A Brief History of Immanuel Lutheran Church
With Some German Christmas Traditions and Treats
December 8, 2021 at 7:00 PM
Immanuel Lutheran Church, Scott & William Streets, Tonawanda, NY
The past two Holiday programs of the HSOT brought attention to the stories and traditions of Salem Church of Christ and Our Lady of Czestochowa. This year we continued the history of our churches and their significance in community life by gathering at Immanuel Lutheran Church which was founded in 1868.
Early on churches played a very important role in most family’s lives: with marriages, births and deaths being celebrated and recorded and even the education of young people whether through parochial schools or Sunday schools - a focus on young people’s moral development was an essential part played by the church.
Our speaker, Joan Roth Close was born and raised in the City of Tonawanda and actually lived in what once was the parsonage that was next to the original site of Immanuel Lutheran Church at Morgan and William. She attended as a child and has remained an active member at Immanuel.
After 30+ years as an elementary first grade teacher at Fletcher School, Joan retired but brings her experience with the community and the families into focus around their contributions to church life.
Joan began with a tour of the sanctuary and highlighted the stories of the stained glass windows and the unique woodwork. Next we gathered in Lorenz Hall to hear the story of the fire in the original building, the influence of war on the German Lutheran community, and other changes along with anecdotal remembrances.
The evening culminated with some special German traditional Christmas treats and a display of historical pictures along with some fun German Christmas items.
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