Faith Lutheran to celebrate 25 years

Published 5:53 am Monday, June 4, 2012

Faith Lutheran Church of London, Minn., will celebrate its 25th Anniversary on Sunday, June 10, with a special service beginning at 9:45 a.m. -- Photo provided

On June 10, Faith Lutheran Church in London will be alight with music, food and stories.

The special service will celebrate the church’s 25th anniversary. After the 9:45 a.m. service, the congregation will take a group photo outside the church and then gather in the dining hall to enjoy a catered dinner. The extended service will likely run an hour and a half to two hours, and will feature more music performed by congregation members than services typically hold.

“Several of the people that can sing or play instruments are going to be doing their musical thing,” said Donna Rae Davis, who lived in the Twin Cities before moving to the area. She has been with the church for 23 years, and said her husband was a charter member.

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Faith Lutheran Pastor Kent Otterman, who has led the church for 4 1/2 years, said several presentations will help recognize the anniversary.

“We will also be having a few speakers in addition to myself who will be sharing memories of the church when it was founded, or what it means to them,” he said. Currently there are four speakers lined up to give five- to 10-minute presentations, and Otterman plans to speak also.

Faith Lutheran is a conservative, Bible-based church, according to Rita Rosenberg, who has been a member for about 15 years. The church is independent in that it does not affiliate with any larger church body, and sticks to a simple worship service that uses its own liturgy.

“It’s a warm and friendly congregation there, and people help each other,” Davis said.

Rosenberg agreed.

“It’s like one big family,” she said.

Otterman said the church’s mission is simple.

“We strive to allow the scriptures to be the word of God,” he said. Faith Lutheran is very mission-oriented, he added, and the congregation gives a lot to support mission work. In the past, the church has sponsored the Salvation Army, the Ronald McDonald House and other organizations.

“I feel we do a lot of good,” Rosenberg said. Church members also provide confidential help to people on an individual basis.

In its 25 years, Faith Lutheran has been been served by four pastors. In addition to his work there, Otterman serves as pastor of Round Prairie Lutheran Church, located about six miles south of Albert Lea. He recently rejoined that church after having spending 12 years there in the late ‘80s and ‘90s.

Members of the Faith Lutheran congregation come from all over, Davis said. Some are from Albert Lea, Austin and St. Ansgar. It isn’t uncommon for people to drive more than 25 miles to get to the church, and several even come from as far as 50 miles away.

Some that join the church are simply new to the area, while others choose to switch to Faith Lutheran over their existing church. Word-of-mouth recommendations help the congregation grow. Currently, the church has about 72 member families, Davis said. Around 150 people come to a typical Sunday Mass.

Faith Lutheran Church is located at 11690 903rd Ave., London, MN. The church welcomes visitors to attend the anniversary service.