2006 PEBBLES FROM THE ROC ARTICLES

 

(JANUARY-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC        Recently, during a Bible/Talk Time at the ROC, Pastor Mueller was teaching the teens about prayer: to whom to pray, for what to pray and how to pray.  He asked the teens for what they wanted to pray.  One teenage girl said she would like to pray for her mother to be dead.  The teen felt her mother didn’t care about her because her mother, two years ago, had deserted her by leaving her and her dad and had moved to another town.  What a wonderful opportunity it was to present God’s love and forgiveness, that even though we have often deserted our Lord by sinning, He still forgives us for Jesus sake.  Empowered by God’s love, the girl no longer hates her mother.  Instead, she phoned her mother, shared that forgiveness and they got together for Christmas.  The greater joy is found in the eternal salvation of this teenage girl and how she is now in God’s kingdom through the Savior.  Continue to pray for and support the ROC so that many more teenagers can come to know and believe in Christ.

            We also invite everyone to stop in at the ROC anytime to visit and we encourage you to check out our new and updated web page, www.thewttnroc.com.  On the web page you will see many pictures of the hundreds of teens who attend the ROC.  You will also learn about our Adult Volunteer program and Junior Volunteer Program.  Calendars, wish lists and so much more can also be found on the web page.  Check it out at www.thewttnroc.com.

 

(MARCH-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC        “How do I reach my teenage son/daughter?  He/She seems so distant.”  “How do I reach out to teens?  They scare me.”  Such questions are often on the minds of parents and adults as they think about teenagers and want to relate to them.  We often see parents and adults handling teens with all law or with teen stereotypes in mind.  Teens are people, who, like us, want to be given a chance and, deep down, want to be properly disciplined, needed and loved.  Sometimes adults will judge teens by their looks without even talking to them.  Some of the neatest teens we’ve met at the ROC, however, are those who, by their looks, will repulse most.  As we work at the ROC, we remember how repulsive we were due to our sin, but how God, by His grace and in Christ, made us His holy people and nation.  May our thankfulness to God for our rebirth into His kingdom move us to reach out to each individual, no matter how they look or who they are.  At the ROC, we are able to share the Gospel of our Savior with so many teens we wouldn’t otherwise be able to reach, teens who are “like sheep without a shepherd”.  Please continue to pray for and support the ROC, our Watertown Recreation & Outreach Center for Youth.

 

(APRIL 2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC        What a life-like lesson the teens were exposed to one night at our Watertown ROC (Recreation & Outreach Center) for Youth as Mr. Todd Morris, a ROC volunteer, dressed up as a homeless person and walked around the ROC for an hour.  Todd was unrecognizable and held up a sign that read, “Will Work For Food”.  We were pleased to see how most teens had great compassion for the “homeless person” even giving him their last change and one even giving him his coat off his back.  Finally, some teens invited him inside, out of the cold, where a Bible/Talk Time was held.  As Todd revealed himself, Pastor Mueller centered on God’s love for all and His death on the cross as full payment for our sins even when we were “detestable,” sinful by nature, before him.  It is God’s love for all that empowers us to reach out to all, no matter who they are.

Be Informed & Aware.  Another great lesson, organized by The ROC Board and Staff for ALL parents, grandparents, teens, ministers, teachers and anyone interested in helping the teens in our community and their families will be held on Mon., April 10th, 7:00-8:30 p.m. at St. Mark’s Parish Center.  This presentation by Pam and Phil Merten will give an overview of all kinds of addictions and how to recover from them.  Pam is a licensed Professional Counselor with Rogers Memorial Hospital and Life-Span Family Counseling Services.  Pastor Merten is our WELS Chaplain with Wisconsin Lutheran Institutional Ministries and Grace Oasis, a Christian fellowship and outreach program for men, women and teens in recovery.

Please continue to support the ROC as your donations are its main funding.  Donations can be dropped off at the ROC or sent to 601 Mary Knoll Lane, Watertown, WI 53098 or 1411 Wedgewood Drive, Watertown, WI 53098.  We thank our Lord God for your generosity.

 

(MAY 2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC        Recently a rash of break-ins occurred in Watertown.  Among the victims was the ROC (Watertown Recreational & Outreach Center for Youth) as the door was smashed down and vending machines and the office broken into.  As the teens came to the ROC the next day, they were devastated and upset since, for many, the ROC has become their home away from home.  Our Bible/Talk time that evening dealt with God’s promise that “all things God works for the good of those who love him.”  We gave thanks that computers, TVs, video games, and pool tables weren’t vandalized.  We gave thanks that all that was missing was mostly food and drink.  We prayed for the thieves asking God to lead them to repentance and forgiveness through Christ and a desire to right the wrong.  The Bible/Talk time revealed to many what it feels like to be violated in such a way and, out of love for Christ, to “Love your neighbor as yourself”.  What a lesson it turned out to be and what spiritual growth has already occurred through this trial.

