First Lutheran Church of Strongsville
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Mission Statement: To live in the powerful example of Jesus, and to discover new pathways for spiritual growth.

Welcome... Monthly Revelations.....

Pastor Kathy 25 Years of Service
Thank You!!

Click here to see
a presentation on YouTube by Amy Kuntz.

Welcome to First Lutheran Church

  • Come and explore your deepest spiritual desires with us!
  • Discover God's desire for you!
  • We invite you to discover our dynamic Christian Community dedicated to sharing the awesome love of God that is revealed in Jesus Christ.
  • Whether you are just beginning your spiritual journey or have traveled the Christian road for some time....

You are welcome here!

19419 Royalton Road
Strongsville, Ohio 44149

Phone: (440) 238-7890

Interested in joining First Church? A “mega-class” will be held next Sunday, May 4, 6-8? PM. Child care will be provided, if necessary. To register, call the church office or speak with one of the pastors.

Worship Services (to September 7th)


8:15 AM

Traditional Worship every Sunday at this time.


10:00 AM

Contemporary on the 1st and 4th Sundays of each month; Traditional on the 2nd and 3rd Sundays of each month
Note These Worship Services!!

Aug 31

10:00 AM

CONTEMPORARY Worship only.

2014 Church Annual Report:
Click Here

Council Highlights & Notes:

Northeastern Ohio Synod Notes:

Contemporary Worship.


Journey Forward

While Bishop Eaton was still our synodical bishop she challenged every congregation in Northeastern Ohio to participate in a spiritual discernment process she dubbed “On the Journey Forward.” Even though Bishop Eaton is now serving as the Presiding Bishop of the ELCA the Journey Forward continues.

First Church has a Journey Forward team consisting of Ray Treudler, Darden Blake, John Brinzo, Kurt Blankenship, Connie Nielsen, and the pastors. We are part of a cluster of nine congregations who will meet together regularly to participate in this process. Our team will also meet on its own, in between cluster meetings, to work on a variety of assignments designed to help us understand our identity and what God has called us to do and be in the Strongsville community.

The Journey Forward process involves four general phases. Discovery is the data gathering phase, designed to give us an accurate picture of our congregation and community. Diagnosis is the analysis phase where we will attempt to interpret the data and what it reveals about our mission and ministry. Decision is the planning phase where we will design a mission plan with measurable goals. Because we are working within a cluster we may discover that a partnership with another congregation in some particular area of ministry may be beneficial. Do is the implementation phase, and well … it’s where we will actually start DOING something.

As this process continues the congregation will be updated and, at times, invited into the process to provide valuable information and insight. In the meantime the team invites the prayers of the congregation for clear insight and understanding of God’s intentions for us.


2014 Church Annual Report:
Click Here

August Revelations:

A hard-working mother was brought to tears of thankfulness when the woman behind her in the grocery store check-out gave her a helping hand through a devastating situation. If it wasn’t for this kind woman, this mom’s precious kids would have gone hungry. This is what she wrote to her grocery store guardian angel:

Dear woman behind me in line at the grocery store,
You don't know me. You have no clue what my life has been like since last year. You have no clue that my family has gone through the wringer. You have no clue that we have faced unbelievable hardship. You have no clue we have been humiliated, humbled, destitute.
You have no clue I have cried more days than not; that I fight against bitterness taking control of my heart. You have no clue that my husband's pride was shattered. You have no clue my kids have had the worries of an adult on their shoulders. You have no clue their innocence was snatched from them for no good reason. You know none of this. What you do know is I tried to buy my kids some food and that the EBT machine was down so I couldn't buy that food. I didn't have any cash or my debit card with me. I only had my SNAP card. All you heard was me saying "No, don't hold it for me. My kids are hungry now and I have no other way of paying for this." You didn't judge me. You didn't snarl "Maybe you should have less kids." You didn't say "Well, get a job and learn to support yourself." You didn't look away in embarrassment or shame for me. You didn't make any assumptions at all.

What you did was you paid that $17.38 grocery bill for us. You gave my kids bananas, yogurt, apple juice, cheese sticks, and a peach ice tea for me; a rare treat and splurge. You let me hug you and promise through my tears that I WILL pay this forward. I WILL pay someone's grocery bill for them. That $17.38 may not have been a lot for you, but it was priceless to us. In the car my kids couldn't stop gushing about you; our "angel in disguise." They prayed for you. They prayed you would be blessed. You restored some of our lost faith. One simple and small action changed our lives. You probably have forgotten about us by now, but we haven't forgotten about you. You will forever be a part of us even though we don't even know your name.

