From the Pastor:
It is with both hope, sadness and joy that I announce that the Lord has led me to accept the call to serve as Pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Sheboygan, WI.
This decision fills me with joy because of so many wonderful memories that my family and I have of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and her many members. You opened your arms to a wet behind the ears man and have helped form me into the pastor I am today. It would take me a long time to recount all of the blessings we have received together.
It fills me with hope because you have many great things going on and a future that is brighter. When so many congregations are desperate to try anything that will turn around the decline you held firmly to God’s Word and Sacraments and He has blessed you with many people from many places. I want your next pastor to be able to enjoy your steady faithfulness and confidence in the Lord.
It is these exact things that also fill me with sadness. I love St. Paul’s. We have so many friends at church and in the area. I feel like by leaving we will be deserting a part of ourselves. I weep even to think of it. I would not be the person I am without all of these dear friends and brothers and sisters in Christ whom I love with all my heart.
The reason I am able to accept this call to Immanuel is because I believe that God will bless St. Paul’s and your lives and work Amherst. God has blessed St. Paul’s for 160 years and we pray it continues for another 160 or more! In the same way I know that God also goes with us and as Immanuel is faithful to the Lord they will be blessed abundantly. I look at Immanuel and see God’s children who need a pastor, and I see a community that needs Immanuel to be actively engaged in the life of the people in that area. I also see many opportunities to bring God’s Word to bear on the lives of the people and let Him work to grow them in faith and love for Him and their neighbor.
St. Paul’s is in a place where a new pastor will be able to come in and help to lead the church in new directions and move them past and through the challenges that come ahead. St. Paul’s leadership is good, Lutheran and faithful. I have every confidence that St. Paul’s will be able to call a new pastor soon, and that they will be deeply blessed by him, and that he will be blessed by St. Paul’s.
Please keep all of the flock at Immanuel and St. Paul’s in your prayers. Please keep us in your prayers as we make this transition. I remain
Yours in Christ, Donald T. Johnson Pastor