Sutter Memorial Archives
Metropolitan NY Synod of the ELCA
Home
Sutter Family History
Beginnings
German Ev. Lutheran Church -- Aug-Oct 1869
Trinity Lutheran Church -- Photographs
Frederic Sutter -- 1907
Timeline
Trinity Lutheran Church -- 150th Anniversary
First Annual Reports - Rev. A. Krause
5th - 17th, 20th Annual Reports - Sutter
Contact Us
Congregation Resources
Research Services
Useful Links
About Us
Location
Download
Lutheran Disaster Response -- Sept. 11, 2001
Lutheran Historical Conference
Assembly Minutes
Bishop's
Bronx Conference
Manhattan Conference
Queens Conference
Staten Island Conference
Nassau Conference
Delaware-Hudson Conference
Hudson Conference
Suffolk Conference
Tappan-Zee Conference
Peconic Conference
Frederick Lutheran -- Virgin Island
Advent Lutheran Church -- 1209 Avenue P
Brooklyn Conference
Bethlehem -- 3rd. & Pacific (inactive)
Christ Evangelical -- 1070 59th St.
Gloria Dei Church (inactive)
Good Shepherd -- 7420 4th Ave.
Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Epiphany
Incarnation Lutheran -- 5313 4th Ave. (inactive)
Holy Redeemer -- 2424 Linden Boulevard
Holy Trinity -- Ave. R Hendrickson St. (inactive)
Holy Trinity -- Cumberland & Lafayette (inactive)
Lutheran Church of the Messiah -- 129 Russell St.
Our Saviour's -- 414 and 80th St.
English Reformation -- Barbey St
Salem Danish -- 345 Ovington Ave. (inactive)
Salem Danish -- 128 Prospect Ave. (inactive)
Salem Swedish -- 450 67th St. (inactive)
St. Jacobi -- 54-06 4th Ave.
St. John's of New Utrecht -- 84th St. & 16th Ave.
St. John-St. Matthew-Emmanual -- 283 Prospect
St. John's -- New Jersey & Liberty (inactive)
St. John's -- Greenpoint
St. Luke's -- 259 Washington Ave. (inactive)
St. Paul's -- 392 MacDonough St. (inactive(
St. Paul's -- Ave. J and East 40th Street
St. Paul's -- 334 South 5th St.
St. Peter's -- 1004 Bedford Ave. (inactive)
St. Stephen's -- 2806 Newkirk Ave.
St. Philip's - 287 McKinley Ave.
Trinity Lutheran -- 411 46th St.
Zion -- Bedford Ave. (inactine)
Zion Lutheran -- Bedford and Flatbush (inactive)
Zion Norwegian -- 63rd and Fourth Ave. (inactive)

Fifth-Fifteeth, Seventeeth & Eighteenth Annual Reports -- Rev. Frederick Sutter


[trans. John Daggan, 2004] 

Fifth Annual Report

of the Activities of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor Frederick Sutter 

1907

Introduction to the Fifth Annual Report

With thanks to God it was granted us in October of last year to celebrate the 50th year Jubilee of our congregation. The festivities that took place were:

Sunday, Oct. 7 at 10:30 am, was the Festival Service for the church; the guest preacher was Pastor A. Richter from St. Matthew’s German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hoboken, N.J.

That afternoon at 3 o’clock: a celebration for the Sunday School; with an address by Pastor J.C.R Lührs from St. John’s German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Jersey City Heights. Memorial photographs of the Jubilee were distributed.

Sunday evening at 7:30 pm: Festival Service for the Organizations of the Church: Ladies’ Guild, Sunday School, Choir, along with a celebration of the founding of the Ladies’ Guild. the guest speaker was Pastor F.W. Oswald, President of the New York Ministerium, of St. John’s German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, NY.

Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 7:00 in the evening: a social reception given by the Ladies’ Guild in the schoolhouse, to which all the church members were invited..

Thursday, Oct. 11, at 8:00 pm: an organ recital by Mr. Hugo Troetschel, organist of the German church in Schermerhorn St., Brooklyn, N.Y., for all church members, who received free tickets.

May it be permitted to us in years to come, after 25 and 50 years, again to come to a similar Festival in our church!

 

Continuation of the History of the Church

(from October 1895 to March 1905) 

The last historical report reached through the beginning of Pastor Krause’s term of service. His introduction was held, with the help of three guest preachers, on Oct. 1, 1893. For this celebration, the church was bedecked with flowers, and the entire Board of Trustees and many members were present.

The Board of Trustees for the following 10 years, until the appearance of these pamphlets, were, chronologically, composed as follows:

From 1893-1895, elected in the year 1892: Mr. Heysich, Mr. Stake, Mr. Ehlert, Mr. Meuerer, Mr. Siemer, Mr. Zentgaf, Mr. Harder, Mr. Robert, Mr. Pape, Mr. Meyer and Mr. Horrmann. Chosen for office: President, Mr. Herpich,; Vice-President, Mr. Horrmann; Secretary, Mr. Zentraf; and Treasurer, Mr. Siemer.

In March 1895, Mr. Siemer, Mr. Ehlert, Mr. Zentgraf, and Mr. Lindemann were elected as Elders, and Mr. Schumann, Mr. Stake, Mr. Meyer, Mr. Pape, Mr. Meurer, Mr. Wedemeyer and Mr. Harder were elected as Trustees. Mr. Lindemann served as President; Mr. Meurer, Vice-President; Mr. Zentgraf, Secretary, and Mr. Siemer, Treasurer. At this meeting, the congregation expressed its gratitude to Mr. Herpich, who declined re-election, for him many years of service, during which the church and school had prospered.

In March 1898, Mr. Meyer, Mr. Pape, and Mr. Wedemeyer stepped down as Trustees, and were replaced by Mr. Bardes, Mr. Kumm and Mr. Schaus. For the period from 1901-1904, the Board of Trustees from 1898-1901 was re-elected. The only exceptions were in the offices of Treasurer and Vice-President. Mr. Siemer could no longer serve as Treasurer because of a long absence from the island. After a long debate, Mr. Meurer declared himself ready to undertake that office, and gave his resignation as Vice-President and was then elected Treasurer. Mr. Siemer was elected Vice-President in place of Mr. Meurer.

During the period from 1893-1905, many things were done, so the interest of old members was re-awakened, and new members were attracted. The Pastor, with the help of the Board of Trustees, made it their business to promote all of these efforts.

In the year 1894 it was decided to undertake Religious Instruction in the school curriculum, and Pastor Krause declared himself ready to do his part. In the same year, the envelope system was introduced, by which everyone, with a small weekly contribution beginning at 5 cents, eventually could become a member of the church. The congregation purchased advertisements in certain German newspapers of Staten Island.

The Sunday School was given more attention and more space was found for it. Through a base of Sunday School teachers, Ladies’ Guild, and Youth Group, a close connection with the church was brought about.

An evening school under the leadership of the Pastor was organized.

Through distribution of a yearly pamphlet, every member could get insight into the work and growth of the church. The women of the church made it their special concern to beautify the church by adorning it with stained glass.

The report of 1903 showed that there were 260 members (the report of 1906 reported 350 members).

Through the active interest of the congregation, one of the members was permitted to distribute circulars on Easter Sunday, 1898 to raise money to reduce the outstanding mortgage of $5,000 on the church properties. A total of $502 was collected. A church concert under the leadership of Mr. Schaefer on May 7, 1898 for the benefit of the church brought in $200.45. Our fair held in Oct. 1901 to defray the cost of the necessary repairs to the church and schoolhouse raised $1,826.99. Instead of the recurring deficit for 1893-1899, the following year closed with a surplus.

At the same time, though, it is a matter of concern that the income of the church from the parish school have steadily become smaller. This school, which Mr. G. Schumann had led as director -- and which Pastor Krause, having received a very good impression of it, took over shortly after the beginning of his ministry – counted 91 scholars on the roster in 1893; and according to the Treasurer’s report, the school had a surplus of $417.30 in the fiscal year 1894-1895. In the following year’s audit of the school’s finances, Mr. Schumman carried over a surplus of $350. In the following year it was $300 and in 1899 it was down to $200 per year. So because the enrollment was becoming smaller (many children had started to attend the improved public schools), Mr. Schumann feared the school would come to an end. He then attempted to make a contract between the Westerleigh Institute and the church, in which the Institute would have a preparatory school, on a trial basis, for 6 months. But this contract was annulled on Oct. 4, 1901. Another attempt was made to reorganize the school by combining the position of teacher and organist. It was to this end that requests for applications for the position were placed in 10 newspapers. But still, no success.

Later, a parish school under the leadership of Pastor Krause was founded, for which purpose the schoolhouse was made available free of charge.

Also, a bequest by an anonymous donor did not help to reduce the burdensome mortgage of $4,500 on the church property, since the donor stipulated that interest on the mortgage only was to be paid, the rest of the bequest being kept in a savings account.

When the American church in Brownell St. instituted German services and Sunday School classes, our church lost a number of members. They also started a free German school in 1898, held on Sundays, which was attended by about 140 children.

In spite of all these worries, the church moved on, and as the report of the last year shows, the efforts of the Pastor and the church leaders were accompanied with blessings. The position of organist was filled by Miss Francke from October 1893 until March 1894, by Miss Taege from March 1894 until her death in March 1896; by Mr. Bayerl from 1896-1899 and by Mr. Schaefer from 1899-1903.

In March 1896, the Board of Trustees was informed that Mr. Schaefer had a bequest, in which a sure amount was pledged, to allow the church, as well as the building inside the fence, to be painted. The name of this donor was not ascertained.

