Shared Vision

April 2019

From the Pastor's Desk:

As we move into April, St. Paul is anticipating many changes. Some of the changes we greet with enthusiasm, some with mixed feelings.

Thank You, Heidi! March 31 will be the last Sunday that Heidi Polzin will serve as our organist for the 8:30 Service. Heidi has been our organist since 2014. I have appreciated her talent, hard work, and enthusiasm since I have been Pastor of St. Paul. Heidi is definitely a team player and is always willing to do what she can to enhance the ministry of our congregation. Along with playing the organ, Heidi has shared her gifts as a flute player, pianist and singer. She and David, along with Aubrey and Isaac, are moving back to Minnesota in June. We are happy that they are opening a new chapter in their lives, but we will certainly miss them.

Welcome Sandy! At the same time, we are excited to welcome Sandy Davis-Quarles as our new organist. Sandy is a graduate of Ohio State University and the University of Florida. She has worked for the Air Force as an engineer for 31 years and currently works at Eglin Air Force Base. Sandy has over 25 years of experience as an organist and church musician, including at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Fort Walton Beach and at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Sandy and her husband, John, recently moved back to Niceville from Columbus, Ohio.

Changes in the Kitchen: As many of you know, Mike and Diane Ballard have place their home in Niceville on the market. They are building a home near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and hope to move there when it is completed this summer. They are making the move to be closer to their daughter, April, and her husband, Frank. Again, we are happy for the Ballards as they open a new chapter, but we will miss them and the many ways they contribute to our ministry at St. Paul.

This means that we need to make plans for this coming fall. We know that we will not be able to duplicate the work that Diane has done at St. Paul. Her abilities, hard work and dedication cannot be matched. Carl Spring, Deacon for Parish Life, is currently planning for how Wednesday Night meals and other events will be organized. He is hoping that a combination of pot luck dinners and dinners hosted by various groups (as takes place in Lent) will work for us. You will be hearing more as plans take shape.

VBS Changes: Our Vacation Bible School program will be changing in 2019 as well. Our enrollment has been so high for the last two years that the Board of Education decided to hold two weeks of VBS this year. The first week, May 20-23, will be a Pre-K VBS for ages 3, 4, and 5. The second week, June 17-21, will be a K-5 VBS. Our VBS director for this year is Karen Painter, who is being assisted by Jo Jones. Registration for both weeks have already begun! Go to to register, or pick up a form in the office. Look in the Sunday Announcements for more information.

Bowling League: Josh Landon has been working hard to start a St. Paul bowling league. Beginning on Sunday, March 31, we will be bowling at Hurricane Lanes in Destin from 2:00 to 4:30 on Sunday afternoons. Those who would like to ride as a group should gather at St. Paul a little before 1:30. The church van will depart at 1:30 for the ride to Destin. Cost is $10 per player, plus $2 for shoe rental. Thanks, Josh.

Baptisms! The month of April, is a time of new life. We will celebrate Easter on April 21. Along with our celebration of Easter, we will also be privileged to witness the baptism of four children during the month. I (Pastor David) will also be teaching a class on Baptism following Easter. This will be a class for parents and other adults, to help them nurture their children in the faith and to understand their own baptism better. More information will come soon.

Yours in Christ,

Rev. David Charlton


St. Paul's foreign missionary, Rev. Kristin Engstrom, was sent to the African country of Senegal to be the coordinator of the ELCA's Young Adults in Global Ministry program. Senegal was chosen for this program because the country is stable and the people are friendly. It is a small country of 75,750 sq. mi. (the size of South Dakota) and a population in 1990 of 7,400,000 (the population of New Jersey). Senegal is located on Africa's west coast, the Atlantic Ocean coast. The northern part of the country is dry, part of the Sahel, while the southern part is a wet, tropical area. The coastal areas have the most productive lands and most of the population live there. The eastern inlands receive small amounts of rain are therefore lightly populated. The native population consists of seven major African tribes. Senegal was a French colony from 1895 until it achieved independence in 1960. The French gave the country a democratic, republican style government which the people have retained. This has given them a stable, peaceful country. They are 95% Moslem. They have an amazing sense of hospitality and friendliness. They willingly accept non-Moslem outsiders like Rev. Kristin and her young missionary trainees. They not only make them welcome, they make them part of their communities. Let us pray for Rev. Kristin and for her young volunteers. We need to support Rev. Kristin with our generous gifts to Missionary Support. A picture of Rev. Kristin is posted on the Mission Bulletin Board.


Our Florida-Bahamas Synod, like all the synods of the ELCA, has developed several special ministries. The Lutheran Outdoor Ministries is one such ministry. This special ministry holds many programs and day camps for our Lutheran youths. Programs and camps are held at many different locations around Florida during the year. The ministry has a permanent site at Camp Luther Springs. There they hold many of their programs. This camp has 350 acres. It is located in central Florida, northeast of Orlando. Camp facilities include cabins, RV and tent sites, a meeting hall, an outdoor worship center, and recreational facilities. There is room for participants and for guests. Since its founding, the camp has expanded by continually adding new buildings and new services. Lutherans can use this camp for various purposes: religious meetings, retreats, vacations. The camp was built for Luther youths. However, to help the Church the camp has made programs and facilities for all ages. At the camp there is something for everyone. Families, youths, individuals can pray, study, swim in or boat on the lake, or hike on the various trails while appreciating the beauty of God's created world. If you want a new vacation spot, something special, try Camp Luther Springs. Information about both Camp Luther Springs and the Outdoor Ministries is now on the Mission Bulletin Board. Let us help support this special ministry of our Church with our prayers. Let us support it by giving gifts to Mission Outreach


April 2019 Bible Study Breakfast

The LMM monthly Bible Study and Breakfast will be Saturday, April 20, at 7:30 A. M. in the Parish Hall. We are continuing the Course on "Men." This is the second session where we will be discussing the subject "For Men Only: Issues Men face." The Bible study topic is "Fatal Attraction: 'Lust in the eye - adultery in the heart'" (Matthew 5: 21-48). This Bible Study will follow Option 2: Advanced: Teaching with Margin Questions.

