Last updated on April 25th, 2023
… the founders and first members, whose faith and trust in God was the foundation stone for this congregation.
… the present congregation, which with God’s help, a constant willingness to give, and with drive and action has acquired this church as a lasting place of worship.
… our children and future generations as a legacy of our faith and as an incentive to uphold this inheritance with dignity.
… the one God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, for the blessing received. Glory to him from eternity to eternity. Amen.
Dedication and Table of Contents Page 2-5
Scroll of Greetings Page 6 -21
Foreword by Pastor Stefan Wolf
Forward by President Church Council Ernie Wienecke
Overview “50 Years Congregational Life” Page 22-25
The Years in Particular Page 26-119
Church Council Members 120 121
Group Pictures 122-127
The photos and text for this book were meticulously compiled by congregational members of Martin Luther Evangelical Lutheran Church. The editorial committee consisted of Olaf Weigelin, Helmut Herrmann, Maike Wolf, Pastor Stefan Wolf, Heinz Gutsch, Kathe Kleinau, Else Weigelin, and Annette Gutsch.
1954 – Background
On December 18, 1955, in a rented room of Bathurst United Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Martin Luther Church was officially founded. Guest speaker was Dr. Heick, Professor at the Theological Seminary of the Canada Synod in Waterloo. 198 registered members belonged to the congregation.
Due to the large waves of immigration in the 1950s, many refugees were searching for spiritual support in a familiar environment in church congregations. In October 1954, the Canada Synod commissioned Pastor Karl Wulf of Winnipeg to win Evangelical Lutheran immigrants for a new German congregation in West Toronto. Newspaper ads, radio announcements, home visits, as well as talking to refugees as they arrived on immigrant trains in Toronto, helped him to fulfil his assignment. The number of church visitors in 1954 rose from seven on December 5, 1954, to 90 on Christmas Eve.
February 1955 – forming of a youth group under the leadership of Rolf Auermann; March 1955 – registration of the first confirmands, instructions began in May; April 1955 – move of the Pastor’s family into the parsonage at 7 Baby Point Road, Toronto; May 1955 – founding of a men’s choir under the leadership of Albrecht Günther, first musical family evening; the youth group served refreshments and entertained the mothers on Mother’s Day; English language instruction, German religious and confirmation instruction, Sunday Church Services, Sunday School and youth group meetings; July congregational trip to Doneden Park on Humber River; September 1955 – founding of a women’s group, meetings every 3rd Wednesday of the month, president Mrs. Weishaar; November 1955 – election of a provisional Church Council consisting of 9 members. The Synod and the Lutheran World Federation provided the salaries for the Pastor, and the parish assistant, Dr. Klügel, and the full purchase price for the parsonage. The plate offerings at the New Year’s Eve Service amounted to $9.08.
In spite of membership increase, the congregation’s financial position was quite weak. Due to lack of space, they expressed the wish for their own facilities. In February, guest speaker Pastor Otto Winter of Zurich, Ontario, held an ‘evangelisation week’. On March 18, 1956, the first Annual General Meeting took place. President of the Synod, Dr. Jacobi, introduced the church constitution which was accepted by the congregation on April 29, 1956, and Pastor Karl Wulf was elected as Pastor of the congregation. Pastor Hempel from Bremen preached at Easter. In May 1956, the congregation was accepted into the Canada Synod. The Pastor of the congregation was asked to or der an official seal and stamp. On May 20, 1956, Pastor Karl Wulf confirmed the first ten confirmands. Dr. Breondlin showed films about Islam, Easter customs and three German composers in the Ladies’ Group. In June, the Church Council defined their rights and duties. In October 1956, it became known that the Redeemer Church at the corner of Bloor Street and Indian Road, was looking for subtenants for their church. In November 1956, the newspaper advertisements for the congregation were cancelled due to high costs. Serving Church Council members were asked to escort church visitors to their seats. Facts and Figures: The first full working year began with a balance of $134.48. The annual church contribution per member was suggested at $30. One hundred donation envelopes were handed out at Pentecost. 10% of the Pastor’s salary of $3,480.00 was to be assumed by the congregation each year. The first officially elected Church Council consisted of Mssrs. Rolf Seidel (President), E. Block, F. Janker, Hans Jozwiak, P. Meyer, Willy Scheibelt, K. Schoendorff, K. Wussow, Hans Schnick.
In June 1957, the congregation moved into the building of the Redeemer Lutheran Church, which was a member of the same Synod. There was hope of constructing a larger church on the property, as there was still not enough space in the new rooms. In January 1957, the Church Council was informed that the Redeemer Lutheran Congregation wanted to unite with the Martin Luther Congregation. The first congregational celebration took place. The Youth Group entertained with music and play while the Ladies’ Group (leader Charlotte Fiege) attended to the guests. Benno Gutsch was leader of the youth group which had an average of 25 participants. An Advent wreath was purchased for the church. Due to discrepancies in keeping financial records, the president of the Church Council resigned in May. Pastor Karl Wulf and Hans Schnick took part in the Synod Conference in June 1957. Pastors Reich of Germany and Müller of Hamilton substituted for Pastor Wulf while on vacation. Sunday School: Mmes. Christa Guschewski, Polacsek, Margot Spauka, Petra Wehrmann and Wulf taught 60 children in 5 classes, two of these in English. At Easter and Christmas, the children received presents. More help from parents and regular attendance of the children was requested. Facts and Figures: Three council members served during the church services. 34 members were present at the Annual General Meeting on March 3, 1957. There were one English and three German confirmation classes. The Pastor made 1,054 visits. 60 baptisms, 34 weddings, one funeral took place. Following the move, church services began at 9:45 a.m. The congregation had 298 members.
Church Council 1957: Rolf Seidel, Karl Ernst Kriese, E. Block, F. Janker, P. Meyer, E. Polacsek, K. Schlöndorf, Hans Schnick, H. Struckhold, K. Wussow
At the end of the year, founding Pastor Karl Wulf accepted the call as Pastor of the First Lutheran Church in Toronto. The congregation then elected Pastor Otto Winter as his successor. During Lent, Pastor Wulf held devotions on Wednesday evenings. Fred Sommerfeld, Erich Polacsek and Ewald Guschewski were chosen as trustees. In December, the Youth Group organized a congregational Christmas celebration at St. Jude’s Anglican Church. The members of the Redeemer Church and of the Evangelical Lutheran Martin Luther Church could not agree on common building plans for a new church. The congregation began to pay off mortgage debts and deferred interests on the parsonage. Taking photos during church services and other official functions was only permitted with the approval of the Pastor. Radio announcements drew the attention of new immigrants to the German church services of the congregation. The congregation decided to order new hymn books. Pastor Karl Wulf made weekly visits in two hospitals. Church Council 1958: Karl Ernst Kriese Dietz, Adolf Fiege, H. Fuchs, Daniel Goltz, F. Janker, P. Meyer, K. Schlöndorf, H. Struckhold. The Ladies’ Group greeted Dr. Heimann as guest speaker in August 1957. Facts and Figures: The budget for the financial year 1958 amounted to $6,000. The Ladies’ Group donated $ 82.55 towards the purchase of the hymn books. Pastor Wulf conducted 61 German and 13 English Church Services. He taught five confirmation classes in both German and English. 40 names were on the member list of the Youth Group. Page 31.
Church Council 1958: Karl Ernst Kriese Dietz, Adolf Fiege, H. Fuchs, Daniel Goltz, F. Janker, P. Meyer, K. Schlöndorf, H. Struckhold
In a ceremony at the end of January 1959, the congregation said farewell to Pastor Karl Wulf and in augurated Pastor Otto Winter in February. The merger of the Redeemer and Martin Luther Congregations was not achieved. The Redeemer Church decreased the rental fees after complaints to the Synod. The Synod promised financial support for the building of a church; Celestin Eugene Kakoschke and Eduard Rinas joined the building committee; there were considerations to build a basement church on the property; also, several building lots were inspected. Suggestion of the Synod to set up a building fund, ($10,000.00 required in the first year); the visiting committee received firm pledges for $6,000.00. Request to the Church Council to submit written quarterly reports to the congregation. Due to lack of funds, the parsonage could not be maintained, therefore the Synod leased the parsonage to the congregation until 1965. The Church Council ordered the Niedersächsisch – Oldenburgische hymnals and began use in July (cost: DM 7.00 each). A decision was made to announce the number of church visitors and amount of weekly offerings. The Ladies’ Group assumed the costs of new Communion vessels; served food at the Family and Christmas celebrations at St. Jude’s Anglican Church. A special request went out to the congregation due to financial arrears. Facts and Figures: The moving expenses for Pastor Otto Winter ($100) were shared by the congregation and the Synod. Holy Communion Services began at 9:30 a.m. The Synod refunded $90.00 for repairs to the parsonage. On average, 125 persons attended the church services.
Church Council 1959: Karl Ernst Kriese, G. Bellach, F. Janker, P. Meyer, Moritz, E. Polacsek, Willi Scheibelt, H. Wehrmann, Olaf Weigelin
Many attempts were made, also in co-operation with the Synod, to find a church or a suitable building lot for the congregation. Thus far, the efforts were unsuccessful. Decision of the congregation to sell the parsonage, as the rent charges by the Synod amounted to $135.00 per month. Whoever felt they belonged to the congregation had the right to vote. Pastor Otto Winter was disappointed by the attendance of the Lent Services and Bible study. Facts and Figures: Volunteers painted the outside of the parsonage. Change of leadership in Sunday School from Margot Spauka (moved away) to Esther Winter. Congregational trip to Greenwood Conservation Area on June 5, 1960. Disagreements with the Redeemer Congregation because of lack of space. Heinz Gutsch was the first treasurer of the building fund. On Palm Sunday, the examination of the confirmands took place, followed by the Confirmation Service in German, the English Service being held in the afternoon. Herbert Schultz took over as organist. On January 30,1960, 55 congregational members were present at the Annual General Meeting at St. Jude’s Anglican Church. 62 children attended Sunday School in three German and three English classes. In September, the church building fund showed a balance of $1,631.16. There were 359 baptized members in the congregation, of which 290 were confirmed. 16 confirmed members donated less than $2.00 during the year. Official duties of the Pastor were: 73 baptisms, 35 weddings and 3 funerals. Page 33.
Church Council 1960: Karl Ernst Kriese, Günther Bellach, Ewald Guschewski, Siegfried Kleinau, Rudolf Lischewski, Erich Polacsek, Willi Scheibelt, H. Wehrmann, Olaf Weigelin (Heinz Gutsch, Church purchase building fund) (Increased to 12 people)
This year was marked by the search for a suitable building lot for our own church, as the relationship with the Redeemer Congregation steadily deteriorated. The Church Council rejected the fees charged for weddings by the congregation of Redeemer Church. In September, Pastor Schulze, Superintendent of the Hannover Regional Church, visited the congregation. As an extra duty, Pastor Otto Winter served at the Seamen’s Home at the harbour. Pastor Winter discussed the Gospel of Mark in Bible study. He was critical of low attendance. On June 4, 1961, the 100th anniversary of the Canada Synod, the congregation made a special donation. Ferdinand Haassengier, Helmut Schem and Günther Bellach were elected as accountants. In Sunday School, 62 children in five German and two English classes were registered; on average, 30 children attended. The Sunday School of St. Petri Church in Zurich, Ontario, sent a donation of $35.00. Again, the Ladies’ Group gave presents to the children at Christmas. During the church service, the Ladies’ Group looked after small children in the nursery. Facts and Figures: The congregation voted to increase the Church Council membership from 9 to 12. The building fund reached $3,219.00. 391 baptized members belonged to the congregation, 272 of those were confirmed. The average attendance of the services was 116. 41 members attended the Annual General Meeting. 80 children were baptized, 11 of them came from the congregation.
Church Council 1961: H. Wehrmann, Günther Bellach, Ewald Guschewski, Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Siegfried Kleinau, Karl Ernst Kriese, Rudolf Lischewski, Erich Malcharek, Eugen Pahnke, Willi Scheibelt, Fred Sommerfeld, Olaf Weigelin (Heinz Gutsch, Church purchase building fund)
1962 … A Special Year – Finally our own church!
