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Monthly Messenger March 24, 2021 Volume LXXI No. 4

Volume LXXI No. 4


Come Worship With Us!

Palm Sunday, March 28, 2021 10 am

Maundy Thursday, April 1, 2021 6:30 pm with Holy Communion

Good Friday, April 2, 2021 6:30 pm

Easter Sunday, April 4, 2021 8 am and 10:30 am The First Lutheran Church Congregational Council is calling a congregational meeting for Sunday, April 11, 2021 immediately following the 8:00 service. The purpose of this meeting is to call an associate pastor to First Lutheran Church. Please plan on attending this congregational meeting either in person or via Zoom. If you wish to attend via Zoom, please email Jordan – jordan@flcal.org by Thursday, April 8th so the appropriate link and instructions can be sent to you. This is an important time for First Lutheran Church as we prepare to move forward in the post pandemic world into our next one hundred years.


First Lutheran Church, Albert Lea Saturday, May 15, 2021 Check out page 7.

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FLC BUILDING AND OFFICE HOURS Building— Monday-Thursday 8:00 AM-5:00 PM Office —Monday-Thursday 9:00 AM-3:00 PM FRIDAY & SATURDAY CLOSED Sunday Building Hours—9 AM—11 AM [Other times by special arrangement]



Ushers—If interested sign up in the Gathering Space or in the church office. Any questions contact Ken Damerow.

What’s Happening at First Lutheran Church FLCW meetings Virtual Sunday School Leader Teams Bible Study Pre-K—Grade 6 meetings Quilting Take-home packets Church Council Men’s Group Confirmation Classes The Perfect Gift Circle Bible Grades 7, 8 & 9 Shop Studies First Communion Music rehearsals Funerals Mid-week Lenten Peace & Power Drive-up Food services KATE Radio Ministry Blood Drives Live-streams First Lutheran Church + F.L.C. + For the Love of Christ

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 Rejoice in the Lord!  Dear Friends in Christ,

“ I Believe in the Communion of Saints.”

In the third article of the Apostles’ Creed, we confess these words. What they mean is that Holy Spirit forms true Christ followers into a special fellowship, a community, of forgiven sinners that truly are saints. We are saints, not that we are better than others, or live holy and perfect lives, but in the sense that we know that we are loved and forgiven by a good and gracious God, having accepted by faith the Lordship of Jesus Christ in our lives. Have you ever been somewhere and met someone that you sense by their countenance that they are a believer? That special connection is what I believe “the communion of saints” means. During our pandemic isolation it has been hard not to meet together at church as we normally would. As things have opened up these last couple of months it's been such a joy to see in church many that I have not seen for quite a while. I missed seeing so many of you and worshiping with you. Watching on TV or on line, which is helpful, is just not the same. The sense of fellowship and sense of unity we have missed is more than just the social isolation. It’s a longing for that connection with the Body of Christ, which is who we are as church. (First Corinthians 12:27) The “Communion of Saints” is a real, special, deeper shared human connection that is divine because of the Holy Spirit. It’s been so life-giving to be gathering together again at church, because of the reality of the communion of saints. The Bible encourages our gathering as we read in Hebrews 10: 23

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

As a life-long churchgoer, I have found the communion of saints to be life-giving. This special fellowship, worshipping God together, has helped many a person to overcome sin, face life courageously and aided in triumphing in the most difficult circumstances of life. As we gradually re-open from pandemic restrictions, I hope each of you will make it a real goal, to come together regularly to worship, study and pray in order to experience the lifetransforming power of the communion of saints in the Holy Spirit for you and for your neighbors.




Some more things in which to rejoice and be glad:  “Reopening” as Sunday attendance grows; people receive vaccines and as CoViD-19 numbers decline. Now in April we are back to 2 services each Sunday at 8:00 & 10:30 am!  The Call Committee has selected a new pastor for FLC, with the congregation meeting set for Sunday, April 11, to act on their recommendation. You will love your new pastor! How do I know this? ...because that’s what you do so well!  Many of you know my retirement is planned for the end of May. I have mixed emotions, of course. I am confident that Holy Spirit has great things in store for FLC with fresh new pastoral leadership in this new post-pandemic 2nd century of the life and ministry of FLC! May God bless each of you through Jesus Christ as we live... ...In the Light of His love,

Pastor John F. Holt

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The Special Outreach Cause offering for April is designated for Helping Families Fund. Inside Story Headline Special offering envelopes will be available from the ushers at church services. You may also send your outreach offerings to the church. Please, make checks payable to FLC.

