About Us


It is the mission of St. John's Lutheran Church: 

To make Christ Known, Loved and Served: within our congregation, in our community, throughout God's world and within our daily lives, while rooted in the Lutheran traditions we hold dear. 


Are a part of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church of Jesus Christ.

  • Are the largest protestant denomination in the world.
    Base their faith on God’s word- the Bible.
  • Confess the Holy Trinity as taught in the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds.
  • Believe that we are saved by God’s grace through Jesus Christ, and not our own good works.
  • Believe that God comes to us through the Word and the Sacraments within the community of God’s people.
  • Stress Christian Education for all baptized children of God.
  • Regard the congregation as a community in Christ, not simply another social organization.
  • Feel a close relationship with all Christians throughout the world.


Pastor Peter A. Rustico has served as pastor of St. John’s Lutheran Church since February, 1987.  He is a native of the Bronx, New York;  a graduate of Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA;  and a graduate of the Lutheran School of Theology, in Chicago, IL.  Pastor Rustico was ordained in June, 1982 by the Metropolitan New York Synod of the Lutheran Church in America.  Prior to coming to St. John's,  he served as vicar at Calvary Lutheran in Philadelphia, PA,  and as pastor of Trinity Lutheran, in White Plains, NY. 

In addition to his many responsibilities as our pastor, Pastor Rustico serves as the President of the Greater Middletown Interfaith Council which includes more than 20 faith communities in the Middletown area.  The "GMIC' operates an overnight shelter called "The Community Warming Station" during fall and winter months.  Pastor also serves on the Muhlenberg College Alumni Board and as chaplain of the Excelsior Hook and Ladder Company of the Middletown Fire Department.  Pastor Rustico is a Retired Chaplain of the United States Navy Reserve, having completed 30 years of service in 2014.

Pastor Rustico and his wife Barbara are the parents of four sons, and the grandparents of three granddaughters.  The Rusticos make their home in the Middletown area.  


St. John's Lutheran Church was founded in 1898 by a small but faithful community of believers.  In 1899 property was purchased at the corner of Linden & Franklin Streets for $3,000. Services were held in the basement of the parsonage and the church incorporated under the name St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church.  In 1902 St. John's joined the New York Lutheran Ministerium. 1903 brought a new Estey Chapel Organ to the church for the price of $175 and the formation of the Martha Society for youth, which later became the Luther League. 1906 saw the church become debt free. In 1909 Worship Services were conducted in both English and German. The Good Shepherd window was presented and the cornerstone for the new church was laid in 1913. St. John's discontinued services in German in 1935 and had a full-time pastor in 1938 after a congregation in Chester dissolved.  After many discussions and serious consideration, "Renew and Rejoice" kicked off in 1977. The church needed to temporarily relocate, worshiping at AHRC for two years while our new home on Mt. Hope was being built.  The new church was dedicated in 1985. Wagner Hall, large kitchen and Sunday School classrooms were added in 1995.  St. John's is an active community of believers, there is always something happening within our church home along with reaching out into the communities in which we live. These activities reflect our many talents and gifts. Our light is truly shining for others to see and share with us the good news of Christ. We seem to always have food on the table and an open door.  Our new Sanctuary was dedicated in October 2009.  Our doors are always open to receive family, friends and guests. New members classes are held on a steady basis as our family is constantly growing. Our Confirmation and Sunday School classes are steadily getting larger. Tomorrow our children will be telling stories of the Saints of today.