On January 28, 1962, the decision was made to purchase the “Lakeshore Gospel Temple”, at 123 Lakeshore Road in Mimico (Etobicoke, Toronto). In a special meeting on February 1, 1962 with Pastors Reble and Berner (Synod), a representative from the Real Estate Firm LePage, and Adolf Fiege (congregation), the conditions of purchase and financing for the church were established. The purchase price amounted to $110,000. On April 9, 1962 the congregation took over the building and within one week changed it into a Lutheran Church. This was achieved under the leadership of Celestin Eugene Kakoschke, with the technical blueprints by Sieghard Schmidt, Olaf Weigelin, Hartmut Sator and many coworkers. The kitchen was supplied with dishes, coffee, and cooking pots. Tables and chairs etc. were purchased through the dedication of Eugenie Lischewski and other contributors. On April 15, 1962, on Palm Sunday, the church was consecrated by Pastor Dr. A. Lotz, President of the Synod. Reduction of membership after the move, yet, service attendance rose from 116 to 133. In June, congregational picnic at the Strehle farm, Pickering. Fundraising by the Ladies’ Group made organ purchase possible in the Fall, dedication in a festive church service. Thereafter, regular English services, participation 18 people on average. Sale of parsonage (7 Baby Point Road, Toronto) and purchase near church (94 Bonnyview Drive, Etobicoke). Facts and Figures: Founding of new Youth Group (ages 12 to 18) in October; leaders Heidi Wiesner, Heinz Gutsch, August Wehrmann, (meetings with 10 to 15 participants, Sundays at 4:00 p.m.) Sunday School: 70 children in 6 classes; teachers (German): Christa Guschewski, Petra Wehrmann, Kurt Braun, Klaus Heisterberg; (English): Karl-Heinz Esch, Robert Peter. Church Choir: 22 members; leader Otto Zirke. President of the Ladies’ Group: Charlotte Fiege. Mrs. Koronkievicz was paid $40.00 per month for cleaning the church. Page 35
Church Council 1962: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Günther Bellach, H. Guschewski, Siegfried Kleinau, Bruno Klötzel, Rudolf Lischewski, Erich Malcharek, Eugen Pahnke, Hartmut Sator, Willi Scheibelt, Fred Sommerfeld, Olaf Weigelin (Heinz Gutsch, Church purchase building fund)
Pastor Winter was pleased that the German church services were well attended (123 persons on average) and that the donations for the mission rose by 50%; he was, however, concerned that the number of English visitors to the ser vices had remained the same as last year. The president of the Church Council, Celestin Eugene Kakoschke, emphasized the importance of German Lutherans finding their way into the German congregation. “That is our Mission work”. Exterior and interior renovation work on the church building was in progress. A parking lot, a lawn and a fence were installed. Everyone was overjoyed when the organ was paid off and new books could be bought for the church choir. In this year, Sunday School was attended by 78 children. Esther Winter and Joachim Schmidt joined the teachers’ team. Children and teachers eagerly took part in mission work by supporting a congregation in Brampton and a school for boys in Madras (India). The members of the Ladies’ Group visited the sick and took care of small children during the church services. On October 20th, they served meals to 50 participants of a pastors’ conference in our congregation. Pastor Kantor from Hungary, who talked about his work with enthusiasm, was a welcome guest in this circle. The Youth Group had 25 members. Under the leadership of Erich Feyerabend they built a room in the basement for their own use. Their goal was Christian fellowship. Facts and Figures: 62 children baptized, 15 young people and 3 adults confirmed, 16 couples married and 5 persons buried. Page 37.
Church Council 1963: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, W. Esch, Heinz Gutsch, Bruno Klötzel, Rudolf Lischewski for Günther Bellach, Wilhelm Mandau, E. Molkenthin, Eugen Pahnke, Gustav Schafrick, Fred Sommerfeld, Olaf Weigelin, Egon Schmaltz for H. Wehrmann
In March the congregation bid “Farewell” to Pastor Otto Winter and his wife Esther, who were called to the Seamen’s Mission in New York, USA. The congregation was full of gratitude when Pastor Eberhard Wilhelm Schwantes from Sault Ste. Marie had agreed to assume the position as pastor on June 1, 1964. A new parsonage (32 Spring Garden Road, Etobicoke) was purchased on August 28, 1964. Pastor Schwantes thanked the congregation for the friendly reception, which enabled him and his family to settle in quickly and well. During that year, he visited almost all the members of the congregation and many other Lutherans who had no connection to a church (total of 572 visits). The Ladies’ Group under the leadership of Charlotte Fiege had a very busy year. Several family evenings were arranged. Two plays were practiced and presented for these occasions. They were also responsible for a farewell celebration for Pastor Winter and the welcoming of Pastor Schwantes. The Ladies’ Group invited the women of the German congregations of Toronto to the first German “World Day of Prayer” service in our church. 60 women accepted this invitation. Facts and Figures: 36 baptisms, 3 confirmations, 12 weddings, 2 funerals. 50 new members were received. 108 Sunday School children; 238 confirmed members. 110 services were attended by an average of 158 persons. Congregational members came from the following areas: Oakville, Cooksville, Willowdale, Brampton, Thornhill, King City, Newmarket, Schomberg, Scarborough, West Hill, and City of Toronto. Page 39.
Church Council 1964: Rudolf Lischewski, W. Esch, E. Fritz, Heinz Gutsch, Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Bruno Klötzel, Wilhelm Mandau, E. Molkenthin, Eugen Pahnke, Adolf Ratz, Gustav Schafrick, Egon Schmaltz.
1965 … Congregation celebrates 10th Anniversary!
In March 1965, the most important events and challenges for the year were discussed by the Church Council and participating groups. Projects included preparing the Sunday School rooms for 120 children and nine helpers. For the first time, a special collection was organized in the congregation due to reduced income during the summer months. With great effort by Celestin Eugene Kakoschke, a wooden cross was erected at the church entrance. On Eternity Sunday, November 21st, this cross was dedicated to the members of the congregation who had passed away. Costs and completion were entirely covered by donations and volunteer work. A commemorative plaque, carved by Olaf Weigelin, was mounted in the nave. On December 5th, the congregation celebrated its 10th anniversary. A special church service was conducted by Pastor Dr. A. Lotz, president of the Synod. A second service took place with Pastors Otto Reble and Karl Wulf, as well as representatives from other congregations. The Ladies’ Group served refreshments in the congregational hall. A commemorative publication with a chronicle was distributed. Facts and Figures: Ladies’ Group (approx. 45 members) sewed curtains for the Sunday School rooms. Youth Group: two-hour meetings on Sundays, organized a family afternoon, helped with the renovation work in basement. Towards year-end, the group was reduced to 10 members due to marriages. Ernst Wienecke Sr. assumed the duties of the organist, as Mr. Mickus moved away. Acquisition of another 100 hymn books. Pastor’s salary was augmented by $300.00, which resulted in lowering of the Synod allowance. Annual contributions for the mission were raised from $1,000.00 to $3,000.00 during Church Council meeting with Synod representative. Superintendent Pastor Dr. Erich Dietrich, Düsseldorf, German Church Group, sent a donation of DM 4,000.00 for the wooden cross. $1,000.00 repayment on the 2nd mortgage of the parsonage. Decision to employ a theology student during the summer months to assist Pastor Schwantes. Page 41.
Church Council 1965: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, W. Esch, E. Fritz, Heinz Gutsch, Bruno Kloetzel, R. Lischweski, Wilhelm Mandau, E. Molkenthin, Hugo Redmann, Gustav Schafrick, Egon Schmaltz, Willi Scheibelt
From August 21st to 28th, 1966 the very first youth camp was held at Camp Lutherlyn on Golden Lake. 16 young people between the ages of 13 to 16 years participated under the leadership of Pastor Schwantes and his wife Marion and a few helpers from the congregation. A large number of children took part in the first vacation Bible School at the church. In connection with “Interparish Evangelism Co-operation”, 284 Protestant families were visited and invited to Martin Luther Church in September. Group Activities: The visiting committee conducted a successful special collection and, at the same time, exchanged thoughts and ideas with members. The Ladies’ Group enhanced two family celebrations with plays (“Mary and Martha in Beth any” and an Advent play). The Women’s World Day of Prayer was carried out with the supportive organization of Else Weigelin. The group of young couples met continuously monthly, discussed relevant topics, invited guest speakers, and organized an evening in Advent. Under the leadership of Otto Zirke, the Church Choir participated in church services and took part in a multilingual carol singing with the Lutheran churches in Toronto. Facts and Figures: The Pastor’s salary was raised by $600.00 and at the same time any further allowances from the Board of American Mission towards the Pastor’s salary were waived; repayment of $1,500.00 on the second mortgage of the parsonage. Decision to join the “Association of the Toronto Lutheran Churches” Finishing of two Sunday School rooms. Something to smile: Celestin Eugene Kakoschke was given the nick name “Beggar”, because he, as president of the congregation, repeatedly “begged” the members for active participation and financial support. Page 43.
Church Council 1966: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, M. Fetting, E. Fritz, Heinz Gutsch, Bruno Kloetzel, Rudolf Lischewski, Wilhelm Mandau, Hugo Redmann, Gustav Schafrick, Willi Scheibelt, Egon Schmaltz, Olaf Weigelin
The yearly prelude to congregational life was the Annual General Meeting, with the presentation of the reports from the Pastor, the various groups, the budget, as well as voting new members into the Church Council. Even though a few families moved away, the Sunday School gained 30 additional children. Confirmation instruction was held in separate classes in German and English, from now on. Groups and Circles: Sunday School (134 children in 6 German, 31 children in 2 English classes) had the mandate for religious instruction since it was not offered as in Germany; therefore, parents were asked to attend to the homework of their children. Youth Group meetings every second Sunday for numerous activities. Ladies’ Group: weekly preparation of hot meals for the needy in Mimico; Gertrud Kratsch and Missionary Müller, Germany, gave lectures; arts and crafts evenings with Marion Schwantes (dwarves for the children at the Christmas Pageant); financial support to acquire needed items for the congregation; Advent celebration with the play “About Shelters”. Church Choir celebrated its 10th anniversary. Facts and Figures: Donations and volunteer work made the renovation of the parsonage basement possible. Installation of a new heating system in the parsonage. Second mortgage on the parsonage paid through the special collection, amounting to $2,620.00. Recommendation of the Synod to hold a second special collection for the mission was rejected as the congregation preferred to support only as much as they were able to. Listing of inactive members who were without voting rights, since there was no obvious proof of support, nor participation in Holy Communion, however, they were beneficiaries of all other congregational privileges.
Confirmation 1967: Monika Koronkiewicz, Thomas Kress, Chrystel Ottner, Hartmut Pleschke, Hans Vetter (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1967: W. Lohmann, Wilhelm Mandau, Otto Ottner, Eugen Pahnke, Hugo Redmann, Gustav Schafrick, Egon Schmaltz, Edmund Scholz, Olaf Weigelin
From September 22 to 29, 1968 was evangelization week with guest preacher Pastor Dr. Erich Dietrich, Superintendent from Düsseldorf, West Germany. He preached about current topics, showed slides and spoke about the church in the former German Eastern Territories and Israel. He donated DM 1,000.00 for equipment and supplies for the Sunday School. In September 1968, Pastor R. Markwald (Missionary of the Chile Mission), held slide shows about his work among Germans and Chileans. Marion Schwantes founded a Children’s Choir, assisted with confirmation instruction and carried out office work. Pastor Schwantes changed confirmation instruction to two hours; German on Fridays in the parsonage, English Saturdays at church. Decision of the Church Council to continue the special collection due to financial necessity. Leader of the visiting committee (29 helpers), Celestin Eugene Kakoschke, addressed all members in a letter, asking them to be responsible to carry the church financially, as there were no church taxes in Canada. Support was provided for the Youth Group by Giesela and Sieghard Schmidt and Erich Feyerabend. Painting of the church gable, entrance rooms and floors of the Sunday School, improvement of the parking lot through a load of gravel. The Pastor, Marion Schwantes and Mrs. Kirchhofer looked after 17 youths at summer camp. Some members attended the Centre Island picnic of the Lutheran churches in Toronto. Facts and Figures: Attendance at the congregational picnic: approx. 170. The special collection yielded $4,145.00 and pledges. 12 Sunday School teachers and 180 students.
On average 156 church service visitors. 98 voting members were counted at the Annual General Meeting. The salary of the Pastor was $5,500.00. The total debts for church and parsonage were $101,088.00. Page 47.
Confirmation 1968: Inge Hack, Robin Porr, Ruth Ratz, Alfred Redman, Karin Rinas (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1968: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Heinz Gutsch, H. Lohmann, Wilhelm Mandau, Arthur Neukom for M. Fetting, Otto Ottner, Eugen Pahnke, Hugo Redmann for Doberstein, Gustav Schafrick, Egon Schmaltz, Arthur Schonert, Olaf Weigelin
This year was marked by two significant events: The congregation paid off the first mortgage on the church in the amount of $20,000.00 and acquired the duplex on 5 Superior Avenue, Toronto for $42,000.00 for a day care centre. During the Course of the Year: Members took part in the Lutheran Evangelization Conference at the Holiday Inn. The Strehle farm in Pickering was prepared for the congregational picnic: bridges were built, grass was mowed, and insecticides were sprayed. Vacation substitutes for Pastor Schwantes were Pastors Siegfried Otto and Otto Reble. Pastor Schwantes was director of the youth camp at Lutherlyn with the help of his wife Marion and Mmes. Herzog, Jonuschies and Kirschner. Marion Schwantes and Mr. Haselhorst led the Children’s Choir. On Women’s World Day of Prayer 1969, the Ladies’ Groups from all German speaking congregations met in our church. A charitable group was formed in March under the leadership of Else Weigelin; first, approx. 100 pairs of socks were knitted for bedridden children in the care facility in Orillia (handed over by Mr. Karl and Mrs. Lilo Seelke); two quilts from fabric remnants and nylons were made and sent, along with used clothing, to the “Canadian Lutheran World Relief”; goodies bags, 165 toy horses and 50 angels were distributed to the children of the congregation at Christmas. Facts and Figures: The special collection brought in over $12,000.00. 355 confirmed members, 194 children. On average 162 church service visitors. 35 baptisms, 18 confirmands, 17 weddings and 7 funerals. The Sunday School received current teaching materials for 180 students through Dr. Erich Dietrich, Düsseldorf; teachers were delighted with the co-operation of the parents. In a Report of Canadian Missions, Norman A Berner wrote: In an endeavor to see at first hand some of the work for which it is responsible, the Committee on Canadian Missions met at Advent Lutheran Mission, Toronto (William Huras, pastor) and in the afternoon visited Epiphany, West Hill (Bruno Ederma) and Christ the King, Thornhill, (Arnold Weigel). During its business sessions, the Committee approved a loan to Martin Luther, Toronto, for purchase of house adjacent to church for day care centre. Page 112.
