Supporters of Calvary Lutheran High School packed the school's new auditorium Sunday afternoon for the dedication and service of blessing for phase 2 of the school's construction.
The $2.2 million project added a gymnasium, auditorium, three classrooms and space that will be a future dining area.
Jefferson City area Lutheran pastors led the service and the Rev. Gerald Scheperle, pastor of St. John's Lutheran Church, gave the sermon. He said that in past generations, parents who wanted their children to attend a Lutheran school would send them away to Concordia, some 100 miles west of Jefferson City. "Who ever thought we would be sitting here today in 2014?" he asked.
What the church believes about morality isn't in sync with the world today, he said. But through prayer and by leading by example, that could change.
"The job of the church is to proclaim the mysteries of God, the manifold wisdom of God in Christ Jesus, and that's exactly the mission purpose of this organization, Calvary Lutheran High School, along with the education," he said.
The school started in 2005 with nine students, and has grown each year since. It had about 70 students last year, and has just shy of 100 this year.
Addition of the gym will allow the school to have basketball and volleyball "home" games at home. It had been using a gym at Trinity Lutheran School for home games. The auditorium will be used for drama and music productions, as well as chapel. A double-sided stage, with storage underneath, will be for use in the auditorium or gym. The gym has hardwood floors, bleachers, a basketball court and volleyball floor mounts.
Calvary freshman Silas Luetkemeyer said he was excited to enroll in Calvary, where social status and cliques don't mean much. "Everyone's very nice and very caring," he said. "We're all like one big family."
While this is only his first year at the school, he recognizes its history.
"To think that we started out renting one room from Lincoln University to having this amazing gym and facility. It's a testament to God's grace and blessings, and a large group of hardworking people," he said.
John Engelbrecht, the school's executive director, said that before the school was built, four building phases were planned.
Each can take place independently of each other and on an as-needed basis. A third building phase would add more classrooms.