At the meeting of the Board of Trustees on March 22, 1901, the Committee reported that they commissioned a letter of condolence to the family of the late Pastor Kühne, the letter to be sent to Mrs. Steimle to be written in old calligraphy style, and the same to be delivered to Pastor Kühne’s daughter.

Regarding the aforementioned Fair in October, 1901, it was decided in the Trustees meeting of April 18, 1901, that the Board would like to be included in the coming Spring fair, to be held for the benefit of the church’s finances. The Board pledged to assist the ladies of the church in this endeavor. An amendment to appoint a committee for this purpose was immediately accepted. Pastor Krause spoke about this proposal, saying that he would support and promote it. These men were proposed for the committee: Mr. Lindemann, Mr. Meurer, Mr. Schaus, Mr. Siemer and Mr. Bardes; and these men were appointed by the chairman. It was further resolved that the fair would be held on the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th of October. The council was to speak with the various standing organizations of the church in order to invite them to the fair. IN the same meeting it was proposed that the unknown donor of the money towards the liquidation of the mortgage on the property be given the thanks of the Board, and that this resolution be recorded in the minutes.

On April 18, 1900, the resolution was made that with the end of every church year, the report of the Pastor and the Treasurer by published in pamphlet form. These reports should contain the names of the church members, Sunday School teachers, Ladies’ Guild, the choir, as well as the members of the other organizations connected with the church; and also every member in good standing as of Oct. 1 of every year.

On Oct. 17, 1901 it was resolved that money raised by the fair, in the amount of $1,826.99, be deposited in the Staten Island Savings Bank. The Board approved the expenditure of necessary funds to repair the pews in the church, that sum not to exceed $250.00. The board expressed their thanks by letter to the Ladies’ Fair Committee. An estimate would be obtained for the necessary larger repairs. An accurate list of church members was established.

At the congregational meeting on March 9, 1902, the Treasurer’s report was read, and it reported a surplus of $1,745.20 for the fiscal year 1901-2. Pastor Krause reported that the invitation to participate in the Easter festivities was very successful, and it was decided to issue another invitation that year. It was further resolved that the by-laws of the church be reviewed point by point, which task would be undertake in a later meeting.

We believe that this report has stressed the important points of the history of the congregation during the years 1893-1902, and we refer the kind reader to the already published pamphlets for the years 1903-1906 for information about the following years.

 

 

 

Sixth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1908 

Introduction to the Sixth Annual Report 

For a year now, Pastor Sutter has conducted his ministry with zeal and love, and during this time the size of the membership list has soared joyfully. Under his leadership, a Young Person’s Society was organized, composed of young men and women, which has the special duty to encourage the development of Christian youth.

Meanwhile, the Church Council membership was increased to 18, and attendance at the monthly meetings has been good; however, the attendance at the congregational meeting left much to be desired. Every voting member should make it his duty to appear at all the congregational meetings, so that he can take part in the deliberations.

To seek out more families who do not speak German, Pastor Sutter, with the consent of the Church Council, has held an English service on the first Sunday evening of every month, on an experimental basis. As a result, new members for our congregation were won. However, the council will call a special congregational meeting in the near future to give all members and opportunity to express their views on these important matters.

The congregation is indebted to the Ladies’ Society, as well as the Young People’s Society and the Sunday School; because of them, the treasurer has had a considerable amount of money at his disposal to help towards the cost of painting the church, school and the parsonage.

Annual Report of the

Secretary1 of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church

of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1907 to March 1, 1908

The passing of our true fellow-worker of many years, Mr. Charles F. Zentgraf, was duly noted in the Protocol, and the deepest sympathies of the trustees was extended to the family of the dearly departed.

Another long-serving and true member of our council, Mr. Carl Schumann, was released from his heavy burden, and was also remembered honorably.

Also in the last year, Mr. Claus Holtermann, a member of the council, entered the rest of eternal life. His blessed memory remains with us.

The mixed choir contributed to the beautification of the services through their musical offerings, and we are indebted to them for their efforts. The organ concert given in the last week of November was well attended. All of the people responsible were extended the thanks of the trustees.

Under the energetic leadership of Pastor Sutter, happy progress was made in the formation of the Young People’s Society; it is hoped that this Society will in time take a joyful part [in the life of the church].

As can be seen by the appended membership list, a most pleasing number of people have joined our church; and this, along with the gratifying results in this respect of last year, points to the hope of an even greater success in the coming year.

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1907 to March 1, 1908

 

When we look back over the past year in the life of our church, we must praise our God for all his grace, who has so richly blessed us and held us in his fatherly love.

On October 6, 1907, the undersigned began his ministry as Pastor of this congregation, and on October 20, 1907, he was installed by Pastor D.W. Peterson of Middle Village, L.I., with the assistance of Pastor W. Siebert of Newark, N.J.

The divine services, Sunday School, and Confirmation classes were regularly held during the last year. Since the first Sunday in November, services were held every Sunday evening.

Attendance at divine services noticeably increased, and we implore God’s rich blessing for true planting of his holy Word.

The Sunday School was attended by 234 children, who were instructed by 27 teachers. The Ladies’ Society, who performed many blessed works in the past year, alleviating many and sundry needs, enjoyed continuous growth and now has 98 members. In this place I must once again express the heartfelt thanks of the congregation to the ladies for their beautiful gift of 180 chairs. These were put to good use in the school rooms, and contributed greatly to the order and management of the Sunday School.

In February 1908, a Young People’s Society was established in our midst, made up of young men and women of our congregation; they meet every second Tuesday evening of the month. This society promises to have a blessed future.

Mr. Friedrich Harder has been sexton of the church since November 1, and he has performed his duties in pleasing manner. Also, Mr. Franz Fischer faithfully performed his duties as collection-counter. Miss Else Scherz served as the organist this year, to the satisfaction of all.

Regarding the financial condition of the church, reference should be made to the Treasurer’s Report. The Confirmands started an Altar and Chancel Fund, which now runs to $219.48. The sum will certainly be larger by the time of the yearly meeting. In the past Synodical year, $175 was delivered to the Synod Treasurer for charitable works.

In the course of the past month, several repairs were done in the parsonage. The rooms on the first and second floors were painted and papered, while the bathroom was enlarged and outfitted with modern conveniences.

Since the beginning of 1908, at the decision of the trustees, all members of the church were sent, free of charge, the “American Ambassador,” a monthly religious magazine. May this paper richly bear fruit.

49 children were baptized; 20 couples married and 31 persons buried. There were 190 communicants and 36 confirmands.

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor

Stapleton, March 8, 1908

1 Willy Sonntag

 

 

Seventh Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1909

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1908 to March 1, 1909 

It has been a blessed year that our congregation has seen, not only outwardly, but also inwardly; not only in worldly things, but also in spiritual respects. The Lord has richly blessed us and his work in our souls has not been in vain.

Divine services, Sunday School, and Confirmation classes were held as usual during the past year. A special congregational meeting was held in November, to vote in writing “for” or “against” the holding of English-language services. A great majority voted for this resolution. Accordingly, since last December, services in the English language have been held on the 1st and 3rd Sunday evenings of each month.

Lenten devotions, which were introduced this year and held on every Wednesday at 8:00pm, were well-attended. And it certainly gives us all great joy that attendance at all the divine services has been increasing.

In the month of December, the congregation decided to introduce the use of the “Kirchenbuch” published by the General Council of the Evangelical Lutheran Church; it has already become a beloved and cherished book, and has contributed greatly to a better understanding of our liturgy.

Our Sunday School was attended by 350 children, who were instructed by 35 teachers. The number of teachers has increased, but not enough to keep up with the growth of the Sunday School. At this point I must therefore note, that our Sunday School room has become nearly too small; sooner or later we must deal with the questions of where to put the children – especially if the school continues to increase the way it has this past year.

Again this year our Ladies’ Society, which presently has 119 members, performed especially blessed work for the poor and unfortunate. The Young Men’s Society composed of about 83 members, has also done its duty, enthusiastically involving young people in the work of the church. We are indebted to the mixed choir and the various soloists for their great embellishment of divine services. During the past year, the Committee for Church Interior Decoration was revived; the congregation has already experienced their zeal and self-sacrifice. May this committee flourish as a rich blessing to our church.

Regarding the financial state of the congregation, refer to the Treasurer’s report. The collection by the Confirmands towards the Altar and Chancel Fund now totals $318.08. According to the published report of the Treasurer of the New York Ministerium, our congregation contributed $240 to charitable works. The Pastor delivered $28 to the local hospital, the Smith Infirmary.

In October of last year, the executor of the will of the deceased Mr. Charles F. Zentgraf paid the church a bequest of $10,000. This sum was placed, by decision of the trustees, under the administration of a committee composed of Mr. Otto Lindemann, Mr. H.C. Hagedorn and Pastor Sutter. It has been laid aside as a Building Fund. The yearly interest will be added to the capital. The noble mind and great generosity of our departed friend has been memorialized in a most fitting fashion.

The passing of a longtime, true member – the last living founder of our congregation – Mr. Louis DeJonge, Sr., was solemnly recorded in the Protocol of the Congregational Council. Although he lived in Frankfurt am Main for many years, he took a lively and active interest in the life of our church.. The deepest sympathies of the Council were conveyed to the family of the deceased.

In the months of July and August of the past year, important improvements to the church property were made. The torn tächer were repaired; the three buildings – Church, School and Parsonage – were painted; new entryway doors for the church were installed, along with many other improvements. The congregation owes thanks to the Women’s Society, the Young Men’s Society, and the Sunday School , who contributed so generously to cover the costs of the repairs.