Confirmation 1969: Thomas Albrecht, Wanda Cichocki, Heidi Ganter, Erika Gemeiner, Claudia Graeber, Steffi Heller, Christine Horn, Christine Hornung, Harry Indriksons, Vernon Kakoschke, Birgit Kurschner, Eric Matto, Armin Pfister, Christine Pohle, Eddie Ratz, Brigitte Reinert, Michael Rucht, Gundrun Skawradschun (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1969: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Theo Betke, A. Herzog, H. Lohmann, Arthur Neukom, Otto Ottner, Eugen Pahnke, Hugo Redmann, Egon Schmaltz, Arthur Schonert, Olaf Weigelin, Ernst August Wienecke
The nursery was renovated with untiring effort and furnished under the acting builder Egon Schmaltz, the building committee (Theo Betke, Hugo Redmann and Olaf Weigelin) and many helpers. On April 19, 1970 with Pastor Dr. Otto Reble as guest of honour, the newly completed nursery was dedicated. The Province of Ontario recognized the institution as a registered day care centre and granted subsidized day care spaces. Donations covered all expenses so that there were no additional debts. Nursery commit tee: Olaf Weigelin, Arthur Neukom, Karl Seelke, with Pastor Schwantes as director. The nursery staff consisted of three early childhood educators and two part-time helpers. Groups and Circles: The Charity Circle assisted with the furnishing of the day care by sanding and polishing build ing blocks, sewing of bedding, collecting of books and toys. Ernst Wienecke, organist, founded a Brass Band; Albert Sems taught the young wind instrument players. Through the initiative of Nick Eisfeld, a sports group was started at the gymnasium of Norseman Public School. The first movie evening took place with films from Germany. On December 6, 1970, the congregation celebrated its 15th anniversary with Pastors Karl Wulf and Otto Winter, as well as Dr. Otto Reble, Synod president, and Pastor Algimantas Zilinskas, Co-ordinator of the Lutheran churches in Toronto. A second church service was held in the afternoon, followed by a social hour. Hugo Redmann and his son Alfred Redmann took over the cleaning of the church. Facts and Figures: In November 1970, the Ladies’ Group played host to 40 mentally challenged children from Orillia. Decline of visitors 1969:162, 1970: 143. Almost all loans from congregational members were repaid through the special collection ($5,500.00). Many little children were supervised by the Ladies’ Group during the services.
Confirmation 1970: Martin Bachner, Harald Gorney, Richard Hack, Marianne Hentzelt, Irene Hentzelt, Monika Jonuschies, Karin Klett, Heinrich Koronkiewicz, Angelika Reinert, Ronnie Sadkowy, Michael Schwantes, Harry Spreen, Axel Vogt, Wolfgang Wehrfritz (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1970: Celestin Eugen Kakoschke, Benno Gutsch, Hans Jonuschies, Wilhelm Mandau, Arthur Neukom, Hugo Redmann, Willi Scheibelt, S. Schnee for A. Herzog, Arthur Schonert,
From February 21 to 24, 1971 evangelization days took place under the leadership of Pastor Günter Dahle from Montreal. Discussion leader was Professor Wehrfritz. Young people also took an active part. Based on a Church Council decision, as of September, English services were held every 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month. As president of the Church Council, Olaf Weigelin made an appeal to the congregation’s generosity for sustained donations. Sunday School leader Erich Feyerabend asked parents to send children, unfamiliar with the German language, to the English classes. In the fall, regular Youth Group meetings took place every 2nd Sunday for activities such as kite flying, horseback riding, trips, assisting during services at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Ladies’ Group president: Elli Jonuschies, secretary: Gertrud Kratsch; membership: 35 ladies. Meetings on the first Wednesday of each month included a reflection on a Bible verse; other activities were participating in World Day of Prayer, caring for small children during ser vices, visiting the sick, preparing Easter and Christmas surprises for children. The Charity Circle, established three years earlier, busily sewed dolls’ clothing and bibs for the nursery, made handicrafts and shipped 41 parcels of clothing. During September and October, photos were taken for the church album. Facts and Figures: The special collection ($5,526.00) made the repayment of the mortgage advance possible and compensated for low summer income. With the collection at the picnic, instruments were purchased for the brass band. 135 children attended Sunday School. Decline of the average number of pupils from 75 (1969) to 53 (1971). The 22 members of the Church Choir were directed by Otto Zirke. Page 53.
Confirmation 1971: Reno Indriksons, Mona Kakoschke, Edeltraut Koronkiewicz, Linda Scheibelt, Fred Spreen, Heidi Walker, Ina ____? (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1971: Olaf Weigelin, Theo Betke, Nick Eisfeld, Benno Gutsch, Hans Jonuschies, Wilhelm Mandau, Arthur Neukom, Hugo Redmann, Willi Scheibelt, S. Schnee for A. Herzog, Arthur Schonert, Ernst August Wienecke.
The congregational photo albums were handed out to members at the beginning of the year. All German-speaking Lutheran congregations formed a working group; as a result, the first joint Reformation service was held at Martin Luther Church, with guest preacher Dr. Haugh from Philadelphia. Several congregational members participated in a retreat hosted by the Toronto Co-operative Ministry. Two family evenings were organized to help members get better acquainted. As in every year, the young people spent a week at Camp Lutherlyn; highlights of the year were two canoe trips with nights spent at the Olaf Weigelin and Erich Feyerabend cottages. The Charity Group (also called Handicraft Group) collected and sent clothing to the Lutheran World Relief in Kitchener, repaired toys and books for the day care and made Easter and Christmas surprises for the Sunday School children. The traditional spring cleaning of the church and nursery rooms took place before Pentecost. After his sudden death on July 10th, the congregation said farewell to the Church Choir leader of many years, Otto Zirke; his successor was Ernst Wienecke, who continued to lead the Brass Band; 26 members belonged to the Church Choir. They met regularly for practices as well as for social get-togethers. At year-end Pastor Schwantes and wife Marion once again invited the Church Choir into their home. Facts and Figures: The special collection amount was $6,973.00. A donation of $600.00 was sent by Pastor Dr. Erich Dietrich from Germany. President Ernst Wienecke expressed concerns regarding the decline of church attendance. The construction of a new pumping station caused cracks in the basement walls of the day care as well as the church building. Page 55.
Confirmation 1972: Wilfried Betke, Jacqueline Czernecki, Thomas Klett, Karl Ernst Kriese, Karen Liske, Sylvia Littek, Marita Mandau, Heidi Mayer, Norman Polnau, Pierre Bruno Reinert, Gerhard Strauss, Monika Walker, Martin Weigelin, Birgit Weigelin (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1972: Ernst August Wienecke sen., Nick Eisfeld, Alfred Grammenz, Hans Jonuschies, Wilhelm Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Willi Scheibelt, S. Schnee, Edmund Scholz, Arthur Schonert, Fritz Wilke
Secretary Hugo Hack wrote: “In retrospect, it was a busy year”. Pastor Eberhard Schwantes recorded approx. 1000 visits, 54 church services in German and 25 in English. He worked jointly with the Toronto Co-operative Ministry, the German Cluster, the Chaplain Advisory Board of Queen Elizabeth Hospital and the Central District of the Canada Synod. The German-speaking congregations in Toronto (German Cluster) planned evangelization weeks from March 25th to April 8th, conducted by Pastor Klaus Eickhoff from Hermannsburg. They were well attended and a great success. Annual summer events included the congregational picnic on the Strehle farm, preparing the terrain beforehand, and the summer camp on Golden Lake with 40 children. Many volunteers participated in a clean-up after a flood caused by cracks in the foundation walls of both buildings. Facts and Figures: The special collection made two payments ($21,000.00) towards the 2nd mortgage possible. The Exterior Office of the Evangelical Church, Germany, sent $714.00 for the purchase of a movie projector. A minibus, seating 12, was purchased. Sunday School: increase from 128 to 135 children; on average, 49 were in attendance. Charity Group: collected Dominion tapes for a gas stove; Lilo Seelke suggested knitting socks for the Orillia home; 32 pairs were knit. Ladies’ Group: Advent celebration with performance “The Night Burns over Bethlehem”. Church Choir: joint singing with other choirs on Reformation Day. Nursery Committee: Arthur Neukom (accounting), Karl Seelke and Olaf Weigelin.
Building: Church, Purchase year: 1962, Cost $110.000, Mortgage $38.150
Building: Parsonage, Purchase year: 1964, Cost $21.000, Mortgage $9.472
Building: Daycare, Purchase year: 1970, Cost $42.500, Mortgage $27.871
Obituary: The congregation said farewell to longstanding member and author of the church chronicles Daniel Goltz. Page 57.
Confirmation 1973: Gary Peter, Werner Pahnke, Wilfried Pahnke, …
Church Council 1973: Ernst August Wienecke sen., Alfred Grammenz, Benno Gutsch, Hugo Hack, Alfred Liske, Wilhelm Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Robert Peter, S. Schnee, Edmund Scholz, E. Schonert, Fritz Wilke
Pastor Eberhard Schwantes called this year “A Time of Blessings” and summarized the most important events as follows: The minibus was often used for trips. On March 30, 1974, a joint church service of the four German-speaking congregations took place at St. Ansgar Lutheran Church with guest preacher Dr. Helmut Thielicke. As of April, the four German-speaking congregations broadcasted “The Word for the Day” twice daily with the support of the Exterior Office of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD). Annual congregational activities: Special collection, picnic at the Strehle farm, summer camp at Lutherlyn. Reinhard Gutsch donated and installed a loudspeaker system in the church. The Church Council and Sunday School teachers participated in a retreat in October 1974. The German congregations organized an evangelization week from October 17th to 24th; preaching the Reformation sermon was Pastor Röckle from Stuttgart, West Germany. Under the leadership of Eugen Pahnke, renovations in the church basement were completed; the pumping station settled for damages in the amount of $1,500.00. Groups and Circles: 130 children (83 in German, 47 in English classes) attended Sunday School. Goals which the Ladies’ Group had set were participation in World Day of Prayer (organized under the direction of Else Weigelin), nursery duties, visiting the sick, serving at all church events, collecting stamps for Bethel, Easter and Christmas surprises for the children, purchasing a gas stove. Two faithful Church Choir members moved away: Stella Kakoschke and Talita Betke. The Church Choir visited the Jonuschies family in Gravenhurst on December 28, 1974 and spent a pleasant day. The Sports Group of 8 to 12 members met at Norseman Public School, Etobicoke. Page
Confirmation 1974: Heidi Jonuschies, Christine Guschewski, Peggy Seifert, Christine Kleinau, Diana Vetter, Renate Aukstekalnis, Monika Schmidt, ____ Horn, Mark Rinas, Hubert Ottner, _____ Reuse, Kurt Schnick (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1974: Hugo Hack, Benno Gutsch, Alfred Grammenz, Alfred Liske, Ludwig Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Robert Peter, Gernot Schmidt, Sieghard Schmidt, S. Schnee, E. Schonert, Fritz Wilke
1975 … 20 years Martin Luther Church
With gratitude the congregation celebrated its 20th Anniversary. On May31st, 1975 a trip to the “1000 Islands” with 44 members took place. On November 11th, there was a congregational afternoon with a movie and a slide show under the direction of Karl Seelke and Reinhard Gutsch. Benno Gutsch read from the Congregational Chronicles written by Daniel Goltz, and a play “The Congregational Ship” under the direction of Christel Feyerabend was presented. On December 7th, the official anniversary celebration took place. In the morning, Pastor Siegfried Otto (Seamen’s Mission) preached the sermon, representing Dr. Otto Reble (President of the Synod), while Pastor Karl Wulf (founder of the Congregation) held the service in the afternoon. The Church Choir and the Brass Band contributed to both services and a violin solo was presented. Activities of the Individual Groups: Charity Circle and Ladies’ Group: Sewing of pillows and curtains for the nursery, knitting of socks and mittens for a home in Orillia, making ingenious presents for the Children’s Christmas Pageant, acquisition of a gas stove for the kitchen through the accumulation of “Dominion tapes” collected by the entire congregation, do nations to the building fund and serving refreshments at the anniversary celebration. Youth Group: Sports trips in winter, assisting in church ser vices at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and square dancing at the Mandau-Rinas farm. Maintenance Committee: Leadership provided by Eugen Pahnke and Hugo Hack. Facts and Figures: The special collection ($ 7,225.00) further reduced the church mortgage. The purchase of a film projector made it possible to show movies. Support from the Exterior Office of the Evangelical Church, Germany, with a donation of $1,500.00. Sunday School was attended on average by 60 children in 6 German and 4 English classes. Pastor Schwantes became President of the German Interest Conference. Page 59.
