301 S. Oak St. • Kendallville, IN 46755

The Eagle Eye

St. John's weekly newsletter to parents, faculty and staff

Banner #16; December 2, 2013

Cathy Thiem
WRITTEN BY Cathy Thiem - 02 December 2013


St. John Lutheran School

December 2, 2013

Number 16

The Principal’s Pen

One for the money,

Two for the show,

Three to get ready,

Four to go!

Do you recall this childhood verse? It refers to being ready, but being ready for what? This verse was, and is, often used to help kids be ready for the start of a race.

We have now entered the time of Advent, these weeks leading up to Christmas. Advent is a time to get ready. Get ready for what? Well, for sure, it is time to get ready for our Christmas celebrations: decorating, baking, shopping, wrapping, sending Christmas letters or cards, going to parties, and more. All of these are good, but isn’t there more?

Our Christmas celebration is about much more than all this, as important as these parts of our celebration are. Christmas is all about Jesus’ birth and our getting ready should focus on that. Here are 4 simple ways for your family to spend some time getting ready to celebrate Jesus’ birthday:

Advent Calendars: There are many versions of these calendars. Some have windows that open to pieces of chocolate, others to pictures or Bible verses.

Advent Wreaths: These wreaths include different candles for each week of Advent. The candles help us focus on different aspects of Advent.

Advent Devotions: There are many Advent devotional books and online sources for your family to use. You can find devotions (which can also be used with Advent Calendars or Wreaths) appropriate for all ages. continued inside…

Advent Worship: Many churches offer special Advent services. If yours doesn’t, please join us at St. John. More information is found in this Banner about our special Advent services.

Perhaps your family can start a new tradition by using one or more of these things to help you get ready for Christmas. May God bless you and your family as you prepare for Jesus’ birth, the real reason we have to celebrate at Christmas.

Seeking to reach all with Christ, St. John Lutheran School partners with families to provide a Christ-centered education which nurtures faith in Christ,

promotes discipleship, develops God-given abilities and skills,

and encourages academic excellence.

Family Pictures

Let St. John help you with your family portraits. On Sunday, Dec. 8, from 11:00-3:00, Derby Studios (the studio that is doing our school pictures this year), will host family portrait sessions here at St. John. You can get your family pictures done right here for a great rate. For only $30, you will receive a CD of 6-8 pictures with the rights to make as many prints as you desire. Of that $30, St. John will receive $25 to go towards Kids Against Hunger and student technology. You can have additional poses (like mother and kids or kids only) for only $5 each more. You can’t beat this opportunity! This event is also open to church and community members, so invite your friends. Call the school office for more information or to sign up for a time slot.

Kids Against Hunger

Have you ever gone to bed hungry? No, I mean really hungry? Around the world, 1 in 7 people go to bed starving each night. One in six children worldwide die before they turn 5 from malnutrition and other related conditions. Our chapel offering for the 2nd Trimester will support Kids Against Hunger (www.kah-fortwayne.org) in bringing highly nutritious meals to needy children all over the world. Plus, our children will take part in an event in April to actually pack these meals. Your child has already received materials to help them collect money at home for their chapel offering.

A HUGE thank you to everyone who made this year’s collection of shoeboxes for Samaritan’s Purse such a success!

I’ve been chairperson here at St. John for a few years now, and this was our second year as a Relay Center. Just as last year, it was a great deal of fun! I don’t know who was more blessed – the kids that will receive the boxes, or me!

Last year, I challenged the congregation and school to fill 200 boxes and our final tally was 206!! It was the hope to increase that number each year. This year, our school and church collected 278 boxes!!

Last year, our Relay Collection Center took in a grand total of 1,136 boxes and this year 1,151.

There are many hands which made this project work. They are as follows:

• Relay Volunteers – Laura Pepple, Cheryl Young, Whitney Holle, Janet Sibert, Matthew and Carrie Tibbs, Brett and Lena Slone, and Ruth Kaiser

• Those who loaded the trailer – Nick Hayden, Melissa Monn, the Youth Group, and the Eighth grade students

• Joe Taylor – who donated his trailer for use and then drove it to the drop-off site in Ft. Wayne

• Those of you who donated a box!

I hope this year’s effort has generated enough excitement that at least some of you will consider collecting shoebox items throughout the coming year. I will attempt to do a better job of printing reminders to do just that!