The Law meant everything to the Jews. The Law helped them to know whether they were in a right relationship with God or not. The Law was their rule of life. In this section of the Gospel of Matthew Jesus explains how God's law was not being correctly understood. The true spirit of the law, how God intended His people to live, was being missed.

Jesus takes six examples of the Law: murder, adultery, divorce, oaths, retaliation, and love for enemies, and uses them to illustrate and explain exactly how we are to relate to the Old Testament law.

Using those six examples Jesus made a fundamental change in the way of thinking without altering God's standards. Jesus challenged not the law itself, but its rigid interpretations, stating repeatedly words to this effect: "You have heard this, but I tell you there is more to it!" He dealt with the attitudes and intents of the heart, not simply with external action. The Pharisees said that righteousness consisted of performing certain actions, but Jesus said it centered in the attitudes of the heart.

Jesus wanted people to understand who God is, and in order to grow in their understanding they needed the ability to see beyond the legal restrictions to the essential character of the One who had made the laws. He taught that love is the summary of the law.

Discussion will focus on the importance of understanding God's perspective on how we relate to others. What are God's principles or standards of behavior He expects us to follow? What determines how we relate to Him and to others? What is our attitude toward the interpretation of God's Law? Can we accept it as Jesus teaches it?

In Matthew 5:48, Jesus reemphasizes His focus, "Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." What does it mean to be perfect? Can we really be perfect? Jesus tells us to be.

All men of the congregation are invited to attend.


Are you looking for a place to get involved with our church family? Altar Guild is one area that needs attention every week but only takes two people to get the job done. Anyone and everyone are welcome to come lend a hand in preparation for worship. For more information or an orientation at your convenience contact Regina Humphrey at 850-502-7488 or email


If you have a worn out, tattered, or faded US flag you need to properly dispose of, you can bring it to the church and Don Cleveland will deliver it to his Veterans of Foreign Wars Post for a proper and respectful disposal.


St Paul Lutheran Church has 2 AEDs for use in an emergency. One is located in the Gathering Room hanging on the east wall (near the classroom door) and the other is in the Family Life Center/School in the Lobby.


There will be one service on Ash Wednesday at 6:30 pm which will include Imposition of Ashes and Holy Communion. Two services will be offered on Wednesdays during the Lent season beginning March 13. The morning service is at 11:00 am and an evening service will be at 6:30 pm. During Lent season, you can enjoy a meal served by various groups of St. Paul before the evening service at 5:30. The meals are as follows:

  • April 3: Tacos served by St. Paul School
  • April 10: Spaghetti served by LMM


It's time again where we get to fill Easter Baskets for our friends at the Pavilion! Be sure to have your baskets back at the church by April 13th and we will take and deliver them to the Pavilion at 10:00 am on April 20th.


We raised $625.25 on Chili Night and WELCA matched those donations to benefit two special facilities that can always use extra blessings: the Twin Cities Pavilion and the CALM House. Thank you so much, St. Paul, for your generosity and thanks to our volunteers for their contributions into making Chili night another success!

Spring retreat is April 26-28 and the theme is "Gardens of the Bible". We're trying to fill the van, so if you would like to carpool, let us know!

There are new WELCA leaders! Dona Charlton and Beth Hoffman will be taking over the WELCA reins.

There will be a combined WELCA & Altar Guild meeting to help set up the altar for Easter on April 20th at 8:00 AM. Feel free to come and help! Also on April 20th, we will be delivering Easter Baskets to the Pavilion at 10:00 am.

Community Pastoral Counseling

A ministry of

St. Paul Lutheran Church and School

Rev. Robert R. Lutz, PhD


American Association of

Pastoral Counselors

Call 850-843-3083 for

Information or to make an appointment


Visit to register, or pick up a form today! We're blasting off into space for a Miraculous Mission to learn how Jesus saves the world. Preschool VBS is available for kids ages 3-5 the week of May 20-23 from 9:30-11:30 am. K-5th grade VBS commences June 17-21 from 9:00-12:00. Cost is $5 per person plus a $5 T-shirt donation. Want to volunteer? Sign up on the same site. Start the countdown, because this year we're going to rocket!


Every Sunday beginning at 2pm at Hurricane Lanes in Destin, members of the congregation are welcome to come and enjoy open bowling and fellowship. Just $10 per person plus $2 shoe rental is all you need. Meet at the church parking lot at 1:30 pm to carpool. We have room to spare!


As many of you know, the Ballards are going to be moving soon. We will miss them immensely and we are happy they have this blessing from God to be closer to their family. Diane is leaving a big hat to fill, and St. Paul is looking for someone to oversee the cleanliness and order in the kitchen. The position comes with a salary, but it will not include the monumental efforts Diane makes in cooking. The duties of this position include ensuring the kitchen is orderly, food is not left out in the open, light cleaning, and the overall organization of the kitchen. If interested, please contact the front office at with the subject line: kitchen position.