Lutheran Church of St. Luke Celebrating 100th Anniversary
Luebke, Nancy, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Nancy Luebke Daily Herald Correspondent
The steeple church on Walnut Street in Itasca will be 100 years old in 2007 and Lutheran Church of St. Luke members are already celebrating.
"The Lutherans in Itasca worshipped at the church in Bensenville that is now Zion Lutheran Church before they built the Lutheran Church of St. Luke in 1907," said Gerald Danzer, a church member who is also one of the volunteer church historians.
Planned events began with the opening of a 100-year-old time capsule last Thursday. The celebration also includes upcoming discussions led by former pastors, readings from the Gospel of St. Luke at each service and the sale of a historical calendar.
In 1907, 10 founding families built the first Lutheran Church of St. Luke for $10,000. The "steeple church," as the landmark is known in Itasca, was built on high ground and can be seen at any spot around town.
The building was used by the parish from 1907 until 1962, when the current church was built to give more space to the school affiliated with the church.
Before Lutheran Church of St. Luke was founded in Itasca, German families arriving in the 1830s and '40s worshipped in Bensenville, or Churchville as it was called, in churches along Church Road. Those families sent their children to German Lutheran schools scattered around the area. The Lutheran school affiliated with Lutheran Church of St. Luke was established in Itasca in 1885. The first pastor also taught at the German Lutheran school.
In 1917, during World War I, the congregation decided to buy as much in war bonds as they had spent to build their church. Another $10,000 was raised to purchase Liberty Bonds and support the war.
Danzer said that throughout its history, Lutheran Church of St. Luke has mirrored the changes that have taken place in Itasca, going from a rural parish to a suburban parish to a metropolitan parish that serves those living in rural areas. …