Pastor Bill Thalacker has been serving St. John’s since March of 2003. His pastoral work
has been in congregations in Northeast Iowa and before coming here he served recently
at Trinity in Waterloo. He is a graduate of Wartburg College and has post-graduate degrees
from Wartburg Seminary, the University of Iowa and Luther Seminary. He and his wife
Marilyn who was originally from Oelwein are the parents of five children and fourteen
grandchildren. Pastor “T” (as he is known) has been active in church and community affairs
including local minister organizations, the Alliance for the Mentally Ill and Exchange Club. He
is a former registered Iowa high school sports official for basketball, baseball and softball. His
hobbies include golf, bicycling (he’s ridden Ragbrai for thirty years), hunting and fishing, and
gardening. His special pastoral interests are in personal and marriage counseling, ecumenism
and the relations of the Church with other religious groups and in adult education for and in the
That the Bible is the Word of God and the final authority for the faith and life of the Church
That the One God is made known in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
That Jesus is the Christ / Savior, true God begotten of the Father and true human born of the Virgin Mary
That by His life, suffering, death, resurrection and ascension Jesus has done enough to make full atonement for our sins
That the Holy Spirit is active in the one Church and comes to us through God's chosen means of grace:
Word of God and the Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper
That Jesus will return on the Last Day to judge the living and the dead, and will receive to Himself those who believe in Him in order that they may share eternal life
That no human being be reason of strength can believe in Jesus as Lord / Ruler or come to Him.
The Holy Spirit calls us through the Gospel and empowers us through His gifts of grace to have saving faith. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
That as a response to God's blessing of love and goodness, we are set free from sin and death to thank and praise, serve and obey Him as a blessing for others.
St. John's receives members from all Lutheran Church bodies by Letter of Transfer. We will assist you in that process if you choose. For those who are members of other denominations, or who have no previous Church background, the Pastor will assist you with information and will accomodate you. You will want to discuss that with him.
We offer classes to give basic information about the Bible, Church history, Christian teaching and Christian life. The focus is on basic Christian truth about the way of salvation. These classes will give the opportunity and help those interested learn more about Lutherans and our congregation before becoming members.
Attending classes imposes no obligation for those who come. For those interested in membership in the congregation at the completion of the classes, membership is arranged and a time for joining the congregation set.
St. John's is one of the more than 11,000 congregations of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The ELCA is the largest of the Lutheran church groups in this country with about 5.25 million baptized members. Our local congregation is a member of the Northeastern Iowa Synod (NEIS) which serves the northeastern quarter of the State of Iowa.
If you are already a member of a congregation, we pray God's blessing for you and your home congregation.
If you are not a member of a congregation in the Dunkerton community or are interested in membership at St. John's, we invite you to visit us and find out more about who we are and how we live and work together in Jesus' name.
We do invite you to join us in our congregation's life and work. We share a variety of opportunities for worship, education, and service in church and community. Our members are diverse and come from all walks of life. We intend to be a warm and inviting place where persons are welcome / accepted as they are. Individuals, couples and families are welcome.
If you are shut in, or unable to come to worship, let us know. The pastor or a lay visitor in the congregation will come to you with pastoral services.