The Body of Christ
Worship Service Volunteers
Acolytes: Youth in grades six, seven and eight serve as acolytes during worship services as part of the service hours required of all Confirmation students. As acolytes, they assist during worship by lighting and extinguishing the altar candles, and handling the offering plates. Some acolytes also serve as cross bearers, leading processionals during special festival services, such as Christmas and Easter.
Altar Flowers: This person makes contact with the member(s) who wish to donate flowers to beautify the chancel during weekend worship services, orders the flowers, and provides the necessary information to the Church Office for acknowledgement in the worship folder.
Altar Guild: This group of women helps maintain a proper environment and procedure with regard to worship services and the Sacraments. They ensure that the proper paraments and colors of the Church Season are displayed and that the altar area and linens are clean for worship. They also guarantee that proper protocol is maintained while preparing the elements for Holy Communion and Holy Baptism.
Counters: These volunteers, who rotate on a monthly basis, count the offerings received at worship, provide contribution data to the church office for recording purposes, and deposit the money in the church's bank.
Greeters: Working individually or in pairs, greeters position themselves in the narthex area to offer a warm welcome to our members and guests. Specially-trained greeters are also stationed at our Welcome Center to answer questions and provide visitors with information about our church.
Lectors: These volunteers read the opening Scripture lessons in the Traditional worship services.
Multi-media: Creates and runs the multi-media presentation during the Contemporary Praise service, which provides worshipers with all scripture readings and song lyrics on a screen in the front of the sanctuary.
Music: Singers and instrumentalists of all ages have the opportunity to utilize their talents in a Traditional and/or Contemporary Praise worship services. Traditional singers may be part of St. Mark's Adult Choir, while those who prefer a contemporary style may join our Praise Band and Singers. St. Mark's also has an adult handbell choir.
Sound Technician: Operates the sound board, maintaining proper levels during worship, and may record the sermon on audio tape for distribution to our homebound members.
Puppets: Youth and Adult volunteers work together in our Believin' Buddies Puppet Ministry, which presents puppet shows during worship and at other special events, such as Vacation Bible School.
Recorder and Timekeeper: Records song time duration as part of the technical team at the Contemporary Praise worship.
Ushers: Assist in welcoming worshipers by offering them a worship folder at the door, helping them find a seat when necessary, guiding people up to Holy Communion, taking attendance, assisting any worshipers who become ill, and tidying up the sanctuary at the end of each service.
Adult Bible Study and Programs: Lay volunteers provide many opportunities to study God's Word, both on site at St. Mark's and in member homes.
Director of Education: A voting member of the Church Council who oversees all educational programs of the Church and provides support for sub-committee leaders.
Pre-Confirmation and Confirmation: This weekly program for grades three through eight offers students an opportunity to build on what they've learned about their Christian faith in Sunday School and learn about the specific teachings of the Lutheran Church. Students in grades three through five are in Pre-Confirmation; those in grades six through eight are in Confirmation. This program begins in mid-September and runs through the end of April, meeting each Wednesday afternoon from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m.
Sunday School: The Sunday School Superintendent oversees all aspects of the program, encouraging participation and providing support for volunteers. Volunteer opportunities in Sunday School include teaching, assisting, crafts, music and more. Sunday school begins after Labor Day and runs until early- to mid-June, meeting from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. each Sunday morning.
Vacation Bible School: V.B.S. Co-directors oversee all aspects of this weeklong summer Bible camp for children age four through fifth grade. Volunteers include teaching, assisting, music, crafts, snack, nursery, games, decorating, and much more!
Youth: Opportunities for students in Middle and High School to participate in Bible Study, Youth Group, Social Events and Service Projects, both locally and literally around the world. Volunteers assist the Youth Director as Youth Counselors, Drivers, Teachers, and more.
Helping and Compassion
Funeral Meals: Cook and deliver food for meals provided at the Church for bereaved families after a funeral or memorial service. Volunteers may also assist in set-up, serving and/or clean-up.
Lazarus House: Serve as liaison for this local Homeless Shelter, keeping its ministry in focus among our members, and soliciting volunteers to make and serve dinner there once a month.
Librarian: Oversees all functions of the Church Library, including acquisitions, cataloging, and maintaining records.
The Life Center: Serves as a liaison for this Elgin, Illinois agency which provides services to women facing a crisis pregnancy. Volunteers help keep members aware of the on-going mission and ministry of The Life Center, including making members aware of special needs.
Lutheran Hour Ministries Ambassadors: Keeps the membership informed of the on-going ministry of this global Lutheran Agency.
Market Day: Coordinators of this program work with our Nurturing Center Preschool and the Market Day representative to publicize and manage the monthly sales, held in St. Mark's Fellowship Hall. Market Day profits are the primary fund-raising tool of the preschool.
Nursery: Babysit for children up to 3 years old in our fully-equipped church nursery during worship and special events.
Prayer Chain: Make a commitment to pray for those whose needs are made known to the prayer chain, both by phone and e-mail. Prayer Warriors take a solemn vow of confidentiality with regard to all prayers, not even talking among themselves about prayer requests.
Technical and Craftsmanship
Handyman: Plumbing, electrical, carpentry, painting, and other general maintenance duties.
Curb Appeal (Landscaping) Committee: Plan, plant, weed, water, and otherwise maintain our beautiful church grounds.
Webmaster: Maintains the Church website.
Fellowship and Outreach
Discipleship: Manage assimilation, stewardship, and spiritual gift opportunities of members.
Preschool: Our Preschool serves nearly 175 students from ages three to five each week, in two, three, and four-day, morning and afternoon classes. The Nurturing Center is certified by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Volunteer opportunities include serving in the classroom by reading or making a special presentation, assisting with Market Day, or offering clerical help in the office.
Older Wiser Lutheran Seniors (OWLS): A social group for our members and friends age 55 and older.
Public Relations: Provide press releases, photos, and contact with the local press. Internal PR efforts include the weekly SPIRIT newsletter, mailed to each home in time for Sunday worship and events.
Social Committee: Plans and executes social outings and other special events for members, including such things as the annual church picnic, hayrides, concerts, ice cream socials, theatre outings, and similiar events.
Thrivent Congregational Coordinators: Liaison with this Lutheran Fraternal Agency, making the Church aware of opportunities to maximize giving thanks to matching grants and other assistance programs.
Women's Guild: Building on the ministry of the Lutheran Women's Missionary League (LWMS), this longtime ministry of St. Mark's provides fellowship and service opportunities for the women of the congregation. The largest project of the LWMS is it's Annual Holiday Bazaar, held in St. Mark's Fellowship Hall each November.