Confirmation 1975: Robert Berg, Anna Berndt, Corina Gayk, Sylvia Gemeiner, Bonnie Horn, Ron Jendpy, Christa Kriese, Rosemarie Sator, Susanne Schloegl, Monika Stelter, Heidi Stelter, Curtis Wehrfritz, Susan Weigelin, Christine Weigelin, Norman Wendtland (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1975: Hugo Hack, Walter Baumgart, Benno Gutsch, Reinhard Gutsch, Alfred Liske, Ludwig Mayer, Robert Peter, Gernot Schmidt, Sieghard Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, A. Wechsel, Fritz Wilke
The goal to pay off the mortgage on the Church was achieved this year; however, the request for financial support for the many challenges continued. Mission projects: Special collection for the earthquake victims in Guatemala; donations of sewing machines for Hong Kong. Choir leader and organist Ernst Wienecke suffered a severe stroke and had to pass on his functions as organist in the congregation to his son, Georg Wienecke, and Mercedes Gayk. The direction of the Choir and Brass Band was assumed by Birgit Weigelin. During Lent, films were shown before the Lent services. On Good Friday, a three-hour radio program was broadcast by the four German pastors on CHIN. The first joint Reformation Service of the four German congregations took place at Central Tech High School with the participation of guest preacher Dr. D. Mann, Hermannsburger Mission. The church choirs were combined for this event under the direction of Bärbel Otto. On this occasion, Vicar F. Michael Lange was inaugurated by Dr. Otto Reble (President of the Synod) to serve in the Willowdale Mission. Facts and Figures: New entrance door and eavestroughs for the church and new roof for the parsonage were installed. Congregational picnic on the Strehle farm and summer camp at Lutherlyn had be come a tradition. Ladies’ Group met every first Wednesday of the month under the leadership of Else Weigelin. Charity Circle was directed by Christel Feyerabend. Collection of used stamps for Bethel by Hilde Schnick. Page 61.
Confirmation 1976 – Thomas Aukstekalnis, Richard Betke, Elizabeth Mayer, Martin Pahnke, Frank Polnau, Richard Schmidt, Peter Schnick, Richard Spreen, Alinda Redmann, Susan Zabel, Sigrid Zabel (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1976: Hugo Hack, Walter Baumgart, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Alfred Liske, Ewald Lischewski, Ludwig Mayer, Jack Schaeffer, Gernot Schmidt, Sieghard Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, Fritz Wilke
The congregation continued to support the mission work, an example being donations for the construction of a school in Bangladesh. In a joint Church Council meeting, the four German Congregations decided to finance the German radio devotions and the expansion of the Willowdale Mission. Through Pastor Eberhard Schwantes’ initiative, the fathers prepared and served the Mother’s Day luncheon after the service. In September, the German Interest Conference was hosted at Martin Luther Church under the leadership of Pastor Schwantes as president. Two break-ins into the church occurred: The altar cross was totally destroyed, doors, cupboards and windows were demolished, and communion vessels and the loudspeaker system were stolen. Olaf Weigelin, Hartmut Sator and Eugen Pahnke fashioned a new cross and carried out all of the wooden repairs. Facts and Figures: Due to low attendance, the Annual General Meeting did not have a quorum and was postponed to the following Sunday. The adult retreat was attended by 10 congregational members. The congregational picnic was held on the Strehle farm in Pickering for the last time. Renovations in the basement of the parsonage were completed. The Ladies’ Group sent donations to the Scott Mission, the “Kirchliche Monatsblatt”, to Pastor Kantor in Hungary, and sponsored a child for the summer camp at Lutherlyn. The Church Choir (20 members) lost two members: Rudolf Lischeski retired, and Mr. Feek moved away. Improvements to the nursery (day care): a heating system and fencing for the playground were installed. Käthe Kleinau became part-time church secretary. Page 63.
Confirmation 1977: Yvonne Burschberg, Michael Car, Ralph Ganter, Nicole Gayk, Catharina Gutsch, Marlies Hendricks, Thomas Knuth, Christine Liske, Grant Mandau, Brian Mayer, Philip Neukom, Richard Ottner, Christine Sator, Richard Sator, Harry Schonert, Harry Schulz, Rene Mark Seefeld, Ralph Redman (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1977: Hugo Hack, Walter Baumgart, Rudolf Czernecki, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Ewald Lischewski, Alfred Liske, Jack Schaeffer, Gernot Schmidt, Helmut Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, Fritz Wilke
This was a year of growth during which many of the previously set goals were achieved: The special collection ($12,000.00) allowed for the purchase of a carpet for the church A climbing structure for the nursery is installed. Repairs on windows and washrooms. Purchase of two trumpets and a copy machine Special salary raise of $3,000.00 for the Pastor Continued funding of the radio program. The Ladies’ Group under the leadership of Else Weigelin was committed to many tasks, such as visiting the sick, helping the needy, providing child care during church services, congregational events, donating to Pastor Kantor, Hungary, and to the organ fund of the congregation. The German Cluster organized a harbour cruise on the paddleboat “Trillium” in May. The congregational picnic took place for the first time at Camp Edgewood. The congregation participated in a Reformation Service at St. Ansgar Lutheran Church. First of Advent celebration with a play. Pastor Schwantes represented the congregation in various ways: Radio broadcast “The Word for the Day”; president of the German Interest Conference of the Lutheran Churches in America; member of the Chaplain Advisory Board of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, the Toronto Lutheran Co-operative Ministry, the Seamen’s Advisory Board, and of two synod committees. Facts and Figures: Sunday School: On average 44 children. The leader Erich Feyerabend encouraged parents to bring their children to church. Church Choir: directed by Birgit Weigelin, visited the former choir director, Ernst Wienecke, on the farm, as well as the Jonuschies family in Gravenhurst. Donation Overview: 1976 – $43,321.00 1977 – $38,914.00 1978 – $46,506.00. Page 65.
Confirmation 1978: Linda Bernt, Udo Bohmann, Rudolph Bojanowski, Carsten Brandt, Susan Eisfeld, Peter Ganter, Ronald Ganter, Heidi Gutsch, Martin Koronkiewicz, Ronald Mayer, Ivette Penno, Astrid Penno, Peter Rinas, Karin Runge, Sabine Schloegl (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1978: Walter Baumgart, Adolf Betke, Rudolf Czernecki, Henry Ganter, Heinz Gutsch, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Ewald Lischewski, Alfred Liske, Jack Schaeffer, Gernot Schmidt, Helmut Schmidt, Olaf Weigelin
This year was marked by significant events: On June 24, 1979, an anniversary service to celebrate Pastor Schwantes’ 20-year term as Pastor and 15 years of service in the congregation, and his 50th birthday. Guest preacher was former president of the Synod, Pastor Dr. Otto Reble. Guests of honour included Pastors Karl Wulf, Otto Winter and Joachim A. Knaack. During the celebration in the afternoon, a travel certificate was presented to Rev. and Mrs. Marion Schwantes in the amount of $1,500.00. In October 1980, a two-week evangelization with Pastor Klaus Eickhoff, Germany, took place. In November, Pastor Dr. Erich Dietrich, Germany, who with his wife accepted an invitation, preached, and presented a slide show on Poland through contacts of the Kakoschke family. Youth Work: Under the leadership of Käthe Kleinau, performance of plays in the congregation and at Heidehof, a seniors’ home in St. Catharines; April/May “The Miracle Doctor” and the “Circle of Truth”, recital of Mother’s Day poems and children’s choir songs with presentation of bouquets of flowers to the grandmothers. October/November “Old Shoes and Rotten Eggs” and “Abu Hassan”. Two confirmand retreats at Camp Edgewood with approx. 20 participants. The Kleinau family invited the youth group to a weekend at the “Little Meadow Farm”. Facts and Figures: Nursery building paid off (approx. value at the time $200,000.00). Installation of an alarm system. Financial support for Vietnam refugees with $2,100.00 through Erika Mandau’s initiative. Edmund Scholz donated a lawn mower and Adolf Betke purchased two fire extinguishers. Maintenance Committee among others: Eugen Pahnke – painting, Walter Baumgart – repairs, Edmund Scholz – carpentry, Rudolf Lischewski – tables and chairs, Adolf Betke – renovation of men’s washroom. The Bojanowski (Reinhard, Rudolf) family took over the apartment above the nursery and assumed the duties of Mrs. Raes. Page 67.
Confirmation 1979 – Matthias Rucht (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1979: Walter Baumgart, Adolf Betke, Rudolf Czernecki, Heinz Gutsch, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Ewald Lischewski, Eugen Pahnke, Jack Schaeffer, Gernot Schmidt, Helmut Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, Olaf Weigelin
The congregation celebrated its 25th anniversary on November 30, 1980, with Pastors Karl Wulf and Otto Winter as guest preachers. A banquet followed in the afternoon with 240 guests. For the congregational picnic Mr. and Mrs. Wienecke donated a roasted piglet. A spiritual concert with “Schola Cantorum Choir” celebrated the congregational anniversary. Susan Weigelin took over the choir leadership from her sister Birgit Weigelin. Youth Work: Under the direction of Pastor Eberhard Schwantes and Käthe Kleinau: Three retreats at Camp Edgewood; traditionally prepared Passover meal with the youth on Maundy Thursday; congregational afternoon in May; program was repeated at Heidehof Senior’s Home in St. Catherine’s in June; four youth meetings and a trip during the summer; roller skating in the fall; Candlelight Service in Advent. Facts and Figures: The not undisputed sale of the parsonage to Pastor Schwantes and his wife necessitated special meetings of the Church Council and the congregation. The special collection of $12,000.00 was designated for a heating system and new offices. In Sunday School, an average of 46 children were taught in four German and four English speaking classes. The existing toddler class was discontinued due to low attendance. On average, 26 members came to the Ladies’ Group and experienced a varied program. For Easter and Christmas, presents were made for the children. Hilde Haassengier and Helene Ratz made gifts for the ladies on Mother’s Day and for Christmas. Hilde Schnick sent the collected, used stamps to Bethel, where the stamps created work for people with disabilities. Page 69.
Confirmation 1980: Sylvia Abony, David Betke, Tina Brozach, Frederic Budnik, Peggy Burschberg, Frank Grotsch, Orville Hendricks, Isabel Kleinau, Thomas Kleinau, Brigitte Kubialka, Gerhard Runge, Judith Schonert, Carol Schuster, Kaja Werbus, Peter Woessner (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1980: Heinz Gutsch, Adolf Betke, Walter Baumgart. Rudolf Czernecki, Erich Feyerabend, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Helmut Herrmann, Eugen Pahnke, Jack Schaeffer, Edmund Scholz, Gerhard Vetter, Olaf Weigelin.
This year was overshadowed by the severe heart attack Pastor Schwantes suffered in January. Pastor Otto Winter conducted a special prayer service for Pastor Schwantes. Retired Pastors Karl Wulf and Otto Winter, and many congregational members assumed everyday duties in the congregation. Erich Feyerabend and Benno Gutsch held confirmation classes. Starting at Easter, Pastor Schwantes was able to resume some duties and conducted the confirmation on Pentecost Sunday. A festive service celebrating Pastor Schwantes’ recuperation took place on November 15th, with the participation of Pastors Wulf and Winter (sermon), the Ladies’ Group, the Brass Band and the Church Choir. At the end of March, a photo album of the congregation was published for the 25th anniversary of the congregation. “Schola Cantorum” and Mr. and Mrs. Jung (organ and recorder) presented a Spring Concert. Due to an increase in costs, the Radio Program “The Word for the Day” was to be terminated. The first Christmas Eve service in the English language, held by Pastor Winter, was well attended. Facts and Figures: Repairs and improvements included the ventilators in the nave of the church, cots for the church nursery, fencing for the parking lot, outside lighting and windowpanes. The Church Council dealt with issues such as nursery, extending the church office and washrooms, heating system, financial commitments, church van, and printing. The Ladies’ Group shipped about 100 parcels to the Lutheran Aid Organization. The special collection reached $12,700.00. 40 children attended the summer camp at Camp Lutherlyn under the leadership of Käthe Kleinau and congregational members. Page 71.
Confirmation 1981: Sandra Betke, Anne Kekkonen, Ingrid Kessler, Martin Klett, Mark Neukom, Karin Pruenoschat, Christian Sator, Corinna Schmitt, Linda Soostmeyer, Christine Soostmeyer (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1981: Edmund Scholz, Ernst Carl, Rudolf Czernecki, Erich Feyerabend, Heinz Gutsch, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Helmut Herrmann, Alfred Liske, Eugen Pahnke, Robert Peter, Jack Schaeffer, R. Werbus
The congregation achieved remarkable results by bringing to fruition the idea of an addition at the south side of the church building. The gratifying amount of the special collection was $18,000.00. In August, the plans for the addition (offices for Pastor and congregation and two meeting rooms) were accepted by the congregation; approximate Costs $30,000.00. With financial support and with the help of many volunteers, construction began on October 30th under the leadership of Olaf Weigelin. Pastor Schwantes held a retreat for Sunday School teachers and parents at Camp Edgewood in January. Traditional events such as Mother’s Day luncheon, congregational picnic, summer camp and retreats took place. In addition, Pastor Schwantes provided religious instruction for adults. The Church Council rejected the decision of the German Cluster to end the radio program “The Word for the Day”. Two slide shows by Eugenie Lischewski delighted the congregation. Topics were “Israel” in June, and “Summer camp 1982” in October. On the First Sunday in Advent, new families were introduced to the congregation. Every three months, Pastor Schwantes conducted a service for patients at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. A few congregational members at tended a religious workshop in Burlington. A joint Reformation service of the German Lutheran congregations took place at St. Ansgar Church. A central vacuum system was installed in the church building and the heating converted to electricity. Facts and Figures: 475 new hymn books were ordered from Germany. 30 young people were separately taught in German and English confirmation classes. The average attendance in Sunday School was 29 of 64 registered children. In 1972 there were 47 out of a total of 128 children. Page 73.