These ministerial acts were accomplished: 59 baptisms, 27 marriages and 49 burials. There were 290 communicants and 27 confirmands.

May the Lord God continue to bless our congregation in the future.

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor

Stapleton, March 14, 1909

 

Eighth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1910

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1909 to March 1, 1910 

“I will sing unto the Lord, for he has done good to me.” So may we, so should we, along with the Psalmist, humbly give thanks upon looking back over the past church year. The heavenly Father did not leave the congregation without signs of His presence; His spiritual blessings of Word and Sacrament, freely bestowed and joyfully received, have also improved our outward condition.

Divine services, Sunday School, and Confirmation classes were held as usual during the past year. In general, attendance at services has improved and icnreased steadily; however, it is still not good in proportion to the number of members. If only every family were represented at each service, one might almost be persuaded that a larger church must be built! Holy Communion was celebrated six times; 406 communicants partook, in addition to 12 in private. And thanks be to God, that the desire to hunger and thirst for the blessings of the holy supper was awakened and strengthened in so many people.

We began the church year 1909 with 402 members, of whom 50 were added during the course of the year. We begin the year 1910 with 445, 7 names having to be stricken due to moving, death, or non-payment of contributions.

Our Sunday School, which was attended by about 380 children, fulfills its purpose well, and is in very good condition. It however always needs trustworthy and capable teachers. I wish more and more that we would understand that the Sunday School is a nursery of Christian faith and Christian culture; that in it the future church is being built; and I wish that a result of this knowledge the Sunday School will find many fellow workers.

 

Ninth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1911 

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1910 to March 1, 1911 

With thanks to the Lord our God, and with the confession of Jacob, “I am too small in all faithfulness, for all that you have done for your servant,” we have completed another church year; and, in confidence with the same Lord, enter upon a new one. “And may the Lord our God be kindly to us and promote the work of our hands, He will promote the works of our hands.”

On all Sunday, Festival Days, and every Wednesday of Lent, divine services were held; and it was permitted to the Pastor to be able to lead all the services, with only a few exceptions. Holy Communion was celebrated five times; 390 persons received Communion, in addition to 12 in private. I am sorry that I must in this connection mention that many members of our congregation never come to the Lord’s table. Perhaps I have not made myself clear about this. May the Lord God awaken and strengthen, in all our hearts, the hunger and thirst for the blessings of the holy supper.

We began the church year 1910 with 445 members on the roll, to which 29 more were added during the course of the year. We begin the year 1911 with 475, for during the year, 3 names were stricken due to death and moving away.

Our Sunday School, which is attended by about 450 children, has expanded its work in the past year; and has certainly bestowed many blessings on the hearts of the children. It is extremely important work that we do here, a work whose blessings cannot be reckoned in numbers. It is garderner’s work that we do; we plant the seeds. The harvest will come later. Only the Eternal can know the entire blessings of this work. I wish that even more of you, who remain idle in the marketplace of life and are gifted and called by God, will join us in this work, to help teach the children that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” The Sunday School treasury has $250.

The neighborhood school, which meets every Saturday from 2 to 4 in the afternoon, did industrious and faithful work during the past year. Three teachers gave instruction. We would like to recommend this school to all parents. It is certainly very important that the young girls learn to sew, knit, ???, and so forth. The school has $8 in its account.

We would also like to recommend the “German School,” which meets every Friday afternoon at 3:30 from September to May; from May to the end of June every Saturday morning from 9 to 11; and during July and August every other week from 9 to 11. Currently there are 40 children enrolled in this school.

Our clubs have enjoyed steady growth, and have carried out their special tasks with energy and ability. Our Ladies Club, which now counts 162 members, has a total cash balance of $625. During the past year, they have continued their charitable deeds. In order to alleviate many needs, many energetic consolations had to be given. (???)

The Young Men’s Club, composed of 60 members, finds itself in a quite prosperous condition. The meetings were well attended, which contributed greatly to the instruction and edification of the members. Here we have a very important branch of our ministry. The young men of the church consider that it is important in these days to work with other denominations in church-related endeavors. The English church in this area has developed an astonishing number of activities; but in our German church and families, the situation seems to be rather the opposite. If one somewhat more closely examines and knows his work and ???, he will see that his responsibilities and duties are great. There is $200 in the treasury of the Young Men’s Club.

The Church Decoration Club, which has 40 members and a cash balance of $183, deserves the thanks of the congregation. The new linoleum in the vestibule of the church, the new altar and chancel hangings, and the German as well as the English Bibles are gifts from this club.

The choir has again during the past year beautified the divine services and uplifted the congregation through their singing. Without a doubt, the service and sacrifice of the singers is worthy of praise. By decision of the Church Council, this past Easter every member of the choir was given a small gift.

The position of organist was supplied with usual conscientousness and to general satisfaction by Miss Rebecca Heidemeyer. Mr. Friedrich Harder is the sexton; as always, Mr. Franz Fischer is the collector of the church.

The Treasurer’s Report shows a credit of $1,788.54. The altar and chancel fund now amounts to $334.26. According to the printed report of the New York Ministerium, during the course of the past year our congegation gave $456.16 in charitable contributions to support Missions, the Orphanage, schools, etc. With regard to the administration of the Building Fund, we refer you to the special report of the committee.

At this time I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to the donor of the new altar hangings.

The new church constitution, adopted at the last Annual Congregational Meeting, was presented to the Ministerium of New York for approval, with a request for admission to the Synod – both of which were approved by that body. The church has now been a member of the Synod since June 1910. May this union lead to greater and lasting blessings!

There lies before today’s congregational meeting, the recommendation of the Church Council to invite the New York Conference to hold their fall meeting in our midst. Today’s meeting also has the task of electing 6 members to the Church Council. The terms of the following men have expired: Emil Schmid and J. C. Siemer as Elders; Friedrich Bender, Charles Bormann, Franz Fischer and John F. Schwiebert as Deacons.

Pastoral acts accomplished from March 1910 to March 1911 were: 53 baptisms, 35 confirmations, 37 marriages and 58 burials; there were 397 communicants. May the Lord, our God, remain with us in the future with his spirit and gifts. May He lead us according to his grace, and awaken all our hearts to greater love for Him and the work that He has given us to do.

Stapleton, March 12, 1911

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor

Church Council

Ex Officio: The Pastor

President: Otto Lindemann, from 1872-1892 and from 1895 on the Council

Vice-President: Adolph Schaus, from 1898-1904 and from 1907 on the Council.

Secretary: Willy Sonntag, on the Council since 1906.

Treasurer: Eduard C. Meurer, on the Council since 1892.

Elders: Louis Dejonge, Jr. elected until 1912

H. C. Hagedorn, Sr. “ “ 1912

Otto Lindeman “ “ 1913

Adolph Schaus ” “ 1914

J. C. Siemer “ “ 1914

Willy Sonntag “ “ 1913

Deacons: Edmund Schaefer “ “ 1914

Christian Boehe “ “ 1913

Charles Bormann “ “ 1914

Franz Fischer “ “ 1914

Heinrich Glaser “ “ 1912

Friedrich Harder “ “ 1912

Eduard C. Meurer “ “ 1913

Gustav A. Barth “ “ 1914

Friedrich Kettler “ “ 1914

Hermann Smolka “ “ 1912

Albert Stake “ “ 1913

Ernst Zentgraf “ “ 1913

 

Committee for the Yearly Report: Pastor Sutter, Albert Stake, Adolph Schaus, Willy Sonntag, Otto Lindemann

House Committee: Pastor Sutter, Friedrich Kettler, Edmund Schaefer

Committee for Promotion of Printed Materials: Eduard C. Meurer, Gustav A. Barth, H. C. Hagedorn, Sr.

Building Fund Committee: Pastor Sutter, H. C. Hagedorn, Sr., Otto Lindemann

Membership Recommendation Committee: John C. Siemer, H. C. Hagedorn, Sr., Edmund Schaefer, Chas. Bormann, Heinrich Glaser.

 

 

Tenth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1912

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1911 to March 1, 1912

“Not to us, Lord, not to us, but to your Name give the glory for your grace and truth.” So will we also with the Psalmist humbly and thankfully confess. His grace has given our congregation a peaceful and blessed year. His grace has made our weakness strong, so that we have had some success and made sure progress in our work. “Give our God the Glory!” And the new year should be a blessed one, non only outwardly, but also inwardly, not only in worldly things, but also in spiritual matters, so that it will be purely and simply your Grace that gives us the right will and the right accomplishments.

During the past year, divine services were regularly held on all Sunday and festival days, as well as on every Wednesday evening during Lent. The Word of the Lord has abided with us, his strength and voice giving us admonition, edification, comfort, consolation and life. This is shown not only in the extraordinarily good attendance at divine services this past year, but also in the many more earnest and zealous members involved in the various works of the church. 427 people communed, a few more than in the previous year; of these, 14 received communion privately. My pastoral acts were: 67 baptisms, 42 confirmations, 23 marriages and 56 burials.

On March 1, 1911, there were 471 roistered members; during the course of the year, 37 more were added. WE begin the year 1912 with 485, since 23 names were stricken during the year due to death, moving away and, particularly, because of non-payment of their contributions.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 525 children, who were instructed in the saving truths of Christianity by about 50 teachers, male and female. The so-called “Kindergarten” of this school, which we introduced this year, has about 40 students, and has proved itself over all expectations in its work with the children. The treasury of the Sunday School has $300.

