Category: News

School Supply Drive

Church Family!

Starting this Sunday July 15 and on July 22, you will have the opportunity to choose to help one or two students from Bowman Woods Elementary or Oak Ridge Middle School with the purchase of their 2012-2013 School Supplies.

Here’s how this will work:

1) On Sunday 15 or 22, you can sign up in the lobby to provide school supplies for either a boy or girl in Kindergartner through 5th grade at Bowman Woods Elementary or a boy or girl 6th-8th grade from Oak Ridge Middle school. You are signing up to buy the school supplies. You do not need to purchase a backpack for the child. If you want to buy a backpack and fill them with the supplies that will be great. Just know that that is an optional contribution.

2) We have school supply needs for 25 students. If we run out of school supply lists, we will let people sign up to bring a backpack by itself.

3) On Sunday July 29 (or before at the church office), we need all of our school supplies and backpacks returned. We will then deliver them to Marion Cares (the non-profit organization organizing this school supply drive). Please make sure you attach the information on the school supplies for which grade, gender, and school you are blessing.

We have a great opportunity to serve our community this summer. May we be a light that draws others to worship our Father in heaven.

Thanks again!

-Pastor Matt

Pastor Post: July 6, 2012


The Pastor Post is a bi-monthly update from Pastor Matt with a brief meditation as well as information on upcoming events in the life of Cornerstone Church.

 July 6, 2012


Dear friends and family of Cornerstone Church,

One of the highlights of my ministry year is the annual summer elder retreat. I delight in serving with these men you have called to be your shepherd leaders. This year we traveled up to Dubuque to spend 2 days at a Catholic retreat center June 20-21. We asked God to speak to us regarding our church’s future. We asked the Lord to bring clarity on some important shepherding issues. Throughout those 48 hours we prayed and discussed (argued even). We feasted on God’s Word. We sharpened one another. We grew. God spoke.

As we left, there was growing consensus on God’s path for us during the 2012-2013 school year. The clouds even began to lift regarding our deep desires to birth a new church plant as well as find a permanent building for our church family. We are excited.

We invite you to come to a very important congregational meeting August 13, 2012 at 7PM at the church office. At this meeting we will finalize some of the work of the 2011-2012 Vision Team. We will present our hopes for 2012-2013. And we will begin to sketch a picture of what we hope will happen as we seek both a birth and a building in the next 3-5 years. As the weeks lead up to this meeting, would you pray for confirmation and for the last pieces to fall into place? We do not want to get ahead of the LORD. Would you wait with us on the LORD’s timing and direction?

Other items related to the life of Cornerstone Church: 

School Supply Drive: This month our church is going to partner with Marion Cares in order to provide school supplies for local kids in need. For those who desire to meet the needs of a Linn-Mar or Marion School District student, we will have sign ups July 15 and 22. Then, the school supplies will need to be brought to the church on July 29. (more details to come soon!)

Ministry Community Meeting, July 9, 2012 @ the Church Office, 7PM: For the elected servants and ministry leaders of Cornerstone Church.

Continue praying the Psalms and meeting with your prayer partner: Continue daily personal readings and weekly prayer meetings with your prayer partner Keep the agenda simple. Read one Psalm together (from the Reading Plan). Share 2 joys and 2 sorrows. Share 2 prayer requests. Pray for each other. Keep it simple; keep it centered on Christ.

Congregational Meeting on Monday August 13, 2012 @ 7PM, Church Office.  Elders will seek final affirmation on the work of the 2011-2012 Vision Team, as well as present the 2012-2013 vision.

Baptism Service Sunday August 26, 2012 (tentative): We plan to host a baptism service after church on Sunday August 26. If you are believer in Jesus Christ, we encourage you to profess that publicly through baptism. Please contact Pastor Matt or one of the other elders if you would like to be baptized.

Launch of Fall 2012 Ministries, September 2, 2012: A new sermon series will start and our weekly small group ministry will relaunch.

I love serving with you,

Pastor Matt


Pastor Post: June 4, 2012

The Pastor Post is a bi-monthly update from Pastor Matt with a brief meditation as well as information on upcoming events in the life of Cornerstone Church.

June 4, 2012


And we have lift off…

The launch of our Summer 2012 series in underway! Thank you for the encouraging words the worship team and I received from our first Sunday in the Psalms. Thank you to the many of your who have already begun reading the Psalms (Reading Plan). Thank you for those who have signed up to be with a prayer partner.

If you already have a prayer partner, I encourage you to meet this week. Keep the agenda simple. Read one Psalm together (from the Reading Plan). Share 2 joys and 2 sorrows. Share 2 prayer requests. Pray for each other. Keep it simple; keep it centered on Christ.

If you do not have a partner, the Partner Matching Service will try and get you one by the end of the week. If you haven’t let us know who your partner is or if you need help in finding one, please email me asap.

