PASTOR'S PAGE..........................................JULY 2017

When things aren’t going well we may ask, “What does the future hold?” That is a question that we often wonder and worry about. Do you have a hope for the future that allows you to deal with the present – no matter how bad the situation, at present is? Whatever the situation is the fact is that there is a day yet to come that will change everything. The Bible refers to that time as “That Day,” or “The Day of the Lord.”

Jesus says, “For the Son of Man is going to come in His Father’s glory with his angels…” (Matthew 16:27). “At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds in the sky with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.” (Matthew 24:30-31).

What a day that will be. “That day…” will be the fusion of several individual days – Good Friday, Easter Sunday and the End of the World. All of these days merge together into one day which we rightly refer to as “Judgment Day.” Judgment Day is a future - present day. It’s present because the judgment of the world has already taken place on Good Friday as God judged and punished the sin of the world in His Son, Jesus Christ.

Judgment day has also already come on Easter as God raised His Son in power and declared His sacrifice to be sufficient payment for all our sin and guilt. Judgment Day will come in the future as all people of all time from every nation stand before the Savior who died to redeem them from a present with no hope.

But there is one more day that is fused into “that Day.” Along with Good Friday, Easter Sunday and the day of Christ’s return is also merged the day of your baptism. In Baptism we died and were buried with Christ on Good Friday. We were raised with Christ on Easter Sunday. We have already been judged in Christ and declared to be righteous and holy, good and faithful, dearly beloved children of God. We live in the “future-present” when we live in our baptism because in our baptism we have already faced our judgment day. To live in your baptism is to live “That Day” every day.

Living in the “future-present” means that we may face the present with great courage. We face evil and sin with the courage to work to change it and a defiance to resist it where it is unchangeable. Rather than returning anger with anger, we may do as Jesus directs us and turn the other cheek not because we want to be “mister nice guy.” By keeping one eye on our future, we take control of the evil of the present by robbing it of the capa city to create another victim. We say, ‘You may have the power today to exercise violence, or illness or injustice , but I belong to tomorrow, to the future when Christ will come again and separate me from all evil once and for all.

Our hope in the promise of Christ to come again to gather us from the ends of the earth does not move us to take a superior attitude to our present world. Nor does it allow us to passively retreat from this present world and not be the salt and the light that we are charged with being. Living in the “future – present” allows us to be humble, gentle and confident servants of Christ.

Blessings on your present and your future!  Pastor Wagner


Registered Visitors at First Trinity for May/June 2017

(Visitors who filled out cards.)

May 28 Eldean/Sharon Adam – Jansen, NE; Amy & Matt Brott – Beatrice, NE; Rosie Hill – Fairbury, NE; Norbert Meyer – Beatrice, NE; Teirstyn Murray – Beatrice, NE; Sean/Jennifer, Alex, Emma & Andrew Shaeffer – Lincoln, NE; Teresa, Natasha & Sarah Martin – Beatrice, NE; Toni, Zane, Caliber & Graysha Brandt – Plymouth, NE; Jeremy/Carin, Issac & Elijah Rosenthal – Beatrice, NE; Jonathan Rosenthal – Beatrice, NE; Sharon Rosenthal – Jansen, NE; John/Dawn & Isabella Hirschler & Ethan Rosenthal – Beatrice, NE

June 4 Eldean/Sharon Adam – Jansen, NE; Kay Brown – Beatrice, NE; Norbert Meyer – Beatrice, NE; Teirstyn Murray – Beatrice, NEWayne/Vivian Zimmerman – Beatrice, NE; Rene' Leppert – Grimes, IA; Allan/Ruth Hahn – Kearney, NE; Erik/Jenny Prenosil – Beatrice, NE; Denise & Joshua Topp – Houston, TX; Jenny, Abigail, Joshua, Micah & Chloe Brinkmeyer - Milford, NE; Amy & Matt Brott – Beatrice, NE

June 11 Eldean/Sharon Adam – Jansen, NE; Norbert Meyer – Beatrice, NE; Anna, Steve/Marcie Ramey – Parkville, MO; Dianna, Bailey & Adam Bannister – Omaha, NE; Ryan/Dawn Meyer – Plymouth, NE; Rev. Jesse/Christal, Anna, Levi, Elizabeth & Rebecca Burns – Ventura, IA; Reagan & Harper Landis – Waverly, NE

June 18 Norbert Meyer – Beatrice, NE; Jacob Gramlich – DeWitt, NE; Matt & Amy Brott – Beatrice, NE; Paul/Kay Brown – Beatrice, NE; Eldean/Sharon Adam – Beatrice, NE


Church Income for the Month of May: $7,063,26.