The Centennial History Book $16

Altar Guild meetings have been canceled during the Pandemic, however the Altar

The Centennial Cookbook $15 are for sale in the church office.

Guild still maintains their monthly duties.

Page 5 Page 5 ...NOTES OF THANKS...

I wanted to reach out as a fellow member of the faith community and say thank you to your congregation for your recent gift of $2000 for the Albert Lea Salvation Army. We consider it an honor that your congregation supports us, and your gift is needed more than ever before.

People are

I want to share how The Salvation Army uses physically your generous gifts, and how First Lutheran showing the Church members might consider partnering with lack of food us to help in deeper ways. The Salvation Army is serving those facing the economic impact of COVID-19. Last year, we served nearly 5 million meals, and many would have had nothing to eat without it. That is hard to comprehend but then food box recipient named Kris describes her neighbors saying, “We’ve already seen them lose a lot of weight,” and it really hits home. If your congregation’s adult or youth ministries are open to serving Albert Lea’s unique needs through volunteering, please call Kathy at 507-373-5710 Thank you again, for many years of generous support! Jessica Raboin, Community Engagement Associate The Salvation Army Northern Division 2445 Prior Avenue North| Roseville, MN 55113 O: 651-746-3424 | C: 651-308-1280

Thank you to all of you who volunteered to assist with worship service safe opening. Many of you signed people in, passed out stickers, gave directions to the elevator and stairs, as well as wiping down stair rails. We couldn’t have accomplished this without you, as well as our ushers and custodial staff. We appreciate your willingness to help. Volunteers are an important part of First Lutheran’s Ministry, and we need all of you today and in the future. THANK YOU

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The FLC Library is pleased to tell you that our library has some great new books for the children to check out. If you love puppies we have purchased 3 new books of Ellen Miles

“The Puppy Place” series and one of her “The Kitty Corner” for the cat lovers. You will fall in love with these adorable pets. The author loves dogs and cats and loves writing stories about them. She lives in Vermont and loves to be outdoors with her dog, zipper. The library also has a new book “ Our Tree named Steve” by Alan Zweibel. It has beautiful pictures and a tender story about a favorite tree in the family’s yard. Also the complete series of “Little House on the Prairie”, a favorite of everyone, is available to sign out. . So come and visit the FLC Library. We have many books for our young readers, as well as older ones.

An Easter prayer From the grave’s depths, Lord Jesus Christ, you emerged, breaking the hold of sin, death and hell, that those who trust in you might share in your righteousness, life and beloved community with God the Father and all God's children. We bow in awe before your majesty, giving thanks for your grace extended so bountifully to us. By the power of your Spirit who lives within us, may we share the astonishing news of your resurrection with others, that they also may know your saving grace. Amen.

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LUTHERAN WORLD RELIEF INGATHERING The Social Ministry Commission WILL be hosting a Spring Lutheran World Relief Ingathering on Saturday, May 15, 2021 from 7am-12noon. Follow the Enter & Exit signs as you enter the parking lot off of St. Mary’s St. on the east side of the church. COVID-19 guidelines will be followed. There should be no need for you to leave your vehicle. Items greatly needed to fill empty warehouses are Mission Quilts, Personal Care Kits, Baby Care Kits, Sewing Kits, & School Kits. Guidelines for kit contents & packing instructions can be found at lwr.org, Please use sturdy & easy-to-handle boxes & heed the 40 pound limit! LWR no longer collects Fleece-tied Blankets or Bulk Soap. Monetary donations for the Quilt & Kit Shipping Fund will be forwarded to Baltimore. Make checks payable to Lutheran World Relief. Crossroads Trailer of Albert Lea will be delivering the truckload(s?) to the LWR warehouse in St. Paul. We look forward to seeing you!!

