Christians use the word "church" in a number of different ways. Sometimes we are referring to a building as in "Let's go to church." At other times we may use the word to refer to all Christians or to a certain denomination. The Bible stresses the local church - A group of believers who gather together around God's word and sacraments. Good Shepherd is led by a pastor and his assistants (pastors, directors, teachers, and many volunteers). These servants work together with various members of the church who are chosen to represent the congregation in different ministry areas (see Boards below).
At least twice a year the congregation meets to hear reports from various leaders and to discuss and decide important matters for the church. In June the Financial Spending Guidelines are approved. In November ministry leaders are chosen. Additional meetings are held as needed. All members 18 years and older are encouraged to attend. The Chairman of our Congregation is Mr. Wally Streuter. Our Secretary is Cheryl Schnicker.
The Church Council is made up of the chairmen from the ministry boards (below) along with the chairman, secretary and two representatives to Metro East Lutheran High School (non-voting). The council meets on the third Thursday of the month in the Church Conference Room.
The new and continuing members of the Church Council (2014) are pictured above (L-R) Front Row: Cheryl Schnicker (Congregational Secretary); Dick Bold (MELHS Rep); Marty Hoffman (Parish Administrator); Kathy Bohnet (Congregational Life); Jennifer Martin (School Board); Wally Streuter (Congregational Chairman); Back Row: Pastor Walther; Doug Ruckmann (Finance); Tim Meister (Outreach); Bob Mayhew (Principal); Paul Lauber (Elders); Gary Engeling (Property); Pastor Adle. Not pictured are Burke Latch (Stewardship), Mark Sengele (MELHS Rep) and Gary Smith (Personnel). We are also thankful for the service of outgoing members Darren Wright (School Board); Bob Jones (Property); and Bruce Cross (Outreach).
Elders: This group meets regularly with the pastors to oversee the spiritual life of the congregation. The elders assist the pastors in calling on members of the congregation and encouraging them in their Christian life. Chairman Paul Lauber.
Christian Outreach: This group directs the evangelism efforts of the congregation including special evangelism programs and Vacation Bible School. Chairman Tim Meister
Christian Dayschool: This group meets with the principal and pastor to direct the educational ministry of our school. Chairman Jennifer Martin
Congregational Life: This group plans the ministries of our church that help to assimilate new members to to help them become better acquainted with one another. They also oversee our social ministry work. Chairman Kathy Bohnet
Stewardship: Our stewardship ministry encourages congregational stewardship and oversees the distribution of funds in our school scholarship program and mission endowment programs. Chairman Burke Latch
Finance: The Chairman of Finance oversees the financial aspects of the congregation. Any member is welcome to have a copy of our annual financial guidelines or monthly financial reports. Please call the Church Office at 618-344-3151. Chairman Doug Ruckman
Church Property: This group directs the facility needs of the congregation. Chairman Gary Engeling
Personnel: Chairman Gary Smith assists all the boards with any human resource concerns.
Good Shepherd is part of the Lutheran Church-Missori Synod. The Synod is an association of some six thousand Lutheran congregations that accept without reservation the teachings of the Book of Concord. The main purpose of the Synod is to provide a structure for the training of church workers, sending missionaries, and providing various kinds of support to other churches and Christians around the world. (See "Affiliations")
Anyone is welcome to donate to the ministry of Good Shepherd. However, we do not expect this from guests and visitors. All members receive offering envelopes. Non-members may request envelopes. Quarterly and annual giving statement are provided.
1. Our congregation’s statement of purpose emphasizes both nurture and outreach using the means of grace (word and sacrament) to bring people into the kingdom of God and to encourage them in their life of faith.
2. The pillars of the public ministry are preaching, teaching, and visitation. Programs and administration must serve the purposes of these three vital aspects of the ministry.
3. We are committed to the doctrinal stance of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. We boldly preach the message of the cross as well as address important issues of the day such as evolutionism, abortion, alternate lifestyles, etc.
4. We highly value Christian education. God has blessed us with an educational program for preschool to eighth grade with over 500 students. We are also members of the Metro East Lutheran High School Association.
5. We are committed to quality pastoral care. Members who are absent from worship are contacted by the pastors and elders for the purpose of encouragement. We maintain high pastoral contact with our newer members and with our less involved members. We want to provide high quality contact and care for all our members.
6. We work hard to reach out to the spiritually lost and wandering in our community. Visitors are contacted on Sunday afternoons by the pastors. We maintain a large evangelism database from which we draw to make numerous contacts. We provide three ten-week adult inquiry classes each year. Our Christian school is specifically geared to be outreach oriented. We would like all programs to have an outreach emphasis.
7. We are committed to liturgical, reverential worship. Since worship is the one thing we all do together, we prefer to keep the worship services unified in substance and style. We do provide opportunities for other styles of worship by means of concerts, chapel services, and midweek services.
8. We highly value peace, cooperation, and the importance of “doing the homework,” as well as fervent prayer when it comes to planning and implementing our ministry. We rely heavily on a very active and committed group of lay leaders. Our decision-making process is streamlined to enable those who are well informed to decide and direct the concerns of the church. Church leaders are expected to be servants of the Lord and servants to the congregation. All major decisions are presented to the voter’s assembly for approval. Only board chairmen are elected. The Church Council appoints board members. All important committees (such as a call committee or building committee) are open to the entire congregation.
9. Good Shepherd values Christian piety and holiness. Newer members need to see the spiritual growth of the older members. While God has no need of our good works, our neighbors desperately need them, and through them there are many opportunities to advance the message of the kingdom.
10. Good Shepherd recognizes its part in the larger picture of the world-wide church. Through the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod and the Southern Illinois District of the LCMS as well as other agencies we support the work of the church that extends beyond our local community including the training of Christian workers, world missions, and social relief.
Constitution and Bylaws
Please call the Church Office (618-344-3151) or email
if you would like a copy of our Constitution and Bylaws.