LSS Blog

Welcome Home – Concordia Village Hosts Patio Home Event

Courtney Page, Concordia Village Senior Living Associate, considers it the highest compliment to Concordia Village when she hears guests exclaim, “Everything has been thought of!” And that was no exception when it came to the Concordia Tour of Patio Homes event on June 29.

Prospective residents, Future Residency Program members and current Patio home residents gathered not only for tours of Patio Homes at Concordia Village, but also for some delicious food. Smoked Brisket, Smoked Pork Butt, BBQ Ribs, Napa Cabbage Salad, Red Potato Salad, Coleslaw, Grilled Vegetable Kabobs, Grilled Asparagus with Balsamic Reduction, and Ice Cream Sundae Bar, to name a few. Hungry yet?


“We have great meals here and of course, that evening it was no exception,” said Chuck Krell, Concordia Village resident for the past 5 years. “A chance to visit with some of our future neighbors over great food is always delightful. And we always tell them not to wait to come here and enjoy living life to the fullest.”

Having recently added a new Wellness Center, an Independent Living Apartment building, and patio homes, Concordia Village residents are experiencing the best in senior living. “My wife and I love it here, so anytime that we can share how much we love it with others, is amazing.”

Around LSS: Progress and Renovation

You might have noticed that there’s a lot of construction and renovation occurring across Lutheran Senior Services. We’re investing in the future and the needs of seniors by preparing today. Take a peak at some of the projects that are occurring and a deeper explanation of why they’re so important.




A Conversation with Jacque Bogner, Executive Director of Concordia Village, and Donna Roetker, Concordia Village Resident

LSS: Lutheran Senior Services is a not-for-profit. That means any surplus money doesn’t go into the pockets of shareholders, but is reinvested in our communities. In 2015, many LSS communities saw renovations and expansions. Jacque, as an Executive Director, what does that reinvestment do for your community and other LSS communities?

Jacque: For current and future residents it means that they can enjoy places and spaces that fit their needs. This is home and we want it to be a place where people are proud to say they live. Plus through reinvesting in our communities, we are extending our services to more seniors and providing a larger variety of services.

LSS: Which is needed.

Jacque: Exactly. Everyone knows that we have a large generation population that has reached, or is close to reaching, retirement age. And Lutheran Senior Services is preparing for that with both renovating existing spaces and creating brand new ones. Wellness centers, fitness and art studios, pool spaces — all these are a part of investing back in our communities and I believe it’s a part of our mission.

LSS: Donna, you are a recent new resident to Lutheran Senior Services. How has your life changed since moving in?

Donna: My life has changed tremendously since moving in. I had both a house and a condo and I knew it was time to downsize. Now I have a lovely apartment with a great view, friends surrounding me, and on top of that we have a new wellness center that I use every day. I had concerns and was nervous when making the decision to move, but everyone here is wonderful and it’s home. I haven’t missed my old place once.

Jacque: Donna has a story similar to many others. One of the best parts of my job is
that my team and I get to show them what life is like here.

Donna: I really have nothing to worry about here. The building is so very beautiful but I have to say that it’s the people that really make it special. People like Jacque are what make this place a home.


The ever-changing needs of a rapidly aging population leads change throughout LSS. Being responsible stewards means finding new ways of delivering value without sacrificing quality. Remaining viable in an increasingly competitive market calls for consistent evaluation of existing product and constant renewal through renovation and, at times, new construction. Multiple projects remain in the works at all times with an eye toward meeting the needs of both today and tomorrow.

2015 Projects included:

Concordia Village, Springfield, IL: 
  • Completed construction of new apartments and patio homes for independent living, as well as a Wellness Center featuring pool, art studio, game room, and clinic.
Lake Pointe, Lake Saint Louis, MO: 
  • Began pre-sales and continue developing phased construction of this new continuing care retirement community.
Lenoir Woods, Columbia, MO: 
  • Continued pre-sales of a new independent living wing and a master plan for construction of a new care center.
Lutheran Hillside Village, Peoria, IL: 
  • Began construction on a new care center and continue developing master plan for additional renovations.

Join us for the Walk to End Alzheimers!

