SCHUBERT, Mo. - A noble building in a tiny community holds strong traditions and a valued history.
St. John's Lutheran Church, Schubert, will celebrate many milestones Sunday.
Ten years ago, a major building addition was completed.
The original building is 125 years old.
The congregation was founded 145 years ago.
And the group of believers who eventually became St. John's formed 170 years ago.
"We're wrapping all of this together into a celebration of thanksgiving," said the Rev. Gerald Scheperle.
The Osage Point Church served from 1844-69 less than a mile from St. John's current location. It served as a "preaching station," where preachers traveled in a circuit to minister to multiple, rural congregations.
When that location was sold, the Schubert site, 4409 St. John's Road, was bought.
St. John's has been Lutheran since its doors opened. But the church predates both the Missouri and Iowa synods, so its affiliations have changed, Scheperle said.
At first, the members denominational ties were loosely based on the availability of rural pastors. Then, they were part of the Iowa Synod until 1921 when they joined the Missouri Synod.
Marking these many anniversaries is a chance for the congregation to remember its purpose, Scheperle said.
"The church was planted to serve the needs of the Kingdom of God in this area," he said.
In nearly two centuries, the mission remains, though the faces may have changed from early immigrants to modern families.
That's why a missions-oriented speaker was invited, Scheperle said.
"We want to remind people of the opportunities God has given us here and around the world," he said. "We never want to forget our blessings."
The Rev. Milo Figur, coordinator for Latin American outreach at Lutheran Hour Ministries, will be the guest speaker.
A continental breakfast will be offered at 9 a.m. during the Sunday school hour.
Then Figur will preach at the 10 a.m. worship service with Calvary Lutheran High School Choir providing special music.
After the service, Makers Dozen from Immanuel Lutheran Church, Honey Creek, will perform.
A basket dinner will close out the celebration.
Sunday also is Friendship Sunday, when the congregation especially invites the community and guests to join in their worship. This time, friends of the church also are invited to join in their thanksgiving and celebration.