IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.
updated 12/05/11

German Lutheran Church
St. John's Lutheran Church

Luana, Clayton co. Iowa

St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, Luana, Iowa, 1906
St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church

            Luana, Iowa. – Der 4. November war für die St. Johannes-Gemeinde in Luana, Iowa (W. Paulsen, Pastor), ein rechter Freudentag; konnte sie an diesem Tage doch ihre neue Kirche einweihen.  Die Gemeinde, gegründet durch Herrn Pastor Heimann, entwickelt während einer zehnjährigen treuen Amtswirksamkeit Herrn Pastor J. Appels under weitergeführt duch den jetzigen Pastor, hatte bisher ihre Gottesdienste in der Methodistenkirche abgehalten, bis die Gemeinde in diesem Jahre den Beschluß faßte und zur Ausführung brachte, sich ein eigenes Gottehaus zu bauen.

            Nachdem der Ortspastor und Gemeinde Abschied genommen hatte vom alten Gotteshause, bewegte sich die Prozession hinüber nach der neuen Kirche.  Hier vollzog Pastor W. Paulsen unter Assistenz der Pastoren O. Wappler von Monona, F. Linnenbürger von Clayton, Centre under G. Weise von Farmersburg (Ohio Synode) die Weihe.  Dafür hielt Pastor O. Wappler die Weihpredigt über Haggai 2, 10.

            Nach Schluß des Vormittagsgeottesdienstes begaben sich die Zuhörer in das Kellergeschoss der Kirche, wo die Frauen der Gemeinde ein Mittagessen bereitet hatten an welchem gegen 500 Personen teilnahmen.  Gegen zwei Uhr began der Nachmittagsgottesdienst.  Die Kirche war für die Festversammlung jedoch noch zu klein, da sich zwischen 900-1000 Festgäste eingefunden hatten.  Herr Pastor Linnenbürger predigte über Offenb. John. 21, 3 und Herr Pastor G. Weise hielt die Schlußpredigt auf Grund von Matthe. 28, 20b.  Der gemischte Chor, sowie der Männer Chor trugen durch ihre herrlichen Lieder viel zur Verschönerung des Festes bei.

            Die Kirche, gezeichnet vom Achitekten Herrn. C. F. See in Monona, von roten Ziegeln erbaut, is 60 bei 38 mit 85 Fuss hohem Turm und kostet etwa $7000.00.  Im basement befindet sich die Einrichtung für “Heisse Luft-Heizung”.  Der herrliche Hochaltar, mit Thorwalden Christus-Statue, die Kanzel, der Taufstein, zwei prächtige Kronleuchter, zwei Altarstühle sowie Altarbibel sind Stiftungen von einzelnen Gemeindegliedern.  Der Jugendverein schenkte Orgel, sowie Altar- und Kanzelbekleidung.

            So hat denn die Gemeinde ein würdiges Gotteshaus; möge der Segen Gottes bei uns bleiben, dass wir in dieser Kirche hier unten recht vorbereitet werden auf die “triumphierende Kirche” da droben.  W. P.

Kirche zu Luana, Iowa

Kirche zu Luana, Iowa


          Luana, Iowa. - November the 4th was a great day of celebration for St. John congregation in Luana, Iowa (W. Paulsen, Pastor), a real day of joy; and on this day they could also dedicate their new church.  The congregation, founded by Pastor Heimann, and developed during a ten-year faithful effort by Pastor J. Appels and furthered by the current pastor, has had to hold its services until now in the Methodist church [across the street - SN],  until the congregation in this year made the decision and achieved building its own place of worship.

         After the pastor and his congregation took leave of their old house of worship, the procession crossed the street to the new church.  Here then Pastor W. Paulsen completed the dedication of the new edifice with assistance from Pastors O. Wappler of Monona, F. Linnenbuerger of Clayton Center, and G. Weise of Farmersburg (the Ohio Synod).  The dedication sermon preached by Pastor O. Wappler was based on Haggai 2:10.