FIRST LUTHERAN CHURCH WOMEN Fist Lutheran Church Women are having a monetary donation for Lutheran Relief Kits from April until May15, 2021. Please make checks to FLCW (note memo LWR kits). Donations can be brought to the church office or sent to Ruth Noren; 240 Green Lea Lane, Bonnie Schneider; 813 Maple Hill Dr. B3 or Cindy Gandrud; 502 Sheridan St. Thank you!

First Lutheran Church Women General Meeting Wednesday, April 14, 2021 1:15 p.m. in Bethany Hall Program: Memories of FLC By: Pastor John Holt Circle Roll Call Devotions: Cindy Gandrud Offering Prayer: Cindy Gandrud

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Easter Sunday 8 & 10:30 am In Person Worship-S 10 am-Peace & Power BroadcastKAAL-TV, Channel 6 10am-Worship Service BroadcastKATE Radio-1450AM

11 10 am-In Person Worship-S



5 Easter Monday 6 8 am-Quilters-BH & MPR


Office & Building Closed

8 am 9 am 9:30

9:30 am-Staff meeting-P

6:30 pm-Blended Service Music Rehearsal


10 am-Peace & Power BroadcastKAAL-TV, Channel 6 10am-Worship Service Broadcast KATE Radio-1450AM

6:30 pm-Social Ministry Team mtg.-MPR

5:30 6:30 tion



8 am-Quilters-BH & MPR

9:30 am-Staff meeting-P 6:30 pm-Blended Service Music Rehearsal


10 am-In Person Worship-S 10 am-Peace & Power BroadcastKAAL-TV, Channel 6 10am-Worship Service BroadcastKATE Radio-1450AM


10 am-In Person Worship-S 10 am-Peace & Power BroadcastKAAL-TV, Channel 6 10am-Worship Service BroadcastKATE Radio-1450AM

19 4 pm-MC #6-MPR 6:30 pm-Church Council meets-P


20 8 am-Quilters-BH & MPR 9:30 am-Staff meeting-P 11 an-Set up for Blood Drive-BH 12-6 pm-Red Cross Blood Drive-BH 6:30 pm-Blended Service Music Rehearsal


8 am-Quilters-BH & MPR 9:30 am-Staff meeting-P

6:30 pm-Blended Service Music Rehearsal

8 am 9:30 1:15 5:30 6:30

21 8 am 9:30 5:30 6:30


8 am 9:30 1pm5:30 6:30

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Thu 1 Maundy Thursday

12 pm-Community Service of remembrance & Hope 1 year of COVID 19 in Freeborn County-Gazebo on the lake/FLC

Fri Good Friday 6:30 pm-Good Friday Service-S

1 pm-Hardanger-MPR 5-6 pm-Food Ministry Drive Up-SL 6:30 PM- Maundy Thursday Service-S


0 pm-7th grade Confirmation 0 pm-8th & 9th grade Confirman

5-6 pm-Food Ministry Drive Up-SL



6:30 am-Men’s Book Study-P m-Prayer Group-PR 0 am-Bible Study-BH 5 pm-FLCW Program-BH 0 pm-7th grade Confirmation 0 pm-8th & 9th gr. Confirmation

4:30 pm-1st Communion Service-S







1 pm-Hardanger-MPR

1 pm-Hardanger-MPR 5-6 pm-Food Ministry Drive Up-SL

6:30 am-Men’s Book Study-P 22 -Prayer Group-PR am-Bible Study-BH pm-7th grade Confirmation 1 pm-Hardanger-MPR pm-8th & 9th grade Confirmation 5-6 pm-Food Ministry Drive Up-SL

6:30 am-Men’s Book Study-P m-Prayer Group-PR am-Bible Study-BH -Messenger Crew-P pm-7th grade Confirmation pm-8th & 9th grade Confirmation



Sanctuary back up for weather

6:30 am-Men’s Book Study-P m-Prayer Group-PR m-FLCW Board meets-BH 0 am-Bible Study-MPR




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REPORT FROM YOUR CALL COMMITTEE Greetings from your Call Committee! We have news. We have a candidate and the council approved moving ahead with a congregational meeting and vote. We thank you for the privilege of serving on this committee. As chair I want you to know they are a group that is discerning and very qualified. I am thankful for all of them. Members include: Diane Damerow, Sue Loch, Randy Nicol, Aaron Ladlie, Sandy Jensen, myself, Della Simmons, Jack Edwin, Brianna Mann and Virginia Larson. We also want to thank SEMN synod for quick response and consult.

