St John's Lutheran Church, La Grange IL 60525 (LCMS)

St. John's Lutheran Church and School
47th Street and Brainard Avenue, La Grange, Illinois 60525


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Group Life

Debbie Arfsten, Group Life Ministry

Group Life at St. John’s is purposely designed to deepen the community within the church and to expand our reach to the community around the church.

Group Life will help us…

Meet Jesus through Bible study in a small setting among friends;

Experience the Support of a Church by providing personal connections as we get to know our church family better;

Live as Disciples by fulfilling God’s calling through exciting opportunities to serve in the church and community.

Group Life has become in a short time a core ministry in our vision for Reaching Farther. Group Life provides a smaller setting (usually 8-10 people) growing deeper in relationships within the church and beyond the church. Because Group Life happens in 40 day cycles it also offers a format that fits a variety of seasons and schedules as well as the opportunity to move around and form new relationships through different groups.

Group Life is more than a study group. Group Life is a community built around Jesus where people experience the support of the church through worship, study, prayer, fellowship and service together. Many will attest that Group Life communities are life changing. Group Life’s prayer and service attributes, in particular, are deepening our relationships beyond St. John’s  and into  the community.

Sign up for small groups for our 40 Days… On the Water series. Groups begin meeting the week of August 25 and will continue for six weeks. There are many days/times available, so check out the boards in the narthex, and find a group that fits for you.


Chicago    3:00p Louis & Rosa
La Grange 4:00p Glenn & Venna
Burr Ridge 7:00p Dana & Dalyne


Lyons 6:45p Tom & Vicki
LaGrange 7:00p George & Barbara


LaGrange 1:00p Rebecca
Westmont 7:00p Mark & Kristen


Western Springs 7:00p Laura
Indian Head Park 7:00p Scott & Jean
Indian Head Park 7:00p Fred & Julaine
Berwyn 7:30p Chuck & Gwen


La Grange (church–Men’s group) 7:00p Pete
La Grange (Women’s group) 7:00p Pam
Western Springs 7:00p Gary & Nancy

Looking for a good book to finish out your summer reading plan? Check out John Ortberg’s book, “If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat.” This book is the basis for our small group studies for 40 Days… On the Water. It’s a great read and will give you a headstart on pondering your “water-walking” plan. Available on Amazon.




Our "Service Cycle"

What is a Service Cycle?

There are two times during the year that we break from our regular group life meetings—Thanksgiving through New Year's and the month of May. Recognizing that these are very busy months, instead of groups meeting weekly, we encourage people to be engaged in service opportunities at the church and in the community.

Here are opportunities and a special collection included in our service cycle:

Cups of Blessing
Beginning this past April, the java served during our coffee hour will provide an extra jolt of energy. We’re not talking about the caffeine content of our new brew. Rather, our donations will allow us to take our coffee fellowship a step farther.

The coffee served will be from Fair Trade, a partner of Lutheran World Relief, which supports South American coffee farmers who are paid poorly and cannot support their families. Coffee hosts will be asked to donate $20 to cover the cost of cups and coffee.

While we enjoy our coffee together and visit in our “new and improved” narthex, we’ll also be sharing a cup of blessing with someone in need. Donations placed in the basket provided will support a mission. For the first six weeks, donations will go to Lori Wilbert and her ministry at Statesville Prison. A suggestion box will be available for more ideas for missions we can support, which will all be prayerfully considered.

If you would like to host a coffee hour please contact the Church Office.

Prayer Walk
August 25, 2013 (9:25a-10:25a)

Join St. John’s congregation in a prayer walk around our community, praying for our neighbors and providing invitations at each door for people to share their prayer concerns through our website. We will begin with a chapel service at 8:00a. Then, during the education hour, we will begin our walk. Routes are short and should take less than an hour.



Serve with Us

Caring Community Kitchen

Greater Chicagoland Food Depository

All School Prayer Walk National Day of Prayer
May 2nd

Mother’s Day Service Project, May 12th

Cups of Blessings

I started small groups because I was invited. That simple gesture has led to making connections and starting other new small groups. I am open to meeting new people and seeing the resources God has given us with people and we get to see how He works in our lives. People can be threatened by church. Small groups are safe and caring. God called groups of people at a time. I am using small groups to share, pray and care for others. We come together and our belief becomes stronger. ~Roger

"A 6 week commitment to small groups, and 2 years later, here I am. The St. John’s family has given me opportunity to do more than I have ever done before. Unique ways to serve, like the Prayer Walk really opened my eyes to all the things I can do.

You are so welcome at St. John’s whether you are a member or not. There is no pressure. That was a real foreign concept to me since the church I grew up in, well you just don’t “visit” church. I was looking and St. John’s was the drastic difference I was looking for. I felt a stone rolling down a hill; I kept picking up speed here at St. John’s. I realized I was in the right place.

Service has carried over to my work life. I have always been someone who did more than expected, but I’m finding areas to serve at work now, that previously, I didn’t recognize. I encounter many people at work while participating in service opportunities that has opened doors to me being able to witness to students. Service has always been some part of my life. But now, I have reprioritized and service is at the top of the list.

Service is a journey for life. I now see all the service opportunities God is showing me. In service, I am leaving a legacy for my children and for their children too. Service is a learning experience. I learn so much from people, get to know people and get to share my faith. I get so much more than I am giving." Laura (Worship)

"The Small Group Ministry has not only transformed me, but I feel it has transformed the whole congregation of St. John’s. I was raised Catholic and this used to be foreign to me. I feel a real sincere effort has been put into a grass roots movement that has redefined St. John’s.

I have developed extremely close, personal and spiritual relationships with the Small Group Ministry. I truly love the people I am in group with. I have reconnected with scripture. I was raised with scripture and have always had some kind of connection to it; however, 30 years later, it is so much more meaningful now. I am spiritually stronger and grounded in my faith.

I have developed a deep spirit of service that was instilled in me as a result of being involved in Small Group Ministry. I am so much more aware of the opportunities available for service and have an ongoing commitment. Thru the “BEDS” program, a LaGrange service organization, I have been united with others in a desire to help the homeless. I meet a lot of nice people who are just products of their environment and circumstances. One night I met a woman who told me “There is such a light that comes from you.” We shared our faith amidst doubters and mockers, but, a few others were moved by the conversation. Faith can really get you by in this cruel world. We need to nourish the body and the soul. I am so committed to that. I enjoyed our time together, because now we both were able to go out into the nasty world with a smile.

Small Groups Ministry has created a deep desire and drive to help others and has also lead me to joining in and studying the bible in a year. As long as I can see Jesus, that is where I am going to be. St. John’s is an enabler in all of this. What St. John’s does had drawn me back into the church. At first I felt a little uncomfortable, but the constant sending out is a powerful driving force in the mission of what St. John’s is all about." Glen (Small Group Ministry)

Meet! Experience! Live!   
Meet Jesus... Experience the Support of a Church... Live as His Disciples