The Beginning

Several families who had been regularly attending services at Lyster Lutheran Church in rural Nelson, Wisconsin received guidance from Reverend Dr. J. C. Thompson, pastor of that church. The American Lutheran Church Board of Missions helped to organize the congregation, locate a place of worship, and seek a pastor. The Reverend Paul Lee accepted the call and the first service was held on September 8, 1968 in an abandoned butcher shop storefront located at 145 Second Street West, Wabasha, Minnesota. Sunday December 8, 1968 is formally considered the birthday of Faith Lutheran Church.

The Declaration

The renovated store-front served as the church, the living quarters above for the Lee family, the Sunday school and gathering place for other church-related events. The present day parsonage at 230, 3rd St. East was purchased in the Spring of 1969. By the spring of 1971 Faith Lutheran had grown to 40 families. During the summer of 1974 and ending in 1982, an ecumenical arrangement between the United Church of Christ of Wabasha and Faith Lutheran was designed. Each church body was to maintain their separate traditions and services while being guided by one pastor. For four years Faith rented the United Church of Christ building for Sunday worship and the Sunday School met at the parsonage. The congregation continued to grow. A building fund had been started. In 1983 the parsonage mortgage was paid off. Faith Lutheran was now 81 family units strong.

1984 to The Present

In 1984 at the annual congregational meeting, a Call Committee was named to secure a full time pastor. After meeting with Pastor John Henriksen, the Call Committee voted unanimously to issue a call to him which he accepted and arrived in August, 1984. A Building Committee was formed. George Schwalbe was selected as the general contractor, and ground-breaking was held on July 14, 1985. The sign was erected on the land site and construction began. The first service in the new church building was on November 11, 1985.

After 25 years of being a part of the American Lutheran Church, the local congregation became part of the new Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The Rev. Glenn A. Nycklemoe was elected to serve as the first Bishop for our southeast Minnesota Synod. Faith moved from the old Rochester Conference of the ALC to become part of the Cannon River Conference. In 1990 the congregation voted to build an addition which included Sunday School rooms, a larger narthex, a nursery and a new kitchen. The Education Wing was dedicated in April, 1991. This provided for the first time, a permanent home for Faith’s education ministry.