/20   15345 (family needing help w/rent)     100.00
12/20   15346 (family needing help)                  50.00
12/20   DEPOSIT                                                                        680.00
12/21   15347 Alliant Utilities              445.49
12/22   DEPOSIT (Tedd Lees*)                                                769.24
12/23   15348 Zion Luth Sunday School        330.00
            (Carol Diehl memorial)
12/24   DEPOSIT                                                                        945.00
12/25   DEPOSIT                                                                        115.00
12/27   DEPOSIT                                                                        330.00
12/27   15349 Pastor Mary Fiane                   150.00
12/27   BALANCE                                                                                          $10,200.34
12/28   DEPOSIT                                                                        435.00
12/28   15350 Concordia (bulletin cvrs)         111.91
12/28   15351 Paul Hirte                                    31.50
            (winterize doors/window)
12/29   DEPOSIT (offering & Sturm Foundation Gift)         5,100.00
12/29   BALANCE                                                                                          $15,591.93
* Return of 2020 vacation pay given in error to Tedd Lees.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
          Zion Lutheran Church
          157 North Bridge Street
          Manawa, WI 54949
Tidings from Zion


January, 2021