During the past year, the neighborhood school, which was held every Saturday afternoon from 2-4, expanded its work in its accustomed fashion. Three teachers share the instruction. The treasury of the school has $11.

Also this year, for the furtherance and preservation of the German language, instruction in German was held from September to May every Friday afternoon at 3:30; from May to the end of June every Saturday morning from 9 to 11; and during July and August twice a week from 9-11. The school was attended by 40 to 50 children.

Our congregation’s societies are thriving. Our Ladies’ Society, now comprised of 170 members, has performed many blessed works, and has done so with unfailing good will and self-sacrifice. The Society has $625 in its treasury.

The Young People’s Society has also done its duty, involving young adults in the business of the church. There is $260 in the treasury.

The Society for Decoration of the Church, with about 40 members and a cash balance of $254, deserves the thanks of the congregation for their enduring interest in the beautification of our property.

During the past year, the choir has again adorned the divine services with their songs, contributing to the upbuilding of the congregation. Without a doubt, we owe the singers a vote of thanks for their true and dedicated work.

In December, Miss Heidemeyer resigned as the church organist. The Church Council accepted here resignation with great regret, and expressed the thanks of the congregation for her creditable service, her musicianship, and faithful performance of her office. Prof. Chas. L. Schaefer, a former organist of the church, became her successor on March 1 of this year. The sexton is Mr. Freidrich Harder; Mr. Franz Fischer remains as the collector of the congregation.

The Treasurer’s Report shows a positive balance of $1,916.55. The Chancel and Altar fund amounts to $358.16. Charitable contributions of $750 were made to support education, orphan homes, the poor, missions and the local hospital.

The Building Fund, which is managed by a special committee, amounts to $10,000. During the past year, various repairs were made to the church properties. The details are reported in the Treasurer’s Report.

On September 26 and 27 of last year, we invited the New York Conference of the Evangelical Lutheran Ministerium of the State of New York and Neighboring States and Countries into our midst. A certain member of our congregation covered the catering costs for the Conference. We express our heartfelt thanks to the self-sacrificing and generous donor, and to a friend who made his automobile available for use on the last day of the meeting.

The congregation received this letter from the Secretary of the Conference:

Rockville Center, N.Y. 28 Sept. 1911

To the German Evang. Luth. Church in Stapleton, S.I.

The Honorable F. Sutter, Pastor

Worthy friends in Christ! Greetings in God’s name! During our Fall Conference, the New York Conference of the New York Ministerium was permitted to enjoy lovely days of great spiritual blessings and truly grand hospitality in your midst. We will not neglect to write to you our deeply felt appreciation, especially for a particular person. Therefore, I have been given the commission to report, with great joy, the following unanimous resolution passed by the Conference:

“That the N.Y. Conference of the N.Y. Ministerium heartily thank the Pastor and the congregation of the German Evang. Luth. Church of Stapleton, S.I. for their hospitable reception on the occasion of the Fall Conference on Sept. 26 and 27th, 1911.

In the name and by order of the N.Y. Conference of the N.Y. Ministerium.

A.H. Holthusen, Secretary

In the meetings of the church council during the past year, further discussions were held on the necessity for a new church building. In order to give every member of the congregation an opportunity to offer their thoughts on this very important business, a special congregational meeting was called for Thursday, December 7, 1911, at 8:15pm. 40 voting members were in attendance at this meeting. The following reasons were given for the necessity of a new church building:

  1. The accommodation of our constantly growing Sunday School, which now has over 500 scholars.

  2. The many repairs that must be made on the existing church.

  3. Our congregation should also have a parish house. The old church could be relocated to the newly acquired piece of land and eventually used as a parish house.

  4. A new church building would without a doubt awaken the greatest interest and new enthusiasm.

  5. The position which our congregation holds as the largest German church in Staten Island, and as the guardian of the German language, deserves a correspondingly grand House of God.

After long and thorough discussion of this very important issues, the following resolution was unanimously and enthusiastically passed:

“In order to move forward with the building of a new church, when that has been decided, the total debt shall not exceed $20,000.

That a subscription list with three headings for the years 1912, 1913 and 1914 be prepared, overseen by the Pastor, to gather together the names of congregation members and others who will be asked to underwrite the cost of the building.

That the Church Council has the responsibility to see that provisions be made for the realization of this resolution.”

At their January meeting, the Church Council named a committee that was entrusted with the accomplishment of the resolution passed by the congregation.

In the near future, every member and friend of the congregation will receive a letter, asking for their friendly cooperation and energetic support; and to prepare them for an expected visit from the Pastor.

Today’s congregational meeting will also have the duty to elect 6 members of the Church Council. The terms of the following men have expired: Louis Dejonge, Jr. and H.C. Hagedorn, Sr., as Elders; Heinrich Glaser, Freidr. Harder, Friedr. Kettler and Hermann Smolka as directors.

May the Lord, our God, be with us in the future with his Spirit and Gifts. May he bless all our deeds and undertakings.

 

   

Eleventh Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter 

1913

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1912 to March 1, 1913

It is a blessed year, a year of great progress and visible success, that today we look back upon. The heavenly Father has wonderfully led us and shed his grace upon us. So we, in accord with the words of the exultant psalmist, say, “Thank the Lord, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever” and remember our weakness and unworthiness, and the boundless mercy and goodness of our Lord. Before us lies the new church year with its great tasks and duties, and its many opportunities to do good and to further God’s kingdom. Verily, we must look to the heavenly Father from whom all blessings flow, and humbly entreat him to crown with success the important and weighty work we are engaged in – to build Him a new house. May He preserve us in blessed peace and give success to the willing.

Holy services were held on all Sundays and festival days during the past year, as well as every Wednesday evening during Lent. The Holy Supper was celebrated five times; 460 people received communion, 16 of them privately. My pastoral acts were: 74 baptisms (6 adults), 50 confirmations (6 adults), 40 marriages and 75 burials.

We began the church year 1912 with 485 members, of whom 38 joined us during the course of the year. We begin the year 1913 with 517, for during the year 6 names had to be stricken from the rolls through death, moving away, and non-payment of their contributions.

In our Sunday School, attended by about 530 children, richly blessed work continues to be done. Here the work visibly grows. The 46 teachers -- both men and women -- and 8 helpers are constant and skilled, and have given a good return on the talents entrusted to them by God. Our school can only result in blessings, though, when all our members join in the work and share with us this great responsibility. One is ready to sacrifice time and energy for all sorts of organizations; why not join in with this very important movement, which has this noble and lofty purpose: to prepare children for the Kingdom of God and equip them with the strength of will and character for the difficult struggle of life. The Sunday School treasury has $442.

The Neighborhood School, which is held every Saturday afternoon from 2 to 4, has 20 children enrolled. Three teachers share the instruction. The school has $10 in its cash box.

The German School, which is held from September to April every Friday afternoon at 3:30 and from April to the end of June every Saturday morning from 9 to 11, has an enrollment of about 40 to 50.

Our societies are working smoothly and constantly, caring for their special tasks (described below) with their energy and money.

The Ladies’ Society, which currently has 180 members, has a treasury of $930 at their disposal.

The Young People’s Society has 83 members and a cash balance of $345.

The Society for Decoration of the Church has 40 members and a treasury of $260.

Our choir, under the direction of our excellent organist, Prof. Charles L. Schaefer, has embellished divine services and built up the congregation through their singing. We greatly appreciate the service and self-sacrifice of the singers. The Church Council without doubt expressed the spirit and sense of the congregation when they held a banquet for the choir this past summer.

The Treasurer’s Report shows an ending balance of $1,685.09. The Altar and Chancel fund has $372.62. $500 in charitable gifts was donated to support schools, orphan homes, the poor, missions and the local hospital. Our Ladies’ Society has donated $82 to help the poor and shut-ins.

Regarding repairs to the church property during the past year, we refer you to the Treasurer’s Report.

On November 18th last year, the Church Council announced at a special congregational meeting that the Building Fund, including the signed pledges, is now over $40,000; and at the Annual Meeting, they asked for a written resolution to allow them to proceed. After long and thorough discussions, it was unanimously decided to build a new church and parish house. A Building Committee was named, composed of Mr. Otto Lindemann, H.C. Hagedorn, Sr., E. Zentgraf, E.C. Meurer, J.C. Schwiebert, E. Schaefer, C. Bormann and the Pastor. They were commissioned to hire an architect to prepare a plan for the new buildings, to be presented to the congregation at a later meeting. After looking at several churches, the Building Committee requested that the architectural firm of Upjohn and Conable prepare a tentative plan. At their January 6, 1913 meeting, the committee decided to hire the above-named firm, and asked them to show the plans to the congregation for their comments. The congregation gathered on January 21, and unanimously and with great joy accepted the proposed plan; they then gave the Building Committee full authority to move forward with the project. Since the architects announced that the cost of the buildings, with fittings, etc. would run to approximately $70,000, and since at a prior congregational meeting the decision was made that the debt for the building could not exceed $20,000, we must increase the Building Fund to $50,000. We are short of this amount by a little less than $7,000. The Building Committee, trusting in God and the generosity of our members and patrons, decided to start the new building. We would like to express in advance our heartfelt thanks to our beloved donors for their pledges.

It is with a heavy heart that I announce to the congregation that on the first of this month, Mr. Louis Dejonge, Jr., an invaluable and zealous member of our Church Council, entered life eternal in San Remo, Italy. He had hoped to continue to serve the congregation, and to see the new church completed, but the heavenly Father in His wisdom decided otherwise. May God comfort the grieving family, and have mercy on all the families of our congregation who have been plunged in grief because of death.