Remember the ROC GOLF EVENT is scheduled for Sunday, June 25th, at the Watertown Country Club with a 4:30 pm tee time. It will again be a 9 hole scramble with 5 person teams. Please see a special note for the details. Remember that non-golfers can attend the buffet following the golfing for a cost of $15.00 and a silent auction and sponsoring of holes is also part of the outing.  Any questions or any other inquires please contact Dale Ninmann at 920-261-5719 or daleninmann@charter.net.

Also, please prepare for  the ROC fundraiser/rummage sale to be held on July 21 & 22 at Trinity/St. Luke’s School.  Please see another special note for the details. Volunteers are needed.  To volunteer or for more info., call Ruth Uttech 920-261-6772 or Pam Erdman at 920-261-9674. 

 

(JULY-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC     Is it all worth it?  After almost three years of operation, it is important for us to ask the tough questions.  Is our Watertown ROC (Recreation & Outreach Center) for Youth accomplishing what we had hoped and prayed for?  Are souls being reached and saved through the Gospel shared through the ROC ministry?  Are all the offerings, gifts and time worth it?  To answer that question for yourself, it is extremely important to visit the ROC or talk to someone who has visited the ROC.  When the ROC is open, it is constantly busy and active.  Sometimes the noise level is high simply due to the amount of teens gathered in one place.  As you look around at the ROC, you see churched and unchurched interacting and communicating.  As you watch and hear the staff, you hear God’s Word brought into many conversations with the teens.  As you stay for Bible/Talk time, you see the teens settle down and the Word of God taught and shared.  As you watch teens disciplined, you see how it is done completely with the use of Law and Gospel.  If you visit the ROC, you will appreciate how we are able to share the Gospel with so many teens who have been without it all their lives and how Christian teens have a perfect opportunity to live and share their faith.  Is it all worth it?  Absolutely!

            The third annual ROC Rummage Sale will be on Friday and Saturday, July 21+22.  Call Ruth Uttech 920-261-6772 or Pam Erdman at 920-261-9674 to volunteer your help and for more information.  Also, plan on enjoying a brat, chips and soda at Glenn’s Brat Stand and help fund the ROC on Saturday, August 12th, 10:00-3:00.

            Remember, you can stop by at the ROC anytime it’s open to visit or be considered for our volunteer staff.  Your gifts are also greatly appreciated and needed.  Thanks so much for your support.

 

(AUGUST-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC     For this and several more “Pebbles From The ROC” we have asked teens, who attend our THE ROC Youth Center, to share their thoughts as to what THE ROC means to them and what it has done for them.  We feel it is important for all of us to see that THE ROC is touching real lives and real people.  This time we hear from Tyler who is a member of one of our congregations but hasn’t attended church much at all in the past.  Tyler writes, “When I first came to THE ROC, one thing I had a lot of trouble with was my anger.  It was so bad that I was in counseling for it.  Twice I had to be sent out of THE ROC because of my anger.  PT (Pastor Mueller) helped me by showing me it was a sin against God but that Jesus died so that I would be forgiven.  Before that, I always blamed the anger on someone else or on my disabilities.  I have changed a lot and no longer need anger counseling because of how fully the staff forgave me and, most of all, because of Jesus who died for me.  Also, I have been made fun of by other kids all my life.  At THE ROC I love how I am important and  treated with respect.”

            The “Jerry Kastens Memorial Golf Outing for The ROC” was another huge success even though we once again were rained on.  The outing will have raised over $10,100.00, the most ever, after matching funds from the Jefferson County Thrivent Branch and WELS Kingdom Workers Living Waters branch are received.  Thank you to everyone who helped and participated.

Also, plan on enjoying a brat, chips and soda at Glenn’s Brat Stand and help fund the ROC on Saturday, August 12th, 10:00-3:00.  Please note the date change.

            Remember, you can stop by at the ROC anytime it’s open to visit or be considered for our volunteer staff.  Your gifts are also greatly appreciated and needed.  Thanks so much for your support.