To the woman behind me at the grocery store, you have no idea how much we appreciate you. You have no idea the impact you had on my kids. You have no idea how incredibly thankful I am for you. Your action may have been small, but to us it was monumental. Thank you.
Thank you for not judging us. Thank you for giving my kids a snack when they were quite hungry. Thank you. Just thank you.

This letter was recently shared with me and immediately I thought about this year’s Sunday school food drive. I wonder how many people we made the difference for? You all gave so unbelievably; item after item was placed on the shelves of donation. It was overwhelming to see your loving response.

So, I would like to say thank you! Together we collected a couple thousand dollars of food and for that I am very grateful. Thank you for all of your efforts and for the support that you offered to our Sunday school’s outreach efforts. Thank you for putting food on the tables of people who are in need.

But, as proud of that as I am, I also realize there is still a hunger issue in Strongsville, and so I would like to encourage you to continue your efforts of donation. Please remember that items can be dropped off at the church; or, at the new food bank location once it is up and running. This year’s VBS program revealed to me that we still have hungry kids in our city to feed. So, let’s continue to make the difference!

In Christ,
Pastor Kathy




Do you have a prayer request?

Please use the bulletin board over the water fountain to make your prayer concerns known, or Click Here to submit one for inclusion during our next service.


Share Your Talents with
First Church!

How do I get involved?

Click on the “Share Your Spiritual Gifts Volunteer Form” link below if you know the gifts you have been given, and let us know how you would like to share them with First Church this coming 2013-2014 year.

Share Your Spiritual Gifts Volunteer Form:

How do I know what my spiritual gifts are?

Click on the “Discover Your Spiritual Gifts” link below. The survey is simply a list of questions that help identify what gifts, skills and interests you have been given. Once you submit the completed survey, we will score it and email you with the results. We will also include a few suggestions regarding volunteer opportunities that are a good fit for your gifts. If you would like to share your gifts, please take the “Share Your Spiritual Gifts” survey and we will get you connected!

Discover Your Spiritual Gifts Survey:

Questions regarding the surveys, or opportunities to share your gifts with First Church, can be directed to Connie at (440)238-7890 or send an email to


Church News, Photos, etc.. News - Important Dates - Stuff.....


Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers as we embarked on our adventure. You can reach us at or 8700 Southside Blvd #2202, Jacksonville, FL 32256-0720. If you’re ever vacationing down here, you have somewhere to stay!

Gene Thompson & Tom Serdar

Thank You One and All …

Thank you to everyone who participated in our Sunday School Spring Service Project, the Strongsville Emergency Food Bank. We took over the last 552 food items, which we collected for this project. In total, through everyone’s generous donations, we collected well over 1500 food items to help those in need in our community. All donations were of course greatly appreciated at the Food Bank, which sees a slowdown of donations during the summer months. We also want to say a special thank you to Sandy & Maria Treudler, Connie Nielsen and Brenda Jacob, who all helped count, box, and take over the food items.

Thank You! Thank You!

We trustees of the Strongsville Emergency Food Bank thank the youth of First Evangelical Lutheran Church for their weekly food donations during the months of April, May and June. You young people are to be commended for collecting over 1500 items of needed food supplies. The monetary donations you collected, which totaled over $350, will be used for distributing refrigerated items and paper items.

Construction of a new Food Bank facility on Zverina Lane, behind the Communications Center on Pearl Road, will be completed this summer. Please feel free to visit and “check out” the Food Bank during the hours of operation from 9:30 to 11:30 AM every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and the second Saturday of each month.

Again, thank you for aiding those in our community who are in need of assistance.

The Strongsville Emergency Food Bank, Inc., Trustees


Please click on a link below to view the current newsletters published by First Lutheran Church.

Weekly Revelations
(news & events)

Sunday School/Youth
Faith & Family

April 2014

Monthly Revelations

Last Month
Monthly Revelations

Prior Month
Monthly Revelations

Our community Food Bank is running low on food. Donations may be dropped off in the shopping carts located near the doors. Items needed most: canned soup, canned tuna, canned vegetables, peanut butter, and jelly.

SCS offerings thru the end of the program year will go to Providence House, one of the oldest child care organizations in the country to house newborns to children age 10 for an extended period of time. They are voluntarily placed there when there is fear of abuse or neglect within the family. The family also receives needed help and support to change the home environment. Watch for more details on this service project.

Coffee and donuts are available in the Fellowship Hall on Sunday mornings. This is a service project of our Confirmation students and their families. The donuts are purchased at a cost of $.50 per donut. All other items are donated. Please help us cover the cost of the donuts.

