History & Past Events
SCROLL DOWN FOR INDEPTH LISTS of Marriages, Deaths, Members, Centenarians, previous Pastors and Musicians.
Our church was founded by German Speaking protestants who arrived into this heavily German Catholic community. The first call to form a congregation was May 13, 1860. The first formal constitution was adopted in October of 1861. The first name of the church was "The First German United Lutheran and Reformed Congregation of Jeffersonville."
See below Different names our church was known under through the years.
Early photos, Time line and stories
The first services were conducted totally in German and continued with some German language portions until the 1930's. Our founders originally met in small groups in each other homes, they gradually grew in numbers, and in 1861 bought an old Presbyterian meeting house where they stayed until this 1915 "Toledo" style building was erected. It is still a work of art today.
The original Anchor Glass Co. stained glass windows are regarded as among the finest of any church in the Louisville area. The building has been expanded from its original footprint and frequent lovingly respectful renovations take place to keep it sound and safe.
In 1937 the Ohio River flooded at the 500 year flood level and wiped out most of the communities on both sides. St. Luke's is three blocks from the river and for several days the only entrance to the sanctuary was by rowboat.
The 1937 Flood provided an opportunity as well as a financial crisis. The farmers of the congregation donated hogs for sausage, the women baked pies and made German food, and the community was invited to the first fundraiser, now known as the "Sausage Supper." It has continued annually through this year with great community participation. We recently added another festival for the Fall we call "Octoberfest" with a different menu, still German.
We keep the living records of the church in our Heritage Room with archives and artifacts of the journey of faith by members past and present. We respect and honor the past; but we do not remain there. Today, St. Luke's is a leader in community ecumenical projects. We were cofounders in 1970 with Presbyterians, Methodists, Episcopalians, Roman Catholics, and Disciples of Christ of the Center for Lay Ministries. We give food and aid to over 15,000 individuals annually as well as serve as a clearing house for Christmas Baskets and together foster cooperative Christian projects. "Loaves and Fishes" provides a meal to the hungry individuals each Saturday, using a different congregation to prepare it in our kitchen. We share community Lentin Services together and meet here for lunch and blessing of the community palms for Palm Sunday. Other groups use our building to meet as a part of our community ministry.
Today we are a diverse congregation. All races are represented and we are open to new people and ideas. Very few members can speak German. It has never been a goal to be a mega-church, but healthy growth and community service remains a priority
Early photos, Time line and stories
Different Names, Same Body of Christ
German Evangelical Protestant Church June 1860-October 1861
First German United Lutheran & Reformed Church of Jeffersonville Oct 1861-Aug 1862
The German Evangelical St. Lucas Church August 1862-September 1874
German Evangelical Reformed St. Lucas Church September 1874-1920
St. Luke’s Reformed Church 1920-1938
St. Luke’s Evangelical & Reformed Church 1938-1957
St. Luke’s United Church of Christ (Evangelical & Reformed) 1957– present
CLICK ON A CATAGORY BELOW FOR INDEPTH LISTS of Marriages, Deaths, Members, Centenarians, previous Pastors and Musicians.
For almost 150 years, the Charter Members published in the church histories were men. As we researched the lives of our founders, we found listed in both church records and newspaper obituaries, references to the Founding Father’s wives as Charter Members. In this year, we are including the spouses as Founding Members [MORE..]
Link to Marriage records. Church Record books may contain more information. Some marriages occurred elsewhere but were recorded by St. Luke's. All names are transcribed from handwritten records. Please contact the church office for further details or corrections.
Louise Matilda Alben Bushfield
Born April 6, 1904 Baptized May 12, 1912 - Confirmed: St. Lukes’s Class of March 20, 1921
Died June 8, 2005 age 101
Julia Callahan Grimm
Born March 29, 1892 - Confiirmed St. Luke’s Class of April 6, 1928
Died December 26, 1995 age 103
Rosa Matilde Keller Hunter
Born 06/15/1888 in Jeffersonville - Confirmed St. Luke’s Class of April 5, 1903
Died: June 20, 1990 age 102
Minnie Henrietta [Unknown] Juergins
Born: 1856 - Member: listed in St. Luke’s Volume 4
Died: October 4, 1958 age 102
Lillian L. Diepenkoven Nachand
Born: 1878 - Confirmed: St. Luke’s Class of April 4, 1915
Died: May 27, 1978 age 100
Margaret Alben Seigel
Born December 16th - Confirmed: St. Luke’s Class of 1923
Maude Mull Vissing
Born: June 24, 1896 - Confirmed: December 27, 1953
Died: August 25, 1998 age 102
Historical Information provided by:
St. Luke's : 150 Years of Faith, Hope, Love, and Service
By EDEN KUHLENSCHMIDT
Organist, Choir and Music Directors o f St. Luke’s. There are far more musicians attached to St. Luke’s than the individual’s hired to lead the choir and play the organ.
We hope to eventually add names of those who sang, led youth choirs, or played in the St. Luke’s orchestra.
If you sang or played at some point in the past, please let the church office know and ask them to put a note in the History box with your name, years of musical service, and the name of the performance group.
Link to past & present members. Information about spouses, parents, children and know information.
Pastors and Interim pastors throughout the life of the church
Death Dates and Funerals as recorded in St. Luke’s records from 1870 to 2009. Church records may also indicate cause of death, where the individual passed away, the pastor who officiated at the funeral, the scripture used, and where the individual was buried, depending on the pastor who recorded the information. Women are listed first by maiden name, then married name