Please pray for the children receiving boxes, that God will use that little gesture to touch a heart and save a life!

Cathy Thiem, Relay Center Coordinator

Christmas is just around the corner…

Women of St. John Winter Festival

THIS Saturday, December 7 - 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

The Women of St. John will be hosting a Winter Festival THIS Saturday, December 7, and I encourage each school family to support the efforts of these women. This group has done much over the years to improve our facility and they provide our fourth graders and new students in upper grades with Bibles each year.

If you would like to help out, you can donate some home-made cookies for the cookie-go-round or something for the bake table. Bring your goodies before 9:00 a.m. on Saturday. Whatever it may be, the Women of our congregation would welcome your donation.


The Women of St. John have asked if some of the school kids

would be willing to sing during the lunch hour. If your child is in grades 1-8 and is interested in joining us, please meet in the Worship Center at 11:15 on Saturday, December 7th. The kids will sing around 11:30 for about a half hour or so. If your child will be participating, would you please send a FastDirect message to Mr. Buuck. Thanks.

As a part of the spiritual formation we provide children, our students are preparing to help lead worship during the Advent season! Advent is a time of preparation for Christmas. Our 3rd-8th grade students will lead the Advent worship on Thursday, Dec. 5. The St. John Youth Group will lead the worship on Thursday, Dec. 12. Our Preschool-2nd grade students will lead the Advent worship on Thursday, Dec. 19. All services begin at 7:00. A light meal will be available before the services to both ease your schedule and provide some fellowship time. We hope that your family will plan now to join us for these special services.

Thursday, December 5 - 5:30 – 6:30

This week’s Menu:

Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwich



Free-will offering proceeds to benefit Washing D.C. trip or St. John Youth Group.

Order a Christmas Poinsettia

If you would like to order a Christmas poinsettia to decorate our worship areas for our Christmas Eve and Christmas morning services, please see Mrs. Thiem or Miss Young for an order form. The cost for each poinsettia is $12.00 and the plants can be placed in honor or in memory of a special person in your life.

Deadline to order is noon, Monday, December 16, so don’t delay!

Classroom Christmas Gifts

This year students in grades 1-8 will not exchange gifts between students at their classroom Christmas parties. Instead, some grades recently collected items to fill shoeboxes for “Operation Christmas Child”. Those boxes, filled with toys, candy, and school supplies are sent to needy children all over the world and are often times the first gifts those children have ever received!

Please watch for letters from your child’s teacher regarding the projects that will be undertaken by the classroom for Christmas in lieu of the gift exchange.

Students in preschool and kindergarten will continue the tradition of purchasing a gift in the $4.00-$5.00 range to exchange with classmates. Again, please watch your child’s class letter for details.

Shop With SCRIP for Christmas!

Using Scrip doesn't always mean giving a gift card! You can redeem the scrip yourself to purchase gifts. Make Scrip your first stop before you shop and save money on your tuition or other school expenses. Still not sure how Scrip works? Ask in the office! Don't miss out on the opportunity to save--it's never too late to get on board!

Christmas is right around the corner and if you want a special order gift card, the time to think about that is NOW! Cards sell quickly this time of year, so please don’t wait too long and be disappointed if we are out of stock on an item you wanted. Don’t delay! Shop with scrip today!!

Christmas at Bixler Lake

Don’t miss the opportunity to see our student’s work displayed on large wooden boards at Bixler Lake. Students in grades 2-8 painted Christmas greetings to be displayed along with boards from other local school children. The displays will be lit each evening from 6-9 p.m. Other activities will be available during those times as well.

Christmas Gift Collection

While the holidays can be an especially joyous time for most of us, it can be a time of sadness for a child of a needy family. To help in this cause, we will be taking a gift collection to be given to needy children of our school and congregation. This is strictly a voluntary donation.

Ornaments have been placed on a Christmas tree in our school. Each ornament has written on it either the name of a specific toy or a suggested type of gift certificate for clothing which would be enjoyed by one of our families. (We have switched to gift certificates for clothing rather than the purchase of actual clothing.)

If the item to be purchased is a toy, purchase the toy, wrap the gift, then tape the ornament on the front of the package. If you choose to purchase a gift certificate, simply place the certificate inside the envelope you take from the tree and return it to the school office. We will see that it gets to the family for whom it was intended.

