Redemption Lutheran Church

The following history of Redemption  is copied from a 1974 congregation directory and encapsulates the history of Redemption up to it’s 20th Anniversary.


ln the early part of the 1950‘s the need for another congregation in Battle Creek Michigan became apparent to the Mission Board of the Michigan District of The Lutheran Church- Missouri Synod. With the help of St. Paul’s Church, until then the only Missouri Synod Lutheran Church in Battle Creek, and the now sainted Pastor Conrad A. Rook, preliminary work was done in the west Battle Creek area and an investigation was launched for the possible purchase the property on which to erect a church building.  

Once the Mission Board began its work it acted quickly and on January 12, 1954, Pastor Elbert W. Nuelken arrived in Battle Creek to begin the work necessary to found a new mission. It was hoped that services could begin in the early weeks or February in one of the public schools or the area but since this was not possible the Mission Board moved quickly to develop plans for a new church building. The architectural firm or Meritt and Cole of Detroit were engaged to develop the necessary plans so that the erection of a new building could begin as soon as possible.

On March 21st ground was broken for the new church and once begun the building moved rapidly forward; so rapidly in fact, that it was dedicated to the Glory of the True God on September 26, 1954.

Meanwhile the congregation was growing too. Ten families, all members of St. Paul’s Church were invited to assist in the starting of the new mission and many meetings were held in the first parsonage of Pastor Nuelken of 120 Waubascon Rd. It was at one of these early meetings that the little group decided to name the church Redemption.

In April or 1954 came the first real break for the new congregation when the People's Savings and Loan Association completed its new building in Urbandale and the downstairs recreation room of this facility became the first place of worship for Redemption Lutheran Church.

With Sunday services and Sunday school being held regularly, the little church began to grow rapidly and the 110 persons who attended the first service soon became many more.

Until this time Pastor Nuelken had been a missionary, engaged by the Mission Board tit the Michigan District, but on July 15th the congregation extended to him a call to be the permanent Pastor of the Church, In August, Pastor Nuelken accepted the call and became in effect the first Pastor of Redemption Lutheran Church. He was installed on October 24, 1954.

These were busy months as the many committees were active in preparing the Church and Site where they would serve the Lord in His Kingdom. The Church grew in membership, in love of the Lord and in service, and the Lord continued to bless them through the years as they grew and prospered.

In February of 1958 Pastor Nuelken received a call to Birmingham, Michigan and accepted it. It was with regret that the congregation bade him farewell, but they respected his wishes to serve the Lord in yet another field.

On May 4th of the same year, the Rev. G. Kenneth Kausch was installed as the 2nd Pastor of the new parish, and while he was Pastor a parsonage was built on the property adjoining the church. Pastor Kauseh remained at Redemption until January 1964 when he accepted a call to serve the Lord in the St, Louis area.

After several calls were placed in the six months after the Pastor left, the Rev. Armin C. Draegert, then serving a parish in Asheville, North Carolina, accepted the call of Redemption and was installed as Pastor on September 13, 1964.

During the ensuing years the congregation had its ups and downs. Membership wise the parish reached over 400 communicants and then began to slip until it leveled off at its present 3004

Financially, the Church has done well, keeping up its constant offerings to the missions of both District and Synod and continuing to lower its indebtedness to the Church Extension Fund. It is our wish and prayer that as we celebrate our 20th Anniversary, the Lord of the church would continue to bless Redemption and that we may continue to do the work for which He placed us in this place.


1954 THANKS BE TO GOD 1974



1954

January  1st – The Rev. E. W. Neulken, under direction for the Mission Board of Michigan District of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, arrives to begin a new Mission.


March 21st – Ground-Breaking Ceremonies for the new church, Redemption Lutheran, at 2450 West Michigan Avenue, Battle Creek, Michigan.


April – Congregation held its first worship services and Sunday School classes held in the Community Room of People’s Savings and Loan Association, with an attendance of 110 persons.


September 26th – Dedication of the new church with 77 communicant and 134 baptized members.


October 24th – Pastor Neulken installed as the first pastor of the new congregation of Redemption.


1958

May 4th – The Rev. G. Kenneth Kausch installed as the second pastor, upon the departure of Pasor Neulken to Birmingham, MI in February of 1958.


1959

September 20th – The 5th Anniversary Festival celebrated at Redemption – St. mark hosts our banquet.


1961

June – New Parsonage completed at 143 East Prudence Lane.


1964

January – Pastor Kausch leaves and goes to the St. Louis area in January 1964.


September 3rd – The Rev. Armin C. Draegert installed as the third pastor of the congregation.


1969

September 21st – Pastor Kausch returns as our speaker for Redemptions 15th Anniversary.


1974

September 29th – The congregation celebrates its 20th Anniversary and Pastor Draegert’s 10th Anniversary at Redemption.


1975

June 25th – Pastor Draegert called to eternal rest.


September 21st – The Rev. Edwin H Kringel serves as vacancy pastor upon the death of Pastor Draegert.


1976

May 16th – The Rev. Dan L. Seng installed as the fourth pastor of Redemption.


1979

September 23rd – Celebrated the Twenty-Fifth Anniversary of Redemption. Final mortgage payment made and celebrated by burning the mortgage.


1984

June 17th – Congregation directs Building Committee to proceed with rearranging of the worship area to comply with the adopted plan of renovation.


1985

January 22nd – Renovation of worship area begins with volunteer help.


February – Care Cells organized


Palm Sunday (March 31) – The first worship service in our new setting.


July – Installation started of our cathedral glass windows.


2001

March 11th – Pastor Seng’s last church service at Redemption.  An Interim Pastor, Jim Metclaf, of St. John’s Lutheran Church of Jenison, Michigan has agreed to serve as a resource to the Board of Directors and help to find a permanent pastor.


2003

July - Pastor Barkow has ended a six month stay with Redemption as a fill-in pastor.


July 20th – Rev. Karl N. Strenge installed as the fifth pastor of Redemption.


2004

August 8th50th Golden Jubilee was celebrated with a pig roast and a picnic.


2014

August 28th - 60th Diamond Jubilee.


Redemption Lutheran Church History

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History of Redemption Lutheran Church

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