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History of TLC

Trinity Lutheran Celebrated 125th (2006)

     In 1881 thirteen families came together on Sunday mornings to begin holding worship services in their homes. One hundred and twenty five years later those worship services are still being held at Trinity Lutheran South of Hartford in the area often called, East Wall Lake. The congregation has gone from meeting in their homes to holding services in a wood frame building located on what is now the cemetery. In 1906 they build the brick church which is still there and have added a fellowship hall to provide space for the programs and fellowship. They build two parsonages and a parochial school which disbanded several years ago but now is being revived with a day care and preschool planned for 2007. To remember those one hundred and twenty five years the congregation held a two day celebration.

Pastor Moeller assisted by the Rev. Dr. Vernon Schindler did part of the 6pm, Saturday worship service in German. The service was followed by ice cream cake and fun. Karen Best provided accordion music the included German songs and a few good polkas. We held our beard and costume contest at this time.

     Winners in the beard contest were, DeWane Carls, 1st, Archie Wolfe, 2nd, Ray Matthies 3rd. In the costume contest Joyce Carls, 1st, Jessie Moeller, 2nd and Donna Bowden 3rd. Mr. Twister was on hand to provide balloons for the "kids". A chain of paper rings was built that listed all the people that had been baptized at Trinity in the last 125 years. There were almost 700 of them and the chain extended completely around the church. and into the hallway. Several former pastors were on hand to tell us what they have been doing since they left Trinity.

     Former Pastor Thomas Wenndt returned to preach for the Sunday morning Celebratory service. After the service the entire congregation former members, visitors and neighbors, gathered outside the church for a group picture. The Sioux Falls Area Ministry Action Team served and excellent meal of German Sausage, potatoes, beans and sauerkraut which left everyone happily filled. As everyone was enjoying the good food, a group called "Sheltered Reality" was preparing to present their concert.  Sheltered Reality is a nonprofit, youth oriented drum line which, with it's youth members, reach out the audiences motivating them to advocate for those in need, especially children. They do such an excellent job of performing that soon the entire audience is involved in the program.

There were many displays for people to look at and pictures of celebrations gone by where people could stop and say, "remember that?". Of course pictures of everyone looking much younger also received various comments.

     With the help of so many people and the presence of old friends and neighbors it is a celebration we won't soon forget. Now as we look back on the 125 years gone by and look forward to another 125, we pray that as the Word of our Lord continues to be proclaimed at Trinity, that we may share that Word and the blessings that it bestows with the community around us.

     TRINITY LUTHERAN is located at 46448 263rd Street, Hartford SD 57033 *605-526-3571)

About Us

The Evangelische Lutherische DreieinegheitsGemeinde(Evangelical Lutheran Trinity Congregation) wasorganized in 1881 by thirteen families.

In 1882, Rev. E.G. Starck became Pastor of Trinity and the church grounds began to take shape. The original church was located within today's cemetery grounds. An arbor and a bronze plaque have been placed at in site within the cemetery. The original church was 24' x 36' and was dedicated on July16,1882.Across the street, the first parsonage was also built. Around 1906, the original church was moved to Crooks, SD and used as a community building, Vacation Bible School, and a two year high school until a fire took the structure in 1924.The current church building construction was completed in 1906and was dedicated on Dec. 2, 1906. It is a 36' x 74' x 18'structure with an 80' tower containing a bell weighing 1500 lbs that is still in use today. In 1904, a 12' x 14' structure was built and used as a parochial school. This building sat between the church and parsonage. In1920, the old parsonage was moved towards the back of the property and was used as the Christian Day School until 1927.In 1920, the current parsonage was built by Julius and Ben Koenig. It is a two-story, nine room structure 30' x 32' x 18' and is still in use today .Over the years updates have been made including adding a garage, mud room, new basement steps, and a newer kitchen off the back of the house. Most recently a deck off the master bedroom was added to aid in the moving of furniture due to the tight corners in the house and stairway. The first organ was purchased on July 26, 1922. Until this time, the congregation would sing hymns unaccompanied or accompanied by the church band. The reed organ was used until May 9, 1948 when the Hammond Organ was dedicated and used exclusively until 2002 when a Clavinova was added to Trinity's instruments. Altogether, we have been given six acres for building sites ,cemetery, and trees. Our newest additions have been a large fellowship hall that adjoins the church and also houses a daycare and preschool, a wonderful fenced playground behind the church, and a picnic shelter next to the play ground. We look forward to continuing to update and maintain our church site and welcoming new members.

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