           Upon conclusion of the morning’s worship service all in attendance went to the basement of the church, where the women of the congregation had prepared the noon meal.  Approximately 500 persons attended the noon meal.  At 2:00 the afternoon worship service began.  The church at this time, however, was too small for the festival, as about 900-1000 guests were in attendance.  Pastor Linnenbuerger preached on the passage of Rev. 21:3, and Pastor G. Weise gave the concluding sermon based on Matt. 28:20b.  The mixed choir, as well as the men’s choir contributed much to this festival through their wonderful songs.

            The church, designed by architect C. F. See in Monona, and built of red bricks, is 60 x 38 feet with an 85 foot high tower all of which cost ca. $7000.00.  In the “basement” you will find the arrangement for a future “hot air heating” system.  The glorious high altar with its Thorwaldsen Christ-statue, the chancel, the baptismal font, two stately chandeliers, two altar chairs as well as the altar Bible are gifts from individual members of the congregation. The church youth presented the palls for the organ as well as the altar and chancel.

            The congregation has a worthy place in which to worship; may the blessing of God remain with us, so that we in this church down below are well prepared for the “triumphal church” above. W. P. [Paulsen]


The Church at Luana, Iowa


~source: article from an unknown publication, ca1903
~translated from German & contributed by Stanley P. Nuehring
~Stanley's notes: "Recently from my oldest first cousin, Leo Fette, I received the above document about the 1903 (?) dedication of the Luana Lutheran Church. In that building serveral of my aunts and uncles were baptized or confirmed. I was confirmed there as was my father before me. My middle brother, Daniel, was married there in Jan. 1968. The article appears to be written by the late Rev. W. Paulsen for some religious publication, of which I have no knowledge. It is my belief that this clipping came into the position of Leo Fette's late mother, my late aunt Frances Nuehring Fette, who died just 13 months ago at the tender age of nearly 97. The second document "romanizes" the Fraktur German text of the article and then on the 2nd page of the Word text, the translation into English."


1912 Confirmation Class - German Lutheran Church, Luana

Rev. W. Paulsen, pastor of the Luana German Lutheran church, accompanied his confirmation class to Postville Monday and had their pictures taken. They are a fine looking class of boys and girls, fifteen in all, and their names follow:

Edwin Kliefoth
Orville Doerring
Henry Kamps
Elmer Lenth
Emil Schultz
Eldo Schrader
Emil Rekow
Henry Rekow
Edmund Dell
Hubert Doerring
Lucille Funk
Florence Engelhardt
Milda Knuth
Esther Lenth
Florence Backhaus

~Postville Review, April 12, 1912
~contributed by S. Ferrall


1940 Confirmation Class

Rev. Paul Adix confirmed thirteen young people at St. John's Lutheran church on last Sunday. The class was composed of the following:

Betty Homan (also baptized)
Elaine Bugenhagen
Betty Neverman
Darlene DeSotel
Grace Moeller
Donna Mae Krambeer
Lorene Nuehring
Eldon Knuth
Lorenz Lenth
Donald Knuth
Gerald Palas
Leon Kruse
Merle Funk

~Postville Herald, July 10, 1940
~contributed by S. Ferrall


Pastor J. Appel
Pastor J. Appel
Pastor Wm Paulsen
Pastor Wm Paulsen
Pastor F. Westenberger
Pastor F. Westenberger
Pastor Henry Kumpf
Pastor Henry Kumpf

St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1947
St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church
Pastor & Mrs. Paul Adix, daughter Paula Hope - Parsonage, 1947
Pastor & Mrs. Paul W. Adix and their daughter Paula Hope
St. John's Lutheran Parsonage, 1947

~source: photos from church publication, ca1947
~contributed by Stanley P. Nuehring


Iowa Churches - Luana Lutheran
by Florence L. Clark - Gazette Correspondent

Luana - A church with 420 baptized members in a village of 250 population is St. Joh's Evangelical Lutheran church at Luana. About 80 percent of the members are from farms.

The building has floodlights on its outside walls to light up about an acre of recreation area, for sports and social activities. It also has a $10,000 pipe organ, installed in 1847 and paid for largely by funds raised by the young people's and woman's missionary societies of the church.