Our Prayer & Care Group prepares and sends cards to those of us, young and old alike, who are lonely, suffering from illness or injury, or those with on-going issues. Join us the first Friday of every month at 10 AM. Questions? Contact Sue Ludwig (440.238.5164 or


First Lutheran Busy Bags contain quiet items, crayons, and books for children to use during the service. They can be found under the table at the back of the church. Just ask an usher if you would like one of these bags for your little one.


FrontLine Service, formerly MHS, has several families who were recently homeless and are now in need of beds and living room furniture. They also need TV’s and a microwave. If you have donations, please call Tammy Widdows (216.548.2761).

The Street Ministry continues to collect men’s socks for the homeless. Please place your donation in the marked box by the Fellowship Hall entrance. Questions? Contact Steve Gall (440.238.3019).

Join the Red, White, and Blue Team!

A new Mission Ministry is being kicked off to help military families within our congregation and community that have a parent or loved one currently deployed overseas. We are looking for volunteers to provide meals, home handyman, and babysitting services for military families that could use a little extra help and support.

Help fulfill your patriotic duty while doing the work our Lord has called us to do!

Reiner Mueller ( or 440.846.0532).

The ELCA Malaria Campaign intends to contain malaria on the African continent by 2015. To help, make a donation using the special envelope in the pews. Make checks payable to First Lutheran Church, and place envelopes in the offering plate. Our goal is to raise $5,100.

Do you have a prayer request? Please use the bulletin board over the water fountain to make your prayer concerns known.

Need to get rid of your old cell phone? Recycle the old one! Please drop off old cell phones and used ink cartridges – boxes located on the table under the youth bulletin board by the Fellowship Hall entrance. Questions? Contact Debbie Brighter (440.572.2627).

Stop by the Welcome Center, in the lobby, for additional information on our activities and ministries.

Donate your altar flowers to local nursing homes or our own church shut-ins. Please contact the church office if you are interested in donating your flowers.

Cleaning for a Reason - If you know any woman currently undergoing Chemo, please pass the word to her that there is a cleaning service that provides FREE housecleaning – 1 time per month for 4 months while she is in treatment. All she has to do is sign up and have her doctor fax a note confirming the treatment. Cleaning for a Reason will have a participating maid service in her zip code area arrange for the service.

Strongsville Emergency Food Bank - The Food Bank is open to Strongsville residents year-round: Monday thru Friday, 9:30 – 11:30 AM and including the 2nd Saturday of every month. Call 440/846-0197 for more information. Nonperishable food items can be placed in the shopping carts by the side and Fellowship Hall entrances. This is taken to the Strongsville Food Bank.

Both pastors offer open office hours for anyone who wants to stop by to share & concerns. It is helpful to call in advance for an appointment. Drop-in visitors are received on a first come, first served basis.
Pastor Chuck’s hours are 10 - noon on Tuesday.
Pastor Kathy’s hours are 10 – noon on Wednesday

Celebrations, parties, or just everyday living ... if you shop at GFS - don’t forget to mention First Lutheran when checking out and help First earn credit to supply future church functions.

CWWV clients need women’s size 16 jeans or pants and XL solid color tops. Also, men’s size large and size 18 boy’s shorts for a 15-yr-old. Please place donations in the church office. Questions? Please call Tammy Widdows (216.548.2761).

The PATH Program (serving those living under bridges and in the woods) needs canned food to hand out to people they find. Please put your donations in the shopping carts. Questions? Please contact Tammy Widdows (216.548.2761).

WOW will continue to collect women’s full-size personal hygiene items and diapers for Laura’s Home. Donations may be placed in the container on the Welcome Center.

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Worship Service Recordings
for Shut-ins

First Church has a program to provide CD recordings, currently of the lesson readings, Gospel reading, and sermon, for members who are unable to attend regular services.

The shut-in will be provided with a CD player, on loan from the church, with which to listen to the service recording mailed or delivered to them each week. Plans are to expand the recording capability to the entire service in the future.

If you know of any or our members, or nonmembers, who may be interested in participating in this program, please contact the church office or click here.

We now have a special page on this Web site devoted to the prior sermons from each week of service.

Please click here to view the sermons you can download.



The following are church events and fellowship opportunities at First Church. A complete listing of all of the Church Events can be downloaded by clicking on the "Weekly Revelations" located in the box to the left.

Soon we will be welcoming Shane Brandes and Zachary Richards to our music ministry staff! Thank you for your prayers and support during the search process.

