LORD OF LIFE lutheran church
Lord of Life Lutheran Church, 550 N. Broad St., Canfield, will celebrate its 50th anniversary next weekend. At 6:30 p.m. next Saturday, there will be a Holden Evening Prayer for the community and area Lutheran churches and choirs. A reception at the church will follow. On May 18, an anniversary service will be at 10 a.m. with Deaconess Judy Hoshek, assistant to the Bishop in the Northeastern Ohio Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. A luncheon at 1 p.m. is planned at D.D. and Velma Davis Center at Fellows Riverside Gardens of Mill Creek MetroParks. For reservations, call the church office at 330-533-3531.
Mission statement: As a new creation in the risen Jesus Christ, the Lord of Life community seeks to worship faithfully, witness to the Gospel joyfully and respond compassionately.
The beginning: Canfield Lord of Life Lutheran Church began as a mission congregation of the Lutheran Church in America. Pastor Gerry Swanson came to survey the area in October 1963. He found 23 families interested in forming a church. A planning committee of William Anderson, Charles Haggis and William Roorda along with Pastor Swanson and the Rev. Martin Yonts, regional secretary of the Board of American Missions, was formed in December 1963. Arrangements were made to use the C. H. Campbell Elementary School in Canfield for a weekly fee. The first worship service was Feb. 2, 1964, at C. H. Campbell School with 198 people in attendance.
Organized: The congregation was officially organized on Pentecost, May 17, 1964. The charter was signed by 97 members. Current charter members are Jim Duffett, Jayne Duffett Boucherle, Lorinda Oakley Moucha and William and Peppy Theodore.
Church built: Ground was broken for the current church building Feb. 5, 1967, and dedication was Feb. 4, 1968. Dr. John Rilling, president of the Ohio Synod of the Lutheran Church in America, was the dedicating officer and homilist. Lord of Life continued as a mission church until April 1972 when a service of recommitment took place and the church was self-supporting.
Dedication: On June 6, 1999, members dedicated the present sanctuary. In 2012, renovations and repairs were made to the older wing, including the choir room, nursery and restrooms. All windows were replaced in this section, and roof repairs were made.
Pastors: The Revs. Gerald Swanson, Warner Holmgren (interim), Michael Shahan, D. Gary Schreckengost, Dixon Slingerland (interim), Robert Schmalzle, Dale Deames (interim), Constance Mentzer, Lang Collins (interim) and Rebecca Richie, October 2009 to present.
Worship: Lord of Life has Sunday services with communion at 8:15 and 10:45 a.m. The sanctuary choir sings at the later service, and child care is provided at the later service. There also is a 5 p.m. Saturday worship service with communion. A Bible study is at 10 a.m. Wednesdays.
Source: Lord of Life Lutheran Church