Today’s congregational meeting has the duty of electing 6 members of the Church Council. The terms of the following men have expired: Otto Lindemann and Willy Sonntag as elders; and Christian Boehe, E.C. Meurer, Albert Stake and E. Zengraf as directors.

May the Lord bless and keep us and bestow upon us a peaceful, blessing-filled church year.

Stapleton, S.I., March 9, 1913

F. Sutter, Pastor.

 

 

Twelfth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856 

Pastor F. Sutter 

1914 

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1913 to March 1, 1914

With heartfelt thanks towards merciful God, who this past year so richly blessed us beyond all our expectations; in humble acknowledgement of our weakness; with holy vows of devoted faithfulness, we gather together to discuss the Lord’s business and to promote the health of our congregation and the souls entrusted to us. The Lord has granted us a clear vision of the importance of the work that has been given us, and made our hearts and souls free of all selfishness. So we have not grown weary of the sacrifices needed for the noblest and most holy work that the weak hands of man can undertake. The past year has been arduous and troublesome, but at the same time blessed and fruitful. Many entreaties for support and guidance ascended to the throne of heaven, and the heavenly Father has heard the prayers of his faithful children.

During the past year, divine services were regularly held on all Sunday and festival days, as well as on every Wednesday evening during Lent. The Holy Supper was celebrated five times; 574 people received communion, 22 of them privately. My pastoral acts were: 74 baptisms (7 adults), 62 confirmations (10 adults), 38 marriages and 67 burials.

We began the church year 1913 with 517 members, of whom 24 joined us during the course of the year. We begin the year 1914 with 525, for during the year 16 names had to be stricken from the rolls through death, moving away, and non-payment of their contributions.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 550 children. The 50 teachers and 10 helpers are faithful and skilled, and labor with their God-given talents for our impressionable children. The Teachers’ Society donated $500 to the Building Fund, and resolved to donate $200 per year to help defray the interest expense. The treasury of the school has $163.80.

The neighborhood school was forced to suspend its work due to the prevailing circumstances. However, they hope to resume the praiseworthy work after the completion of the Parish House. The school gave $20 to the Building Fund.

The German School, which is held from September to April every Friday afternoon at 3:30 and from April to the end of June every Saturday morning from 9 to 11, and during July and August three times a week, has an enrollment of 50 to 60 children.

Our societies have enjoyed healthy growth, and are strong supports of our congregation.

The Ladies’ Society, which currently has 215 members, has a cash balance of $210. The Society donated $1000 to the Building Fund, and has already pledged to donate $300 yearly towards the interest expense.

The Young People’s Society has 95 members, and has a cash balance of $25. The Society gave $500 to the Building Fund and pledged $150 per year to help offset the interest expense.

The Society for the Decoration of the Church has 35 members, and has a treasury of $200. The Society gave $200 to the Building Fund. We certainly acknowledge the self-sacrifice of this society, and we give them our well-deserved thanks.

The choir has again this past year embellished divine services and built up the congregation through their singing.

Prof. Chas. L. Schaefer performed his duties as organist with his usual excellence, to the general satisfaction of everyone. Mr. Friedr. Harder is the sexton; Mr. Franz Fischer is, as usual, collector of the congregation.

At a special congregational meeting on April 29th of last year, the Building Committee announced that the lowest estimated cost for building the new church and parish house was $79,463, and that a sum of about $90,000 might be required to finish the new buildings according to the accepted plans. After a long and thorough discussion, the following resolution was passed:

“In consideration of the projected higher costs, the Treasurer shall ask every member of the congregation how much they would be willing to increase their contributions to the church fund.” After further assurances that no one should be forced, but that everyone should use their own discretion, everyone present agreed to double their pledges, and, if necessary, contribute even more.

With great enthusiasm and trusting in God and the willingness to sacrifice of our members and friends, it was unanimously resolved, that the Trustees of the Congregation take out a mortgage of $35,000, and if necessary, $40,000; and as soon as such a mortgage could be obtained, to proceed with the new buildings. Within a few days, the chairman of the committee appointed by the Church Council successfully concluded the entire business of the mortgage. Various members of the Building Committee and the congregation declared the congregation’s willingness to assume responsibility for the $35,000 mortgage at 5 percent interest, and named Mr. H.C. Hagedorn, Sr. as their Trustee.

At the May 8 meeting of the Building Committee, the building contract was signed by all the members of the committee, the architect Geo. Conable and Mr. Louis Wolff, the contractor. The old church, the schoolhouse, the sexton’s house and the Schuhladen were purchased by John Tripler & Co., house wreckers, for a price of $200.

On Sunday evening, May 25th, a farewell service was held in the old church. This service, which combined a celebration of Holy Communion and Confirmation, was very well attended. It was surely a time of melancholy memories; but the realization that, with God our Father, we were building a sorely needed new church and parish house for our growing congregation, brought us consolation and reassurance.

On May 27th the demolition of the old buildings began, and on June 12 the first work towards erecting the new buildings started.

On October 26th, on a day of glorious weather, the cornerstone of the new church was laid. Pastor C.G. Fischer of Elizabeth, N.J., President of the New York Ministerium, conducted the German service, and Dr. G.C. Berkemeier, Directory of the Wartburg Orphanage of Mount Vernon, the English. And the undersigned, assisted by Mr. Otto Lindemann, President of the Church Council, performed the joyous task of laying the cornerstone.

The military band of the Wartburg Orphanage accompanied the singing of the congregation, and contributed greatly to the uplifting and adornment of the celebration. The impressive ceremony with its beautiful speeches and large audience will remain unforgettable. We are already looking forward with joy to the Day of Dedication and Holy Services in the magnificent new church.

The hammer used in laying the cornerstone was donated by Mr. Otto Lindemann, the trowel by Mr. Louis A. Pape and the copper chest for the preservation of the documents by Mr. Adolph Pape, Jr. The thanks of the congregation go to these cheerful donors. The following books, documents, etc. are sealed in the cornerstone:

A German Bible, service book, Church Book, catechism, the Deutscher Lutheraner of October 23, 1913, Lutheran of October 23, 1913, a copy of the Synodical Minutes, 1913; Constitution of the New York Ministerium, Constitution of the Congregation; Constitution of the Ladies’ Society; Church Yearbook, 1912; Jubilee Report of the Congregation, 1906; program of the cornerstone-laying ceremony; Staten Island Post from February 8 and from October 25, 1913; the New Yorker Staats-Zeitung and miscellaneous coins.

The Building Fund, including the original funds, the current pledges, and an inheritance which will be counted in the near future, runs to about 51 to 52,000 dollars.

The Confirmands, at the request of our other committees, have taken on the responsibility for outfitting the new church. They have already gathered a sum of $1400, which will go towards the chancel, altar, chairs, pulpit, etc.

Mrs. Louis Dejonge wishes to give a window for the Kreuzschiff of the church in memory of her deceased husband; and the children of the Sunday School have donated the window in the baptistery.

The congregation spent $10 ($5 in July and $5 in August) for holding services in the Masonic Temple during the building of the new church.

Mr. John Viemeister has made the spacious rooms of the German Clubhouse available to our Sunday School at no charge. The Easter Devotions were held in Mr. Edmund Schaefer’s chapel – also at no cost to the congregation. Both gentlemen deserve the thanks of the church.

At the October 2nd meeting of the Church Council, Mr. Ernst Zentgraf was elected Elder to replace Mr. Louis Dejonge, and Mr. William Horrmann was elected as a Trustee.

Today’s congregational meeting must consider the proposal, presented at the last meeting in writing, to change the annual meeting to Tuesday evening. The terms of the following men as members of the Church Council have ended: Adolph Schaus and J.C. Siemer as Elders, Edmund Schaefer, Charles Bormann, Franz Fischer and Gustav A. Barth as Trustees.

“And now my beloved brethren, be strong and immovable and always caring for the work of the Lord, since you know that your work for the Lord is not in vain.” The Lord stands with us, he grants us his grace and fulfills our wants.

Stapleton, S.I., March 8, 1914

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor.

 

 

Thirteenth Annual Report

of the activities of the

German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner St. Pauls Avenue 

Founded 1856.

Pastor Friedrich Sutter 

1915 

Stapleton, S.I.

Printed by “Staten Island Post”, 532 Bay St.

 

Annual Report

of the

State of the German Evangelical Lutheran  Church of Stapleton, S.I., N.Y.

for the time from March 1914 until 1. March 1915 

“The Lord has done great things for us, and we are joyful.” So let us today rejoice as we look back on the past church year. The faithful God has above all expectations richly blessed us, and our faith in his help and grace has been richly rewarded. He has wonderfully led us, and crowned our weak efforts and aspirations with visible success. To Him be all honor and thanks.

On Sunday, July 12 of the past year, it was granted us to consecrate the new church. Pastor D. W. Petersen, President of the Long Island Conference, preached in the morning in the German language, and Pastor J. A. Wehl, President of the New York Conference, preached in the evening in English.

