One of Stettler’s oldest churches, St. Peter Lutheran Church, marks 100 years of Lutheran faith in the region with a special service on Sunday, Sept. 29.
“We are celebrating 50 years for this church and 100 years of Lutheran churches in the area,” said Penny Tash, one of the organizers.
Several pastors from the past will return for the service, which starts at 1:30 p.m., followed by a time of fellowship.
“It will be a time to celebrate history with words and music,” said Tash, who has been part of the church for 40 years.
Alfred Erichsen is writing a history book, “Stettler Lutheran Pioneers and Their Churches.”
With an average of 100 in the Sunday worship service, the congregation has about 260 baptized members and 190 confirmed members.
“It’s a very loving and caring congregation, open to new ideas, and lots of people help in so many ways,” said Karl Faltin, pastor for the past 19 years.
“They are very interested in growing in their faith and spiritual life.”
After major renovations three years ago, the building provides ample space for various ministries, such as Sunday school, confirmation classes, an active women’s group, a youth group that has partnered with Erskine Evangelical Free Church, and a fellowship room for banquets and receptions.
Over the decades, the congregation has seen many transitions.
“We’ve seen many changes in the Lutheran tradition, with more people involved in the worship service, and we’ve held on to the Lutheran principles,” Tash said.
“Women never used to serve communion, and now we do and it’s nice.”
With pews to seat 200 people, the sanctuary has become renowned for the acoustics and the century-old pipe organ.
“Choirs and music groups love to sing here because the acoustics are great,” Tash said.
A 1890 pipe organ that was headed for the scrap heap was rescued and revived.
“It’s a nice feature to the church,” Tash said.
Another longtime members values the congregation at the Stettler church.
“It’s my church family, so it’s important in my life,” said Al Leinweber, part of the church for 50 years.