When we gather for worship, we connect with believers everywhere.

When we study the Bible and pray, we are drawn more deeply into God’s own saving story.

When we serve others and address social issues that affect the common good, we live out our Christian faith.


Church Services:



5:00 PM Worship Service


9:00 AM Worship Service
Summer Schedule

Upcoming Events:

Vacation Bible School
July 24-28th


More information on all of these events and more read our Church Newsletter.

St. James DVD

Church Service on DVD. If you had been listening to the radio service of St. James Lutheran Church for years, you may have noticed that we are no longer on the radio. Instead we have been making DVD's of the church services each Sunday, and copies of the services have been distributed to friends and members who would like one. We are currently only recording the Sunday worship services, but recordings can also be made of special services as well. If you would like to have a copy of the services, please let Ann in the church office know, and it can be provided.


St. James Lutheran Church


Whether you are a new member or just visiting, we want to let you know how excited we are in having you here. Our web site contains helpful information about the varied ministries and programs of St. James Lutheran Church.

St. James membership is comprised of individuals of all ages and diverse backgrounds. We faithfully preach and teach the living word of God to help you further develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Then, we nurture Christian lives by meeting spiritual needs and make disciples through our witness. We are, by the grace of God, the St. James Lutheran Church.

Please consider yourself an important part of the St. James Church family. Here you will find a church in which you will be welcomed, greeted, loved, and cared for, in the name of Jesus the Risen Savior. There is a very special place for you at St. James, and if you haven't already, we hope you will consider making St. James your church home.


Pastor's Ponderings


Our entry in the Independence Day parade celebrates the 100th birthday of this congregation and the 500th anniversary of Luther posting the 95 theses at the Wittenberg Church. As we have begun our anniversary celebration with centennial moments and a parade float, our conversations have been filled with reviews, deliberations, and celebrations. Let's pause and consider the love that brings us together as St. James ELCA, one part of the universe-sized Body of Christ.

The Greeks realized that no single word sufficed for this thing called love. They used four terms: storge, philia, eros, and charity. Storge was wonderfully visible when Harper Pottorff solemnly served as basketbearer at communion, and when she joyfully shared the thrill of a blinking light with each table at a Lenten dinner. Storge is that love that Harper feels for us. This love does not make demands. It does not carry any expectations. It is the joy of holding a newborn babe. It is the joy of kissing the crepe-wrinkled cheek of a great-grandparent. It is a reveling in the joy brought by the simple presence of another.

Philia is the Greek word for friendship, the relationship of companionship – of mutual affection and respect between those who share a common goal or purpose. Philia is visible at bell choir, at quilting, at lefse making, at Bible studies, at Dinner Belle, etc. You know what this is. You experience it anytime two or more of you are gathered here at church.

The Greek word for romantic love is eros. It is visible between newlyweds – and, beautifully and quietly, it is visible in the joined hands and the shared looks between those who have been married for decades.

These first three are human loves. The fourth love is a divine love that the Greeks call agape. Agape is love which transcends our humanity. It is God's made visible in the life of Christ. We experience agape in those moments when we sense that we are somehow, remarkable, one-with-all. It is that Triune Love moment where everything is simultaneously blended and distinct, connected and individual. This is the love Jesus lived. This is the love that Jesus invites us to live.

“The church is not a building. The church is not a steeple . . . the church is the people” proclaims a children's song. The song continues: “All who follow Jesus, all around the world, yes, we're the church together.” The church, then, is agape. It is love. Still confused?

An evangelist was leading a week of revival meetings emphasizing the need for a church built on Godly love. “What is your church?” the evangelist repeatedly prodded. After the final service, the evangelist was approached by an old man. “Do you want to know what a church really is?” the old man asked. “A church is what is left when the building burns down and the preacher leaves town.” And that, dear folks, is love. That is the Belle Fourche St. James ELCA. Come, celebrate the love with us. See you in church and at all of the other places where two or more are gathered!

Pastor Jean Helmer/SAM


Church Notes:

Vacation Bible School

Mark your calendars, parents, because Vacation Bible School will be held July 24-28 and will again be led by the Outlaw Ranch counselors. Remember there is no cost to the children attending VBS. Register as soon as possible so we can give Outlaw Ranch a fairly accurate count of participants. Anyone interested in housing the counselors or providing snacks and/or meals during the week of VBS, please speak to Tara Knapp, Vanesa Kudlock, or Mavis Ude.


Update Information

We are making an effort to update information on our members and friends of St. James Lutheran. Many of you have gone to using only cell phones in your homes, and we do not have the correct information in our computer. If you have not filled one out, you may complete one of the information cards in church or email the information to annstjames@rushmore.com.


Fall Retreat at Outlaw Ranch

Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2 This year's Fall Retreat at Outlaw Ranch will be September 8 & 9 and will be hosted by St. James Lutheran with Our Saviors Lutheran in Spearfish in charge of the registration. As a special treat this year, Cari SkogbergEastman, daughter of John & Genevieve Skogberg, will be our presenter exploring the question “Who Is My Neighbor?” We will share conversations about God's call to love and serve the stranger among us. Cari is an independent researcher, writer, and educator living in Sioux Falls. She earned her BA in Secondary Education/English and Modern Foreign Languages from Augustana University in Sioux Falls, her MA in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in Spain, and her Ph.D. in communication from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Her research has focused largely on public reception and understanding of border and immigration issues, particularly those involving the US-Mexico border. Registration information, as well as information about our church's duties for the retreat, will be available at a later date.




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