Buena Vista County, IA
USGenWeb Project

History of St. John's United Church of Christ

St. John's United Church of Christ, rural Newell, was organized in 1888 and a church building erected that same year.  The adjoining cemetery was also begun that year, the first burial being the infant son of Henry Boese.  The parsonage was built in 1892.  The original church edifice burned in 1963, and a new one was built the next year.


St. John's Congregation in Grant

The Evangelical St. John's congregation in Grant township was organized by Rev. C. A. Heldberg in 1888 as a branch of the German Evangelical Synod of North America.  Among those who took part in the organization of the society were H. Behrens, H. Brummer, W. Gerberding, Fred Griffel, D. Griffel, William Boese, Fred Boese, Fr. Lehmkuhl and H. Mehlhop.


The church has enjoyed a steady growth since its organization and has had resident pastors continuously.  Among those who have served as pastor are C. Heldberg, L. Frank, H. Haupt, O. Kraft, R. Lorenz, J. Herlinger and R. Schmiechen, the last named being the present pastor.


The present (1909) official board consists of G. Sorby, H. Mehlhop, H. Griffel, W. Sievers, A. Beckfeld and H. Uhllrich.  The number of communicants at the present time is about one hundred.  The congregation holds property valued at five thousand dollars, including the church, parsonage and school.


Parochial school is taught by the pastor from fall until Easter of each year, and is well attended by the children of the church.


Extracted from:  Wegerslev, C. H. and Thomas Walpole.  Past and Present of Buena Vista County, Iowa.  Chicago:  S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909, p. 119-20.