In truly splendid fashion was the dedication day of our new, magnificent church conducted. On Sunday, Sept. 20, at 10:30 in the morning, the celebration of our dedication service began, at which Pastor Dr. G.C.F. Haas, the President of the New York Ministerium, gave the sermon. The solemn act of dedication was performed by the writer of this report. At 3 o’clock in the afternoon followed the celebration of the Sunday School, with a speech in German by Pastor G. Doering of New Springville, S.I., and a speech in English by the pastor of this congregation. At 7:45 in the evening, a service in English was held, at which the Rev. Dr. G.C. Berkemeier, the Director of the Wartburg Orphanage in Mount Vernon, N.Y., gave the sermon. Monday evening followed with a celebration of the Women’s and Youth Groups of the church, with a German speech by Pastor F.A. Bavendam of Jersey City, and English by Pastor C. Weber, a son of the church, of Yonkers, N.Y. On Tuesday evening followed the service for men, with a speech by Pastor D. Kranch of Albany, N.Y. The final celebration was on Wednesday evening with a general assembly of the church members in the church house. The impressive celebrations, the beautiful speeches, the wonderful hymns, and the large audience will remain unforgettable to us; God grant that it will be a lasting blessing for us all.

In the past year, services were held on all Sundays and festivals, as well as every Wednesday evening during Lent. The Holy Supper was celebrated five times; 502 communicants received it, including 15 in private. My pastoral acts were: 72 baptisms (6 adults), 54 confirmations (5 adults), 38 marriages and 70 burials.

We began the church year 1914 with 525 counted members, and during the course of the year 37 new members joined. We begin the year 1915 with 542, since, during the course of the year through death and moving and because of non-payment of contributions, 20 names had to be removed.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 580 children, who were instructed by 53 teachers. Here was a blessed work done. In the Sunday School we educate the future congregation and are trying to prepare the children for the future struggles of life. The school has $219.67 in cash.

The neighborhood school, which is held every Saturday from 2 to 4 o’clock, counts 30 children. Two teachers give instruction. In the cash-box is $6.29.

The German School, which is held every Friday afternoon at 3:30pm from September through April, and every Saturday morning from 9-11am from April to the end of June, and during July and August 3 times a week, has an enrollment of 50 children.

Our organizations’ faithful and efficient work support our congregation in energetic fashion.

The Women’s Group has 222 members and oversees a treasury of $388.

The Youth Group is composed of 115 members and has a cash balance of $127.

The Church Decoration Committee counts 36 members. The beautiful carpet is a gift from this group.

On November 2 of the past year, the Men’s Organization was founded, with 42 members and cash balance of $78.97.

The purpose of the organizations is:

  1. to strengthen the convictions of the congregation

  2. to challenge the congregation to do their part to encourage the well-being and growth of the church

  3. to support a liberal, Christian education

  4. to promote cheerful and pleasant fellowship among the membership. 

Under the stewardship and care of these organizations the new bowling alley was installed.

Our choir, under the direction of our excellent organist, Prof. Chas. L. Schaefer, has also in the last year edified the congregation through their singing. We are greatly indebted to the singers as well as the organist. 

Mr. Friedrich Harder has resigned as sexton of the church as of the first of February. Mr. Ernst Rothlich, one of the many stranded reservists, will assume the post temporarily. The church Council hopes to fill the position permanently in the near future. Mr. Franz Fischer is, as always, the collector of the congregation.

With regard to the financial situation of the church, we refer you to the Treasurer’s Report.

Charitable contributions from the church of about $1000 were made in the past year to support the schools, orphanage, the poor, missions, German and Austrian victims of the war, stranded reservists, and the local hospital.

Mr. H. C. Hagedorn, Sr., Secretary of the Building Committee, will issue a report on the condition of the building funds.

We would like at this time to mention the altar, pulpit, altar-chair, collection-stand, and hymn-board, which were given to the church by the Confirmation class.

The Church Council has donated the bell. The beautiful painting over the altar in the church is given by Mr. Eduard C. Meurer in gratitude to his deceased parents. The stained-glass windows which I mentioned in my last year’s report have not arrived yet because of the war. The cheerful givers deserve the thanks of the congregation.

The death of one of our leaders, Mr. Claus Nordenholt, was duly noted in the Minutes of the Council, and the family of the departed received the most sincere condolences of the Council. 

Also, in honorable fashion Mrs. Amalie Zentgraf returned home; our church thanks its noble patroness and benefactress.

The terms of the following members of the Church Council have expired: H.C. Hagedorn, Sr. and Ernst Zentgraf as elders; Heinrich Glaser, Albert R. Moss, Friedrich Kettler and the deceased Claus Nordenholt as directors.

In conclusion, permit me to extend my heartfelt thanks to the faithful members of the church, who have so energetically supported me this past year through difficult times, and for their great work. This past year has demanded many sacrifices, but I have been richly rewarded by the confidence it has brought to me. Now, before us lies the new church year with its great challenges, but, I may also say, with your great work.

The new building that we have completed gives us a solid foundation with many possibilities for the activities of our congregation. And we pray that through your varied organizations, our minds and hearts will be guided and watched over.

But we also in the coming year build by the grace and strength of God; we rely upon the cooperation of the members of our congregation, and on the prayers of believing souls. The Lord gives us a clear vision, that the work he has given us to do is important; to know and make our hearts free from every selfish desire, so that we will not tire. He can propel us weak human beings to make sacrifices for this noble and holy work.

Stapleton, S.I., March 2, 1915.

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor.

 

Fourteenth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856

Pastor F. Sutter

1916 

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1915 to March 1, 1916 

At today’s meeting, the congregation looks both to the past and to the future. We are mindful of the great blessings that have come to us, and fold our hands to pray, “Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.” His grace has turned our weakness into strength, so that we have had some success in our work, and have made some progress. But we should also not neglect to earnestly examine ourselves, and ask “Have I done my duty?” And when we come to acknowledge our many failings, we should not fail to also pray, “Lord, do not judge me.” -- In this fashion we look to the past. And we should look forward as well. When we look towards a blessed year, we should not only consider outward things, but also inward things which build up the kingdom of our Lord and Master, promote the well-being of our congregation, and strengthen every soul for its struggle with the calamities of this earthly existence. We should ask our Heavenly Father to equip us with spiritual gifts to fit us for every good work.

During the past year, divine services were regularly held on all Sunday and festival days, as well as on every Wednesday evening during Lent. Through the Word of the Lord, the strength and voice of God has been among us, giving us faith and life through admonition, encouragement, and inspiration. 530 people received communion, 18 of them privately. My pastoral acts were: 70 baptisms, 56 confirmations, 34 marriages and 45 burials.

We begin the year 1916 with 545 members. During the year several names had to be stricken from the rolls through death, moving away, and non-payment of their contributions.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 580 children, who were instructed in holy truths of Christianity by 50 teachers. The treasury of the school has $368.

The Neighborhood School, which is held every Saturday afternoon from 2 to 4, has resumed its usual work during the past year. Three teachers share the instruction. The school is attended by 30 children. In the treasury is $13.00

Also this year, for the promotion and preservation of the German language, instruction in German was held from September to the end of June every Tuesday and Friday afternoon at 3:30, and during July and August three times a week from 9 to 11. The school was attended by 40 to 50 children.

On September 21, 1914, our Kindergarten opened under the leadership of Mrs. Blanca Schmal, who was trained in Germany as a Kindergarten teacher. 12 children attended. We would like to warmly recommend this branch of our ministry to the parents. Sadly, we have not given it much support during the past year, and we have tried to consider all the reasons for this. We heartily invite you to visit the Kindergarten, so that you can personally witness the richly successful and blessed work that is being done there.

The societies of our congregation are flourishing .

The Ladies’ Society has 250 members, and a cash balance of $812.86.

The Young People’s Society has 135 members and looks over a treasury of $250.

The Society for the Decoration of the Church has 37 members, and has a treasury of $16.77.

The Men’s Society, with 53 members, promises to be a great help to the church. It should be a great joy to us that the men of our congregation have now founded a special working group, and no longer wish to trail the women when it comes to the work of the congregation. There is $57.75 in the treasury of the society.

Our choir, under the leadership of our talented organist, Prof. Chas. L. Schaefer, has again this past year built up the congregation through their singing. Since April 1, Mr. Gottfried Teike has been the sexton. Mr. Franz Fischer is, as usual, collector of the congregation.

The Building Committee is unfortunately not in a position to give a final report. The congregation still owes $127.52 to the architect, and $187.11 to the firm of Philipp Wolff & Son. The committee will pay these debts as soon as the contractor fulfills the conditions of the contract he signed. Although the building fund has only a very small balance, there yet remains a total of about $1500.00 in uncollected contributions that were pledged by members and friends of the congregation.

The congregation gave charitable contributions of about $500 to support education, orphanages, the poor, missions and so forth.

The donors of the new altar and pulpit, as well as the donors of the furniture and money for furnishing the parish house deserve the thanks of the congregation. Our societies have made contributions not only to furnish their own rooms, but also to provide the entire parish house with suitable furniture.

The Church Council has cared for the larger congregation in deed and spirit. They used the parish house as a headquarters and meeting-place for the Staten Island Board for the General Help-Bazaar for the victims of the war in Germany, Austria-Hungary and other lands connected with them, which was held from March 11 to 23 in Madison Square Garden, N.Y. City.

The terms of the following members of the Church Council have expired: Otto Lindemann and Willy Sonntag as elders, Wm. Horrmann, Eduard C. Meurer, John F. Schwiebert and Albert Stake as trustees.

And now, my dear brethren, an eventful, change-filled, care-heavy year lies behind us. What lies before us? God knows. We live in troubled, serious, momentous times. We will pray for those over there, and for us here. With brotherly love and confident belief, we will pray that, where now the bloody war and its horrors rage, God will soon return it to an honorable peace. And we will pray in penitent humility, that with a new earnestness in our hearts, we will renounce earthly inclinations – selfishness, pride, and hypocrisy, which, despite all excuses, are the primary causes of war and all evil.

