“Gathered around the Word and Sacrament, we live the
Good News of Christ's love throughout
our Community & the World.”
Longmont was without a Lutheran Congregation in 1900. A number of people of Scandinavian heritage made their way here from Chicago in 1901. They were in need of a Lutheran Congregation!
On October 13th, 1901, a number of people gathered to consider a Lutheran Congregation for Longmont. After scriptural and prayerful consideration, they decided to organize. On December 8th, 1901, the congregation organized at the home of Evan Olden, 444 Collyer Street. It was to be a unit of The United Norwegian Lutheran Church of America. The congregation met in homes.
The first Church building was a former Catholic Church building purchased in 1906. This building was purchased after discussions about building a new Church were disbanded.
In a meeting in 1924, the Church made the decision to conduct all services in the English language. At this meeting, it was also decided to pursue the construction of a new Church building. In November of that year, they broke ground at Fourth and Terry. The cornerstone was laid on April 5, 1925. The stately building served until 1970. That property was sold to a new Baptist Church, which used it for several years, then sold it to a bank, which demolished it for a banking facility. The property has once again been demolished and lies vacant (as of 2005).
By the 1950s, there were several Lutheran Congregations in Longmont. Peace Lutheran Church was one of these, and a long series of meetings took place to merge Peace Lutheran Church into Bethlehem Lutheran Church. This merger was accomplished on November 3, 1957, when thirty-four families, representing 143 persons joined Bethlehem. The Peace Lutheran Church building was sold, and the funds designated for the new Bethlehem Lutheran Church at 1000 15th Ave, with the caveat that the Education Hall be named Peace.
The property at the present location was purchased in 1955. The parsonage was constructed on this property shortly thereafter. In 1969, the congregation decided to build on the current property. A corporation was formed, Lutheran Builders, after bids to have the Church constructed were deemed inappropriate. Members, directed by Ace Houck, did much of the work. The new Church was dedicated on Easter Sunday, 1970. The new Sanctuary was named Peace Education Building.
Further expansion occurred in 1993 when the new Sanctuary was constructed and dedicated. It was in a more modern architectural form, and was constructed under contract. It currently is in use, and seats about three hundred persons for services. The large Narthex is used for overflow and for fellowship before and after services.
The newest expansion took place in 2001, with the construction of the wings on each side of the Peace Education Building, adding the Fireside Room, nursery and a number of classrooms.
Bethlehem Lutheran Church Celebrated one hundred years of service in 2001. The celebration was held for two days at the end of October. An evening of fun and fellowship on Saturday evening started the festivities. The Sunday Service was Reformation Sunday. A number of Pastors who had served here were in attendance, and the Service was done in English, Norwegian and German. The Service was the largest ever in the history of Bethlehem. A wonderful celebratory meal followed the service.
Other events of the one hundred year celebration were the construction of the bell tower, using a bell from a Church in the Midwest and a First Place award-winning float in the Boulder County Fair Parade.
Bethlehem has been blessed with heaven sent Pastors as their Shepherds. These spiritual leaders have led Bethlehem into the twenty first century, with faith that the future is very bright for the People of God at Bethlehem!