On Sunday, March 22, 2015 current and former members of Faith Lutheran Church in Plano, Texas gathered to celebrate the church's 50th anniversary.
The anniversary celebration, themed "Christ is our Cornerstone,” included two morning worship services featuring guest speakers Rev. Robert W. Hill and Rev. Jacob Sutton, both of whom formerly served Faith Lutheran Church. An afternoon worship service featured special guest speaker Rev. Dr. Lawrence Rast, president of Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
"Fifty years ago, the Lord the Lord said 'I must come and stay in this house....this church.' And He has stayed, and He has blessed this place with people of God who have been shaped by the Gospel in this place. Jesus has come and stayed, but He has also sent pastors and other from this place out into the world to do His work in ways that we cannot even comprehend," said Rast. "It is helpful to have anniversary celebrations like this, not to see what we have done, but to see by God's grace what He has done. Transforming lives. Tearing down walls. Building His kingdom. God will continue to be faithful to this congregation not because you are great people or because you have a great church, but because you are His. Because He has built this place on the cornerstone that is Christ. Rejoice this day! This is a good day! Recall all that God has done!"
A dinner reception followed the afternoon worship service.
"Faith Lutheran Church has had the opportunity to serve our community in many and various ways in the church's 50 year history," said Faith Lutheran Church senior pastor Rev. James Woelmer of Lucas. "We thank God for His good gifts to Faith Lutheran Church, and for the opportunity to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ in Plano and beyond."
Woelmer said that several things stand out when looking at the 50 year history of the church.
"God has blessed us with the Gospel and sacraments, and He has kept us faithful to the scriptures and to our Lutheran confessions. We can look back at the people, the places and the times, but the most important thing is the Gospel and the sacraments," he said.
Woelmer also pointed out the fact that Rev. Robert W. Hill faithfully served as pastor of Faith Lutheran Church for 34 years. Such tenure is somewhat unusual in ministry.
"We thank God for all of the blessings which He bestowed on Faith Lutheran Church through the ministry of Pastor Hill," said Woelmer.
Rev. Hill preached a sermon at one of the morning worship services on the day of the anniversary festivities.
"It is my prayer that God allows the pastors and people of Faith Lutheran Church to go on speaking God's word clearly," said Hill. "To speak the truth, centered on Jesus Christ, in whom you have forgiveness of sins and life everlasting."
Woelmer also noted the impact Faith Lutheran School has had on the church and the community. The school's preschool program was started in 1971, and Faith Lutheran School now offers classes preschool through grade 12.
Woelmer also remarked that Faith Lutheran Church has always been very mission minded.
"Faith Lutheran Church transferred numerous members to Our Savior in McKinney and to St. Paul in Plano over the years in order to help their congregations become established," he said. "Faith also started Immanuel Lutheran Church in Allen in 1994, Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Flower Mound in 1999 (which later closed in 2004), Faith Lutheran Church in Wylie in 2002, and Peace Lutheran Church in Texarkana in 2005."
Faith Lutheran Church also has 12 “sons” of the congregation who are now pastors, said Woelmer. John Hill (son of Rev. Robert W. Hill) was the first “son” of the congregation to enter the ministry in 1990.
'We are thankful that God has influenced these 12 men to enter the ministry, and we are thankful that Faith supported them during their seminary education," said Woelmer.
"We thank God for the many blessings which He has bestowed on Faith Lutheran Church these past 50 years by means of the Gospel," added Woelmer. "We are thankful to be a part of God's kingdom through faith in Christ. May our Heavenly Father keep us faithful to His Word and the proper confession of the faith."
About Faith Lutheran Church:
Faith Lutheran Church is a Christ-centered congregation of believers in the Lord Jesus Christ that confesses the teachings of the historic Christian church as they are taught in the Bible. Faith Lutheran Church is a member of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and has locations in both Plano and Wylie, Texas. For more information, please visit www.faithplano.org and www.faithwylie.org or call 972.423.7447