Confirmation 1982: Susan Burschberg, Robert Eisfeld, Dirk Gebhardt, Karsten Gebhardt, Andre Thomas Gutsch, Heidi Hartl, Heidi Polnau, Andrea Schloegl, Kerstin Zimmer (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1982: Edmund Scholz, Ernst Carl, Rudolf Czernecki, Erich Feyerabend, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Helmut Herrmann, Heinz Gutsch, Alfred Liske, Eugen Pahnke, Robert Peter, Ernst August Wienecke, R. Werbus
On June 26, 1983, the dedication of the addition to the south side of the church building was celebrated. Under the expert leadership of Olaf Weigelin and Eugen Pahnke many volunteers worked with great effort on completing the addition. In the end, the project was debt free. The Pastor’s office was designed and built by Hartmut Sator in consultation with Pastor Schwantes and others. Regular Bible study on Tuesday evenings began with 12 to 16 participants. Lecture, slide show, and movie about Martin Luther on the occasion of the 500th birthday of the Reformer. Arrival of the new books hymn from Germany; half of them were paid for privately; a considerable portion was funded by Wolfgang Hechtenberg. Discussion on how to increase the number of visitors in the English service. In September 1983, Mona Kakoschke took over the leadership of the Church Choir from Susan Weigelin; Grant Mandau led the Brass Band, and Georg Wienecke continued as organist. New sod was laid in the playground, a play structure was erected and a cheery, multicoloured mural was painted by Olaf Weigelin. Change in Sunday School leadership: After ten years, Christel Feyerabend passed her duties on to Ernst-August Wienecke. Helpers were Lotte Arndt, Christine Weigelin, Susan Eisfeld, Ingrid Kessler and also Edith Peter and Mrs. I. Tiedemann; discontinuation of the English classes due to low attendance. Pastor Emeritus Otto Winter passed away in December 1983. Facts and Figures: The Ladies’ Group mailed 109 individual pack ages with clothing and toilet articles for men, women, and children, supported three orphans in India, acquired new coffee cups for the congregational household. In October, Mrs. Kobs (Missionary) gave a talk on her aid projects in Cairo and Poland. The council of the Ladies’ Group consisted of Else Weigelin (President), Gisela Bennies (Vice-President), Ursula Pahnke (Secretary), Maria Bastick (Treasurer), Elfriede Schmidt. (Building Fund). Page 75.
Confirmation 1983: Erika Abony, Alexandra Silke Bowk, Carol Ann Brauer, Peter Eric Alexander Budnik, Rosemarie Feyerabend, Sandra Greiling, Gerald Groetsch, Thomas Huff, Annemarie Neukom, Paul Christian Nigol, David Runge, Randy Schonert, Susan Tittlemeier, Stephanie Wiegand (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1983: Eugen Pahnke, Walter Baumgart, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Heinz Gutsch, Wolfgang Hechtenberg, Helmut Herrmann, Alfred Liske, Martin Pahnke., Robert Peter, Edmund Scholz, R. Werbus, Ernst August Wienecke
On November 18, 1984, the congregation celebrated Pastor Schwantes’ 25th ordination anniversary and 20 years of serving at Martin Luther Church. The deaths of Benno Gutsch and Ernst Wienecke, two longstanding, faithful and very active members, were a painful loss. The Church Council acquired English Orders of Service and “In Memoriam” donation cards. Marion Schwantes took over the leadership of the Ladies’ Group from Else Weigelin after ten years in office. Ursula Pahnke and Gisela Bennies retired also. The focal points of Pastor Schwantes’ work were preaching of the Gospel and personal visits. Day trips with the church bus were organized in summer and early fall. Donations provided aid for the needy. The topic for the World Day of Prayer, held in our church, was “Hope in Christ, Fountain of Life”. Pastor Schwantes and Charlotte Fiege gave lectures in the Ladies’ Group. Sunday School attendance dropped from 50 children to 32. The teaching staff consisted of leader Edith Peter and helpers Lotte Arndt, Rosemarie and Elisabeth Feyerabend, Kerstin Zimmer, Carol MacKenzie, Ernst-August Wienecke. I. Tiedemann finished her duties in July as she was moving away. At the Christmas celebration of the congregation, members of the Ladies’ Group presented the play “Points of Intersection” by Erich Colberg. Facts and Figures: 331 packages were put together by the Ladies’ Group for refugee camps in Africa. Cooking pots and tablecloths were purchased for the congregation. The members of the Maintenance Committee were Walter Baumgart, Erich Feyerabend, Eugen Pahnke and Robert Peter. Page 77.
Confirmation 1984: Lynda Car, David Eisfeld, Elisabeth Feyerabend, Sylvia Stephanie Gutsch, Ralph Kutz, Frank Lein, Ronald Lein, Nicole Mittag, Susanne Nitschke, Ulrike Nitschke, Nicolette Quasdorf, Colette Rabba, Nicole Rabba, Mark Scholz, Gordon Weber, Mark Weber (with Pastor Eberhard Schwantes)
Church Council 1984: Eugen Pahnke, Walter Baumgart, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Reinhard Gutsch, Helmut Herrmann, Alfred Liske, Martin Pahnke, Robert Peter, Edmund Scholz, Ernst August Wienecke, Horst Zimmer.
On May 19, 1985, the congregation celebrated the Golden Ordination of Pastor Emeritus Karl Wulf. December 1, 1985, marked the 30th anniversary of the congregation. 300 guests were welcomed in the Polish Hall. A parapet was added to the chancel for Holy Communion. The completion of the third floor of the church addition began. The annual picnic took place at Camp Edgewood and was well attended. New mission project: Ladies sewed quilts for the “Third World” every Wednesday morning. The Ladies’ Group purchased new tea pots and acquired curtains for some Sunday School rooms. On the occasion of Johann Sebastian Bach’s 300th birthday, the Church Choir presented three Bach hymns. Stella Kakoschke and Karl Ernst Kriese talked about Bach’s life and work. On November 3rd, all Toronto Lutheran churches celebrated Reformation Day with a special concert at Metropolitan United Church. The Church Council devoted itself to various activities: Sunday church services, youth retreats, congregational bus trips, Mother’s Day celebration, special collection, organizing events, providing greens for the Advent wreath, cutting branches, and putting up the Christmas trees. In the Ladies’ Group, guest speakers talked about the work with the terminally ill patients at Queen Elizabeth Hospital and about the Hermannsburg Mission in Ethiopia. Facts and Figures: Karl-Ernst Kriese tirelessly took loving care of the floral arrangements in the altar room. Every year he also made up the Advent wreath and looked after the sheet music of the church choir for many years. The Ladies’ Group decorated the church for anniversaries and church events. At the Advent celebration, eight members of the Ladies’ Group presented “I have been a guest” by Leo Tolstoy. Page 79.
Confirmation 1985: Gerhard Aukstekalnis, Jennifer Becker, Anja Bosch, Olaf Brandt, Sonja Carl, Tamara Fleischmann, Stefan Grammenz, Elke Gutsch, Ingrid Ottner, Christian Schmidt, Sybille Scholz, Astrid Starke, Erik Weigelin, Susan Wiegers, Karen Zimmer (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1985: Ernst August Wienecke, Walter Baumgart, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Helmut Herrmann, Alfred Liske, Martin Pahnke, Robert Peter, Arthur Schonert, Horst Zimmer
Under Pastor Schwantes’ initiative, the members of the congregation registered, wherever possible, their protest against Sunday store openings through articles in newspapers, submissions to the government and presentations to city council, letters of protest and collection of signatures. For the 20th time, the summer camp took place at Camp Lutherlyn, Golden Lake. In the Ladies’ Group, Marion Schwantes was president, Stella Kakoschke secretary, and Maria Bastick treasurer. In April, guest speakers Mr. and Mrs. Schulz reported twice on their mission work in Papua, New Guinea. Pastor Marilyn Hunter from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital gave a lecture on “Coping with pain and grief”. At the Christmas celebration, ladies presented the play “He was among us” by Erich Colberg. Examples of works of love were: Spring cleaning in church and nursery, decorating the church, serving refreshments at special occasions, coffee hour after services, donations to the Scott Mission and the Bodelschwingh Institutions, Bethel, Germany, in January and as well in November, sending parcels with stamps, supporting three orphans, paying the costs for advertisements in the “Kirchliche Monatsblatt”. The packages of the Mission Circle even reached Ethiopia. Subsequently a deeply moving thank-you letter, and report arrived, which was distributed among congregational members. Facts and Figures: In addition to 245 packages for men, women and children with clothing and toiletry items (towel, wash cloth, soap, tooth paste and brush, underwear, sewing accessories) the Mission Circle produced and shipped 35 quilts; furthermore, six boxes of soap pieces, one box of baby clothing and one box of fabrics and sewing accessories. The number of Sunday School children decreased from 50 (1984) to 37 (1986). In co-operation with the Church Council, Pastor Schwantes organized a dance for young people. Page 81.
Confirmation 1986: Kirsten Brandt, Andreas Grammenz, Derik Grammenz, Christian Gutsch, Mark Kulz, Werner Ratz (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1986: Ernst August Wienecke, Walter Baumgart, Ernst Carl, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Alfred Liske, Martin Pahnke, Robert Peter, Arthur Schonert, Hans Wiegand, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer
The interior of the room on the upper level of the church was finished under the direction of Olaf Weigelin and many volunteers and was dedicated on May 31st. At the same time, the Church Choir celebrated its 30th anniversary. On this occasion, each member received a rose. A monetary gift, presented to the Church choir, was used to purchase additional song books. On March 23, 1987, Celestin Eugene Kakoschke passed away. As president of the Church Council, he had tirelessly taken up the causes of the Martin Luther Church for many years. Facts and Figures: For the first time no confirmation at Pentecost. Higher attendance at Bible study. Sunday Services at 9:45 a.m. in English, and at 11:00 a.m. in German. During three years, six women sewed 96 quilts and packed over 1000 parcels which were shipped with the help of Mr. and Mrs. Gernot Schmidt. Sunday School was divided into four groups with a total of 37 children; leader: Edith Peter, teaching staff: Lotte Arndt, Sonja Carl, Elisabeth Feyerabend, and Ernst-August Wienecke. The Ladies’ Group collected food for the “Toronto Food Bank”. At its Mother’s Day celebration, members presented the play “The Student”, and at the congregational Christmas celebration, “Four Advent Candles”. Offices held: Marion Schwantes: Ladies’ Group; Ursula Pahnke: Mission Circle; Karl Ernst Kriese: flower deco rations on the altar, advent wreath, plant care; Mona Kakoschke: Church Choir director; Georg Wienecke: organist; Mr. and Mrs. Reinhard Bojanowski: caretakers for church and nursery; Käthe Kleinau, congregational secretary and acting nursery director. Page 83.
There was not Confirmation in 1987.
Church Council 1987: Ernst August Wienecke, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Walter Baumgart, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Arthur Schonert, Hans Wiegand, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Honorary Member: Alfred Liske)
This was a rather quiet year for the congregation, after the reconstruction of the church building with the extraordinary effort of all members. The focal points of Pastor Schwantes’ work were now as before the preaching of God’s word. First and foremost, his position as Pastor required visiting families and the sick. However, the changes in society and the shifting of old basic values weighed heavily on his mind. The commercialisation of Sundays, the pollution of the environment, the financing of the Roman Catholic schools with public funds were current topics with which we, as a congregation, had to concern our selves. Being around the nursery children almost every day gave Pastor Schwantes constant joy and energy for his daily challenges. The English-speaking members took on the task of posting the hymns, lighting the candles, and collecting the offerings in the English service. The World Day of Prayer took place in our church. The collection was directed to the “Women’s Inter-Church Council”. The Ladies’ Group presented the plays “Our Mothers” by Elisabeth Detman on Mother’s Day, and, at the Advent celebrations “The Night Burns above Bethlehem” by Erich Colberg. Facts and Figures: No planning of new projects. 28 Sunday School children from 19 families attended and enriched the church services through their special contributions. Support given to Toronto Food Bank, Blind Mission, Salvation Army, Bible Society, Leprosy Mission, mission projects of the Lutheran Church in Canada. Raffling off a beautiful quilt from the Mission Circle as prize at the congregational picnic. Page 85.
Confirmation 1988: Beverly Budnik, Michelle Flisar, Matthias Gutsch, Richard Herrmann, Mark Mittag, Marnie Peter, Lisa Ratz, Walter Ratz, Joanne Rey (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1988: Hans-Joachim Arndt, Walter Baumgart, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Edmund Scholz, Arthur Schonert, Hans Wiegand, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Honorary Member: Alfred Liske)
After his 25th ordination anniversary on May 28, 1989 Pastor Schwantes reflected on the day, “We are very grateful to all of you. Much effort and preparation went into this unforgettable day which you gave us. You have shown us so much love.” Georg Wienecke retired from his position as organist due to his moving away. His successor was Heike Eble. In a special meeting of the Church Council in September, Olaf Weigelin presented his plans for the extension of the church building with an elevator shaft at the main entrance. In October, an evangelization week took place with Prelate Gerhard Röckle, Stuttgart, on the theme “To be a Christian Today”. The demonstrations in the GDR, where people risked everything for personal freedom, the upheavals in Eastern Europe, and finally the fall of the Berlin wall filled us all with awe and admiration. Adelheid von Gutenberg, Bavarian Mothers’ Service, Stein, was a guest in the congregation and spoke about the World Day of Prayer. Facts and Figures: Marion Schwantes retired as president of the Ladies’ Group; Christel Feyerabend took over the leadership in the fall. Henriette Swistunovicz sewed seating pads for the pews. Brass Band leader was Grant Mandau. Confirmands of the years 1984 and 1985 formed a new Youth Group and organized activities and trips. Sunday School programs (26 children) included the topic of the World Day of Prayer, (topic “Burma”), anniversary celebration, mission program in northern Canada, birthday party for Jesus. Church Choir: departure of members Otto Ottner (retired), Georg Wienecke (moved away); rehearsing of new hymns; singing at the anniversary, evangelization week and at special events. Page 87.
