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History of Resurrection Lutheran Church

1956 - 2005

The Lutheran Church of the Resurrection began as a mission church built by the Northwest District of the Missouri Synod Lutheran Church. The small white church was on the corner of First Avenue South and 206th Street. The church was dedicated on July 1, 1956 and Rev. Gilbert C. Moore was installed as its first pastor on that date. The cost of the building was $35,000. The church seated 160 in the main church and 120 in the adjoining educational wing.

By December of that year there were 45 baptized members with 22 communicant members. There were 60 children enrolled in the Sunday School. George Beckmann was the first chairman of the congregation. Other officers in 1957 were: William Sloper, Ken Erickson, William Eichler, Jr., M. W. McClung, Harrie White, C. A. Retzlaff and Harold Schwanke. Organist was Warren Jaech. At this time there were 184 baptized souls, 76 communicant members and a Sunday School enrollment of 120.

On April 27, 1958 the congregation was officially organized. Frank Lindeke was chairman for drawing up the constitution and signed the Synod’s constitution at the District convention in Portland. That year the parsonage was built and dedicated on November 9.

The property the present church stands on was purchased in 1959 for $15,200. At that time part of the two acres was filled with water providing much fun for neighborhood children.

In 1961 the church celebrated its fifth anniversary on November 28. At that time there were 175 communicant members and the average attendance was 116. The Sunday School had an enrollment of 233. Although Resurrection was a subsidized congregation until 1964, missions were strongly emphasized. Choirs were organized by Ann Lindeke and later Edna Bevan. Women’s Guild was active in altar work, sewing (church paraments), flowers, mission work and church cleaning. Ruth Runland was a dedicated worker and inspiration to this group. Aileen McClung was a volunteer secretary for both Pastor Moore and Pastor Kudick. Mr. & Mrs. Harvey Pittelko served as Youth Counselors from 1958 to 1974.

In 1962 the church took part in the Lutheran Rally at the Seattle World’s Fair.

In 1964 the congregation became financially self-sustaining. Pews were installed that year.

In 1965 Pastor Moore left and Pastor Ronald Kudick accepted our call and was installed in August. He served until June of 1972. During this time we purchased our pipe organ and built the gym, kitchen and offices on our present site. The building was dedicated on March 1971. Building committee members were Verle Roth, Fred Bauer, Charles Runland, George Beckmann, and Joseph Oliver. Architect was K. Walter Johnson and the contractor was Paul Maier. The 85 year old pipe organ was purchased for $200 from Pastor Kudick’s home church in Visalia, California. In 1968 Edna and Wayne Bevan along with Jim Luden from Olympia Organ Builders traveled to California, packed the organ into a van and brought it to Seattle. For a time it was stored with Olympic Organ Builders and later was stored in the church basement until it was placed in our new sanctuary in 1978.

Ground was broken on June 28, 1970 for the new hall which included gymnasium, offices and kitchen. Dedication of the gymnasium-fellowship hall was March 14, 1971. The Rev. Ronald Kudick conducted the service and read the dedication rite. At that time we ceremonially burned the mortgage on the First Avenue building.

After Pastor Kudick left in 1972, the Rev. Richard W. Gerken accepted our call and was installed on September 10, 1972. During 1972 the first Director of Christian Education, Keith E. Brosz, was called and installed. He served until September 1974. Ellsworth Knos (Sandy) Anderson was called to serve as our next D.C.E. He was installed on June 22, 1975. Under Sandy’s directorship our Mexico Mission was begun. In 1981 a group of youth and adults traveled to Las Palmas, south of Te’cate and worked for a week in an orphanage. Since that time members of Resurrection have worked in Mexico, at first twice a year and then once in the spring. This ministry continues at the present time. The mission has built a church, schools, homes and also repaired buildings.

In 1976 the First Avenue property was sold for $80,000. This money retired the debt on the gymnasium-fellowship hall and left some monies for a start on completing our worship facility. The gymnasium was remodeled for use as a temporary sanctuary and education facility with the construction of the altar and pulpit, communion rail, carpeting and several classrooms. Ground was broken for the new sanctuary on February 5, 1978. The architect was Milton Stricker. Contractor was Leo Finegan Construction Company, Inc. He agreed to allow our members to work on the construction site where possible. Members volunteered many, many hours of work. The building was dedicated on July 30, 1978 with Pastor Ronald Kudick participating in the service. Doctor Oswald Hoffman, Lutheran Hour Speaker, preached at a Praise and Thanksgiving service that same evening.

The last building program was completed on the spring of 1989. Classrooms and storage were added on the south side of the building.

David Sanger came to Resurrection in 1985 as Whole Way House Director and later as Minister of Children and Youth. He left in 1995 to complete studies for the ministry at Fuller Seminary.

Pastor Dorpat was called to be associate pastor in the spring 1995 and serves faithfully up to the present time. Although his work load has decreased over the years he has stepped into the breach to take over for Pastor Hagan during his four months in the United Arab Emirates.

On February 2, 2003 a retirement service and reception were held for Pastor Gerken and Kathie who had served Resurrection for 30 years.

Our present pastor, the Rev. Raymond L. Hagan, was installed on March 2, 2003. As a reserve officer in the Air Force he was afforded the opportunity to serve as a chaplain to our troops in the United Arab Emirates and with the congregation's blessing was able to serve there from May until September, 2005.

History written by Ann Lindeke; September 2005
134 South 206th Street; Des Moines, WA 98198 206-824-2978 secretary@resurrection-lcms.org