This Month's Newsletter

The monthly Sing For Joy newsletter contains a letter from the program's host, Rev. Alexandra M. Jacob, along with a listing of music selections for each program and the corresponding scripture readings. If you'd like to receive a complimentary subscription, fill out our online request form to subscribe.

June 2024 Newsletter (Year B)


When I was a seminary student, my preaching professor assigned us a unique piece of weekly homework. Each week, we were to take our oversized preaching sketchbooks (unlined and the largest size possible, also a requirement) to a location that would get us outside our usual spots around town. Wherever we were, we were to sit down with our notebook and a pen and simply observe. With all five senses, we were invited to be on the lookout for the presence of God in our midst. Then before the week was over, we were to write a parable about what we’d experienced. “The kingdom of God is like …” Just like the parables of Jesus, these were to be brief — almost pithy — and should involve everyday settings and characters, paired with an unexpected twist. And they should reveal something of the realm of God.

Throughout the semester, we shared parables with settings that ranged from the bus stop to the international produce market, from the tax office waiting room to the creek bed near the seminary campus. In these ordinary locations, my classmates and I expanded our view of where and how God’s realm was already among us. This assignment continues to inspire and challenge me as I move through God’s good world. Where is the Spirit already working? Where is the ministry of Christ already vibrant? Where is God’s work of creation already blooming?

On June 16, churches will hear two parables of Jesus from Mark 4: the parable of the growing seed and the parable of the mustard seed. In these harvest-themed parables, we catch glimpses of God’s kingdom, which is revealed to us in moments of surprising growth. On our Sing For Joy program that week, we will sing a favorite hymn of mine that plays with these images of harvest and growth: Fred Pratt Green’s hymn, For the Fruit of All Creation. As we move through the month ahead, may the last verse of this hymn be our prayer, and may we find our own “parable” moments throughout God’s good world! 

For the harvests of the Spirit, thanks be to God;

For the good we all inherit, thanks be to God;

For the wonders that astound us,

For the truths that still confound us,

Most of all, that love has found us,

Thanks be to God.

Peace to you this summer,

Rev. Alexandra M. Jacob

Program Host, Sing For Joy

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June Playlists and Programs

Interested in reading hymn lyrics as you listen? We recommend, where you can search by hymn name, composer, and more.

Lanterns in Boe Chapel

Memorials and Honorariums

Thank you for your gifts in memory and honor of those close to your heart.


Rev. James DeLange

Albert and Norma Eickmann

Clarence and Esther Hauck

Rev. Thomas A. Herbon

Arthur and Erna Raap

G. Leland Ralph

To include an honorarium or memorial when you give to Sing For Joy, simply include the name(s) and occasion(s) in the comment box, as well as who should receive an acknowledgement letter and their street or email address. Due to editorial lead times, Honorariums and Memorials will appear in the Sing For Joy newsletter two months following our receipt of the gift. 

Sing For Joy is sponsored by:

Sukup Manufacturing Co., St. Olaf College, and American Choral Directors Association (ACDA)