OUR RICH HISTORY
THE YEAR'S BIGGEST HIGHLIGHTS

Immanuel Lutheran Church is a congregation with deep roots and a strong sense of tradition. 


1866—organized as Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Congregation; the church building was constructed with land designated for a cemetery.

1870—first full-time pastor and first full-time parochial teacher installed. Land purchased for new church building-site of present church.

1881—congregation suffered split between Missouri and Ohio synod.


1903—New church built on the present site. The old site became a cemetery.

1904—Church was dedicated.

1906—English services introduced. German used exclusively before.

1914—New parsonage built.

1916—50th Jubilee Celebration.


1921—Luther League was formed. English services were held regularly.


1930s/1940s—installed electric lights, created an envelope system for contributions, installed stained glass windows, purchased new organs. Basement excavated, kitchen and auditorium installed.  Immanuel became part of ALC.


1954—Luther League created a fundraiser to purchase a piano, new pews were purchased.


1960s—Easter sunrise service with breakfast became a tradition, cemetery committee was formed, new front entrance to the church built.

1966—100th anniversary celebrated.


1970s—the Couples Club was created, first artificial Christmas tree purchased, vinyl siding installed, Immanuel won the Kendall County Church League Softball championship.


1980s—First trifold bulletin used, ceiling fans installed in church, first newsletter introduced, first pictoral directory created, prayer chain developed, church received new roof, merged into ELCA.


1990s—First computer purchased and the first website created. The building became handicap accessible. Two worship services held every Sunday.

1991—125th Anniversary celebrated
 

2000s—First female pastor installed, outreach established, church addition dedicated, Immanuel created an intentional plan to spread God's word.

2002—Church addition dedicated.

2015—150th Anniversary celebration.
God with us, touching lives through Christ.

To the best of our knowledge, our congregation was organized in 1866 as Immanuel Evangelical  Lutheran Congregation. Under the leadership of Pastor Johannes Strieter, a church building was constructed toward the center of a two-acre plot of land that now serves as our current cemetery. 
Although Lutheran ministerial acts date back to as early as 1853 in Kendall County, this was the first time a Lutheran church had been constructed. ​The exact date of its dedication is unknown since records of that time cannot be located. 


The first Baptism in our records recorded by Rev. Riedel took place on November 27, 1853, for Christian Heinrich Harning, the son of Christian and Anna (nee Bergh) Harning.  It is not listed as to where it took place.
 
The first marriage Rev. Riedel performed took place on January 14, 1854, between Friedrich Wilhelm Lippold and Elizabeth Schacker.  This probably took place at the Schacker family home, but it is unknown where that was located.
 
The first communion service for our members took place on April 9, 1854, and was held in Oswego.  There were 10 people who took communion that day, including both men and women.  A total of 4 communion services were held in 1854, in Oswego, rural country, Oswego and Long Grove respectively.
 
                                             

           



                                     







Immanuel became a member of the American Lutheran Church in 1930 which was a merger of the Ohio, Iowa and Buffalo synods.

In January 1965, the Cemetery Committee was 
formed. For Easter, in 1969, the Brotherhood 
planned a breakfast after the worship service,
which started Easter Sunrise Service.

For the 1978 homecoming parade, a model
replica of the​ church building was built which
​is still on display today in Heritage Hall. 


In January 1983, the first newsletter, called the Immanuel Son Times, was printed.  Although it no longer has that name,  a monthly newsletter is still created for our members.  The first pictorial directory of the congregation was put together in 1984.  In 1987 Immanuel merged into Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA)

In 1990, the congregation agreed to purchase its first computer.  The June 2, 1991 bulletin was the first one printed on the new computer.  In 1994, two Sunday worship services were held on a regular basis.  In March 1998, Immanuel saw its first website. In May 1998, a new women’s circle was added, called Servant Hearts .  Until now, the Ruth Circle and Naomi Circle were very popular and allowed the women of the congregation to meet. The Handicap Accessibility Committee gave their proposal for adding an addition to the church building with allowances for handicapped accessibility. 

                         In September 2003, Pastor Leaf retired from the active        
                         ministry.  Pastor Joanne D. Adrian, the first female interim
                         pastor served Immanuel.  In 2005, Pastor Dorothy became
                         the first female pastor of Immanuel.

                         Francis Bretthauer spent many hours each year making
                        quilts and donating them to Lutheran World Relief ,

                        Lutherdale Bible Camp. In 2006, other interested quilters
                         got together a group to make Advent banners.  Francis soon
                         joined and group has became known as Busy Hands .

In December 2010,  Rev. Joseph Chu was called to serve as interim pastor.  He improved visitation and  created caring visits . In 2011, the parking lot was redesigned and paved with blacktop.  Handicap spots were also designated. In July 2012, Rev. Michael J. Neel was called to be our next pastor who introduced continued involvement in the community.  In 2013, under Pastor Neel's observance, Immanuel began new Outreach programs by helping serve Hessed House in Aurora Hessed House is a homeless shelter that provides clothing to those in need in our communities.
Immanuel began participating in the ELCA program 
God’s Work Our Hands , an outreach for helping others in
the community on one Sunday a year. Members at Immanuel
help pack meals for Feed My Starving Children on this day.
Members regularly collect donations of food and necessities
We strive to reach those who need our help the most and recently
began our Global Mission , helping our partners in Africa.

Immanuel, while rich with history strives to remain current with the needs of its congregation and those living in surrounding areas. Through  Sunday services, ministries, youth programs, local and global mission, Immanuel inhabits its mission: God with us, touching lives through Christ.

History
150th
Ministers