A Pastoral Reflection: 

This month marks the completion of my second year at Cornerstone Church. I’ve been reflecting recently on where we’ve come in our first 24 months together. If our church is like a growing and aging tree, I see the past 24 months as a season where our roots have gone deep and the the health of of our trunk and branches have improved. It is at this point that I see  2 possible things happening.

(1) Good trees bear good fruit. Thus, I believe we may be entering into a season of rich harvest. I expect God will be using you at work, at home, and in your circles of friends and family to advance the cause of Christ. I believe we may see people come to Jesus as you share the Gospel. I believe God will use you to feed the poor, help the orphan, and defend the downtrodden. I also hope to see our church grow through the spiritual multiplication of laborers in God’s harvest field.

(2) The second thing that may occur is intense suffering and storms. God has positioned us to be ready for a difficult season of sorrow. God has prepared our hearts to bend, but not break. This tree will hold because God is over all and through all. I do not wish this on us, but suffering is the common lot of God’s people (until glory). May we pray like Paul in Philippians 3 that we will to know Christ even in the sharing of His sufferings.

To be honest, I expect that God will bring both our way in the coming months and years. We will weather many storms together. We will weep and mourn. We will see a great harvest. We will rejoice and sing. This is another reason why our study in the Psalms in so necessary. The Psalms teach us to rejoice and to mourn. The Psalms teach us to trust in God whether in victory or in defeat. Whether the next chapter in the story of Cornerstone Church is one of great harvest or of great storm, may we say blessed be the name of the LORD.

I love serving with you,

Pastor Matt

THE LAUNCH: Summer Series Coming…

Dear Church Family,

I am getting very excited about our Summer Series “Drinking Deeply in Dark Days” that will focus on the Psalms and Prayer! Sunday May 27, June 3, and June 10 are Launch Sundays. Let me update you on how you can be a part of the LAUNCH.

1 – READING: If you haven’t already, grab a summer reading guide. We encourage every person a part of our church family to read through the Psalms this summer. We all start reading on June 3. There are questions for each day on the reading guide to help you dig a bit into the message of the Psalms.
2 – PRAYING: We want every person in our church to have a prayer partner. This is where the P.M.S. comes in.  The P.M.S. is the Partner Matching Service (what else could it be? :)). On Sunday May 27, June 3, and June 10 a table will be set up in the foyer. Please come to this table and let us know who your prayer partner is for the summer. Or if you need help finding a partner, we would be happy to pair you up with another friend at Cornerstone Church.
3 – LEARNING: Starting June 3, I will start preaching a psalm a week from the Book of Psalms.

As the summer goes one, we hope to hear from you on what you are learning about prayer, what prayers God is answering, and how prayer is bringing you into a deeper relationship with God and His people.

I look forward to worshiping with you this Sunday as we have our final sermon from the book of Genesis. Thank you for going on this journey of faith together!

God bless,
Pastor Matt

Pastor Post: May 14, 2012

The Pastor Post is a bi-monthly update from Pastor Matt with a brief meditation as well as information on upcoming events in the life of Cornerstone Church.



May 14, 2012

Dear Church Family,

It has been a spectacular school year. We have seen new individuals and families become a part of the Cornerstone Church family. We’ve seen individuals trust Jesus Christ to be their Lord and Savior. The whole body (and particularly the Vision Team) labored faithfully to seek God’s face for our future. God is bringing in a harvest. Keep praying, keep serving, our labors in the LORD are not in vain.

At the same time, the year has been filled with moments of sorrow and pain. We’ve seen close friends go through illness and death. We’ve seen loved ones struggle through difficult marriages and relationships. I’m thankful that at these moments that we have Christ’s church to offer support and solace. I’m thankful for a church that deeply cares for one another.

Christ promised, “In this world you will have trials and tribulation, but take heart I have overcome the world.”

A look ahead…

This Sunday May 20th…Back by Popular Demand!! Rob Taylor will be preaching from Genesis 32. Keep him in your prayers as he labors over God’s Word and prepares to speak with God’s people. I’m so thankful for Rob’s passion to study and proclaim God’s Word. He models the heart of Ezra: “For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel” (Ezra 7:10, NIV). We’ll also be blessed as Jeff Olson leads us through the Lord’s Supper.

“Drinking Deeply in Dark Days” — Summer Series: Starting June 3 our church family will begin traveling through the Psalms. We invite and encourage every person to grab a Reading Guide so we can all read together the 150 psalms. Also, we encourage every person at Cornerstone Church (teenagers included) to identify one person to pray with on a somewhat weekly basis throughout the summer (more details to come). Call someone today and ask them if they will be your summer 2012 Prayer Partner.

Church in the Park, June 17: We will be having Church in the Park on June 17. Our worship service will start at 10AM in downtown Marion at the Depot. Bring your own picnic lunch for after the service. There will be no Sunday School, Nursery or Children’s Church. Bring chairs, a blanket, activities for kiddos (as needed), and dress for the weather.

Privileged to serve with you,

Pastor Matt