 

(SEPTEMBER-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC     For this “Pebbles From The ROC” we continue to hear from  teens who attend our ROC Youth Center.  We feel it is important for all of us to see that THE ROC is touching real lives and real people.  This time we hear from Michelle who was completely unchurched and has been coming to THE ROC almost from the beginning.  Michelle writes, “I just want to tell you how “The ROC” changed me.  I first started to come to THE ROC when I was in high school.  I was a real mess.  I didn’t have a job, my dad didn’t and still doesn’t care about me, I was failing high school and in trouble with the law.  Now after three years I have a job, am an older junior volunteer at the ROC and have and graduated from high school. The ROC was there for me emotionally and spiritually. The ROC was there when my mom past away three years ago. When I was feeling down, the director and staff were there to listen to what was wrong and gave me guidance and advice. I recently was confirmed in a WELS church and feel great to be a part of a church family.  Most of al,l I’m thankful God forgives me, through Christ,  for all the wrongs I’ve done.   I feel that the ROC is there to help teens in trouble like me.  It helped me to get over grief and sadness. The teens need the help that only God’s Word can give.”

            Our thanks to Michelle for sharing her thoughts.  Also, we greatly thank all who helped with the recent rummage sale.  $6,013 was raised for the ROC.  There were 700 hours of volunteer hours of which 86 were given by the ROC teens.  We are overwhelmed with the generosity.  The adults and teens that helped with the Brat Stand, which raised about $1,000, were also fantastic.  Finally, how proud we are of the teens who totally rearranged the ROC to make it more spacious and inviting.  All are invited to come into the ROC to see the new look.

 

(NOVEMBER-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC     For this “Pebbles From The ROC” we continue to hear from  teens who attend our ROC Youth Center.  This time we hear from Logan and thank him for his thoughts.  Logan writes:

“I have been going to The ROC since it opened, and I know that many people, including myself were drawn to it because of Pastor Mueller's warm and welcoming personality. Pastor Mueller brought us into his life, so we wanted to show that we welcomed him into our lives as well. We fondly nicknamed him P.T., which stands for Pastor Tim. I am very happy to have P.T. around as a friend and a mentor, but for many he has become a father figure that many people have been looking for all their lives.

I go to Luther Prep, and have gone to a private Lutheran grade school all my life, so it was a shock to be around so many people who could have cared less about religion. P.T. has been an awesome example of how important we all are in God's eyes. In his own unique way, he helped me let my faith shine around people who don't have one. Pastor Mueller and his actions have had such a strong effect on me that I have gone from not considering becoming a pastor, to making it my life goal and something I look forward to. I'm not the only one who P.T. has influenced, I have seen some of my fellow teens go from being people who didn't care about anything at all, to opening the doors and saying hello when people come in. It's amazing for me to see first hand what P.T. has accomplished using The Gospel. What can be more rewarding?

I feel that P.T. and all of my friends at The ROC are part of God's way of taking my life in a different direction than what I had originally been planning. God has blessed P.T. with amazing talents that have helped so many people since The ROC opened. In doing this, a better future for Watertown is being developed every day. We have all become one big family at The ROC, everyone is welcome and accepted (with the guidance of P. T. on occasion) and I am glad to be a part of it.

We sincerely thank everyone for their continued support of THE ROC mission and ministry.  Due to your special and generous gifts to THE ROC, no money has ever been taken out from any general church budget although the churches have planned and promised such support.  Please remember that you can stop by at the ROC anytime it’s open to visit or be considered for our volunteer staff.  Also, you can check with Pastor Mueller if you would like to donate goodies, a wish list item or a special talent you have such as singing, game playing and the like.  The teens love the involvement of the adults.  Once again, thanks so much for your support.

 

(DECEMBER-2006) PEBBLES FROM THE ROC    

            How thankful we are for the many blessings God continues to pour out on our ROC mission and ministry.  Our Watertown Recreation & Outreach Center (ROC) for Youth, located at 321 S. Water St., opened three years ago on December 3, 2003.  As we look back on the last three years, we give thanks to God for the Gospel of salvation in Christ and how hundreds of teenagers have heard that Gospel at THE ROC.   We thank our Lord for how He, through the Gospel, has changed many teenagers from living for themselves to living for Christ.  We thank our Lord for each one of you as you continue to greatly and generously support of THE ROC. 

            We also thank our Lord for the building and site that we have been using for the last three years.  What a blessing that we have not had to pay rent but only the owner’s taxes for the land and building.  Lately, however, due to publicity about the river development, many of you have been asking about the future plans for the location of THE ROC.  It doesn’t seem as though those plans will develop in the near future.  Nevertheless, we all need to keep our eyes and ears open for another future location.  Maybe there is someone out there, who can provide such a location or knows someone who can.  Please let us know if you hear anything.  Stop by or call Pastor Mueller (206-9581) or Chairman Don Bartz (261-1319).

Always remember that you can stop by at the ROC anytime it’s open to visit or be considered for our volunteer staff.  Also, you can check with Pastor Mueller if you would like to donate goodies, a wish list item or a special talent you have such as singing, game playing and the like.  The teens love the involvement of the adults.  Once again, thanks so much for your support.