God grant that on our 60th anniversary in October, we may celebrate worldwide peace, as we also celebrate that after so many years our church remains the stronghold of the faith of the great German Reformer, Dr. Martin Luther. May the name of the eternal God be glorified, who sits in power and faithfully and tirelessly seeks the everlasting salvation of needy souls.

Stapleton, S.I., March 1916

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor

 

 

Fifteenth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856 

Pastor F. Sutter

1917

Annual Report of the Condition

of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church

of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from March 1, 1916 to March 1, 1917

Another year lies behind us. Once again we can gather together with this confession in our hearts and on our lips: “Thank the Lord, for he is gracious, and his benefits last forever.” Looking back, we see much darkness, but at the same time God’s gracious protection and help. While the World War with its horrors rages on, and moves our hearts with sympathy, and it sometimes seems that we will also be drawn into the vortex, we have so far been spared. The Lord stands by us, he leads and guides us as the wise and graceful shepherd of Israel. We will hold fast to the words of the psalmist: “Commend your ways to the Lord and hope in him, and he will make everything well.” We remember also the unnatural children’s epidemic, which during the past summer rampaged through city and country like an angel of death, taking hundreds of our beloved little ones suddenly and unmercifully. There were very few congregations in our city that were spared. 1

May the Lord comfort the bereaved parents, and gracefully bear the ravages this disease wreaked on the bodies of the children, and be their Doctor; may He protect us and our own. And may he allow each of us to look clearly into our hearts, so we may offer honest repentance.

In the month of July last year, a lightning bolt struck the tower of our church during a fierce thunderstorm. With anxious and fearful hearts, we investigated the damage. We breathed easier and gave our heavenly father thanks, when the announcement was made that the damage was of a trifling nature, and the strength of the building was not compromised. The treasurer of the congregation will report on the amount given us by the fire insurance company.

The last year was truly a serious and sorrowful year, yet also a blessed and fruitful one. The Lord has heard the childlike entreaties of trusting souls, and has richly blessed us, and always more wonderfully inspired and strengthened us.

We celebrated our 60th anniversary in truly glittering fashion. The festivities began on Sunday, Oct. 15th, at 10:45am with a festival service, with a sermon by Dr. J. J. Heischmann, pastor of St. Peter’s Church, Brooklyn, N.Y. At 7:45 in the evening, an English service was held, with a sermon by Pastor H. C. Wasmund, Pastor of St. Johns Church, Brooklyn, N.Y. On Tuesday evening, there was a celebration by the various organizations of our church, with a German speech by Pastor G. H. Tappert of New York, and an English speech by Pastor G. Weber, a son of the congregation, from Yonkers, N.Y. The festival ended on Wednesday evening with a general meeting of the church members in the parish house. God grant that these festivities will leave a rich blessing to the entire congregation, and impel us to a new faithfulness and pious life. The Jubilee offerings amounted to $5,321.18. Certainly this is a living witness to the thankfulness and self-sacrifice of our congregation.

During the past year, divine services were regularly held on all Sunday and festival days, as well as on every Wednesday evening during Lent. Holy Communion was celebrated six times; 592 people received communion, 17 of them privately. My pastoral acts were: 75 baptisms (4 adults), 63 confirmations, 35 marriages and 60 burials.

We begin the year 1917 with 536 members. During the year several names had to be stricken from the rolls through death, moving away, and non-payment of their contributions.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 550 children. During the summer, we had to close the school due to the spread of the paralyzing children’s disease. The teacher’s organization contributed $200 to the Jubilee fund The treasury of the school has $3200.

The Neighborhood School was attended by 30 children, who were taught by 2 teachers. The school contributed $20 to the Jubilee fund.

The kindergarten remains under the leadership of Mrs. Blanca Schmaht and was attended by 15 children.

The German school, under the leadership of the Kindergarten teacher and the Pastor, had 30 to 40 students.

Also this past year, instruction in gymnastics was begun. 40 to 50 children attended the classes held by Mr. Henry Hassel.

Our organizations have enjoyed generally healthy growth, and are a strong support of the church. The Ladies’ Society, which currently has 252 members, has a treasury of $373.92. The Society contributed $1000 to the Jubilee.

The Young Peoples’ Society has 118 members and a cash balance of $42.97. The young people contributed $500 to the Jubilee fund.

The Society for Decoration of the Church has 37 members. It has a cash balance of $11.77.

The Men’s’ Society has 63 members and a treasury of $106. $100 of this Society’s treasury was donated to the Jubilee fund.

The choir has again this past year adorned the divine service with their singing.

The duties of Organist were performed to the general approval of all by Prof. Chas. L. Schaefer. The sexton is Mr. Gottfried Tieke; Mr. Franz Fischer is, as always, collector of the church.

Regarding the financial condition of the congregation, we refer you to the Treasurer’s Report.

$5,000 of the outstanding mortgage on our properties was paid down.

Mr. H. C. Hagedorn, Sr., Secretary of the Building Committee, will report on the status of the Building Fund.

The congregation gave charitable contributions of about $550 to support education, orphanages, the poor, missions and so forth.

In the past year, the executor of the deceased Mrs. Amalie Zentgraf paid out a bequest of $5,000 to the congregation. We express the gratitude of the congregation to the family of our deceased benefactress. An additional legacy in the amount of $350, which is under the administration of the Pastor, has been added to the church treasury.

The terms of the following men as members of the church council have expired: Adolph Schaus and J.C. Siemer as elders; Edmund Schaefer, Charles Bormann, Franz Fischer and Gustav A. Barth as trustees.

And now, dear brethren, be strong, unwavering and strive always to do the work of the Lord, for you know that your work for the Lord is not in vain. The Lord has commanded us to further his kingdom and watch over the well-being of our immortal souls. We are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, which will celebrate its 400th anniversary in the coming fall. Surely we will admonish ourselves, “Be mindful of the past and what the great Lord has done for you.” We will bear witness with word and deed that we are thankful heirs of the glorious Father, and will struggle for him who is to us faith, truth and self-sacrifice. May the Lord bless our efforts; give success to our endeavors; hold his protecting hand over our entire congregation; and guide and lead all to his paradise.

Stapleton, S.I., March 6, 1917

Friedrich Sutter, Pastor

 

1 The poliomyelitis epidemic that struck in the summer of 1916 was one of the largest ever in the United States, with over 27,000 cases reported from 26 states -- 8,900 in New York City alone -- and a mortality rate approaching 25%. (http://www.amphilsoc.org/library/mole/n/nycpolio.htm)

 

 

Seventeenth & Eighteenth Annual Report

of the Condition of

the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stapleton, S.I.N.Y.

Beach Street, Corner of St. Paul’s Avenue

Founded 1856 

Pastor F. Sutter 

1920 

For the period from March 1, 1918 to Mar. 1, 1919 

With thanks to God we have completed another church year and with trust in that same Lord we begin another one. A glance back shows us much darkness, but at the same time God’s protection and help. Great was the necessity, heavy the burden of these past years. Never before had we worked with such heavy hearts; never before did we have such fear for the welfare and future of our congregation. But the Lord has guided us wonderfully. We trusted in Him, and He did not betray that trust. Furthermore, he helps us, guides us and leads us as the wise and faithful shepherd of Israel – the Lord himself wishes to embrace us, and to fill our hearts with the words of promise: “I will be with you always until the end of the world.”

We commend to Him the 125 brave young men of our circle who obeyed the call of the government. He will keep them safe and sound, strong and healthy in body and soul until their blessed return. He abides with all: for those who bear the horrible results of the war in their bodies, He is their doctor. He is with the parents who wait in vain for the return of their beloved sons, and is their consolation and support. The Lord stands by our government and is their counselor. The Lord will give the poor world a lasting and just peace and will become the savior of all peoples.

Services during the past year were regularly held on all Sundays and Festival days, as well as on every Wednesday evening during Lent. Since September, according to the decision of the church council, services in English were held on Sunday evenings.

I would like to say several things about the attendance at church services. We have naturally expected that -- given the seriousness of the times, the dark and gloomy clouds in the sky of the world’s history, the many sinister aspects of the political and social sphere, the dreadful raging sickness that has claimed countless victims1 -- every individual would be in God’s house, and on their knees free themselves from the chains of transitory goods and all ephemeral things of the world. But in spite of the earnest request and friendly invitation: “Come with your burdens to the Father of all grace and mercy, let him give you happiness and healing; listen then to the Word of God, for it is and remains the only power which can make men happy and prosperous,” nevertheless church attendance remains very weak.

You members of the church, who love the places of honor and the highest seats, hear then the call of your Master: “See, we go up to Jerusalem.” Should we not then pray and solemnly sing:

Jesus, still lead on,

Till our rest be won;

And, although the way be cheerless,

We will follow, calm and fearless. 2 

In the past year 530 people came to Holy Communion; besides them, 17 received private communion. My pastoral acts were: 70 baptisms, 46 confirmations, 36 marriages, 102 funerals.

We began the church year 1918 with a total of 540 members, to which total was added 41 newcomers during the course of the year. We begin the year 1919 with 563, for during the year, due to death, moving and non-payment of contributions, 18 names had to be removed.

Our Sunday School is attended by about 450 children, who are instructed by 42 teachers. In the month of May of the past year, English lessons were established, and are attended by about 45 children. There is $228.76 in the school account. The neighborhood school is attended by 25 children. In the treasury is $5.

The Kindergarten remains under the leadership of Mrs. Blanca Schmahl, and is attended by 4 children.

