History of Trinity Lutheran Church
Trinity Congregational History
The Lutheran Ministry in Central Alabama began as early as 1915, and in November of the following year, the Montgomery Mission was established as the doors of the Christian Day School were opened. The Rev. George Taylor served as pastor and prinicipal. The school was housed in an old labor hall on Holt Street. Because Rev. Taylor was of British background, he called the mission school of St. George Lutheran School. Because Rev. Taylor worked to develop the leadership needed to continue the mission and after his death, Mr. and Mrs. Martin worked to improve the school and expand the mission to surrounding communities. Soon, they left Montgomery and the work of this ministry of Christian Education was left to the capable hands of Mrs. Fannie P. Nesbitt who engaged to serve as principal and teacher.
In the fall of 1924, Mr. H. Lawrence, a student of the Lutheran Theological Seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church joined the ministry fo a short while. He was followed by M. Browning, who had studied at Maywood Lutheran Seminary of the United Lutheran Church. Like Mr. Lawrence, his tenure too, was short lived. Others who served the congregation as Lay Missionaries or Pastor wer Superintendent Richards, Rev. H. Augsburg, C. Hilderbrann, H. Folge, R. S. Tarrant, and Perry C. Dumas. Laymen Grover Dixon, Sr., S. Daniels, D. Braxton, and William Powell, also served the parish.
Pastor Tarrant served the congregation until October, 1946. He was succeeded by Rev. Percy C. Dumas, a Wilcox County native, who began his pastorate in January, 1947. In February, 1948, this building was dedicated. Pastor Dumas guided the congregation until November, 1951 when Rev. W. S. Langhans, the Dean of the Alabama Lutheran Bible Institute was appointed to serve as acting pastor. His pastorate lasted until July 1, 1952 when a call was extended to Rev. Nelson W. Trout, a graduate of Capital University and the Evangelical Lutheran Theological Seminary in Columbus, Ohio.
During this time the school was an integral part of the ministry and its influence formed the basis of the church's contact with the community. Several teachers were instrumental in bring souls to Christ through teaching and religious training. Mrs. Alice Wilborn, Mrs. Mary Austin, Mrs. Rosa Dandridge, Mrs. Gussie Wagstaff and Mrs. Francis Davis Cook made profound and lasting contributions that are immeasurable, even today.
Pastor soon left to accept a call out of state. During the subsequent years, Trinity was blessed with able and sincere leadership in the persons of Pastors Robert Gratz, John T. Skinner, Brice L. Thompson, Sr., and Jimmy McCants. The concern of Pastor Gratz is well documented in the writings of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Pastor Thompson was instrumental in the construction of our educational facility.
Through the years, our Christian Day School has continued to emerge as our most significant entrance into the Montgomery Community. In this era, there is another educator who influenced the continuation of quality education through Christ -- Delores Thompson, who along with her husband served us for more than seventeen years.
Under the leadership of Rev. James Wiggins, Sr., who began his pastorate at Trinity in 1984, he shared the mission of the church and school. Under his leadership there was seventy-eight years of combined instructional experience in the Christian Education setting.
In 1998 after the retirement of Rev. Wiggins we were blessed to have Pastor Ferry L. Nye, Sr. In 1999 he became Pastor of the Historical Trinity Lutheran Church until January 4, 2004.
Below are excerpts from the 1948 Dedication Services of
Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church
500 Cleveland Avenue
On this day of dedication of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, I am sure that all members and friends alike must confess that God has done great things for us whereof we are glad. We cannot but give God all the praise for His unspeakable blessings in enabling us on this day of rejoicing to have this glorious opportunity to worship in a new church home. Many of the Christians of the Church and Community have prayed and labored to make this occasion a reality. Truly our dreams, by the grace of God, have come true. Much credit must be given to the former pastor of this church, Rev. R. S. Tarrant, who is now pastor of our chuch at Dayton, Ohio. He labored untiringly while in charge of his pastorate and launched the building campaign in order to make this beautiful church edifice possible. With the unfailing aid of the loyal members and friends of Trinigy Evangelical Lutheran Church, we will go forward with God's help and guidance. "Giving thanks always for all the things unto God and the Father in the Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Eph. 5:20. Let us then, exclaim with Martin Luther the great Reformer: "With might of ours can naught be done, our loss were soon effected, but for us fights the valiant One whom God himself elected. Ask you who is He? Christ Jesus here see, as Lord of hosts adored, Our only King and Lord."
Pastor P. C. Dumas
The Church Council of Trinity Church
Mr. Wm. C. Powell, Chairman
Mr. Daniel W. Mitchell, Vice Chairman
Mrs. Alice Wilborn, Treasurer
Mrs. Mary Austin, Sec. of Council
Mrs. Gussie Wagstaff, Financial Sec.
Mr. Grover Dixon, Jr.
Mr. Arthur Edwards
Mr. Arthur Stounemire, Rec. Secretary
Mr. Robert Dandridge