New Jerusalem Evangelical Lutheran Church

3233 Apples Church Road

Bethlehem, PA 18015

Sunday Worship: 9:00 AM

Saturday Worship: NO Worship TBD

(1st Saturday of the Month)

Sunday Church School: 10:30 AM (Sept-May)

Office Hours: 7:15 AM - 11:15 AM (Mon-Thurs)



Handicapped Accessible

In case of inclement weather, please watch Channel 69 WFMZ, or call the church office to listen to the message.

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Pastor Lauren's April 2019 Inspiration, Church Council Connection, and Mr. Phil Diaz' Music Corner

March 29, 2019

May God fill you will his New goodness everyday in 2019 and may the love of Jesus overflow from you to others throughout the year!



The Staff and Members of New Jerusalem Evangelical Lutheran Church

Wish You and Your Family a Blessed Easter



​​Siblings in Christ, 


"Coffee With Jesus—Awe and Wonder"



One of the most freeing experiences I have had in my prayer life was a conversation much like the one captured in this “Coffee with Jesus” comic strip. 

A friend and I met for lunch during a stressful time, and when our food arrived, I remember expecting this friend to offer a prayer full of the most reverent and ‘suitable’ words.  Instead, they offered a prayer that started out with a deep sigh, continued with a long silence, and completed with “you know our stress and our needs.  Remind us of your awesomeness, especially when we aren’t feeling it.  Thanks.  Amen.”


This experience has helped me always remember that prayer is an opportunity to connect and communicate with our Holy Creator.  Like any healthy relationship, if we desire our relationship with God to be one upon which we are able to draw strength and assurance, communication needs to be honest and authentic to who we are and how we are feeling.  As we bring these cares and concerns to God, we open ourselves up to receiving God’s peace in response, no matter if we are feeling ‘blah’ or if we are ecstatic, if we feel fear or if we are giving thanks.


Peace in Christ Jesus,

Pastor Lauren Applegate



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 Greetings from your New Jerusalem “Apples” Church Council. 


Congregation members are invited to attend Church Council meetings as spectators.  Our meetings run 7:00–9:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month.  If you have a question or concern that you want addressed at a council meeting, please notify me by Sunday of that week or place it in the question box located in the Narthex.  Of course, you can always share your thoughts and concerns with any current council member and ask them for help as well.  As your Church Council President, I am available by email to or call 610-216-1016.


The Church Council officers for 2019 are: 

  • President:  Marianne Zellner 

  • Vice President:  Pat Leith

  • Recording Secretary:  Barbara Young (Non-Council Member)

  • Treasurer:  Terry Ravier

  • Council Members:  Sharon Bender, Glen Campbell, Kathy Fenstermacher, Cindy Hart,
    Pat Leith, Tina McCardle,Terry Ravier, Jere Reiss, Marianne Zellner, Cindy Ziegler


To each of you, may God direct your paths as you serve your term(s) on the Church Council and as a liaison to the various committees of New Jerusalem Evangelical Lutheran Church.



March 2019 Summary


 At the February meeting we spent quite a lot of time discussing the moving of the organ from the CLS property to the NJ property.  Due to the problems with the pipes, we decided to move only the organ console and leave the pipes. 


There was further discussion regarding the Agreement of Sale in which we made an updated offer. 


We also had an in depth discussion about a proposal that the Worship and Music Committee brought to us.  Though we were not in complete agreement, we voted to allow the hiring of an alto section leader for Holy Week to assist in rehearsals and during worship. 


Our March meeting agenda was a little lighter and included an update on the moving of the organ.  By the time you will have received this newsletter, the organ will be moved. 


We also discussed the rental agreement and will propose some updates at the April meeting. 


We once again discussed the Agreement of Sale and decided to maintain our final offer.  As of this past Friday, Saucon Community Church accepted our final offer.  A Congregation Meeting has been called for March 31, 2019 after worship to vote on the agreement. 


We also voted to support a resolution from the Synod pertaining to supporting the hiring of a Synodical Assistant to the Bishop for Youth, Young Adult Ministry, and Faith Formation.  This support would come in the form of a modest monetary contribution for which we have determined a source.  


I ask for your continued prayers for all the council members and all those in leadership positions for this congregation


Peace be with you, 

Marianne Zellner, Council President  



Council Question Box

No questions this month.


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Endowment Committee News



At their November meeting, the Congregation Council approved the recommendations of the Endowment Committee for the 2018 Fall Grant Applications.  Congratulations to the following ministries areas:


Mission & Ministry Fund

2021 ELCA Youth Gathering:  $2,000.00


Property Fund

Property Committee Steeple Fund Loan:  $3,500.00

Property Committee Oil Tank Removal Loan:  $2,100.00


Christian Education Fund

Preschool new laptop:  $800.00


This was an exciting year for the Endowment Committee.  To have so many viable grant applications speaks to the work this congregation is doing.



2019 Spring Endowment Grant Applications will be available in the church office, Endowment mail box in March.  Deadline for applications is April 14, 2019.


Mission & Ministry Endowment Fund

2019 Grant amount is $4,000.00


Remember that per policy, the use of these funds must fall into one of the following ministry areas:


Mission:  Local, regional, and world projects 

Education:  Higher education and continuing education expenses

Youth:  Support for youth of all ages

Worship and Music:  Support for the worship of the church

Capital Projects:  Major renovations and building of new facilities for the church


Property Endowment Fund

2019 Grant amount is $10,000.00


Remember that per policy, the use of these funds must fall into one of the following property areas:

  • Maintenance; General Upkeep

  • Restoration

  • Repairs

  • Capital Project

  • Equipment Purchases

  • Property Acquisition

Christian Education Endowment Fund

2019 Grant amount is $2,000.00


Remember that per policy, the use of these funds must fall into one of the following property areas:

  • Sunday Church School

  • Vacation Bible School

  • Christian Youth Activities

  • Adult Christian Education

  • Teacher's Education


Fund balances as of December 31, 2018


Mission & Ministry Fund:  $ 96,164.00

Property Fund:  $240,589.12

Christian Education Fund:  $ 47,442.96

Total:  $384,196.08


Endowment—The gift that keeps on giving.


See any Endowment Committee member if you have questions.


Tim Frey, Chairperson; Russ Pacala Jr, Vice Chairperson; Drake Brintzenhoff; Mike Gerstenberg; Tina McCardle


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Mr. Phil Diaz' Music Corner 


Music has always played a pivotal role in Phil's life. Success at the PMEA District, Region and State Chorus festivals motivated Phil to pursue vocal studies at the collegiate level.  Studies at The University of The Arts, The Boston Conservatory, and East Stroudsburg University have only strengthened his musical foundation.  He has performed with the Pennsylvania Lyric Opera, Amici Opera, Boston Conservatory Opera Studio, Philly Pops, and at Northampton Community College.  Phil has extensive conducting and music directing experience having directed ensembles at The University of the Arts, Northampton Community College, Pennsylvania Youth Theatre, and Northampton Area High School.  Many of his vocal students have successfully auditioned into music programs at DeSales, Muhlenberg, Ithaca, Northwestern, The New England Conservatory and Manhattan School of Music.  Phil is a proud member of The National Association of Teachers of Singing, Lehigh Valley Arts Council, and The Nazareth Bath Regional Chamber of Commerce.  In his spare time, Phil enjoys reading, working out, and traveling.  Phil is very excited to be a part of New Jerusalem community and looks forward to a great year!









All are welcome!  Choir practice will be held on Mondays at 6:30 p.m.  Please talk to Mr. Phil if you have any questions or contact him at



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