St. Paul's Evanglical Lutheran Church and School 1201 Main Street, Onalaska, WI 54650 PHONE: 608-783-2552

Today's Bible Passages

Jer 29:11-14

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD, “and will bring you back from captivity.”

Church Services

Click here to visit our YouTube channel for an archive of church services. If you have questions, concerns, or suggestions regarding our video ministry please contact us.

We will be broadcasting selected services on this page. Our services are recorded during the 10:30 service and available on our YouTube channel by Sunday evening.

  • Sunday 10:30am

Please note: We are using the free service provided by for our live streaming technology. In return for this free service will display advertisments that you may click out of after a few seconds. Please contact us immediately if you find these advertisements to be inappropriate for our site.

We may need to stop the live stream during a service in order to protect the identities of visiting missionaries who are serving in dangerous parts of the world. Please be patient if you are watching and experience this. We will try to announce such events ahead of time.

Live streaming video by Ustream


The Value of Hermeneutics

When was the last time you used the word “hermeneutics?” Most of us would say we’ve never heard the word, much less used it in regular conversation. It might surprise us to hear there is a course at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary with that title. Recently, there was a day and a half conference for pastors at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary that used the word “hermeneutics.”

“Hermeneutics” simply is a reference to the way we interpret the Bible. It sounds pretty simple to us because we approach the Scriptures with several assumptions. It is the inspired word of God (II Peter 1:21). It is therefore correct in all it says (John 17:17). We should expect no other revelation. The Scriptures are complete
(Deuteronomy 4:2).

The biggest principle of interpretation rests in the fact that all of Scripture testifies about Jesus. In John’s Gospel (5:39) Jesus says that “these are the Scriptures that testify about me.” We sometimes refer to the “red line” of God’s promises in Christ. The red line ties all of 66 books together. The spotlight falls on Jesus.

The last Sunday this month, Sunday, October 30, we will celebrate the Lutheran Reformation. St. Paul’s will host the area Reformation service at 3:00 p.m. Five hundred years ago Martin Luther approached the Scriptures from the vantage points described above. The greatest gift of the Lutheran Reformation is the understanding that Jesus Christ is at the heart of Scripture. Knowing Him is life.

Models of Joy

In God’s kingdom we are all surrounded by fellow believers who often have much to show us. As a pastor I am so richly blessed when God’s people show me how to FIND JOY IN JESUS.

It has been numerous times in the waiting room of a hospital intensive care unit that someone taught me how to find joy in Jesus. Listening to members facing yet another in a series of tragedies, I have contemplated how to share God’s love for them in Christ. Suddenly I realized they were sharing it with me. I have left those folks with the reminder that joy in Jesus does not depend on the circumstances of life, but on the unconditional, undeserved love and faithfulness of our Lord and Savior.

There are still more lessons to be learned about joy in Jesus at a care facility or nursing home. I am simply amazed at the joy many find in their Lord and Savior. Leading a class on Tuesdays at our local care center two blocks from church is a treat. Regularly it happens that a number of the residents appear to be sleeping and unaware of their surroundings. Yet when we sing our hymn of the day or pray the Lord’s Prayer, those same eyes brighten with recognition. Some sing loudly. Others are only able to whisper “Our Father...”, yet their joy is evident. There is joy in praising our beloved God. It is hard to take worship for granted on Sunday morning after seeing such saints of God give their all to him in a whisper.

No doubt your pastor has many stories of joy that surface as he ministered to people with special needs. Be that the ready smile of the special-needs student or the noticeable appreciation of devotion from someone who is in jail or prison, the joy in Jesus is the same. God has used their joy in my presence to show me that I too can find joy in Jesus at all times and in every circumstance of my life. By God’s grace I am better equipped to “rejoice in the Lord always” (Philippians 4:4).

Fellow saints of God, do not let your called workers corner all this joy for themselves! Be readily involved in the gospel ministry of the congregation you call home. Make use of pre-printed Christ centered devotions. Share God’s love in Christ with someone who is hurting, with a home-bound brother or sister or nursing home resident. Help out a family whose child struggles with autism or anyone with special needs. Wonderful things will happen.

See how their joy in Jesus will grow as the Spirit blesses the message you deliver and the time and effort you expend. You also will learn, up close and personal from wonderful role models. You will be reminded too that the things that we so often feel are essential to a good life like health, career, recreation, and independence, are not the basis of joy in Jesus. And one more thing: You will find yourself better prepared to face many challenges of living in a sin-ravaged world because you, my forever friend, enjoy a new found appreciation for YOUR JOY IN JESUS!


J.A.M. stands for Jesus in the Afternoon for Me. J.A.M. is a Wednesday after-school program for children in grades 1-5. All are welcome to attend especially those who do not have a church home or Sunday school.

Children gather in St. Paul's fellowship hall after arriving from their school (they can get shuttled by bus from their school to St. Paul’s--Ask your child’s bus driver for details). The sessions begin with a snack, free time (games), a Bible lesson (beginning around 3:50), singing and craft. Children are to be picked up at 5:00 p.m. You can register your child when you bring them or by clicking the link below to our online registration form.

J.A.M. is FREE and a fun way for your child to learn valuable lessons for life and bring them closer to God.

For more information click on the link below to the J.A.M. handbook or call St. Paul's church and school office 783-2552 extension 0.

Click here to fill out and submit the J.A.M. registration form.

Click here to view the JAM handbook.

Worship Services

Sunday Services 
8:00am & 10:30am

Holy Communion

  • 1st and last Sunday


Thursday Service


Other Area WELS Churches
Map & Directions

If you know someone who has fallen into the quicksand pit of internet pornography, Conquerors through Christ (CtC) can help. CtC uses the power of the gospel to take away guilt, erase shame, and empower people for purity—the power to leave the life of sin of internet pornography use (John 8:11). Refer someone caught in this sin to CtC’s website. Also check out the many helpful articles being posted on the CtC Facebook page. For more info, speak to Staff Minister Schoeffel — CtC Committee member (783-2552 extension 233), or one of our pastors.

Social Media Links

Hear Recent Sermon

The Gift That Keeps Giving: Part II of four part series. All texts come from II Corinthians 8, 9. Everyone wants to be rich. The Christians in Corinth felt incredibly rich, even though the rest of the world would have considered them resource poor. What makes us rich? Read II Corinthians 8:9-15.

What we believe?

Read the eBook, "What the Bible and Lutherans Teach" for an excellent answer to this question.