BUTLER TWP. – The year of 2016 marks a significant milestone for one local congregation. St. Paul Lutheran Church, located at 7700 Dog Leg Road in Dayton, Ohio, is celebrating 200 years of ministry.
St. Paul Lutheran Church began as The Stillwater Church on July 30, 1816. The log structure with an adjoining cemetery was located on three acres of land between Dog Leg Road and Frederick Pike. In 1842, the logs were replaced with bricks. The brick building was moved to the present location at the northeast corner of Dog Leg and Little York Roads in 1873. At that time, it was renamed St. Paul Lutheran Church.
The focal points of the celebration include a catered dinner for the current members on Sunday, July 24 and a special service of worship on Sunday, July 31.
“At the dinner, our special guests will be a couple who were very influential in the life of the congregation, prior to moving away years ago,” said Pastor Kurt Lammi, pastor of the congregation since 2008. “They will come back and share some of their memories of their time here. Also, I will be giving a presentation of 100 pictures of our history.”
The special anniversary service will be held at 10 a.m. on Sunday, July 31 and is sure to be full of excitement.
“The bishop of our synod and all of our former pastors who are still living will be with us to help lead worship that day,” Lammi said. “After the service, they will also share their reflections on this anniversary and their time at St. Paul.”
Along with the special service of worship, there will also be a dedication of a new Ohio Historical Marker and the blessing of a time capsule.
Planning and fundraising for the anniversary celebration started in October 2014. Pastor Lammi and 10 members of the congregation have devoted countless hours of time, energy, and love for God into the anniversary.
Fundraising efforts have included a new cookbook featuring recipes from both current and deceased members, special ceramic coasters, greeting cards featuring the stained glass windows of the congregation, donuts on Sunday mornings and a spaghetti dinner with a raffle.
“This anniversary planning team has been doing great work,” Lammi said. “The members of the team range in age from 25 to 78, and it’s great to see how God is working through all of them.” Lammi continued, “Then again, God has always been at work in and through all of the members of this congregation. This anniversary is a great time for us to celebrate God’s faithfulness for 200 years.”