• The candidate! He grew up on a farm in southern Iowa. After high school he served in the US Army. Upon being discharged, he studied at Grand View University in Des Moines, IA: he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies. He attended seminary at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque IA where he earned a Master of Divinity degree. He has served in churches in the Southwest MN synod. • He is married to his amazing wife Heather. They have three great children: Ty, Addison and Sawyer. They enjoy spending time together as a family. Some of their favorite activities include going to parks, out for walks, cooking together, watching movies, and finding ways to make each other laugh. They have three dogs that help to keep life busy. • He believes the church finds itself at a very important moment in history. Our society is in a place where the church is uniquely situated to be an agent of reconciliation and restoration within a divided world. The church is just as relevant and important today as it has ever been through history. Our faith in Christ calls us to live out the promises of our baptisms and to serve neighbors and community The FLCour Worship Counting Team as the hands, feet and voice of Jesus. would like to thank the following • One of his favorite scripture verses is Galatians 3:13: “Christ redeemed from members for their past us years the curse of law by becoming the curse for us.” can ask himthe about this but of You service with team: Russ & make spare time. His masters thesis was aboutMaxine the verse. Wignes, Joyce & Norm Selma Sue • Once again we thank you for this privilege.Fredin, Our work is notEngebretson, finished! Olson and Ann Henderson. Janice Hammer, chair

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Almighty God, for Jesus’ sake, we commend to You, for healing and wholeness: Gladys Heys, Nancy Jenson, Deb Koenigs, Amy Ladlie, Frances Kycek-Schulte, and

O Lord, continue Your presence, peace and healing touch, we pray, for: Jody Bakken, Alan J. Christensen, Mike & Mary Ann Christian, Rich Crissinger, Grant Gordon, Jim Hansen, Dorothy Hanson, Breckyn Heinemann, Glenn Helland, Sharon Johnson, Phil Koppelman, Officer Arik Matson, Fritz Moran, Merrill Nottingham, Alexandra Peterson, Larry Peterson, Jean Stearns, Mae Twito, Helene Westrum, and Molly ... and their spouses, families & caregivers and…

Watch over and keep safe: our neighbors serving in the Armed Forces, law enforcement, firefighting and emergency services and their families.

Personal Visitation by the Pastors To support people at the time of illness or injury, pastors usually do make personal visits in hospitals, homes or Care Centers. However, during the restrictions due to the corona virus pandemic, visits are limited to telephone calls. Hospitals only call pastors/churches to inform them of dire emergencies where family requests them to do so. So, please, call us, if you want us to know. We try to be available in emergencies. Do not hesitate to call the church (373-6424), if you have not talked to a pastor and would like to request a call. If you call the church office after hours and get the recording, pushing number ❸ on your phone to reach the pastor on call. We are glad to make home visits as requested when it is safe to do so. No name is automatically put on a printed prayer list. We ask permission before we include a name on our public prayer list. Please, let us know if you want to be on the prayer list or have a pastor call. ~Your FLC Pastors John & Jan

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FIRST LUTHERAN CHURCH OFFICE: Phone (507) 373-6424; E-mail: firstoffice@flcal.org; Fax 373-6330 Mailing address—301 W. Clark St., Albert Lea, MN 56007

Web site–www.flcal.org PASTORAL STAFF e-mails and emergency telephone numbers: Pastor John Holt, johnh@flcal.org (Cell–383-4750; Home–377-0046) Pastor Jan Crissinger, jan@flcal.org (Cell—(507) 621-1758)

2020-2021 COUNCIL MEMBERS QUICK REFERENCE GUIDE President- Ginny Larson- 507-383-6686- larsonvirginia3@gmail.com Vice President- Dawn Thompson- 507-383-2953- dthomps58@gmail.com Treasurer- Dan Dorman- 612-245-5204- aldormans@gmail.com Secretary- Kristin Larson- 507-383-5695-kristin.m.larson71@gmail.com Education- Sue Loch- 507-383-9195- susaloch@gmail.com

