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[SITE FULL] River of Joy Lutheran Church/St Mary Magdalene Lutheran Church

Address:PO Box 70
City:Prior Lake
Baptized Membership:78
Confirmed Membership:45
Average Sunday Attendance:50
Paid Staff:one solo pastor developer, worship leader
Access to Public Transit:None
Congregation Description:River of Joy is an ELCA mission start situated in the southern and eastern area of Scott County, MN. This congregation was birthed out of a partnership between ELCA church-wide, the Minneapolis Area Synod, and local congregations: Shepherd of the Lake, Prince of Peace, and St. Mary Magdalene. River of Joy serves people from the communities of Credit River, Spring Lake Township, Prior Lake, Lakeville, Elko-New Market, Shakopee, and Savage.

River of Joy has from its inception strived to present an alternate expression of church life that is rooted in: Biblical study, exploring deeper community and spirituality, engaging the larger community, and discovering and living into a missional identity in a suburban context. The community started by asking the question, What does it mean to BE the church?

Service and community engagement preceded worship as the front door and primary entry into the community in its first 18 months. River of Joy began regular worship with the start of Advent in 2007. Initially, worship services were held at Five Oaks Elementary School in Prior Lake, moved to the Alternative Learning Center in Lydia and subsequently to the Spring Lake Township Town Hall where the community currently worships.

River of Joy works to be a leader and active facilitator and contributor to Gods creative, redemptive, life-giving mission in Scott County and around the world. River of Joy partners freely with schools, other churches, non-profits, businesses, and networks that work toward this end.

We are in suburban/exurban setting. Our greatest challenge is growth and our greatest strength is our incarnational missional identity.

We serve extensively in our community and extend our reach globally through partner organizations.

We have a single worship service and multiple ongoing educational activities.

River of Joy has recently entered into a partnership with an existing congregation, St Mary Magdalene Lutheran in Savage, MN. This exciting partnership will afford our student even further opportunities to serve and engage in congregational life and leadership.
Congregation Keywords:dynamic, innovative, suburban

Mentor Pastor: Steve Bonesho

Phone:612 812 4583
Years in Ordained Ministry:6
Years in Current Position:6
Previous Students Supervised:none (formally)
Autobiography:I am a second career pastor with a passion for developing missional leaders for the larger community. I foster a theology that is rooted in vocation and calls people to action and engagement.

I am actively involved in the community in which I reside and serve as a volunteer in many capacities. I love to read, golf, fish, and watch soccer.