Churches to celebrate 130 years of ministry

Celebration is this Sunday

Trinity and Storla Lutheran churches will be celebrating 130 years of ministry, together on Sunday, Nov. 4 with a joint worship at Storla at 10:30 a.m. followed by a potluck dinner. All members, former members, friends and neighbors are invited.
The combined celebration is appropriate because the history of the two churches has been intertwined from the beginning.
The two congregations began as a single congregation at a meeting on April 7, 1882. At that meeting a single congregation was formed and a cemetery was established. Several people were buried before any church building was built. When it was time to build the church the members were divided over the location. Some wanted it across from the cemetery, where Trinity is located. Others wanted it a mile north of where the present day Storla church sits. Four miles may seem to be a short distance, unworthy of a disagreement today. But those were the days of horses and wagons and walking, and if you lived on the far side of either location it was worth disagreeing.
In 1924 Storla congregation moved their church building one mile to the south into the village of Storla. Two weeks later a wind storm blew down many buildings in the area, including both church buildings.  At this time when there was neither an east nor a west church a motion was passed to build one church building, but the motion did not specify a location. A parsonage was built from the lumber of the destroyed Storla church, but when it came time to rebuild they built two churches three miles apart.
Trinity and Storla have shared pastors over the years, sometimes with each other and sometimes with the other congregations to the north (Woonsocket) or the south (Victor or Emmanuel.)
In 1944, Storla and Trinity joined to call Pastor O.M. Knudson. Since then Storla and Trinity have worked together in ministry in the community.  Today they share a Sunday School, a Board of Christian Education, Luther League and confirmation classes. They worship together on Sunday mornings, alternating between these two beloved old building.  In 1996, Salem Lutheran, Mt. Vernon, asked to join Storla and Trinity and to form a three-congregation parish.
Both congregations continue to have a strong heart for mission today. Both Storla and Trinity are recipients of the “Holy Cow Award” from the South Dakota Synod Hunger Task Force for their per-member giving to the World Hunger appeal. They have been diligent supporters of Lutheran Social Services, Lutherans Outdoors, the Lutheran Malaria Campaign and the food pantries in Aurora, Sanborn and Davison counties.
Trinity and Storla congregations invite everyone to join them in a day of celebration.

PHOTOS, FRONT: Storla Lutheran; ABOVE: Trinity Lutheran.

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