Worship and Music- Sandy Jensen- 507-319-1447- Sandrakay561@gmail.com Social Ministry- Cindy Gandrud- 507-402-3909- gandy6gunhild@gmail.com Property Enhancement- Dave Van Fossen- 507-402-0634- davevf@gmail.com Membership and Growth- Stephanie Passingham- passingham@wctatel.net F.L.C.W- President- Diane Damerow-507-383-9284- ddamerow@charter.net Sharing the Faith- Jo Hanson- 763-257-9018- jobunny19@gmail.com Youth- Fran Heilman - 507-373-2470- theteech@charter.net Lead Pastor- John Holt-507-373-6424- john@flcal.org Church Administrator- Kara Heinemann- 507-373-6424- kara@flcal.org

Interim Pastor- Jan Crissinger- 507-373-6424-jan@flcal.org FIRST LUTHERAN MESSENGER (USPS196-560)

Periodicals postage paid at

Published by First Lutheran Church (Monthly) Albert Lea, Minnesota 56007 301 West Clark Street, Albert Lea, MN Subscription price $1.00 per year (Postmaster send address correction to 301 W. Clark St, Albert Lea, MN 56007)

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News and Information After prayerful discernment, the staff and board of Good Earth Village have decided that our program focus this summer will be intergenerational overnight camps and one-day adventure experiences. We are excited to offer wonderful themed days for K-12 grade campers and faith-filled family experiences onsite. Visit our website for camp descriptions, dates, and pricing.

REGISTRATION OPENS MARCH 21st www.goodearthvillage.org/summer2021 Save the Date March 21st- Sign Up Sunday (Registration opens for Summer Programming) June 26th- Women’s Day August 28th-29th- GoodStock

Visit our website for more information about our events and retreat opportunities. www.goodearthvillage.org

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Memorials, Honors & Special Gifts PEACE & POWER FUND In Memory of: Army buddy Melford Berhow given by Bill & Lavonne Christensen Rodger Christenson given by Mike & Arlene Kelly Lori Cichos given by Sharon Wakefield & family Mary Claassen given by Roswell & Phyllis Ulland Jaysen Green given by Kathryn Sandsmark Arlen Groe given by friends and family, Beverly Grotsun, the Arlen Groe family, Hazel Senske, Gale Nelson Donna Heilman given by Beverly Grotsun, John & Sharon Buley, Marvin & Dianna Bednar Jan Jerdee given by Hildy Vallevand, Karen Brand Joyce Johnson given by Bonnie Trampel, Douglas & Nancy Reuter, Marge Moine, LaVerne & Shirley Strand, Larry & Julia Tonder, Sharon Seidel Ione Kelly given by Hazel Senske Tom Loverink given by Tom & Betty Sime Art Ludtke for his February 26 birthday given by his wife, Donna Jinni Olson given by Richard & Virginia Loberg, Marge Moine, Pat & Dick Freese, Karen Brand, friends and family, Jerry & Beverly Blakeslee, Fred Friedrichsen, Cynthia & John Peterson, friends and family Clifford Otterson given by Margaret Otterson Dr. Gerald Rasmusson given by Sharon Wakefield Donald Smith given by Arlis Smith Marjorie Swehla given by Leverne & Elizabeth Skov, Lance Skov, Kevin, Leann, Kaitlynn, Christopher and Matthew Rivers Erlys Wittmer given by Jerome Baer Gifts Given By: Joyce Calgaard, West St. Olaf Church, Christian & Annette Hansen, Marvin & Donna Helgeson, Philip Stoltenberg, Gordon & Terry Briggs, Charles & Mary Sukup, Gilbert Gilbertson, Ila Breck, Robert & Theresa Hartke, Norm & Joyce Fredin, Gale Nelson, John & Nancy Sorlie, Leona Howe, James & Kathe Grodhaus, Buddy & Phyllis Bonfy, Warren & Irene Mickelson, Phyllis Sands, Marvin & Donna Helgeson, Rex Colling, West Freeborn Mission, Donald & Phyllis Solberg, Janice Jensen, Elton & Jean Sheets, Deacon Douglas Spiotta, Ruth Franke, Bear Lake Lutheran Church, Craig Nash, Melody Tallman-Wynia, Patricia Tallman, Gilbert Gilbertson