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 8.52.52 AM


Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S. and the only cause among the top 10 in the U.S. that cannot be prevented or cured. Be a part of raising awareness and much-needed research dollars. Join LSS at these upcoming Alzheimer’s Walks. Join LSS at these upcoming Alzheimer’s Walks. To find your team, visit and use the search terms below: read more…

Tee Off with LSS Benevolent Care 2016 Golf Tournament

Thank you to all those who participated in the 2016 LSS Golf Tournament! We had an incredible day out on the course with you. Even more so, we were incredibly humbled by the outpouring of support. From sponsors, to participants, to volunteers, we are so thankful for the community that has rallied around Benevolent Care — helping older adults who have outlived their financial means.

See some of our favorite pictures from the day, and click here to see them all.

Once again, thank you to all of our sponsors — both businesses and individuals who are committed to creating a positive impact in the lives of older adults.





  • BSI Constructors

Golfer Gift SPONSOR

  • SM Wilson


  • Clifton Larson Allen
  • Spencer Fane


  • NAI Desco
  • PNC Bank


  • John and Elaine Kotovsky


  • Fairfield / Medtek Resources
  • Tech Electronics

Beverage / Snack Cart SPONSOR

  • US Foods
  • McKesson Medical and Surgical

Food Sponsor

  • Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse
  • Major Brands
  • Pepsi Company


  • Gilmore & Bell

Exclusive Beer Sponsor

  • Kraftig-William K. Busch Brewing Company

Exclusive Printer SPONSOR

  • Modern Litho St. Louis

hole-in-one SPONSOR

  • Cerame Ford


  • Delta Dental


  • Alliance Rehab STL, LLC
  • Argent Capital Management, LLC
  • Bank of America
  • Bell Electrical
  • Brown Smith Wallace
  • Central Bank of St. Louis
  • EL Pruitt Company
  • Gershman Mortgage
  • HBD Construction
  • Hillyard
  • Holten Meat Inc. / O.E. Brokerage Co.
  • Jarrell Mechanical Contractor
  • Lockton
  • Lutheran Church Extension Fund
  • Modern Litho
  • Perkins Eastman Architects
  • Raineri Construction
  • Ronnoco Coffee LLC
  • Sandberg Phoenix & Von Gontard
  • Senior Care Network
  • St Louis Ballpark Hillton
  • St Louis Cardinals
  • Thrivent Financial
  • Towers Watson
  • Workday
  • Ziegler


  • Clear Arc Capital
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • GFI Digital
  • Health MedEx
  • Major Brands
  • St. Louis Equity
  • Schindler Elevator Corp
  • Southern Bus and Mobility
  • Woodard


  • Air Comfort
  • Allen Roofing and Supply Co., Inc.
  • Allstate Consultants
  • LSS Regional Vice Presidents:  Carla Baum, Karen Larson, and Mike Raso
  • Columbia Landcare
  • Commercial Plating Company
  • Dale & Debbie Kreienkamp
  • Enterprise Fleet
  • Greensfelder, Hemker, & Gale
  • Grubbs & Associates
  • HD Supply
  • Kaemmerlen Electric
  • Lowery Asset Consulting, LLC
  • Lutheran Trust, Inc.
  • Rees Associates, Inc.
  • St. Louis Design Alliance
  • St. Louis Paving
  • St. Luke’s Hospital
  • Vee-Jay Cement Contracting
  • Waste Connections, Inc.


  • Three Sixty Bar
  • Chandler Hill Vineyards
  • Delta Dental
  • Frank Pappa’s
  • Gateway Grizzlies
  • Golfsmith
  • Greenbriar Hills Country Club
  • Hidden Gems Resale
  • Hilton Ballpark Village
  • Johm Komlos – Arco Construction
  • Laclede Groves Senior Living Community – Gary Holzem
  • LSS Volunteer Program
  • LSS Home and Community Based Services
  • LSS Home Office
  • LSS Regional Vice Presidents: Carla Baum, Karen Larson, and Mike Raso
  • Major Brands
  • Mastermind Vodka
  • Modern Litho
  • Norwood Hills Country Club
  • Pepsi Company
  • PNC Bank
  • Rachel’s Grove Dress Boutique
  • Ronnoco Coffee, LLC
  • Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse
  • Saint Louis Billikens
  • Men’s Basketball
  • Scott Hartwig
  • St. Louis Cardinals
  • Group Sales Department
  • Ted Drewes
  • Thrivent Financial
  • Trademark Creative
  • William K. Busch Brewing-Kraftig
  • Woodard

Senior Connections featured in Saint Louis Community News!

