History - Page 1
Concordia Lutheran Mission held its first service at the school in September of
A nearly completed Concordia Lutheran School building, a developing area of new
homes, a vision to sense a fertile mission field, eager volunteers, and a Vacation Bible School all meshed together
in the summer of 1950 to form the beginnings of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. Because the response and attendance to the Vacation Bible School program was encouraging, a plan
to start a new mission congregation was put into motion.
Under the direction of Pastors Arthur W. Schelp of Zion Lutheran Church and
Winfred A. Schroeder of Grace Lutheran Church, both congregations voted to approve this new
mission. A small nucleus of 35 members from Grace and Zion were released
to work in this area.
The first worship service was held on the first Sunday in September of
1950. It was followed by Sunday School. Pastor A. W. Schelp conducted the service. They met in
the basement of the school.
Praying for God’s guidance and direction, little did that small group, then
calling itself the Concordia Lutheran Mission, realize how abundantly God would bless this
First Official Photograph of the
Congregation of Concordia Lutheran Church
A call was sent and accepted
Harold G. Johnson, who grew up at Zion, Tacoma. He was
called from Coffeyville, Kansas, and was installed as the first resident Pastor of Concordia Lutheran Church
in 1951. He and his wife, Maxine, with their two small sons, supplied the youthful enthusiasm for God’s
Kingdom to grow. Slowly, the congregation grew. Sunday School, Christmas pageants, fellowship and family
nights, picnics, and a strawberry festival, helped this growth. The Lord blessed the Johnsons with the birth
of a daughter during their stay at Good Shepherd.
the congregation of Redeemer Lutheran Church, located at Harrison and East “G” Streets was without a
pastor. At that time, the decision was made to merge with
Concordia. This merging increased the membership and brought new
and dedicated workers to the area. The merger also brought
additional children for the Sunday School. The joint membership
voted to change the name of the congregation to The Lutheran Church of the Good
ahead, the congregation purchased the present site of the corner of East 56th and “B” Streets, with the dream
of a future permanent church home. Ground was broken on June 7,
1953, for a facility that would also include a parsonage. Soon, the
cornerstone was put in place. On June 6, 1954, the building was
ready for dedication.
Choose a thumbnail image to view larger photograph...
On November 13, 1955, Pastor Johnson
accepted a Call to Bellevue to help with a mission established in that area.
A Call was then sent
Harold J. Gieseke, who accepted and was installed as the
second pastor of The Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd. He, with his wife, Irma, and three daughters lived
in the chapel church-parsonage. Under his guidance, growth continued both spiritually and
Concordia School building was again used for additional Sunday School rooms. At this time, a group of members was released to begin work in the Summit
area. As the church continued to grow, so did Pastor Gieseke’s
family, as the Lord blessed them with another daughter and a son. In 1962, Pastor Gieseke accepted a Call to Eugene, Oregon.
The third pastor of The Lutheran Church of
the Good Shepherd was Delbert
C. Schroeder, who was installed on Sunday, September
9, 1962. He and his wife, Thelma, with their four daughters and son, came to us from Kennewick, Washington.
It was during Pastor Schroeder’s ministry that the congregation began to feel the need for more space. A
three-phase building program was outlined to meet the congregation’s future needs. The first phase was the
construction of a new parsonage. This was completed and occupied by the Schroeder family in November of 1965.
The old parsonage space was then used for Sunday School classes.
phase of the expansion program had to be delayed when Pastor Schroeder accepted a Call to serve as the
Executive Secretary of the LCMS Northwest District in Portland, OR. He departed Tacoma on June 18, 1967. The vacancy
was partly lessened by the coming of the first of the vicars employed by the
congregation. Vicar Terrance Borchard and his wife, Kathy, occupied
the former parsonage rooms and helped the congregation during the vacancy
A Call was extended
Roland A. Koch of Spokane, WA, who accepted the Call and
was installed as the congregation’s fourth pastor on November 26, 1967. Pastor Koch was joined by his wife,
Hilda, and their three children. Pastor Koch was immediately confronted with the congregation’s desire to
proceed with its expansion program with the construction of a new house of worship.
On February 11, 1969, the congregation voted to proceed with the building of the new church as soon as
possible. A little over a year later, during the week of March 8-15,
1970, the new church was dedicated. At this time, the name of the
congregation was officially changed to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.
Ceremony June 8,
Dedication March 8, 1970
Pastor Koch retired from the full-time
ministry and served as Visitation Pastor for a number of years to follow.
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