Lutheran Church Missouri Synod
- North Wisconsin District -
12th Circuit

History of St. Peter, Pella Opening

In the 1870's , a colony of German Lutherans, from the southern part of the state came to the wilderness area the village of "Pella".  Most of these settlers came form Lutheran congregations near the Watertown. area.


The way was slow , hard and dangerous as they journeyed here by oxen to begin their new home.  Their needs for the precious Word of God and the Holy Sacraments led them to have their faith fed at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church near Pella.  Some of these families requested services nearer to their homes to the south and east.  In the spring of 1875, Rev. Jacob Diehl of Pella began preaching in the home of August Schoenike.


In the fall of 1876, Rev. Barth of Pella came and began to preach in the District No. 2 schoolhouse on County D.  For 3 years, Rev. Barth provided the precious Bread of Life to this fledgling flock.  There were 24 names on the roster when they started keeping records in January 1876.  They operated on a very small budget; the main expense was the salary for the Pastor.  


In the fall of 1878, these Christains took a giant step of faith and voted to organize a congregation of their own, wanting a permanent "House of God" in which to gather as a congregation.  Three resolutions were passed that constituted the beginning of St. Peter.( 1) Resolved to adopt the constitution which had been presented. (2) Resolved to accept the gift of an acre of land by Mr.  Herman Koeller for church purposes. (3)Resolved to build a church on this property.   This area which was donated, as well as the surrounding area, was a complete wilderness.  As these people who all spoke the low-German language began clearing a place for the church, it became know as the "Opening". It is still known as the "Pella Opening".

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