Confirmation 1989: Jennifer Grammenz, Heide Grotsch, Anita Karoline Gutsch, Karin Gutsch (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1989: Hans-Joachim Arndt, Henry Ganter, Reinhard Gutsch, Otto Karthaus, Ron Mayer, Grant Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Axel Romberg, Edmund Scholz, Hans Wiegand, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Honorary Members: Alfred Liske, Arthur Schonert)
The 35th anniversary of the congregation was celebrated at the church in November 1990 with the participation of Bishop Bill Huras and the founder of the congregation, Pastor Karl Wulf. A banquet at the Hansa Haus followed with contributions from church groups and a presentation of the play “The Church Boat” by the Ladies’ Group. The Day Care had been in operation for 20 years. The planting of a pine tree on the grounds of the church was a contribution to environmental protection. The reunification of Germany was commemorated during a church service (Leviticus 25, verse 10). The Building Committee discussed the project “Front Entrance”, which was, at first, turned down by the congregation because of the costs. Sunday shopping and the funding of Roman Catholic schools continued to preoccupy the Pastor and the congregation. Facts and Figures: Confirmation instruction was offered in both languages on Friday evenings from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. The Sewing Circle was led by Ursula Pahnke, the Ladies’ Group by Christel Feyerabend, and the Sunday School by Edith Peter. Honorary members of the Church Council were Walter Baumgart, Alfred Liske and Arthur Schonert. Confirmands received a pin upon leaving Sunday School. Participation of all (!) Sunday School children at the Christmas Pageant. Meetings of the Youth Group for various activities. On average, 15 members attended Bible Study, 20 the Ladies’ Group and 22 the Church Choir. Six large packages of stamps were mailed to Bethel by Hilde Schnick. The Mission Group shipped 269 packages with clothing and toilet articles. Page 89.
Confirmation 1990: Monika Budnik, Leona Kummer, Martin Wiegers, Peter Wienecke (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1990: Hans-Joachim Arndt, Erich Feyerabend, Henry Ganter, Otto Karthaus, Grant Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Axel Romberg, Edmund Scholz, Wolfgang Wehrfritz, Hans Wiegand, Ernst August Wienecke, Melvin Zabel
The work towards the completion of the main entrance to the church was progressing. The government gave a building grant of $ 50,000.00, and the plans could be handed over to an architect. For the 25th year now, the congregation went to summer Camp Lutherlyn on Golden Lake. After 21 years, Edith Peter resigned as leader of the Sunday School. Inge Koo Tze Mew had committed to helping out in previous years, but rejected a leadership offer at this time. Also serving in Sunday School were Ernst-August Wienecke (over 20 years), Lotte Arndt (over 10 years) and Elisabeth Feyerabend (6 years). A solution had to be found for the decline in attendance to 17, language difficulties of the children in the German classes as well as low attendance at the Children’s Christmas Pageant. Temporary organist was the confirmand of the previous year, Klaus Schneeberger, who took over from Heike Eble on short notice. In addition to the regular congregational retreats, one was held for young couples. Mr. and Mrs. Schulz gave several presentations to the congregation about their activities in support of Bible translators in Papua, New Guinea. Facts and Figures: Eligible to vote were those members of the congregation who took part in Holy Communion and gave financial support. In comparison to 1990 with 295 households, this year 279 households, were counted as contributors. The Maintenance Committee consisted of Erich Feyerabend, Eugen Pahnke and Alfred Liske. On March 31, 1991, Elli Rinas, a longstanding choir and congregational member, passed away. 14 baptisms, 5 confirmations, 3 weddings, 12 funerals were recorded. Page 91.
Confirmation 1991: Marcus Arndt, Tania Arndt, Karla Elizabeth Herrmann, Jerry Rabba, Klaus Schneeberger (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1991: Hans-Joachim Arndt, Erich Feyerabend, Reinhard Gutsch, Otto Karthaus, Grant Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Edmund Scholz, Harry Schonert, Wolfgang Wehrfritz, Hans Wiegand, Ernst August Wienecke, Melvin Zabel (Honorary Members: Walter Baumgart, Alfred Liske, Arthur Schonert)
Five years after inception, the idea of expanding the main entrance of the church was realized between May and September. Through the financial support of many congregational members, the total expenses for the addition were almost covered. A service with Bishop Bill Huras to give thanks was held on October 18, 1992. As always, the summer camp at Lutherlyn on Golden Lake took place at the beginning of August. Käthe Kleinau’s long-time experience was of great importance. Reno Indriksons, Harry Schonert and Inge Koo Tze Mew were assistant camp counsellors. Mission work continued to be an important focus as a tangible sign of love for others within and without the congregation. The Church Choir enriched the services. Peggy Seifert acted as substitute choir director. The Brass Band created a musical background to the special services. Starting with the new year, a children’s talk took place at the beginning of the services. A decline in the number of children put the continuation of the Sunday School in jeopardy. Facts and Figures: The caretaking duties of the church building and grounds were fulfilled by Mr. and Mrs. Rudolf Bojanowski. On August 22, 1992, a bazaar was held in the church yard in support of the Day Care centre. The net proceeds amounted to $2,500.00. The Evangelization Committee consisted of Pastor Schwantes, Hans-Joachim Arndt and Hans Wiegand. The congregation was represented in the German Cluster by Erich Feyerabend and Hans Wiegand, as well as by Pastor Schwantes (President). The Sewing Circle welcomed as new members Lydia Schlag and Elli Herold. A special Thanksgiving Service to commemorate the completion of the Renovations to our Church. Page 93.
There was no Confirmation in 1992.
Church Council 1992: Hans-Joachim Arndt, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Reinhard Gutsch, Otto Karthaus, Grant Mandau, Eugen Pahnke, Jack Schaeffer, Edmund Scholz, Harry Schonert, Wolfgang Wehrfritz, Ernst August Wienecke (Honorary Members: Walter Baumgart, Alfred Liske, Arthur Schonert)
This was a relatively quiet year, without building projects and without debts. Congregational Life: The Mission Circle met at the church on Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. With great enthusiasm the ladies worked on producing quilts to be sent to the “Third World” and on sorting donated clothing. Several times a year, Eugen Pahnke drove his trailer, loaded to capacity with parcels, to the Atomic Transport Company in Oakville. This company delivered the parcels free of charge to the “Canadian Lutheran World Relief” in Winnipeg. For months, Hilde Schnick sorted the stamps which Ludwig Mayer brought from his workplace and sent the largest shipment to Bethel, so far. During the June meeting of the Ladies’ Group, Pastor Schwantes gave a report on “The Life and Work of the ethnic Germans in Russia”. Maria Bastick published a bilingual brochure titled “The Lord is my Shepherd”. The proceeds were forwarded to needy ethnic Germans in Russia. Inge Koo Tze Mew, leader of Sunday School as of this year, conducted Sunday School, except during the summer, with four other teachers. A special service was held on the World Day of Prayer. The Youth Group, including the confirmands, met for skating. A winter weekend retreat was held at Camp Lutherlyn. Ten ladies accepted an invitation from the Ladies’ Group of the First Lutheran Church, Bond Street, to celebrate their 120th anniversary. The Ladies’ Group continued to financially support three orphans at the Queen Louise Orphanage, India. During the vacation of Pastor Schwantes, Reinhard Gutsch took on the responsibility of co-ordinating the church services. Page
Confirmation 1993: Lisa Indriksons, Thomas Wienecke (with Pastor Eberhard Schwantes)
Church Council 1993: Horst Zimmer, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Reinhard Gutsch, Robert Peter, Jack Schaeffer, Helmut Schneeberger, Edmund Scholz, Harry Schonert, Dan Sommerfeld, Wolfgang Wehrfritz, Ernst August Wienecke
During the Annual General Meeting on February 26, 1994, Willi Rinas made an unusual proposal to the congregation. He offered a plot of land on Lake Simcoe and financial support for the building of a seniors home. Individual apartments could be purchased; addition of a care-unit would follow. The congregation was asked to express their points of view in a questionnaire. Pastor Schwantes looked back on his 30 years of service in the Martin Luther congregation with gratitude. According to the wishes of Pastor and Mrs. Marion Schwantes, the celebration took place at the congregational picnic at Camp Edgewood. The Ladies’ Group served a buffet with a wide variety of selections. A new congregational project was the cultivation of organic vegetables on a piece of land at the Wienecke farm. The net proceeds of $450.00 were remitted to the Rwanda Aid, thanks to the work of Hilde Haassengier, Käthe Kleinau, Hilde and Hans Schnick, Arthur Schonert and Pastor Schwantes. The German Cluster of Lutheran churches organized an event at the Danube Swabian Club with the theme “40 Years Canada – Desert or Promised Land?”, which was well received, particularly through the keen exchange of experiences among the participants. The congregational choir, the last existing German church choir, sang on this occasion. Facts and Figures: Inge Koo Tze Mew, leader of the Sunday School, was saddened by the further decline in attendance and, together with Pastor Schwantes, invited the families, whose children were baptized in the congregation since 1984, to the church services. Christel Feyerabend resigned the presidency of the Ladies’ Group and Marion Schwantes took on the leadership again. Carola Bubbert, Magdeburg, reported on her personal experiences during the reunification of East and West Germany. The Church Choir gave its first concert at the Christmas celebration. Page 95.
Confirmation 1994: Lisa Carl, Patrick Eisfeld, Yvonne Karthaus, Aaron Nieschulze, Christina Wienecke, Richard Zungri (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1994: Horst Zimmer, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Reinhard Gutsch, Alfred Liske, Robert Peter, Jack Schaeffer, Fritz Schneeberger, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Wiegand, Horst Wiegers, Ernst August Wienecke (Hans- Joachim Arndt, Treasurer)
This year, the congregation celebrated its 40th anniversary. For this occasion, much planning and preparation took place which was only possible through the great effort of many congregational members who were thanked individually at the Annual General Meeting. The different groups organized presentations which recounted their development and activities since 1955:
May 8th, 1995 the Church Choir, September 24th, 1995 the Ladies’ Group, October 22nd, 1995 the Sunday School, November 5th, 1995 the Youth Group.
On December 3rd, 1995 the congregation celebrated a special service with guest preacher Günter Dahle and the pastors of the four German congregations, Wolf-Rüdiger Belzing, Hartmut Hoersch, Sony Panitz and Hans-Martin Steinert. Furthermore, the Church Choir, the Edelweiss Children and Youth Choir and W. Schienke as soloist (“Enduring is your faithfulness”) participated. When suddenly smoke entered the church because of a defect in the heating system, Pastor Dahle’s comments “Holy Smoke!” made every one laugh. Following the service, coffee and cake was served in the congregational hall, and memories and experiences of the 40 years of congregational history were shared. A proposed seniors centre on Lake Simcoe was met with little enthusiasm due to its location. A new joint project of the four German congregations was the radio program “The Word for the Week” on AM 530. Facts and Figures: Installation of an energy-efficient gas heating system. The Brass Band consisted of Monika Buenning, Stefan Grammenz, Elke Gutsch, Sylvia Gutsch, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, and Werner Pahnke. Church membership stood at almost 500, 450 confirmed members and 49 children. Maria Bastik passed away December 31, 1995. Page 97.
Confirmation 1995: Vanessa Alexandra Fiebig, Mark Alexander Fiebig (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1995: Horst Zimmer, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Heinz Gutsch, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Alfred Liske, Robert Peter, Fritz Schneeberger, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Wiegand, Ernst August Wienecke.
Regular congregational activities from September to June: Church service every Sunday at 9:45 a.m. in English and at 11:00 a.m. in German with concurrent Sunday School. Bible Study on Mondays from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m., average of 14 persons attending. Confirmation classes on Friday evenings, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Church Choir practice on Friday evenings at 7:30 p.m. The Ladies’ Group met regularly at 7:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of the month for devotion, lectures, singing and social hour. The Mission Circle met three times a month, from 9:30 a.m. to about 2:30 p.m., to sew quilts and to pack small packages for personal hygiene. Wanda Lischewski, Erika Redmann, Hilde Schnick and Anneliese Ottner among others, supported the circle by working at home. The following ladies attended the working sessions: Trudy Ganter, Brigitta Gebhard, Olga Gilker, Hilde Haassengier, Hilde Hechtenberg, Elly Herold, Ursula Pahnke, Adina Peter, Lydia Schlag, Anna Schmidt, and Agnes Todorovic. The Circle also collected used clothing for the Scott Mission. The Church Council met every 2nd Wednesday of the month. Duties of the Pastor were, other than the church services, Lent devotions, home, and hospital visits, re treats for adults and youth, activities outside of the congregation such as services at the Queensway Hospital, McCall Wing, and at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, the meetings of the German Cluster of the Lutheran churches and the weekly radio program. Facts and Figures: Passing away of longstanding leader of the Sunday School, Edith Peter. October 6, 1996, joint service of the German Cluster at our church on the occasion of the 450th year of Martin Luther’s death, followed by a buffet prepared by the Ladies’ Group. Distribution of the new photo albums of the congregation. World Day of Prayer at our church. Net proceeds from the vegetable and herb garden were remitted to the Lutheran Church in Russia. Page
Confirmation 1996: Andrea Wienecke, Tanya Zielke (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1996: Horst Zimmer, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Ernst Carl, Heinz Gutsch, Karl Ernst Kriese jun., Alfred Liske, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Wiegand, Horst Wiegers
1997 … 35 Years in our own Church!