The German school has, for well-known reasons, been discontinued by us.

The gymnastics class, taught by Mr. John W. Morris, has shown a respectable growth, with 98 children attending.

Our organizations enjoy generally healthy growth, and are strong supports of the church. The Women’s Organization counts 256 members and has a treasury of $1,673.66. At the last meeting of this group, it was decided to contribute $1,500 to the church’s mortgage fund.

The Young Men’s Society, whose membership was somewhat small due to the calling up of all men of military age, became significantly larger in the last few months. It now numbers 105 members and has a cash balance of $150.56.

The Society for Church Decoration consists of 29 members. In the treasury is $200.18. The Men’s Club counts 71 members and has $135.10.

In June of last year, a Confirmand Society was founded, with 39 members and $15.

The members of the choir have apparently lost interest in their praiseworthy work. Allow us to recommend in writing to the congregation, and to the young people, that they devote themselves with new enthusiasm to singing, which will contribute to the adornment of the liturgy.

The position of organist is performed to general satisfaction by Prof. C. L. Schaefer. The sexton at the beginning of this year was Mr. Wilhelm Lenzian, whose place, upon his death in August, was taken by Mr. Gottfried Teike.

The Treasurer’s Report shows the year closing once more with a surplus. The debt on the property amounts to $30,000. In the mortgage reduction fund there is presently $184.80. For charitable donations for educational establishments, the poor, missions, hospitals, etc., nearly $1,500 was collected. The treasury of the “Soldiers and Sailors Welfare Commission” has $667. By organizing a “Drive” in the autumn, $10,000 was raised for the benefit of Wagner College and for the German Professor at the theological seminary in Mt. Airy, Philadelphia. Our congregation donated a total of $11,525.45 for these special purposes. The total sum of money contributed for charitable purposes in the year 1918-1919 amounted to $13,792.45. Not included in this total is what was raised and donated to the Red Cross.

This, truly, is living proof of the ability of our congregation in the realm of charity!

The terms of office of these members of the church council have expired: Otto Lindemann and Willy Sonntag as Elders; William Horrmann, S.C. Meurer, John F. Schweibert and Hermann Niebuhr as directors.

And now, my beloved brethren, let us do good and not become weary. Our quickly passing life has left traces of blessings in our unbending hearts. Work, unresting work is the watchword of our exciting, troubled times. True, conscientious support; examination of all possibilities, time and opportunity: that is the challenge that lies before each one of us. We are called to such efforts by our faith, the Word of God, the seriousness of our times, and the needs of the world. Before us stands the Master; let us show him our untiring deeds. He knows no rest either by day or by night. He speaks words of eternal truth, he bestows comfort and help, he builds the Kingdom of Grace. He wishes to make all spheres of existence and all mankind holy and blessed through the Spirit. Oh, that we also would wish to walk in the footsteps of this great Lord and Master.

Boldly, then: stand fast, walk forth, hold out. Stand fast in faith, walk forth in love, hold out in hope. Our feet standing on the Word, our hands working, and our eyes looking towards heaven, where Jesus is. His is the cause, His is the victory.

Stapleton, S.I. March 1919

Freidrich Sutter

 

Report of the

Condition of the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stapleton, S.I.

for the period from

March 1, 1919 to March 1, 1920

“Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all the good He has done: he forgives all your sins and heals all your injuries: he saves your life from destruction, and crowns you with grace and mercy.” So let us now rejoice as we look back over the past year – and also pray and hope with childlike faith as we look to the new year. The true God has richly blessed us beyond all expectations; and he has gloriously rewarded our trust in his help and grace. The dark clouds of the dreadful war have for the most part been dispersed; it has become brighter in the world outside; and, although we a filled with a certain anxiety and with a definite dissatisfaction with one or another political situation, yet we have reason enough to cherish the hope that the whole world has been set on an orderly and better path. We remember in our prayers the physical and spiritual needs of the poor and bloodied people, that all sins may be forgiven and all injuries healed. But we will remember that we are called to do the Lord’s work. Our duty comes to us from him. We will thus live and work, that the whole world will know that Jesus Christ is her only Savior and Redeemer.

On Sunday, September 21 of the past year, it was granted to us to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the dedication of our church. Pastor J. Kirsch, pastor of St. John’s church in Jersey City, gave the sermon. God grant that the words of the Psalmist’s confession may remain in our hearts and lives constantly: “I was glad when they said unto me, let us go into the house of the Lord.”

During the past year, divine services were held on every Sunday and Festival day, as well as every Wednesday evening during Lent. Holy Communion was celebrated 10 times; 672 communicants received it, as well as 17 people in private. My ministerial acts were: 72 baptisms (2 adults), 37 confirmations (28 German, 9 English), 44 marriages and 73 burials.

We began the church year 1919 with 563 members, and added 27 newcomers during the course of the year. We begin the year 1920 with 575.

Our Sunday School was attended by about 475 children, who were instructed by 45 teachers. Both divisions, German and English, enjoyed constant growth. There is $288.37 in the school’s treasury.

The neighborhood school, held every Saturday afternoon from 2 – 4, has 35 children. There is $3.55 in the treasury. The kindergarten remains under the leadership of Mrs. Blanca Schmahl. We must sadly note that this branch of our church’s work has not shown the development that it deserves. However, we hope to gain new students in the near future. In the past year, the German school was revived, and is held every Friday afternoon from 3:30 to 5:00. 15 children attend the class.

The gymnastics class, conducted by Mr. J. Morris under the sponsorship of the Men’s Club, was attended by 140 children and adults.

The organizations of our congregation worked hard to fulfill their special duties and to strengthen their dedication to the work of the church. 

The Ladies’ Organization counts 210 members, and oversees a treasury of $1,131. The Young Men’s Organization has 98 members. Their cash balance is $191.85. The Men’s Club counts 81 members and has a balance of $34.55. The Confirmand Society has 50 members and a cash balance of $12.80. The Society for the Decoration of the Church was disbanded during the past year. The passing of Mrs. Mathilde Herpich, whose special efforts insured the success of the society, and the impossibility of anyone taking over the extensive administration of the society, caused the Church Council to make a decision . In the cash box of the society was $300.27. $200 was allocated to the mortgage fund, while the rest was used to commission a church painting in the modern style. In this place we would like to once again remember the departed Mrs. Herpich, who was a member of our church for many years, and who truly served her savior and her church with thankfulness and honor. We also should not neglect to recognize the work of the Church Decoration Society and the willing self-sacrifice of its members.

The choir remains under the direction of our organist Prof. C. L. Schaefer. And allow me to express the congregation’s heartfelt thanks to the organist as well as the choir for organizing a concert on Feb. 16th. The audience expressed their appreciation in the highest way for the musical performance given on that night.

The sexton of the church is Mr. Wilhelm Lendzian, who conducted his office to the satisfaction of all. Mr. Franz Fischer, who for years served with faithfulness and conscientiousness as the collection counter, was called to eternal rest in August of the past year. The Church Council has appropriately remembered the dear departed in the Protocol, and tendered their deepest sympathy to his family. Mr. C. J. Bardes became Mr. Fischer’s successor on the council.

Regarding the financial situation of the congregation, we refer to the Treasurer’s Report. In the mortgage fund, there is presently $594.80. The Ladies’ Organization, which is a strong pillar of our church, has through their endowments reduced the mortgage on the church and parish house by about $1,000. We are greatly obliged to the women.

Charitable contributions to support educational institutions, missions, the poor, etc. totaled $1,324.15. For the need in Germany and Austria, $675 was collected. We also have a very large crate of old clothes and shoes that we have been allowed to send over there. May the Lord grant that we will not become weary of doing good for the people from whom we come. The need is great!

At a special congregational meeting on June 30, 1919, regarding the purchase of the property next to the parsonage, 169 Beach Street, the plan brought forth by the Church Council was decided upon. The price of the property was raised to $3,700. The congregation is greatly indebted to Mr. Otto Lindemann, whose gift of $1,000 made possible the purchase. The newly-acquired property has a mortgage of $2,500.

In the spring of the past year, the Church Council, at the recommendation of the “United Lutheran Church,” introduced the so-called “Double-Envelope System” to our congregation. In the future, at the beginning of the year, every member of the congregation will be asked, not only for a contribution to be allocated for the work of our church, but also for the work of the general church. The congregation can only move forward its work with success and not sorrow, when it knows that it can count on a large income during the course of the year. And what is true regarding the work of the local congregation, must then also be true regarding the work of the Office for Inner Missions, Education, Foreign Missions, and so forth.

We are presently asking every member of the congregation, as well as all others, who perhaps are inclined to shut themselves up, to support to the best of their ability the work of the congregation, and the larger church.

The terms of office of the following members of the Church Council have expired: Adolph Schause and J.C. Siemer as elders; Gustav A. Barth, Christian J. Bardes, Carl F. Freh and Edmund Schaefer as trustees.

Before us lies a new church year with its work and its new duties. May God grant us renewed energy and joy in our work. Let us, with righteous earnestness, with high spirits and with holy enthusiasm, get on with the work that we have been commissioned to do. The Lord will show us the Way. Our watchword shall be: “Jesus, still lead on, till our rest be won!”

March 1920

F. Sutter, Pastor

 

1 The great flu pandemic of 1918 – 1919 killed more people than died in the Great War; estimated deaths were between 20 and 40 million worldwide, including approximately 675,000 Americans.

2 “Jesu geh voran”, Count Nicholas Von Zinzendorf, 1700-1760; tr. Jane L. Borthwick, 1813-1897