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St. John urges community to say ‘God Bless the Comets’ during homecoming week in Charles City

This news story was published on September 17, 2012.
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GOD BLESS THE COMETS: Coaches and directors from various middle and high school activities show their homecoming spirit by displaying their “God Bless the Comets” wristband. The wristband was offered to all coaches and directors of extra and co-curricular activities this week as part of the free homecoming tailgate which is completely free, open to the public and hosted Friday by St. John Lutheran Church in their parking lot. From left to right Melinda King, youth and family coordinator at St. John Lutheran Church, Carleene Ritteraff, Middle School Cross Country Coach, Steve Stallsmith, Head Football Coach, Jake Gassman, High School band director, and Erik Hoefer, Middle School Cross Country Coach.

CHARLES CITY (IOWA) – It is Homecoming Week in the Charles City school system and a local church wants to make sure the whole student body knows the whole Charles City community supports them, cheers for them, and wants each Comet to excel in what they do.

St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church is showing their support for the Charles City Community School District students, staff and administration during the homecoming celebrations. The church is hosting a homecoming tailgate on Friday, September 21 in the church parking lot immediately following the parade. The event is open to the community and is completely free. The church’s youth board, family board and staff are working to show their Orange and Black spirit and encouraging the entire community to join in.

“St. John is asking coaches, directors, teachers, and community leaders to stand with the whole student body this week and show them the whole Charles City Community supports them,” says Melinda King, Youth and Family Coordinator at St. John.

Last week the church gifted an orange and black wristband that says ‘God Bless the Comets’ to Middle School and High School leaders of extra-curricular and co-curricular activities. Soon after that teachers, administrators and community leaders in the Charles City area also received a wristband. “We want our students to see they are an important and valued part of the community,” says King.

Community members and students attending the tailgate on Homecoming Friday will be able to pick up their ‘God Bless the Comets’ wristband. The church initially ordered around 400 wristbands in youth and adults sizes. They quickly added to the order after reaction to the wristband was exciting and positive. The church distributed a few hundred wristbands to school and community leaders leaving 400 to be distributed at the tailgate.

“I don’t think God really cares who wins and loses this week in the contests, matches, and games,” says Pastor Dennis Niezwaag, Senior Pastor at St. John. “But God does care about each and every person who is on the field, in the pool, each person who’s rehearsing their instrument, who’s studying and learning. God cares about each and everyone of our Comets. God cares about our whole student body, wants them to know they are special and we want them to know we, as a community, support them.”

With wristbands.

“The school district is an integral part of our community and the role they play in educating our children is just one of the vital responsibilities teachers have,” says Dr. Scott Hansen, congregational President of St. John. “I’m proud of our schools. I’m excited about how our public school students are growing up to be active and engaged learners and leaders. This new Homecoming Tailgate is just one way St. John shows our support for our community school teachers, administrators and

The St. John Homecoming Tailgate is open to everyone in the community and will serve walking tacos and hot dogs, drink and dessert until 7pm. “We understand there are students who will swing through the parking lot to pick up supper and a wristband on their way back to Homecoming events they are involved with,” says King. “That’s okay. We know they’re busy. We’re happy we can be there to provide a quick meal for them.”

There will be games for kids and families, and music for people who want to stay longer, and of course the wristbands for the first 400 people who come. The event will end at 7 P.M., in time for community members to make it to Comet Field for the first note of the Star Spangled Banner.

God Bless the Comets.

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2 Responses to St. John urges community to say ‘God Bless the Comets’ during homecoming week in Charles City

  1. Katie Reply Report comment

    September 17, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    Well, no one can stop them, I guess, as long as they don’t pass them out on school property. I am a firm believer in the separation of church and state. However, I believe there are times when religious things can be allowed in school. I think examples of religious writings can be studied – such as psalms or vedas, without making it about religion, and religious music can be studied and sung without it being about god. It is then about style rather than worship, objective study rather than subjective. When I graduated from high school, we were forced to attend a non-denominational baccalaureate service at the school. That no longer happens, thank goodness.

  2. TheRealFred Reply Report comment

    September 17, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Knock, knock. Who’s there? It’s the ACLU.
    (Anti-Christian Litigation Union)