St. John's Lutheran Church

In the City for Good!

St. John's Lutheran Church participates in God's mission to bless, save, restore and reconcile the world through meaningful worship and faithful witness in the city of Des Moines and around the world.

St. John's Lutheran Church invites and welcomes all people to experience the Good News of God's grace, forgiveness and unfailing love. The Good News calls and empowers us to share God's love in word and deed throughout our city, nation and world.

Prepare for Worship

Worship Schedule

Oct. 1 – Time after Pentecost – Lectionary 26

Readings:  Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32; Psalm 25:1-9; Philippians 2:1-13; Matthew 21:23-32.

Jesus’ parable about the two sons reveals the surprising nature of God. Those whom we would be quick to judge as unworthy of God’s favor are the very ones to gain entry into God’s kingdom before all others. Throughout the readings for today, we encounter the problem of fairness. In Ezekiel, we are told that we are to repent and turn away from wickedness. In our second lesson, Paul reminds us to look to Christ as a model of humility that we might learn to recognize the needs of others and put them before our own. 

Hymns:  “Awake, My Soul, and With the Sun” (557); “Lord, Keep Us Steadfast In Your Word” (517); “The Lord Now Sends Us Forth” (538).

Assisting with Worship:

  • Kisasa Musicians:  “Psalm 25,” Jayne Southwick Cool.
  • Cathedral Choir:  “Show Me Thy Ways,” Walter Pelz, with String Scholars and Steven Kennedy, classical guitar. 

Oct. 8 – Time after Pentecost – Lectionary 27

Readings:  Isaiah 5:1-7; Psalm 80: 7-15; Philippians 3:4b-14; Matthew 21:33-46.

In today’s gospel reading from Matthew, Jesus tells the parable of the vineyard. An important symbol throughout the Bible, the vineyard represents an image of the people. Wine produced from a vineyard depends on how well the roots have been cared for and tended to by the community. The vineyard also reminds us of God’s love, poured out in the blood of Christ, shed for the forgiveness of sin. Through baptism we are connected to Christ, the vine. 

Hymns:  “O Day of Rest and Gladness” (521); “There In God’s Garden” (342); “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” (803).

Assisting with Worship:

  • Cathedral Choir:  “A Vineyard Grows,” K. Lee Scott.

Oct. 15 – Time after Pentecost – Lectionary 28

Readings:  Isaiah 25:1-9; Psalm 23; Philippians 4:1-9; Matthew 22:1-14.

In his letter to the Philippians, Paul urges the community to rejoice and give thanks to God, no matter what the circumstance. Images of banquets and feasts pervade the Old and New Testament readings for today. Like Isaiah, we rejoice that death will be swallowed up forever. The psalmist reminds us that our God provides for us in abundance, even in difficult circumstances. In Matthew’s gospel, Jesus tells a story about a great banquet and warns that this marvelous invitation is not to be taken lightly. 

Hymns:  “As We Gather At Your Table” (522); “Let Us Go Now to the Banquet” (523); “Rejoice, Ye Pure In Heart!” (873).

Assisting with Worship:

  • Cathedral Choir:  “The Lord is My Shepherd,” Noel Dexter.

Oct. 22 – Time after Pentecost – Lectionary 29

Readings:  Isaiah 45:1-7; Psalm 96:1-9 [10-13]; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10; Matthew 22:15-22.

Not easily trapped by the difficult question of religious leaders in the temple, Jesus tells us to “give to God the things that are God’s and give to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s” (Matthew 22:21). As we gather for worship, we are reminded that our true and only allegiance is to God – not to any earthly authority. 

Hymns:  “God Is Here” (719); “God of Grace and God of Glory” (705); “Blessing and Honor” (854).

Assisting with Worship:

  • Youth Handbell Choir:  “Rejoice Greatly,” Susan Geschke.
  • Cathedral Choir:  “Sing to the Lord,” Heinrich Schütz.

Oct. 22 – Service of Evening Prayer

Readings:  Jeremiah 31:31-34; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10.

Preacher:  Bishop Denis Madden, Archdiocese of Baltimore.

Lutherans and Catholics from around the Des Moines metro-area will gather at St. John’s to conclude a year-long commemoration of the Reformation. Guest preacher, Bishop Denis Madden, will offer a homily during the service of evening prayer (vespers). The service will include the five ecumenical imperatives, “From Conflict to Communion: Lutheran-Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation in 2017.” 

Assisting with Worship:

  • Adult Handbell Choir:  “Calming Peace,” Cathy Moklebust; “Fantasy on Kingsfold,” H. Dean Wagner.

Oct. 29 – Reformation Sunday 

Readings:  Jeremiah 31:31-34; Psalm 46; Romans 3:19-28; Matthew 22:34-46.

Today we celebrate a milestone commemoration in our heritage of faith, the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s Reformation. Paul’s words in the book of Romans are central to Martin Luther’s teaching and preaching – that no one can make themselves right with God through works of the law. It is through Christ’s death that we are brought into a right relationship with God. On this, the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, we pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to unite the church in proclamation and witness.

Hymns:  “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” (504); “Open Your Ears, O Faithful People” (519); “The Church of Christ, In Every Age” (729); “Holy God, We Praise Thy Name” (414).

Assisting with Worship:

  • Kisasa Musicians
  • Adult Handbell Choir
  • Brass Ensemble
  • Cathedral Choir:  Cantata 80: “A Mighty Fortress” (First movement), J.S. Bach

 600 6th Ave. Des Moines, Iowa  50309 - 515.243.7691 - a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America