FOOD FOR SCHOOL BACKPACKS FUND In Memory of: Rosie Rasmussen given by David & Linda Pederson Gifts Given By: Ron & Nancy Meyer, Al & Vergie Asper FOOD MINISTRY DRIVE THRU FUND In Memory of: Ken Joachim given by Wayne & Carol Hedalen Joyce Johnson given by Gary & Ginny Thompson Donna Jordahl given by Ellwood & Janice Tukua Max Kleinschrodt given by Jane Maiden Jinni Olson given by Gary & Ginny Thompson Rudy Spieker given by Joe & Marge LaFrance Gifts Given By: Mary Ann Bartz, Marvyn & Donna Helgeson, Dwayne Anderson, Bob & Jean Smith, Duane & Eunice Hatleli, Arlis Smith

GENERAL FUND Gifts Given By: Dale & Joyce Sorensen, Kathryn Oothoudt, Willie King and Sheila Hastings, Mary M. Best, Harvey & Donna Eden, Sara Cogar, Clair& Ruth Vermedahl, Mary Mehus, T. Jan & Shirley Whisler, Vandlyn Hewman, Doug & Joanne Chaffee, HELPING FAMILIES FUND Gifts Given By: Larry & Janice Lestrud KEITH FLIGGE MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP In Memory of: Roger Christenson given by Donna Ludtke Donna Heilman given by Donna Ludtke Ione Kelly given by Donna Ludtke Gerald Rasmussen given by Donna Ludtke JoAnn Rietveld given by Donna Ludtke

Volume LXXI No. 4 Page 15

Memorials, Honors & Special Gifts (cont.) FLC MUSIC FUND In Memory of: Jinni Olson given by Rory & Janet Schumaker RADIO FUND In Memory of: My classmate Tom Guiney given by Alton Flugum Donna Heilman given by Wayne & Carol Hedalen Jan Jerdee given by Jane Maiden Joyce Johnson given by Jane Maiden SUNDAY SCHOOL UPGRADE In Memory of: Rodger Christenson given by Gordon & LouJean Nelson, Kermit & JoAnn Iverson, Lowell & Darcy Nielson

Pastoral Records: Baptisms, Weddings, Deaths, Funerals, Memorial Services

Funerals: Joyce Jonson, February 6, 2021 Baptisms: Tianna Dee Boyd, February 16, 2021

TANZANIA MISSION PROJECT Gifts Given By: Stan Weltzen, Wayne & Jackie Sletten YOUTH SUMMER MISSION In Memory Of: Rodger Christenson given by Rory & Janet Schumaker Don’t see your gift? Any gifts recorded by the church office after March 23, 2021 will appear in the next issue. Any questions or concerns, please call the church office 373-6424. Thank you.

FLC Prayer Ministry Want prayer for yourself or others? Call Jo, 763-257-9018 or Julia, 373-9594. Prayers are kept confidential among prayer chain members.

Have you included First Lutheran Church in your will? Over the years, those First Lutheran Church members who have conscientiously included First Lutheran Church congregation in their estate planning have enabled some very important and powerful ministry to happen here. Please consider including First Lutheran Church, which has served you these many years, in your estate planning. You will enable this congregation to serve many, many more people in years and generations to come. 

SUNDAY’S WORSHIP SCHEDULE In Person Worship - FLC Sanctuary at 10 am Watch Peace & Power-KAAL TV - Channel 6 at 10 am

Celebrated on the 1st & 3rd Sundays of each month.

Listen to KATE RADIO AM -1450 at 10 am Anytime on the FLC website to see video of current and past worship services. www.flcal.org The mission of First Lutheran Church is: to gather, equip, and empower people to joyfully do Christ’s work.

First Lutheran Church 301 W Clark St. Albert Lea, MN 56007

Periodicals Postage Paid at Albert Lea, MN 56007

Sunday Worship Broadcasts 10:00 a.m. - Peace & Power-KAAL TV- Channel 6 (10:00 a.m. - KATE RADIO AM 1450)

First Lutheran Church—F.L.C.—For the Love of Christ

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April 2021  

April 2021