Church Spotlight

Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church in Cottage Grove

By Grace through Faith Alone


As one of the first churches in Cottage Grove, Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church has been a stalwart in the community since 1959.
Concordia Church in South St. Paul canvased the area of Thompson Grove (later renamed Cottage Grove) and found many Lutheran families living there, especially Missouri Synod. This discovery prompted a church service in 1960 in the home of Eugene Myers which Rev. Milton Haack conducted with 30 attendees. They later chose "Rose of Sharon" for the church’s name from the Biblical inspiration of Song of Solomon 2:1, “I am a Rose of Sharon, a Lily of the valleys.”
Ten acres were purchased east of Highway 61 and 80th Street and a kindergarten through eighth grade school with six classrooms was built with a dual-purpose gym which was also used as a sanctuary. As there were not enough classrooms in the public schools, kindergarten was held in the summer and many parents did not want that, so Rose of Sharon held two kindergarten classes. At the end of 1960 there were 125 communicant members and 120 children. In 1969 an addition to the school and a sanctuary were built and in 1978 a portion of the land was sold to the Post Office and Super America. In 2001 Walgreen's purchased the property and land was purchased where Rose of Sharon now operates at its present location.
A need for a preschool in the area was determined and the church served many families for 25 years, beginning as a half day preschool and then transforming to Rosebuds Early Childhood Center in 2018, where approximately 50 children are currently enrolled.
Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church believes that the Bible is the inspirational message of God for all people that points to Jesus as the one True Savior. They believe in the one true God that has shown Himself as the three-part Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. As true God, Jesus’s perfect life, suffering, death, and resurrection from the dead have accomplished salvation for us. There is only one way to Heaven and that is by grace through faith alone in Jesus Christ, so with faith in Jesus, you will be in Heaven. But if you reject Jesus, you will spend eternity in hell. One day soon, Jesus will come again to take all believers to Himself in Heaven. Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church also believes that as followers of Christ they have a responsibility to care for creation and protection of life. Their purpose is “to share the free gift of Salvation given by Jesus Christ to all. To love God and serve our neighbors.”
Members of the Rose of Sharon Lutheran congregation believe they are saved to serve. According to the Statement of Faith on the Church website it states, “Christians are called to love all people by telling them that the only way to heaven is by faith in Jesus. We are also called to live our faith by other deeds of love.” The congregation is very active in community servitude through the Outreach Committee, which is busy year-round providing food baskets to shut-ins at Thanksgiving and Christmas and distributing water and candy at the Strawberry Fest Parade. They provide fun activities on the 4th of July, bringing in parents and children to watch fireworks and providing free popcorn, sno cones, face painting and games for area youth. Each year an appreciation dinner is held for the police, firemen and city workers and in October several vehicles welcome over a hundred youth at the Truck and Treats vehicles. Additionally, the Happy Wanderers Travel Group has taken hundreds of people all over the world. Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church also hosts a Red Cross Blood Drive and participates in the Operation Christmas Child Program.
Pastor Martin Schoenfeld, who has served the Rose of Sharon congregation for nearly 12 years, grew up north of Duluth and attended Two Harbors High School. Continuing his education, he received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from Concordia College, St. Paul, and later received his Master’s of Divinity from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Mo. Married with two grown daughters, he has served in pastoral ministry for nearly 29 years, first serving at St. James Lutheran Church and School in Howard Lake, Minn. for 17 years before coming to Rose of Sharon. Schoenfeld feels the greatest urgency facing Christians today is a zeal for God.
“I think the biggest need in our community is for a greater number of people to become more serious about their faith and attend church regularly. When people engage in their faith, they will then love one another as Jesus has first loved us. This makes a great community.
“In many ways the congregation is reflective of the community,” he adds. “For the most part this is a great community where people are friendly and will look out for one another. God has blessed us by being able to live here. I am thankful for and welcome every opportunity to talk with people about their beliefs and faith.”
When asked what he enjoys most about the congregation, he responds, “There are many wonderful aspects to choose from. But the people are truly wonderful. They are like family. Rose of Sharon is a loving community where Christ is present, and the people care for one another in various ways. I know from personal experience how they are there to help when going through a difficult time. It is also a great joy to be able to study the Word of God and share the salvation that belongs to all who trust in Jesus as their Savior. “
Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church has an energetic youth ministry consisting of a youth group that meets on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. during the months of September through May with Sunday school classes for younger children on Sunday mornings at the same time. Confirmation instruction classes for seventh and eighth grade students are held on Wednesdays during the school year, and during the summer, Rose of Sharon also holds Vacation Bible School classes for children in the community ages 3-10.
Church services are held on Sundays at 9 a.m. and Saturdays at 4 p.m. Worship services are liturgical with “both traditional hymns and contemporary music.” Easter services are as follows: March 28 - Maundy Thursday service at 7 p.m., March 29 - Good Friday service at 7 p.m, and March 31 - Easter Sunday services at 6:30 a.m. and 9 a.m.
For more information on Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church or if you have questions about the Youth and Children’s Ministries, call the church office at 651-459-3551 or visit or on Facebook at Rose of Sharon Lutheran Church-Cottage Grove, MN.