The pastor since 1938 has been the Rev. Paul W. Adix, who came to take over ministry of the church directly following his graduation from Wartburg seminary and his ordination.

The 54-year-old church has developed to its present strength and influence from a very small beginning, when a few German Lutheran settlers in the area met in homes and schools for worship. The Rev. C.W. Haeman drove 50 miles from Cresco to conduct the first services. First resident pastor was the Rev. J.W. Appel, who accepted the call on a salary stipulation of $350 a year and free wood.

After the congregation became to large to meet in homes and schoolhouses, it held its services for 11 years in Luana Methodist church, the Lutheran congregation paying the Methodists rent and holding services on Sunday afternoons.

A parsonage was built and an acre of ground acquired during the Rev. Mr. Appel's pastorate. Children were given religious instruction upstairs in the parsonage. It was not until 1906 that a church was built. A large shed was erected at that time to furnish cover for horses that brought worshippers from the farms during those horse and buggy days. The shed was removed 15 years ago.

In the last few years improvements totaling approximately $15,000 have been made on the church property. Previous to remodeling the church, a larger parsonage was built to take the place of the original one. "The fathers left us a church which they built with much toil and sacrifice in 1906," says Pastor Adix. "This generation will leave an improved church with a majestic pipe organ for the generations of worshippers to come." Then he adds, "May every generation make its special contribution to the buildings of the church and the Kingdom of God."

~Cedar Rapids Gazette, 9/16/1950
~contributed by S. Ferrall


75th Year Observance Day

Three ordained pastors in The American Lutheran Church, all one-time residents of Luana, will be featured speakers at St. John Lutheran on Sunday, August 24. They will deliver anniversary sermons on the congregation's 75th Year Observance day.

Speaking at morning worship will be the Rev. Paul W. Adix of Britt. Pastor Adix was pastor of St. John for 13 years. He attended Wartburg College, Waverly (1932-34) and Luther College, Decorah, where he received his BA degree in 1935. He received his BD degree from Wartburg Theological Seminary, Dubuque, in 1938. The same year he was ordained in the ALC and was married to the former Hope Hinz of Dubuque. The Adix's have two children. Pastor Adix came to Luana in 1938 and served St. John until 1951. He has been pastor at First Lutheran, Britt, since 1951.

The Rev. Gerald D.A. Engelhardt will bring the message at the afternoon worship. He was born and raised in Luana, baptized and confirmed in St. John Lutheran Church, and graduated from the Luana High School in 1930. He is a graduate of Wartburg College (1934) and Wartburg Seminary (1937). He was ordained in St. John Church, Luana, in 1937. He is married to the former Ruth Tessman of Duluth, Minnesota. They have five children. Pastor Engelhardt has served Lutheran parishes in Aikin, Minnesota (1937-41); Dundee, Iowa (1941-44); Rock Rapids, Iowa (1944-57); and Preston, Iowa (1957-present).

Also bringing special greetings at the afternoon service will be Alvin Doerring, former resident of Luana and former member of St. John Church. Mr. Doerring was once a teacher in the Luanan school system and at one time operated the grocery store in Luana. He has been an active layman in the work of The American Lutheran Church, having travelled and spoken widely in the United States, and was formerly director of Men's Work in the ALC. He is currently associate director of Holden Village, a Lutheran retreat center in Washinton state. The Doerring's now live in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Speaking at evening worship will be the Rev. Harold Kumpf of Maquoketa. Born at Oconto Falls, Wisconsin, he lived in Luana from 1918 to 1937 when his father, Rev. Henry Kumpf served St. John. He graduated from Luana High School in 1933, as well as Luther College (1933-1937) and Wartburg Seminary (1937-1940). He was ordained in 1940. The Kumpf's have three children. Pastor Kumpf has served Lutheran congregations in Jesup, Iowa (1940-1947) and Maquoketa (1947 to the present).

~Postville Herald, August 20, 1969
~contributed by S. Ferrall


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