On April 25th, a special service was held to celebrate this occasion, followed by a luncheon in the lower rooms of the church. During a church service in November, Paul Gerhardt’s 390th birthday was com memorated through a contribution by the Church Choir. In his speech, Gunter Gall, member of the choir, described the turbulent life of the poet and pastor. Pictures and documents were displayed in the foyer of the church. Additional congregational activities: In September, Pastor Schwantes reported on the “German Evangelical Church Festival” in Leipzig with the theme “On the Road of Justice there is Life”. Through the Health Department, Barbara von Keller arranged two lectures, “Stress” and “Nutrition”, for the Ladies’ Group. Marion Schwantes continued as leader, Stella Kakoschke as secretary for a number of years now; Elfriede Schmidt turned over the “penny collection” to treasurer Ursula Scholz. The Mission Circle cleaned and repaired the paraments. The number of children in Sunday School was constantly declining, and only through the support of some young people could songs be sung and poems recited in church services; on the 3rd of Advent, for the first time an English play, “Promise of a Saviour” was presented. The children’s program, organized by Else Weigelin at the congregational picnic, was, as always, well received by the young children. The vegetable and herb gardens were still tended, but only by a few helpers. Purchase of telephones and a fax machine, as well as a bookcase for the English hymn books. Repairs and new acquisitions for the nursery and the playground. Else Weigelin continued the ordering and selling of the “Neukirchner Kalendar” and “Losungen”. Page 99.
Confirmation 1997: Geoffrey Eisfeld, Cheryl Karthaus, Alexander Stoefer, Alexander Wilhelm (with Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 1997: Heinz Gutsch, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Karl Ernst Kriese jun., Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Wiegand, Ernst August Wienecke, Horst Zimmer
Accepting an invitation of the German Peter and Paul Congregation, Pastor Schwantes travelled to Moscow during the summer. We financially supported this congregation in the rebuilding of their church. After his trip he used every opportunity to relate impressions and experiences to the congregation. Additional news from the congregation: Andrew Baron, director of “Jews for Jesus”, presented a report describing traditions and customs during Passover. The Ladies’ and Sewing Groups sent donations to Bodelschwingh Institutions (Bethel), the Evangelical-Lutheran Peter and Paul Congregation (Moscow, Soviet Union), Jews for Jesus, Lutheran Bible Translators, Scott Mission, to the “Third World”; paid for the advertisement in “Kirchliches Monatsblatt”. Due to lack of help, the vegetable and herb garden on the Wienecke farm had to be abandoned. Summer camp took place under the direction of Harry Schonert and helpers Christel Feyerabend, Elisabeth Feyerabend, and Dan Sommerfeld. Mona Kakoschke Frantzke founded a Children’s Choir; practices every 1st Sunday of the month. Under the leadership of Hans-Joachim Arndt, the men provided a luncheon for the Mother’s Day celebration, as usual; Philippe and Nicole Koo Tze Mew enhanced the event with music. Families with children preferred to attend English services and Sunday School at 9:45 a.m. One adult and two youth retreats took place at Camp Edgewood as well as the congregational picnic in June. In co-operation with the Sunday School, regular family services were introduced. Invitations went out to 60 families, whose children had been baptized in the church during the last ten years. As a result, 30 children from 17 families now attended Sunday School. Page
Church Council 1998: Heinz Gutsch, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Erich Feyerabend, Gerald Groetsch, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Eugen Pahnke, Edmund Scholz, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Wiegand, Ernst August Wienecke, Horst Zimmer
At the beginning of the year, Pastor Eberhard Schwantes declared his wish to retire as he was almost 70 years old and stated that the congregation must urgently begin the search for a successor. A Search Committee was formed, supported, and advised by Bishop Michael Pryse of the Eastern Synod. As there was no bilingual pastor to be found through advertisements and inquiries either in Canada or the USA, the congregation reached an agreement with the Evangelical Church in Germany, EKD, to appoint a pastor from Germany. Pastor Schwantes agreed to remain in office until a successor was found. Nonetheless, an official retirement reception took place on September 26th, after Pastor Schwantes’ 35th year of service in Martin Luther Church. Following the church service, a diverse program was presented in the Slovenian Church Hall. Among the guests were his son Michael with wife Donna and daughter Christina, Pastor Günter Dahle as representative of the Synod with his wife, and many of Pastor Schwantes’ colleagues. The congregation presented a stained-glass picture of the church, designed by Olaf Weigelin. Groups and Circles: In September, Else Weigelin took over the leadership of the Ladies’ Group from Marion Schwantes. For the first time, a woman, Peggy Seifert-Rabey, was elected to Church Council. The Mission Circle sent parcels to Angola, Tanzania, Malawi, and Kosovo. A flood in the day care basement destroyed all furnishings and toys. Dan Sommerfeld assumed the leadership of the summer camp. Facts and Figures: Statistics: 65% of the congregation were 60-95, 19% 40-60 and 16% were 16-40 years old. Comparison of Official Duties:
Baptisms: 1999 10, 1998 10, 1997 13, 1996 14, 1995 10
Confirmation: 1999 1, 1998 3, 1997 4, 1996 2 ,1995 8
Marriages: 1999 4, 1998 3, 1997 9, 1996 4, 1995 4
Funerals: 1999 6, 1998 8, 1997 10, 1996 20, 1995 12
Church Council 1999: Heinz Gutsch, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Erich Feyerabend, Gerald Groetsch, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Robert Peter, Edmund Scholz, Peggy Seifert-Rabey, Hans Wiegand, Ernst-August Wienecke, Melvin Zabel.
2000 … New Millennium, New Pastor!
The Word for the day of the Annual General Meeting on February 25, 2001, was fitting for the eventful year 2000: “Cast all your anxieties on HIM, for HE cares about you”, 1. Peter 5:7. The Search Committee under the chairmanship of the Church Council president, Heinz Gutsch, could, after an eighteen-month search, bring its work to a successful conclusion. He took on the time-consuming task of arranging all required contacts, correspondence, reports and submissions and made preparations for the visits of the candidates for the pastor’s office. Additional committee members were, among others, Käthe Kleinau, Ernst-August Wienecke, Gisela Wilhelm, Peggy Seifert, Pastor Schwantes and Horst Zimmer. In a special meeting on September 17th, the congregation confirmed Stefan Wolf, sent as EKD-Pastor from Germany, as successor of Pastor Schwantes. Pastor Wolf was then inaugurated on December 3rd, the 45th anniversary of the congregation, by the assistant of the bishop, Günter Dahle. Many fellow pastors were present. A shepherd’s staff, made by Olaf Weigelin, was passed on to Pastor Wolf by his predecessor as a symbolic gesture. In the course of the year: On January 16, 2000, Marion Schwantes passed away unexpectedly. In spite of retirement, personal loss and non-arrival of a vicar from Germany, Pastor Schwantes continued to fulfill his duties with the support of his colleagues Katharina Moeller, Joachim A. Knaack and Hartmut Hoersch. On October 3, 2000, a church service on the Day of German Reunification with an interesting documentary report by Pastor Katharina Moeller. Purchase of parsonage ($369,900.00) in November 2000 and lease of car for the Pastor. Special collection amounted to $37,500.00. On November 27, 2000, Pastor Stefan Wolf, with his wife Maaike Wolf and sons Jan Lukas, Merlin and Fynn, moved into the parsonage on 3203 Gatliff Ave., Mississauga, Ontario. On December 18, 2000, funeral service for Esther Winter, widow of our former Pastor Otto Winter. Founding of Nursery Committee to manage the day care and to resolve staff problems. First detailed nursery report to Church Council; varied program resulted in 80-90% enrollment. Page 105.
Church Council 2000: Heinz Gutsch, Hans-Joachim Arndt, Erich Feyerabend, Gerald Groetsch, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Robert Peter, Edmund Scholz, Peggy Seifert, Ernst August Wienecke, Gisela Wilhelm, Melvin Zabel
This was the first full year for the congregation with Pastor Stefan Wolf after he took office on December 1, 2000. His spiritual leadership, his work in the church service, the congregation, and the nursery, organized with much love, were appreciated by everyone. At the beginning of the year, youth work was resumed, with the assistance of Dan Sommerfeld, and children’s time in the church service. The Easter sunrise service, organized by Olga Gilker and the Rabey and Sommerfeld families in 2000, became a permanent part of congregational life. Awarding of the “Bundesverdienstkreuz am Bande” to Pastor Schwantes by Consul General Mrs. Geissler-Kuss on April 25, 2001. Representation on the internet with assistance of Mona Kakoschke Frantzke at website www.martinluther.ca . 35 children with 7 helpers, and a group of adults attended Camp Lutherlyn. Thanksgiving service with over 160 visitors and a report by Yvonne Karthaus on Ghana, a country in West Africa. October 14 to 18, 2001 visit from Oberkirchenrat Peter Weigand, EKD, instrumental in filling the pastoral vacancy. Incorporation of the day care, founding of a Board of Directors: Käthe Kleinau, Helene Schmidt, Ulrich Karthaus, Grant Mandau, Edmund Scholz, Pastor Wolf; Marilyn Richardson-Furse appointed supervisor; staff team introduced by Pastor Wolf in a service. In March and December, the Wolf family hosted an Open House. Numerous members of the congregation visited the parsonage. Facts and Figures: Adina Peter sent warm clothing to Russia. Hans-Joachim Arndt worked tirelessly as Financial Secretary and was always available. Roof work on church and parsonage buildings. Erich Feyerabend, Edmund Scholz and Melvin Zabel built a deck for the parsonage. Purchase of new Holy Communion vessels. An anonymous donor made acquisition of new English hymn books possible. The Sunday School visited the Toronto Zoo in March, and the congregation the Kortright Centre in October 2001. On the 1st of Advent only one service was held in the afternoon in the church, festively decorated by Maaike Wolf. Repairs were made by Eugen Pahnke, Erich Feyerabend, Robert Peter, Edmund Scholz, Melvin Zabel, John Schmidt, and Ernst Carl. Ten baptisms, four confirmations, two weddings and seven funerals were the official duties of this year. Page 107.
Confirmation 2001: Nicole Koo Tze Mew, Stefan Rinas, Peter Karthaus, Ryan Boyce (with Pastor Stefan Wolf and Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes)
Church Council 2001: Edmund Scholz, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Ulrich Karthaus, Grant Mandau, Ron Mayer, Robert Peter, Helmut Schmidt, Dan Sommerfeld, Ernst August Wienecke, Gisela Wilhelm, Melvin Zabel (Hans-Joachim Arndt, Treasurer)
2002 … A Year of Continued Development
Pastor Stefan Wolf and the Church Council carried the responsibility for congregational growth, financial security and founded a Congregational Concept Committee. For the very first time, the adult retreat was held in English. Pastor Wolf started to receive Holy Communion from a Church Council member according to the decision of the Annual General Meeting. Complete renovation of the nursery in the church by Olaf Weigelin and Eugen Pahnke. Children’s time at the beginning of the services was an important and joyous part for visitors. At the congregational picnic with 165 visitors at Camp Edgewood on June 9, 2002, the play “Daniel in the Lion’s Den”, written by Pastor Wolf and Peggy Seifert, was presented. At the joint Thanksgiving service, Dr. Peter Vanderzaag from the Canadian Foodgrain Bank preached, and afterwards gave a talk on their projects at the BBQ. As of October, a Literary Circle met monthly at the parsonage. The Etobicoke Ministerial met for the first time at our church on November 14th, attended by 25 guests and MP Jean Augustine. A Family Choir was founded and sang with the Church Choir at the Christmas Market held at St. Lawrence Market. The Youth Group organized an Advent service. On the 4th of Advent 2002, the Sunday School was assisted by Peggy Seifert, Matthias Gutsch, Dan Sommerfeld und Heinz Zultner in presenting the Christmas play, written by Pastor Wolf. On Christmas Eve, Andrea Wienecke sang the message of the angel in both services. Facts and Figures: Congregational trips: boat tour on Lake Muskoka with visit of Martyrs’ Shrine in Midland, High Noon Tea of the women at Spadina House, trip to Cullen Gardens and Crawford Lake. Irene Zielke and Lotte Arndt retired from their long-time service in Sunday School. Nicole Koo Tze Mew, Christina Wienecke, and Andrea Wienecke volunteered as helpers, however, after the summer, instruction was offered only at 9:45 a.m. Pastors Alfred L. Boettcher, Günther, Herbert Harms and Joachim A. Knaack substituted for Pastor Wolf during his absence. Heinz Gutsch retired from his long-time service in the council of Moll Berczy House; Pastor Wolf became president and represented the congregation with Erich Feyerabend. The German Cluster compiled a flyer and distributed it to European stores. Compared to last year, church attendance in the German services rose by 3%, and attendance also increased in the English services; introduction of 25 new members in a special service. Despite intensive work, the committee could not realize the project “Seniors” Home” in the vicinity of the church. The Ladies’ Group donated Christmas gifts for needy day care families, and thereby brought much joy. Installation of air conditioning in church, new windows, and air conditioning for 5 Superior Avenue. Six baptisms, six confirmations, two weddings, 16 funerals (ten members), two golden weddings, 920 participants in Holy Communion. Page 109.