This year, Thrivent Financial has designated our Giving Tree as a recipient of some of their service dollars. We are grateful for the help this will provide to our families!!

These school families, prayed for this week:

Amanda McCormick, Stephan and Jamie McKenzie;Alissa Middleton; Brian and Sarah Moreland; and Tyler and Summer Moser

Josh Jank, whose health is in God’s hands, and for the whole Jank family.

World-Wide Day of Remembrance

This Sunday, December 8, is the world-wide day of remembrance of children who have died. All across the world at 7:00 p.m. in respective time zones, candles will be lit in honor of these children.

Please keep the families of the following children in your hearts and prayers this Sunday, and perhaps light a candle in their memory.

Sarah Walz – premature daughter of Tim and Mindy Walz

Dylan Oprysk – nephew of Mrs. Goldey, cousin of Libby Goldey

Christopher Thiem – son of Mrs. Thiem

Morgan Kilburn – sister of kindergartner Evan Kilburn


Remember that we have a Suggestion/Question box in the lobby area (with the soup label, Box Tops, pop tab and ink cartridge drop off boxes). Your feedback is welcome!

Student Council Serving Others

In order to be servants in our community, Student Council has visited Lutheran Life Villages and took Thanksgiving Greetings to some of the residents. We encourage you to visit and bring cheer to the residents also.

In December, they will be ringing the bells for the Salvation Army outside Kroger. Many families in Kendallville are in need and benefit from the Salvation Army. The need for ringers is great this year. If you are interested in ringing the bells, please contact Mrs. Pillers or Mrs. Goldey and they will put you in contact with the right person.

Inclement Weather

As the likelihood of inclement weather increases, a few reminders about the procedure for school closings are in order. St. John will follow the East Noble School Corporation. When their decision is made you will be notified through a SchoolReach call and the following media outlets: WPTA, WISE, WANE, WBCL, WAWK, and WLAB (STAR). You will see or hear St. John Lutheran, Kendallville, listed on all these media outlets. The option exists for school to be closed, on 2-hour delay, or on 3-hour delay, which pushes dismissal time back to 3:45. Parents must always use discretion, whether we are in session or on delay, to determine if their own drive to school is too hazardous and they need to wait before coming in to school.

The next Hungry Howie’s Day is

Tuesday, December 10,

(and each second Tuesday thereafter).

Congratulations to the following students for being recognized as a SERVANT student last week: Caleb Walz, Ian Malone, Libby Goldey, Brendon Heileman, Cameryn Proxmire, Isaac Blaskie, Lilly Moser, Braylon Shire, Hunter Shire, Vanessa Terry, Samuel Burgh, Andrew Schroeder, Coby Treesh, Ashton Benson, Sara Williams, Katie Walker, and Emma Schroeder. We give thanks to God for these students who let their light shine before others.

Pictures, Please

Those who have snapshots that are taken at St. John events this year are invited to e-mail those to the office. They will be forwarded to our photographer for possible inclusion in our annual yearbook. Please send pictures to Mrs. Thiem at cthiem@stjohneagles.org. Thanks!

Spelling Bee January 9

On Thursday, January 9, don’t miss our school’s Spelling Bee where students in grades 5-8 will compete for the opportunity to represent our school in the county Spelling Bee. The Bee will begin at 10:00 a.m. in the Worship Center. Parents, please join us!

Geography Bee January 16

On Thursday, January 16, don’t miss our school’s Geography Bee where students in grades 5-8 will compete for the opportunity to represent our school in the national Geography Bee. The Bee will begin at 1:15 p.m. in the Worship Center. Parents, please join us!

Half-Price Sale!!!

Available in the school office are some extra Butter Braids. They are being offered first-come-first-served at a price of $7.00 each. Available flavors at printing time are:

1 Chocolate

2 Cinnamon

Also available at a reduced price of $5.00 each are THIS YEAR’S St. John T-Shirts.

5 Youth Small (these are very small and would look cute on young siblings!)

1 Youth Medium

1 Youth Large

1 Adult Small

1 Adult 2X

1 Youth Small St. John Hoodie

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St. John Lutheran Church
301 South Oak St.
Kendallville, IN 46755
(260) 347-2444