Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Anecdotes, Displays Mark 150 Years for Church

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Anecdotes, Displays Mark 150 Years for Church

Article excerpt

In 1889, when the treasury balance of Latrobe's first Lutheran church was $9.95, trustees were instructed to borrow $100 from a bank to pay bills.

The financial secretary was directed to compile a list of members who did not give and read it aloud to the congregation.

The anecdote is included in the "150th Anniversary Reflections" to appear in the 2015 weekly bulletins of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in honor of the church's milestone.

A current exhibit on the history of the church, at 331 Weldon St., consists of themed archival displays in Fellowship Hall, featuring a 1729 German Bible used in German language services, hymn and worship books from the 1800s, and a 1941 prayer book.

The next display will showcase pictures of the three church buildings of the past 150 years. It will include a 1965 telegram from the Rev. Karl Kniseley, who was pastor from 1947 to 1954, which praised the "beautiful," newly constructed building.

Other commemorative events include an Easter vigil on April 4, a float in the city's Fourth of July parade, a picnic on July 19, a dinner on Nov. 1 and more.

The guest clergy will be: the Rev. George Mendis, a childhood congregant, on April 4; the Rev. Fred Opalinski, former pastor, on May 30 and 31; the Rev. Ann Schmidt, former assistant pastor, on Aug. 29 and 30; Bishop Emeritus Donald McCoid, former pastor, on Sept. 26 and 27; and Bishop Kurt Kusserow of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Synod, on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1.

Corinne Bollinger, 96, who maintains the artifacts, also writes the anecdotes in the "150th Anniversary Reflections" columns based on information she amassed while working as the church's first secretary some 70 years ago.

Her personal recollections include attending vacation Bible school in the 1920s when facilities were scarce.

"Wooden horses were put on the street so we could play, but there were hardly any cars then," she said.

The yearlong anniversary celebration kicked off on Jan. 11 with the opening of a 15-year-old time capsule containing Sunday school students' responses on what they expected church to be like in 2015. …

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