Senior Connections was recently featured on the front page of Saint Louis Community News! We’d like to take this time to thank all of our volunteers for taking time out of their scheduled to spend with seniors. You can read the article here.

The Story of the Fourth of July


The Declaration of Independence

We celebrate American Independence Day on the Fourth of July every year. We think of July 4, 1776, as a day that represents the Declaration of Independence and the birth of the United States of America as an independent nation.

But July 4, 1776 wasn’t the day that the Continental Congress decided to declare independence (they did that on July 2, 1776).


So what did happen on July 4, 1776?

The Continental Congress approved the final wording of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. They’d been working on it for a couple of days after the draft was submitted on July 2 and finally agreed on all of the edits and changes.

July 4, 1776, became the date that was included on the Declaration of Independence, and the fancy handwritten copy that was signed in August (the copy now displayed at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.)

In contrast, we celebrate Constitution Day on September 17 of each year, the anniversary of the date the Constitution was signed, not the anniversary of the date it was approved. If we’d followed this same approach for the Declaration of Independence we’d being celebrating Independence Day on August 2 of each year, the day the Declaration of Independence was signed!


How did the Fourth of July become a national holiday?

For the first 15 or 20 years after the Declaration was written, people didn’t celebrate it much on any date. It was too new and too much else was happening in the young nation. By the 1790s, a time of bitter partisan conflicts, the Declaration had become controversial. One party, the Democratic-Republicans, admired Jefferson and the Declaration. But the other party, the Federalists, thought the Declaration was too French and too anti-British, which went against their current policies. By 1817, John Adams complained in a letter that America seemed uninterested in its past. But that would soon change.

After the War of 1812, the Federalist party began to come apart and the new parties of the 1820s and 1830s all considered themselves inheritors of Jefferson and the Democratic-Republicans. Printed copies of the Declaration began to circulate again, all with the date July 4, 1776, listed at the top. The deaths of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams on July 4, 1826, may even have helped to promote the idea of July 4 as an important date to be celebrated.

Celebrations of the Fourth of July became more common as the years went on and in 1870, almost a hundred years after the Declaration was written, Congress first declared July 4 to be a national holiday as part of a bill to officially recognize several holidays, including Christmas. Further legislation about national holidays, including July 4, was passed in 1939 and 1941.


(Taken from

Veteran’s Fair

Then don’t forget to join The Meramec Bluffs Veteran Committee for a free “One Stop Information Shopping” event for all veterans and their spouses or widows. Find out what benefits are available to you! RSVP to Margaret Cox at 636.923.2356. Located at 1 Meramec Bluffs Drive, Ballwin MO 63021.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Medicare and Medicaid Upgrade Mason Pointe From Two to Four Stars!

MP four-star-blog

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid have upgraded its overall quality rating of Mason Pointe Senior Living Community from two stars to four stars out of a possible five since Lutheran Senior Services (LSS) purchased the community on February 1, 2016. This above average quality rating includes stringent health inspection, safety, staffing, and quality measures. Mason Pointe has 230 licensed beds offering short stay rehabilitation and 24-hour long term nursing care services.

“Their team achieved this improvement in less than five months of ownership thanks to our thorough and ongoing efforts to clean, renovate, and restructure all service areas throughout the Mason Pointe campus,” said John Kotovsky, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lutheran Senior Services. “This achievement also acknowledges and affirms the high level of care and service LSS provides and the high priority we are placing on the future of Mason Pointe.”

On February 1, LSS acquired the Cedars of Town & Country and announced it would consolidate its REACH West County services with those of the Cedars at the re-named Mason Pointe. In May, LSS began moving approximately 20 residents from REACH West County Short Stay Rehabilitation from the campus of Mercy Hospital in Creve Coeur to Mason Pointe. The movement of all residents from REACH was completed earlier this month; and LSS has turned control of the REACH property back over to Mercy.