Additional volunteers needed to help the Funeral Reception Committee by making a dessert or salad, set-up, serve or clean-up. Call Sue Ludwig (440.238.5164) or Barb Krueger (440.238.9072).

Pastor Chuck has launched a blog at Check it out as a way of staying connected and having dialog about a variety of topics related to the faith.

Are you a generous giver? Do you have joy in knowing that everything comes from God? Then your gifts are needed on the Stewardship Committee. Contact Pastor Chuck if you would like to join this important team.

Property Management Position – Our property management team is looking for a coordinator of the teams. This person will be a point of contact and coordinator for maintenance and repair activities for the church property. This position does not require monthly meetings and has a very experienced committee in place as resources to handle the repairs. For more information, please contact Len Taylor (440.653.4606).

First Church is looking for volunteers to help operate the video projector for the contemporary services. Basic PC skills helpful (PowerPoint a plus), but will offer training to all interested individuals. Please contact Justin Lauschin ( for more information.

Mission Opportunity at New Covenant Lutheran Church – One Saturday per month the members of New Covenant Lutheran Church in East Cleveland provide fresh produce to needy families in their neighborhood. We have assisted with the packing and distribution of produce several times in recent months and are planning to do it again Saturday, August 23. If you are interested in assisting, please contact Bruce Holderead ( or 440.655.1523).

Women Who Wine … and Those Who Don’t annual social event will be held Friday, September 5, 7 PM. Come on out to catch up with your church friends and make some new ones! This year we will gather at the home of Maureen Shorts (146 Kensington Ct, Broadview Heights). Donation of $10 requested to cover food and beverage costs. Sign up on the sheet at the Welcome Center or by contacting Jeanine Kowalewski (440.391.2823 or

God’s work. Our hands.
Rally Day, September 7

On Sunday, September 7, 2014, we will join the nearly 10,000 congregations of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) as they put their faith into action by serving their communities in ways that share the love of God with all of God’s people. Through unique congregational service projects, we celebrate that we are a church that boldly does God’s work of restoring and reconciling communities.

Our congregation will participate in a service project that will have a significant impact on our community. On Rally Day, September 7, we will conduct a special community food collection for the Strongsville Emergency Food Bank. Following our special Rally Day service at 10:00 a.m., we will gather together as a family of all ages for a light lunch. We will then be sent out into the neighborhoods of Strongsville to collect food, which will be delivered to The Strongsville Food Bank.

This is a project that EVERYONE can participate in. Our participants will be easily identified in local neighborhoods by our bright yellow “God’s work. Our hands.” T-shirts. In addition to collecting food from Strongsville neighborhoods on Rally Day, volunteers are needed a few days prior to the event to distribute notices about the food collection in local neighborhoods. Assistance is also needed for preparing and serving the lunch. Everyone is encouraged to gather for lunch, regardless of participation in the food collection. We hope you will participate in this special project.

Sign up online at:; or by using the sign-up sheets located in the Narthex.

“God’s work. Our hands. Sunday reminds us that we are church together for the sake of the world. Our lives have been changed by our relationship with God through Jesus Christ, and it’s that encounter with Jesus that frees us to make a difference.” - ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton

Retreat with the Men of New Covenant – Please join us for a Men’s Retreat with the men of New Covenant Lutheran Church of East Cleveland on Friday, September 26 & Saturday, September 27 at Camp Mowana near Mansfield. We will be carpooling down to the camp from the church on Friday evening and returning on Saturday afternoon. The cost of the retreat is $67, which includes lodging plus breakfast and lunch on Saturday. Camp Mowana requires a 25% down payment within 30 days, with the remainder due the week prior to the retreat. Please contact Bruce Holderead ( or 440.655.1523) if you are interested in attending the retreat.

2015 Mission Trip Opportunity

Have you ever wondered how life-changing a mission trip can be? If so, we are looking for 12 volunteers who may be interested in going on a mission trip to Honduras, June 13 – 20, 2015. The trip, organized through Living Water International, will provide the practical service of digging a new well or repairing an existing well for an impoverished community that desperately needs clean water and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with those we are serving.

No experience is required and training will be provided. The team should consist of 8 drillers and 4 hygiene facilitators. Both women and men are welcome to be a part of the drill team. However, due to cultural differences and sensitive health content, only women are allowed to be part of the hygiene team. The minimum age requirement is 14 by the date the trip leaves. Under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. There is no maximum age limit.

Endowment has set aside funding to subsidize the cost of the trip; and with the subsidy, the expected contribution per volunteer will be $950 to $1,000. If interested, please contact Reiner Mueller (440.846.0532 or

There will be an informational meeting planned for late summer for those who are interested.


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