Confirmation 2002: Erika Frischkorn, Monica Frischkorn, Christopher Mahon, Corey Myronuk-Horn, Alexander Rygus, Jan-Lukas Wolf (with Pastor Stefan Wolf)
Church Council 2002: Edmund Scholz, Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Matthias Gutsch, Ulrich Karthaus, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Helmut Schmidt, Dan Sommerfeld, Ernst August Wienecke, Gisela Wilhelm, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Hans-Joachim Arndt, Treasurer)
The dedication of stained-glass windows on the west side of the church at Thanksgiving fulfilled a long-standing wish of congregational members. The design of the windows, however, took some time, as the proposal of the artists of Red Dala Glassworks did not receive immediate approval by the congregation. Olaf Weigelin together with Sieghard Schmidt, drafted a design concept which simplified the planning to date and included the thematic suggestions of Pastor Wolf. Furthermore, this design coherence linked the ten windows on one side of the church through a continuous band and a manifold colour design. Heinz Gutsch and Horst Zimmer established contact with Repla Windows and, with Edmund Scholz and Hans-Joachim Arndt, contributed substantially to the realization of the project through technical and financial planning. In a short time, enough donations were collected from families of deceased congregational members so that all 20 windows for the church could be commissioned. An anonymous member donated a hearing aid system for the church nave on this occasion. A further out standing event was the trip to Germany, led by Pastor Wolf, to the first ecumenical Church Festival in Berlin, followed by a journey to Luther sites. Particularly impressive were meetings with Pastor Christian Führer in Leipzig. At the beginning of the year, Daina and Ernie Wienecke flew to Brazil to foster contacts with Pastor Milton Schwantes and his successor, Siegmar Reichel. At the same time, a monetary gift of the congregation was presented. After many years of service, Inge Koo Tze Mew was succeeded in Sunday School by Monika Schmidt, who was introduced with the Sunday School Team in a service on September 29, 2003. For the first time, the congregation and day care participated in the Christmas Parade along Lake Shore Blvd on December 6, 2003. Facts and Figures: Particularly emotional adult retreat at Camp Edgewood. Trips to Elora, the Niagara wine region with 72 (!) participants and to the Cranberry Festival in Bala, Ontario. with a concluding devotion in a church at Lake Joseph. For the first time, Bruno Quodt drove the children to summer camp in a school bus as well as the congregation on trips. Hans Vetter, for the first time as social co-ordinator, organized a concert visit to “Christmas in Vienna” in December and a hike on Centre Island. An Alpha Course was held with eight participants. 42 participants at Easter Sunrise Service. Pastor Wolf introduced weekly radio devotions on Ciao Radio AM 530 on Mother’s Day. Tanya Zielke and Gregory White assumed the organization of the Youth Group; first meeting with 25 young people at the parsonage. Introduction of games night at the church. Singing of Christmas carols at Marina Del Ray and the Christmas ser vices were good advertisements for the congregation. Performance of the Christmas play included not only the Sunday School but also confirmands and a few adults. Candlelight Service, a meeting place for young people from near and far. A flyer was the first tangible achievement of the Congregational Concept Committee. Passing away of former choir members Otto Ottner and Gerhard Vetter. Day care enrolment was 95%; during the summer, the very first day camp; the Ladies’ Group donated Christmas gifts to six needy families. $25,012 were donated to Mission projects. 6 baptisms, 5 weddings, 10 funerals, 919 Holy Communion participants. Average number of visitors in the German service 83, in the English 30. Page 111.
There was no Confirmation in 2003.
Church Council 2003: Edmund Scholz, Ernst Carl, Matthias Gutsch, Heidi Jonuschies, Ulrich Karthaus, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Helmut Schmidt, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Vetter, Horst Wiegers, Gisela Wilhelm, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Hans-Joachim Arndt, Treasurer)
Pastor Stefan Wolf experienced that not all decisions for the work in the congregation could be reached without problems. Some issues were approached with concern or hesitation. He encouraged all to move towards the future by trusting in God. An important event of this year is the dedication of the stained-glass windows on the east side of the church nave on April 25th, with participation of the Secretary General of the Canadian Council of Churches (CCC), Dr. Karen Hamilton. On February 1, 2004, Vicar Susanne Hofmann, Vicar from the Bavarian Regional Church, came as assistant for one year. During this time, she founded a Seniors Circle, a Visiting Service, and an English Bible Group. In April 2004, Gunter Gall reported on his trip to Brazil and the visit to Pastor Siegmar Reichel in Guarulhos near Sao Paulo. This resulted in a nursery project in Brazil supported of our congregation. Founding of a flute ensemble under the direction of Maaike Wolf with Heike Eble-Scott, Yvonne Karthaus, Nicole Koo Tze Mew, Peggy Seifert, and Jan Lukas Wolf. For the first time, confirmands were admitted to Holy Communion on the eve of their confirmation (May 29th, 2004). Pastor Stefan Wolf and son Fynn participated in the 60th anniversary church service of the Canadian Council of Churches. In remembrance of the day care child Zvonko Skraban, who tragically lost his father and was sent back to his mother in his homeland, the congregation planted on Thanksgiving a “Tree of Hope”, donated anonymously. In a family service on Reformation Day with Vicar Hofmann, Martin Luther (alias Pastor Wolf) nailed the 95 Theses to the church door. Facts and Figures: Wolf Rüdiger Belzing, Pastor of the First Lutheran congregation, passed away on New Year’s Day. Seven congregational hikes and trips took place. Financial secretary Karl-Ernst Kriese jr. introduced computerized donation lists. Heidi Jonuschies and Brenda Wilson organized a “Clean-up Day” (30 participants). Pastor Wolf represented the Eastern Synod at the Interfaith Social Assistance Reform Coalition (ISARC). Furthermore, he attended the Overseas Pastors Conference in Germany, the Synod Conference (topic: Church and Homosexuality) in St. Catharines, meetings of the Business Improvement Association and Lakeshore Area Multiservice Project, LAMP. Games night was cancelled. Change of broadcast time of the radio devotion from Friday to Sunday mornings. Seniors’ home project “Superior Living on Lake Shore” did not succeed. Day care BBQ with parents and congregational members on July 8, 2004. Bathroom renovations at the parsonage started on November 1, 2004. Participation in the Santa Claus Parade and setting up a Christmas tree at Storefront Humber. Hilde Schnick retired from mailing stamps to Bethel, Inge Koo Tze Mew took over. Church Choir members Lotte Arndt and Hans Schnick passed away. Sunday School: As of September, again during both services; Monika Schmidt (leader), Peggy Seifert, Iris Schweiger, Nicole Koo Tze Mew, Jan-Lukas Wolf, and Merlin Wolf. Page 113.
Confirmation 2004: Andrew Boyce, Adam Eisfeld, Stephanie Englert-Rygus, Matthew Ganter, Lea Horn, Andrew Mahon, Sophia Mama, Brandon Myronuk-Horn, Timothy Spreen, Mackenzie Walker, Gregory White, Merlin Wolf, Andreas Zultner, Julia Zungri (with Pastor Stefan Wolf)
Church Council 2004: Ernst August Wienecke, Ernst Carl, Matthias Gutsch, Heidi Jonuschies, Ulrich Karthaus, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Helmut Schmidt, Dan Sommerfeld, Hans Vetter, Brenda Wilson, Melvin Zabel, Horst Zimmer (Hans-Joachim Arndt, Treasurer)
2005 … 50 Years Martin Luther Congregation
The motto for the year of the 50th congregational anniversary was “The Year with the Bible”. As a prelude, exactly nine months be fore, on February 2nd, the film “Luther” was shown in the nave. Christine Couturier suggested compiling a congregational cookbook and collected together with Maaike Wolf 186 recipes. Stained-glass windows were installed at the church entrance. Photo sessions for the joint album were held from May 3rd to 7th, 2005 under the leadership of Käthe Kleinau and Maaike Wolf. The cover photo was taken at the congregational picnic Camp Edgewood. Two official EKD visitors were received in September: Oberkirchenrat Thies Gundlach with his wife Brigitte on the 18th and Oberkirchenrat Peter Weigand on the 26th. The special edition postage stamps with the motif of the church were used for the invitation to the festivities. On October 29th, 2005 the Wolf family surprised the congregation with the idea of an “Open House” in the church. To the event, the church doors opened symbolically after a presentation of a wind ensemble and a speech by the Pastor caught the attention of passers-by. Approximately 350 visitors enjoyed the luncheon provided by members, the coffee from Birds and Beans. There were sales of crèches made in Brazil, congregational cookbooks, greeting cards painted by Elli Jonuschies, books from Pastor Eberhard Schwantes’ estate, CDs of the Church Choir, postage stamp sheets of the church, a book table from Augsburg Fortress. The program which took place in the nave included guided church window tours, organ concert by Uwe Liefländer, music by the J.S. Jazz Quintet, an interview with Paula Todd and readings from her book “A Quiet Courage”, and a children’s party. Page 115.
Finally, the time had come: On November 27, 2005, the congregation celebrated the founding of Martin Luther Church with approx. 374 church service visitors and 260 guests at the banquet. The sermon was held by Bishop Michael Pryse, and the service included the Church Choir, the Brass Band with the accompaniment of a wind ensemble, which lent the festive service a dignified atmosphere. Special high lights included the children’s time at the beginning of the service and honouring of founding members. Among the Guests of Honour was German Consulate General Dr. Klaus Rupprecht, Member of Parliament Jean Augustine, Secretary General of the Canadian Council of Churches Karen Hamilton and Pastor Christoph Ernst from Ottawa. The contributions of 53 helpers played a crucial role in the success of the anniversary. Events throughout the year: On February 20, 2005, Farewell to Vicar Susanne Hofmann. April 16-23, 2005 Visit from Siegmar and Gudrun Reichel, Brazil, introducing their day care project. June 12, 2005 Celebration of 35th anniversary of the day care in a moving church service with children, staff and parents. On July 18, 2005, Pastor Eberhard W. Schwantes died in the morning hours of his 76th birthday. The funeral took place on July 22, 2005, with Pastor Günter Dahle and Bishop emeritus Bill Huras. Karen and Bob Hiscott designed a logo for the church which was used as of October 2005. During the joint service at Thanksgiving, Pastor Wolf and family announced the wish to extend their contract by a maximum of three years. Moving moments in December 2005: The December 4, 2005 “Christmas tree at Storefront Humber” with congregation having taken active part and distributing 200 small, packaged gifts with church service announcements. The December 18, 2005 family service and play “An unexpected Christmas Pageant”. The December 24, 2005, in the first service, the participation of the Church Choir, the Flute Ensemble, childcare by Sunday School during the sermon, and entrance of the children with lanterns before “Silent Night, Holy Night” In the second service Magnus Hjerpe played pieces by Johann Sebastian Bach on the classical guitar. On December 25, 2005 the attempt to hold a hymn service in the afternoon failed. Page 117.
Facts and Figures: $8,645.00 was remitted by the congregation to the victims of the Tsunami flood disaster. Adult retreat at Camp Edgewood under the leadership of Pastor Wolf and Vicar Susanne Hofmann. Congregational members visited Winterlude in Ottawa from February 11-13, 2005, and on Sunday October 14, 2005, the Martin Luther Church Ottawa, on their 40th anniversary. Pastor Wolf was confirmed in his office as president of Moll Berczy Seniors’ Home. Monthly planning meetings of the Anniversary Committee with Christine Couturier, Käthe Kleinau as well as Heinz Gutsch, Olaf Weigelin, Stefan Wolf, and their spouses. For the first time, in April 2005, envelopes for the special collection were sent out with the newsletter. Sunday School in its new rooms; received gowns sewn by Maaike Wolf, worn for the first time at Pastor Siegmar Reichel’s visit. Mission Circle was attended by fewer women from year to year, who worked all the harder. The number of day care children had tripled since 2000; bookkeeping was taken over by Peggy Seifert, Karen Mwambungu was part time office help; after 18 years of service, Astrid Penno resigned from her position as auditor. Remodelling of toilets and kitchen as well as installation of fire alarm system, with the help of Ernst Carl, Erich Feyerabend, Werner Pahnke, and Eugen Pahnke, Robert Peter, Jack Schaeffer, John Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, Dan Sommerfeld and Melvin Zabel. Pastor Wolf, Erich Feyerabend, Heinz Gutsch represented the congregation at DELKINA = Deutsche Evangelisch-Lutherische Konferenz in Nordamerika. 3 baptisms, 3 weddings, 10 funerals were recorded. Page 119.
There was no Confirmation in 2005.
Church Council 2005: Ernst August Wienecke, Ernst Carl, Stefan Grammenz, Heidi Jonuschies, Ulrich Karthaus, Karl Ernst Kriese jr., Ron Mayer, Keith Rabey, Helmut Schmidt, Edmund Scholz, Hans Vetter, Brenda Wilson, (Hans-Joachim Arndt, Treasurer).