Mason Pointe is located approximately three miles from Mercy Hospital on the South Outer Road of I-64 between Mason Road and Maryville Centre Drive. Mason Pointe will continue to serve Mercy Hospital’s post-acute patients – as well as others in the surrounding communities – in need of rehabilitation services.

“We knew that Mason Pointe had the talent and the ability to change their star rating of care,” Kotovsky added. “We will continue to improve the quality of care as we explore our options to provide additional services beyond those already offered at Mason Pointe in the future.”

Groundbreaking ceremony at Lenoir Woods

Lenoir_View 2

Lenoir Woods Senior Living Community in Columbia, Missouri held a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday, celebrating the construction of the Edgewood Apartments. Current residents, future residents, and guests attended to witness the continuation of the history and vision of Lenoir Woods.

“History is all about honoring those who come before us. Vision is about those who will come after us. Today is about both of those things,” said Jake Bell, Chief Operating Officer of Lutheran Senior Services. “As we look to the future and the groundbreaking that’s occurring today, it all fits perfectly into our Christian mission of Older Adults Living Life to the Fullest.”

The $22 million new construction of the Edgewood Apartments over the estimated 15 months of construction will result in 79 new independent living apartments and underground parking.

Executive Director, Kent Kirkwood summed up the aspirations of the Edgewood Apartments. “As the building grows, it will be easy to see progress. Plumbing put in, walls and windows placed, balconies and a roof constructed. But there is so much more to this building then what you’ll physically see. Underneath it all will be the energy in conversation about the future of Lenoir Woods, the new friends made as future residents extend the scope of our family here; the promise of spaces created specifically created for the needs of older adults set against a beautiful woods backdrop. It’s the very spirit of what it means to live life to the fullest at Lenoir Woods that will make the greatest impact.”

To speak to someone on Living Life to the Fullest at Lenoir Woods, call 573.876.5800.

Breeze Park Resident Elsie Fruend Wins Senior Service Award

Missouri Lt. Governor Peter Kinder has named Elsie Fruend, a resident of Breeze Park Senior Living in St. Charles, as a winner of the 2016 Lieutenant Governor’s Senior Service Award. Lt. Governor Kinder presented the award on May 4 at a ceremony in the House Lounge of the Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City.

Fruend is a member of the Breeze Park Crafters at Breeze Park Senior Living in St. Charles, where she and about six other women make quilts that are presented as gifts to children receiving care at the Ronald McDonald House. She was nominated by the crafters’ group, which noted the young patients quickly become attached to the quilts.

“They become so attached to this ‘security blanket’ that they want to take it home with them,” the nomination said. “Elsie makes this possible. Some of the little ones with big problems are there for years. They know their blanket by the feel of it.”

Kinder said Freund also makes crib quilts that she sells and uses the proceeds to help pay for supplies to make the quilts for the Ronald McDonald House kids.


“Over the past seven years, Elsie has been instrumental in producing more than 1,500 of these special quilts, which have become beloved security blankets for scared children facing dire health issues,” he said. “You have had a positive impact, and your unselfishness has touched countless people in your community.

“You embody the spirit of the ‘good and faithful servant’ taught by our Lord in the parable of the talents – using your energy and talents and devotion to make a difference in your communities,” Kinder added. “This award is one small way our state can join them in saying, ‘thank you!’”

Breeze Park is a senior living community operated by Lutheran Senior Services. Lutheran Senior Services is a mission-driven, not-for-profit network that specializes in housing, care, and supportive services for older adults 62+. With 21 locations in Missouri and Illinois, LSS serves more than 9,000 seniors a year through options that include Senior Living Communities offering all levels of care, Affordable Housing for those with limited incomes, and Home & Community Based Services. LSS builds upon 155+ years of excellence in living out its Christian mission of Older Adults Living Life to the Fullest.

Paul Ogier Named Health Care CFO of the Year

Congratulations to Paul Ogier, LSS Chief Financial Officer. The St. Louis Business Journal recognized him for his significant contribution to the lives of older adults, naming him Health Care CFO of the Year. “Paul has an incredible heart for our ministry and serving older adults,” said John Kotovsky, president and CEO of LSS. “A lot of CFOs are good numbers people, but Paul is able to balance the numbers with the human needs.” Thank you Paul for all that you do on behalf of Lutheran Senior Services and the older adults it serves.

Read the article here.