Youth help out with Trunk-or-Treat!

Each year St. Mark reaches out to the community around us to provide a safe and fun trick-or-treating experience. This year both the Middle School and High School youth helped out by creating their own trunk-or-treating experience. Check out the pictures below to see what they did!

Eikon (High School)

Last Sunday the High School youth built a Spooky Maze in the church basement. During Trunk-or-Treat, the youth helped kids have a safe and not too scary haunted house experience!

CREW (Middle School)

Over the past couple of weeks each of the 6 small groups worked together to plan a fun trunk. Then they met up early on Wednesday evening to put together their trunks and hand out candy to the Trunk-or-Treaters.


  
  

5th Commandment: The Sanctity of Life

“You shall not murder.”

What does this mean?

We are to fear and love God, so that we neither endanger nor harm the lives of our neighbors, but instead help and support them in all of life’s needs.

-Martin Luther, The Small Catechism


On it’s face this commandment seems fairly easy to follow. Most people don’t think they would ever be able to kill someone else. But when we explore what this commandment really means, we reveal a more nuanced idea. The 5th commandment means that all of life is sacred, including Human life. This means that animals are also covered by this commandment. A better understanding of this commandment might be, “Do no harm to another.” We are called to help life flourish around us.

We violate the 5th commandment when we refuse to help someone in need. To understand this better we looked at The Parable of The Good Samaritan (found in Luke 10:30-35) and examined which characters in the story may have broken the 5th commandment.

   

 We also had a special guest join us from the Blank Park Zoo. We took a trip around the world with the help of our zoo guide and some animal friends. We learned about animals, plants and conservation issues from different habitats in this challenging, inquiry-based program.

Walk 4 Water Concert and LOCK-IN!!!

This week instead of our normal Sunday night meeting, we actually met on Saturday Night for a Lock-in. We kicked off the night at 6pm at Faith Lutheran Church where we met up with several other churches from throughout central Iowa for an event featuring the Walk-4-Water campaign, Agape, Rachel Kurtz, and Joe Davis.

The event started with a .1 mile journey through the basement carrying 5 gal water jugs (weighing 40 lbs!) to simulate the 3.7 miles that the average woman in sub-Saharan Africa must walk to retrieve water for her family. On the journey we had to walk through simulated flood waters, stand in the heat, learn about water born illnesses, and follow the perilous journey of an individual who doesn’t have enough water. After sweating our way through the Walk-4-Water track, we moved into the sanctuary where we witnessed an awesome concert!


  
  


Then we headed back to the church for a night full of Gargon, Hypotherables, and The Magic School Bus (seriously, that’s the netfilx movie the youth picked out). It was a great night and it all culminated in us attending the 10am Contemporary worship together.

4th Commandment: Honoring Parents

“Honor your mother and father.”

What does this mean?

We are to fear and love God, so that we niether despise nor anger our parents and others in authority, but instead honor, serve, obey, love, and respect them.

-Martin Luther, The Small Catechism


This is the first commandment that deals with interpersonal relationships. It is many mom and dad’s favorite commandment, and it seems like it gets used just to keep kids in-line. But this isn’t the only place in all the Bible where there are references to the relationships between parents and children. In fact these sorts of passages exist all over both the old and new testaments.

So why do you think the Bible puts so much emphasis on how we interact with our parents? Continue reading

Mario Kart Battle and Shape Shifting

Mario Kart

Tonight’s theme was Fellowship. We had an awesome time playing some new games that Nora came up with. We started off the night upstairs with a great free-for-all, real life Mario Kart Battle. Unlike the video game, where the balloons are attached to a kart, tonight we tied balloons to our ankles and tried to pop everyone else’s balloons. We played a few free-for-all rounds, a couple of team rounds, and finally the boss level. For the final round we set a chair in the center of the room, tied one balloon to everyone, and made sure everyone was touching the chair before we started. Check out the chaos below!


After some ridiculous fun upstairs, we moved down to the lower level of the DC for some team building. For this activity we split the group in two and blindfolded half of them. Then the team that wasn’t blindfolded was shown a shape, letter, or state. They then had to arrange the blindfolded group into that shape. What a great night of team building and fun!

Worship in Everything We Do

For our first Worship night of the 2015-16 school year we met the worship team and talked about the importance of Sabbath Worship. We learned that we can worship God with anything we do. To explore the idea of worshiping God everywhere and in everything we do, we played a game called Cranium. In this game we were asked to draw, sculpt, spell, answer questions, and sing to make our way around the game board.


After we played the game, we met as prayer partners. Our juniors and paired up with a freshman or sophomore to pray for one another. After spending intentionally time praying for one another, we moved our worship to the sanctuary, sang songs of praise, and sought the presence of Christ in our lives and in that space.


3rd Commandment: Sabbath Worship

“Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.”

What does this mean?

“We are to fear and love God, so that we do not despise preaching or God’s word, but instead keep that word holy and gladly hear it.”

-Martin Luther, The Small Catechism


For some of us, when we hear the third commandment, we can almost hear God in our heads (sometimes in a voice that sounds surprisingly like our parents) saying, “You are going to go to church every week, and your are going to like it!” In many of our busy lives this can come as yet another crazy expectation piled on to our already overflowing plates. We can easily forget that God is not just another coach or teacher who doesn’t realize that we already have a lot going on. Instead, when God tells us to remember the Sabbath, God is telling us to take a step back, rest, relax, and spend some time with God. Therefore, Sabbath is when we consciously take a break to seek God’s presence.

In order to better understand our need for rest, let’s take a look at at the life of Phillip, a middle school boy who has aspirations of playing high school sports, achieving the rank of Eagle Scout in his local Boy Scout troop, and getting into college.  As we read this story I want you to keep track of the blessings that Phillip has been given by God.

Continue reading

Feeding the Hungry: Salvation Army Casseroles

Last Sunday the High School Youth of Eikon worked together to make 16 breakfast casseroles and 4 dozen hard boiled eggs to help feed the homeless here in Des Moines. The casseroles will go to the Salvation Army Food Truck which hits the streets every Tuesday and Friday morning. To learn more about the Food Truck ministry of the Salvation Army, and to see how you could make your own casseroles, CLICK HERE.

Check out all how all the action went down in the pictures below:


  

2016 Mission Trips Announced

Mission Trip 2016

In 2016 we will be upping our Mission Trip Game. This year we will be offering two separate mission trip opportunities, one local and one national.

 

June 16-19, 2016 – Love Like Jesus in Des Moines, IA

July 10-17, 2016 – High School Mission Trip in Rapid City, SD

For more information please click on the link below to view the Mission Trip Newsletter

Registration for the either or both of the trips is due Sunday, November 1st at noon during our first Parent’s Meeting. Register at stmarkwdm.org/missiontripregistration.php