HISTORY OF ST. JOHN
Part 4~ the 1950's
• Later in 1949, an oil-burning furnace was installed in the parsonage, a stoker in the teacherage.
• In 1950, an Adult Bible Class was scheduled for Sunday mornings.
• In the tense situation (Korea) the following statement was offered by the congregation:
We, the members of St. John congregation, together with the members of our church everywhere, offer the following statement of our deepest feelings and convictions amid the tense crisis now developing in the world:
1. We sincerely repent of our sins and shortcomings.
2. We trust in Jesus Christ who died that men might live. We are sure that our God is a merciful God as we know Him in Jesus Christ and believe that even now He will forgive our negligence, and avert the looming disaster overshadowing the world.
3. We pray for peace. We ask God to grant harmony to the disunited and oppressed peoples of the earth. We implore Him to make it possible for all nations to solve their differences without armed conflict.
4. We appeal to the leaders of all countries to consider, while there is time, the bitter fruits of war and to weigh every decision with deliberation during these ominous days.
5. We pledge ourselves to stand shoulder to shoulder with our fellow-Americans that the voice of our nation, and if necessary, its arms may be raised for what is right in the sight of God and of the peace of the world.
6. To that end we resolve to dedicate ourselves to earnest, fervent prayer for our country and the peace of the world.
• In 1951, Paul, son of Rev. and Mrs. W. Schroeder, entered St. John’s College, Winfield, Kansas (Saint John's Lutheran College, Winfield, Kansas Opened 1893, closed July 1986), to prepare himself for the ministry, first son of the congregation to do so in more than a quarter of a century. Paul will graduate from Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri in 1958.
• In 1951, after an intensive program of education and information, $17, 389.75 was contributed to the Sioux City Lutheran Hospital. The Hospital had extended a plea for help, as extensive expansion was necessary to keep the doors of the hospital and training school for nurses open. This is the largest sum ever raised for a purpose other than our own.
• In the fall of 1953, Rev. Schroeder suffered a heart-seizure, which necessitated 7 weeks of idleness. The congregation was very thoughtful and when he was able to resume his work in December, they presented him with the money needed to purchase a fully equipped Chevrolet car with the trade-in of his old car, which had run for more than 90,000 miles. At the end of 1953, to lighten the pastor’s load, the German services were discontinued, except for the Good Friday Communion Service.
• The pastor was unable to serve for 2 months due to illness. He recovered and was able to carry on his work.
• June 3, 1956, was the first service of the Jubilee celebration. Rev. A. Amstein of San Diego, California, the only other resident pastor of St. John during these 75 years, addressed the congregation by means of a taped recording. (His age and failing health prevented his traveling). Student Paul Schroeder of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, delivered an address emphasizing Christian education. The children of the Kindergarten and 8th grade, capped and gowned, enjoyed a formal graduation in the service.
• On April 15, 1956, St. John congregation numbered: Souls… 1,009; Communicants members … 731; Voting members …126; Children in school…65; and Children in Sunday School…115.
• In 1956, it was decided to participate in and support Lutheran broadcasting on radio K.D.S.N. – Denison. (today "Thy Strong Word" can still be heard on KDSN 107.1 fm/1530 am)
• In 1957, Paul Fiene was presented a plaque commemorating 50 years of service as President of our congregation. He was also voted as lifetime honorary President. (He entered his eternal home in April, 1967)
• In 1957, it was decided to hold Mission Festival twice a year rather than 2 services on one Sunday.
• In July 1957, the congregation went on record to morally and financially support Eventide Lutheran Home for the Aged.
• November 13, 1957, Pastor W.P. Schroeder, after 4 years of declining health, entered his eternal rest. Funeral services were conducted at St. John on November 16. He was laid to rest in St. John Lutheran Cemetery at Charter Oak. He faithfully served St. John for 23 years.
• February 9, 1958, Pastor O.R. Schlegelmilch of Tipton, Indiana was installed as the third Pastor of St. John.
• August 30, 1959, was a special service commemorating 25 years of ministry for Pastor O. R. Schlegelmilch.