About Us

I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. (John 10:14 NKJV)








Location

Our Savior Lutheran Church is located at the corner of Second and Pine Streets, one block west of Dixie Highway (Illinois Routes 1/17).

Our Savior Evangelical-Lutheran Church


Please click here to take a pictorial tour of Our Savior Evangelical-Lutheran Church.

Brief History

Our Savior Lutheran Church was formed 1891. The congregation was once a member of  The Evangelical Lutheran Church (also known as the "Norwegian Synod", now part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America after a series of mergers). There are a few Danish names in our congregation mixed with German and American names.  

Here is a picture of our former church building on the corner of Gladiolus and Indiana Streets on the south side of Momence in 1897. The building is now home to Broken Art Restoration, whom we thank for the photograph. Please click on the photograph to enlarge.

 Our Savior congregation left the "Norwegian Synod" and joined The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod in September of 1930.  The original church building was severely damaged in a fire on December 17, 1934 and was later sold to the Momence Christian Reformed Church. The congregation worshiped in a storefront on West Washington Street until purchasing a home and lot on the corner of Second and Pine Streets. The home was torn down. Many building materials from the home were used to build the new church building. 

The current edifice was built in the fall and winter of 1942 and 1943. Not many church buildings were built during World War II. The story on how our building was allowed to be built is an interesting one.

In the spring of 1942 a letter was sent to the War Productions Board. This was the board charged with the responsibility to make exceptions to the laws that said that all available building materials were to be used for the war effort. The director of the General Office of Products Management was Mr. William S. Knudsen, a fellow Dane! The congregation appealed for a permit to purchase electrical wiring, lumber, and 300 pounds of nails.  For several months letters were sent by the congregation asking for waivers needed to buy building materials. The total cost of the structure was to be $4,700. Faith triumphed over disappointment and setbacks. A letter dated July 23, 1942 granted the necessary waivers. Construction soon began.

The cornerstone was laid October 25, 1942. The building was dedicated April 4, 1943 with three services at 10 A.M., 3 P.M., and 7:45 P.M. Pastor Walper preached the 10 A.M. service with Pastor Carl Haller of St. Paul's, Kankakee delivering an address. Former Pastor D.C. Hennig preached the 3:00 P.M. service. The choir of Trinity Lutheran, Crete, IL sang at the afternoon service. Pastor A.H. Semmann, Mission Counselor of the Northern Illinois District, preached at the Evening Service. The choir of Trinity Lutheran, Crete, IL sang again at the evening service.

Here is a picture of our current building from 1943. The top photo is the original altar taken from the old building on the south side of Momence. It was replaced in the late 1950s. The side photographs are the interior and exterior of Our Savior Lutheran Church. The large two story home in the exterior photograph was purchased by the congregation in 1980. It is now a rental home, bringing in extra income for the parish. The bottom photograph is Pastor Louis Walper at the cornerstone laying on October 25, 1942. Please click on the photograph to enlarge.

Pews replaced chairs in the mid-1950s. A new altar and the communion rail was added in the late 1950s. Stained glass windows were added through the 1950s into the early 1960s. New carpeting was laid and a modest renovation of the narthex was completed in time for the congregation's Centennial Celebration in 1991. Pastor Marvin Flanscha, Pastor Ch. Adam, and Pastor John Glamann were featured speakers in two special Divine Services.

The building was air-conditioned in 2000. An enlarged narthex with handicapped elevator was built in 2002, as well as enlarged bathrooms in the church basement.

The adjacent parsonage was built in 1955. It served as the pastor's residence until the early 1990s when it was converted to meeting space, the pastor's study, and office space. The parsonage was reconverted from office and meeting space to a parsonage in 2007. A third bedroom, second bathroom, an extended living room, and two closets were added in 2011. During the new addition project, the parsonage received all new plumbing, eliminating the possibility of sewage backing up into the parsonage basement. A renovation of the parsonage great room (kitchen, dining, and living room) took place in 2012.

Pastors who have served Our Savior Congregation

Rev. A.C. Olsen                       1891-1895

Rev. J.N. Andersen                1895-1896

Rev. H.P. Berthelsen              1897-1905

Rev. L.P. Hansen                    1905-1910

Rev. C.H. Fechtenburg           1910-1918

Rev. H.J. Hansen                    1918-1923

Rev. S.K. Knudson                   1924-1926

Rev. R.E. Anderson                  1926-1930

Rev. D.C. Hennig                      1930-1931 (First Missouri Synod Pastor)

Rev. F. Graef                               1931-1933

Rev. Ch. Adam                           1934-1938

Rev. L.O. Walper                       1939-1950

Rev. W. Johannes                     1951-1953

Rev. W.C. Kemnitz                    1954-1960

Rev. L.F. Morgal                        1960-1965

Rev. M. Flanscha                       1966-1969

Rev. Dr. G. Pence                       1970-1973

Rev. Dr. J.V. Glamann             1974-1985

Rev. D.L. Simonson                  1985-1993

Rev. Dr. S.A. Bruzek                  1993-1997

Rev. K.E. GeRue                          1998-2006

Rev. D.M. Juhl                            2007-