History

Concordia Lutheran Church began in 1956. One of the first planning meetings was held in the home of Tom & Martha Heininger, and some who attended subsequent planning meetings included: Virgil & Elsa Waltz, Jesse & Lea Van Dyke, Virginia Weston, Betty Bertsch, Mary Sluss, and Rev. Elwood Zimmerman.

On August 5, 1956, the Greenwood Lutheran Mission held its first worship service at the American Legion Hall on U.S. Highway 31.  Rev. John Kaiser gave the first sermon and served as supply pastor through July 1957. September 2, 1956, was the first communion service.  On September 9, 1956, the Greenwood Lutheran Mission held Sunday school for the first time. Mr. Robert Muhlhauser was elected superintendent and the following teachers shared God’s Word: Mrs. Harold Sluss, Mrs. Virgil Waltz, Mrs. Arthur Knight, Mrs. Ralph Dedert, Mrs. Clay Glover, Mrs. Thomas Heininger and Miss Elaine Gerkepott.  Pastor Kaiser took charge of the adult class. 

On October 7, 1956, the congregation selected its new name, Concordia.  The congregation used it officially for the first time in the bulletin on October 14, 1956.

On Sunday afternoon, October 21, 1956, the congregation adopted the Constitution. On November 18, 1956, the congregation held its first baptism and received into membership Randal William Bueckman. On January 23, 1957 the women of the congregation met to organize the local LWML chapter.

The young congregation purchased a large home on Madison Avenue in Greenwood, early in 1957. After renovations, it served as the church facility until 1964.  The main floor served as the chapel with Sunday School classroom space in the basement. The pastor and his family lived in an upstairs apartment. On June 2, 1957, the dedication service was held.  

On July 14, 1957, Rev. Howard Hilsabeck was ordained and installed as the first full-time pastor.  Pastor Hilsabeck left for Grafton, Ohio, in October 1961.

Rev. Luther G. Strasen served as the second full-time pastor following his installation on September 5, 1962.  He moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana, in November 1968. In January 1963 the congregation purchased eight acres of land on Howard Road in Greenwood.  Dedication took place on November 8, 1964 and is the church’s current location.

Rev. Laverne W. Polley served as Concordia’s third full-time pastor from his installation on December 7, 1969, until January 1978 when he moved to Berne, Indiana,

Installation of Concordia’s fourth full-time pastor, Rev. Howard O. Fabricius, took place September 17, 1978.  A preschool for 3 and 4-year-olds began the following September under the direction of Beverly Fabricius.

In 1982 plans were initiated to go ahead with a major expansion project.  There was extensive remodeling of the small education building and church’s office space.  It included a large multi-purpose fellowship hall. A spacious foyer and entrance area became reality by enclosing the space between the church and the original education building.

During the 1980s, Concordia called its first Deaconess, Deborah (Roth) Rockrohr.  Deaconess Roth married Rev. Carl Rockrohr and moved.  Deaconess Monica Eickmeyer joined the congregation upon completion of her education at Concordia University.

In March, 1990 Deaconess Monica became a full-time mother, the congregation began a search for its next staff member.  On August 12, 1990, the congregation welcomed Mark Musick at his installation as Director of Christian Education.  

The Garden of Gethsemane window was dedicated on July 28, 1991.

When Mark Musick accepted a call to Texas, the congregation decided to call an associate pastor.  Rev. John A. Flamme accepted the call, and his installation took place on November 5, 1995.

When Rev. Fabricius announced his retirement, the congregation extended a call in March 2003 to Rev. Flamme to serve as sole Pastor of Concordia.  On June 8, 2003, Rev. Fabricius preached his farewell sermon to the congregation after 38 years in ministry and 25 years at Concordia. 

The Preschool occupied the parsonage at the beginning of January 2007 and remains at this location.

In June 2013, the congregation extended calls to Sarah (Rice) Shadday to be its Director of Christian Education and Erica Stephenson to be a part-time Deaconess.

When Pastor Flamme announced his retirement in May 2018. Concordia was given a year to begin the call process for a new pastor. After much prayer and discussion the call committee recommended calling a seminarian. On April 30th, 2019 Concordia received a candidate, Rev. Paul Gaschler from the Fort Wayne Seminary.

On May 5th, 2019 Rev. John Flamme preached his farewell sermon to the congregation after 26 years in the ministry and 23 years at Concordia. 

On June 16, 2019 Concordia celebrated the ordination and installation of Rev. Paul Gaschler. Concordia continues to be blessed by God through the faithful teaching and preaching of God’s Word and the distribution of the Sacraments.