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About Trinity Lutheran Church

Trinity Lutheran Church is located at

405 3rd Avenue North

Lake Norden, SD.

Trinity Lutheran Church was organized in 1967 by the merger of three older Lutheran Congregations with roots that date back to 1880 (East Norden), 1883 (Immanuel – meeting at first in a sod church building), and 1891 (First Lutheran).  The people of First Lutheran Church were of Finnish descent; East Norden, predominantly of Norwegian decent;  Immanuel, those of Danish descent. The people united together to carry out the work of their church and to confess their faith in  God.  A service of dedication and installation was held on March 12,  1967. Altar crosses from the three congregations were brought to the altar signifying the merger.

Pastors who have served since the merger are:

Rev. Raymond Salim (1960 – 1967 at First Lutheran Church, and then January – September 1967 at Trinity);

Rev. Ray Larson (June 1968 – December 1977);

Intern Russ Melby (1977-1978);

Intern Mark Helgeland (1978-1979);

Rev. John Allickson (July 1978-September 1987);

Rev. Paul Erlandson (July 1988 – May 1992);

Rev. John Mayer (September 1992 – July 2000);

Interim Pastors Terry Knudson (September 2000 – January 2001);

Pastor Don Schumacher (February 2001 –  July 2008).  

Following the death of Pastor Schumacher in July 2008, the congregation was served by Pastor Gene R. Peterson until July 2012;

Interim Pastor Fred Rosin until February 2013;

 Pastor Mark Jamison (July 2013-February 2016);

Rev. David Patterson. (Dec. 2016 - Dec. 2020);

Rev. Brian Ricke (Jan. 2021-) 

In 2002, Trinity joined Badger Lutheran Church in a shared ministry with Pastor Schumacher serving both congregations until 2008. Since then the two congregations continue to share a pastor.  In this partnership, there are joint Lenten and Thanksgiving Services, and a shared confirmation ministry class.

Clara Lutheran Church was a sister congregation to Trinity for several years. It was founded in 1886 by Pastor John Randahl who traveled around South Dakota forming Swedish congregations.  Ministry continued at Clara until 1987 when it closed due to declining membership.  In May 2000, Joy Nelson of Watertown moved the church to its present location on a hilltop at Joy Ranch near Florence where it was fully restored.  Since then, it has become part of the Lutherans Outdoors camping ministry and will offer a variety of programs and events in the future.

The ministry of Trinity Lutheran is characterized by its members faithfully sharing and working together.  The congregation is blessed by the involvement of several volunteers who serve in numerous ways.  As we look ahead, we rely on the promise of Isaiah  40:8 to be our guide  for the future:  “The word of our Lord shall stand forever.”

On January 16, 2011, Trinity voted unanimously to ratify an earlier vote to end its affiliation with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and join the North American Lutheran Church.

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