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In memory of Alma Rissky

History

1939 - Mrs. Carolina Desmond, mother of former member Lorraine Burkman, writes to the Missouri Synod headquarters in St. Louis, Missouri, suggesting the possibility of opening a "mission station" in Columbus Manor, Illinois. (Columbus Manor is annexed and becomes part of Oak Lawn in 1964.) Mrs. Desmond then canvasses the community, obtains the names of 40 Lutheran families living in the area, and Columbus Manor Lutheran Mission is formed. The first worship service is held on October 22, 1939, under the guidance of Rev. Ernest T. Blau, pastor of Concordia Lutheran Church of Midlothian, who has been assigned to develop the Columbus Manor Mission. Meetings and services are held in the basement of the home of Mr. & Mrs. Edwin Hoppe at 9530 South Merrimac Avenue. A Ladies' Society is organized with eight members on December 7, 1939, also in the Hoppes' basement.

1940-42
Rev. Albert G. Hoffman

1940 - The congregation is organized on April 12, 1940, and named Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church. Two months later the congregation joins the Missouri Synod. The first church building is dedicated on October 6, 1940. The property, on which the parsonage now stands, had been donated by Mr. & Mrs. Edwin Hoppe. The Ladies' Society, which now has 25 members, changes its name to Faith Ladies' Aid.

1941-42 - An elementary school, taught by Pastor Hoffman, is opened and held in the church basement.

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1942-45
Rev. Raymond W. Fechner

1944 - The congregation becomes self-supporting.

1944(-80) - Miss Edna Hosmann serves as organist.

1945-62
Rev. Reinhart R. Steinly

1945(-66) - A Lutheran boys and girls club, to be led by Miss Edna Hosmann, is organized.

1951 - The church basement is enlarged to provide more room for Sunday School classes.

1953(-74) - Mr. Fred Grube, husband of member Mrs. Anita Grube, serves as choir director.

1954 - The interior of the church is severely damaged on Good Friday by a fire, possibly started by the overheating of the church organ.

1957 - The present church building is designed by architect C.W. Marshall and built by the Jackman Construction Company. (It is believed that the cornerstone contains pertinent documents.)

1958 - The present church building is dedicated on March 9, 1958.

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1960 - The parsonage is built on the site of the original church building. (The first parsonage owned by the church was at 97th & Marion.)

1960 - A charter for Junior Walther League is granted.

1962-78
Rev. Norman E. Brauer

1962 - The current Parish Hall, a former grocery store, is purchased as a place to hold kindergarten and Sunday School classes.

1963-66 - Kindergarten classes are held.

1964 - A sewing and craft group is organized by Mrs. Anita Grube for the purpose of making bandages for cancer patients under the auspices of the American Cancer Society. Columbus Manor is annexed and becomes part of Oak Lawn.

1965 - Faith celebrates its 25th Anniversary. A public address system and a glass block window featuring a red cross are installed in the church.

1967 - The Oak Lawn tornado destroys the church's sign and damages the homes of many members.

1978-82
Rev. Kevin L. Wenker

1980 - Approximately 350 people attend Faith's 40th Anniversary dinner on October 26, 1980, at St. Paul Oak Lawn. A brick church sign is erected as a memorial to Mr. Ervin Beckett, former charter member, elder, and father of Miss Donna Beckett, church secretary. Mrs. Edna Hosmann, organist since 1944, retires.

1983-91
Rev. Sheldon H. Klietz

1984 - A groundbreaking ceremony is held for a much-needed addition to the church building that provides office space and an interior narthex in which the members can visit with one another before and after services. (The photo above shows the church as it looked before the addition.)

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1990 - Faith celebrates its 50th Anniversary.

1992-99
Rev. James G. Zimmerman

2001-05
Rev. Michael R. Gudgel


Karen Gudgel & Pastor Mike Gudgel

2005
Rev. Richard P. Wertz
Vacancy Pastor

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2005-07
Rev. Stephen F. Bocklage


Anna Bocklage & Pastor Bocklage

2008
Rev. Ronald L. Simpson
Interim Pastor

2008-present
Rev. Mark Birkholz

PASTOR'S PAGE

2015 - Faith looks forward to its 75th Anniversary

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2002-14 Faith Ev. Lutheran Church
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Faith Ev. Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod
9701 S Melvina Ave, Oak Lawn, IL  60453
(708) 424-1059