Donald Brandt   2          Logan Damme             23

Arlene Smith       2          Delores Wollenburg 23

Tim Beethe          6          Matt Collins                   27

Samuel Wagner 6         Jerry Larmeu                   30

Jacob Wollenburg 15


Megan Sothan 10             Curtis Reynolds 19

Gracin Hahn      11             Donald Brandt   21

Andie Koch         13             Tim Beethe           30

Emery Sluka       13            Samuel Wagner  30

Michael Hinz      18


Russell/Rebecca Behrends 6

James/Robin Hahn 20

Myron/Joyce Belding 21

William/Lucille Winterstein 22

Arthur/Sarah Morris 24

Walter/Shirley Neumann 29

**If your birthday, baptismal birthday, or anniversary date is missing from our lists, please contact the church office so we can include it next year.

First Trinity Lutheran Church Council Meeting Minutes


President Tom Brandt called the June Council Meeting to order at 8:35 pm on Tuesday, June 13, 2017. Pastor opened with devotions from John chapter 14.

Roll call: Six members were present (Brent Niemeier, Kyle Spilker, Dan Bennett, Pastor Wagner, Tom Brandt and Ron Malchow).

Minutes for the previous Council Meeting were read by Brent Niemeier. Approved as read.


An unofficial Financial Secretary’s report was given by Ron Malchow.

Total income for May was $7063.26. Savings Account balance May 31, 2017 was $29,638.56.

Treasurer’s Rport - Ron Malchow

Expenses for May were $14,703.15 with an ending balance of $22,512.25. Moved by Brent Niemeier and seconded by Dan Bennett “To approve both reports as read”. Motion passed.

Elder’s Report

*The next Elders meeting will be July 11, beginning at 7:30 and Council at 8:30 pm.

*Voters meeting will be July 16th after church. Rosie Hill, Interpreter for the Deaf, will be here the 3rd and 4th Sunday’s in July, so she can interpret during voters meeting.

*Plans still in progress for recognition of Carolyn Bennett’s 35th anniversary of playing organ here at First Trinity.

Pastor’s Report

*This year is the 500th anniversary of Reformation. We will recognize this at the June 25th church service, including a special hymn.

*Pastor Koterba’s Ordination and installation will be August 13, for Wymore/Zion dual parish.

*Will bring up 2 transfers in and 1 release in new business.

Trustee’s Report – no one present, no report.

Stewardship/Board of Education – no one present, no report.

Cemetery Sexton’s Report – no one present, no report.

Old business

*Bank is requesting more information before granting our church a credit card.

*Discussed getting a big screen TV for school building for funerals and other uses, or a permanently installed video camera in church. We have some memorial money in savings that could be used toward this. Kyle Spilker will get an estimate for video in church.

New Business

*Moved by Brent Niemeier and seconded by Ron Malchow to approve transfer in of Matt Brott and Amy Brott from St Paul’s, Beatrice. Approved.

*Moved by Brent Niemeier and seconded by Ron Malchow to release Adrian Brandt from our membership. (He is attending church elsewhere). Approved.

*Prairie Fire Workshop is coming up August 5, in Seward. Contact Judy Haussler if you are interested in going.

*Our Missionary agreement for Kristen Lange is due for renewal. This will be on the agenda for the July 16 voters meeting.


Moved by Pastor Wagner and seconded by Dan Bennett to adjourn at 9:15 pm. Motion passed. Closed with the Lord’s Prayer


Minutes submitted by Kyle Spilker