Divine Savior Lutheran Church

405 Ingram Road, Devine, Texas 78016

Phone: 830-663-3735

History Of Divine Savior Lutheran Church

The roots of Divine Savior Lutheran Church were planted in the home of Ernest Weiser, Sr., in Schattel, Texas, 1929.  A group of Lutheran families had moved from Trinity Lutheran Church in Fedor, Lee County, Texas.  In addition to the Ernest Weiser, Sr.'s family, there were the Louis Kruegers, Herbert Neumanns, and Henry Weisers.  Soon after, other families joined including the Reinhold Grafs, Paul Graf, the Martin Grafs, the Alvin Grafs, the Otto Melchers, August Hornbostel, the Bill Hornbostels, and Alvin Hornbostel.  As the congregation outgrew the Weiser home, they moved the Schattel school house in late 1931 or early 1932.

 

     The small Lutheran group asked the Texas District of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod to provide them with pastoral care.  The first pastor to serve was Rev. E.A. Falsken of St. Paul in San Antonio.  Services were held by Pastor Falsken or various other pastors on every second Sunday of each month.  On the remaining Sundays, reading services were led by Gottfried Weiser and Gustav Fischer, Jr. in German and later by Martin Graf, Sr. in English.

 

     In 1936, the congregation was officially organized and joined the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod and was accepted on June 17, 1942 at the Texas District Convention.  Charter members were Louis Krueger, Ernest Weiser, Sr., Henry Weiser, Gottfried Weiser, Fred Weiser, Ludwig Weiser, Ernest Weiser, Jr., Bill Hornbostel, Paul Graf and sons, Gerhardt, Martin, Alvin, and Otto Melcher, Gustav Fischer, Jr., and Mrs. Ottilie Newman and family.

 

     On June 23, 1955, the congregation moved to Pearsall, where services were held in the Presbyterian Church building.  Rev. Gerhardt T. Neumann of Messiah Lutheran, San

Antonio, served the St. Peter congregation until he accepted a call elsewhere.  On August 5, 1956, Rev. Eugene Rall was installed as the first resident pastor for the St. Peter Lutheran Church in Pearsall.

   In 1965, Pastor Brown, Alton and Elizabeth Schroeter, and Clara Weiser began meeting in a private residence on Windy Knoll in Devine, Texas.  In 1966, Bill and Margaret Hornbostel and their daughter Mary moved their letter from the St. Peter Church in Pearsall.  The new church, called Grace Lutheran, entered into a Dual-Parish Agreement with St. Peter Church and was a mission congregation to St. Peter.  In September, 1970 Grace Lutheran dedicated the church building at 405 Ingram Road, still acting as a mission congregation.  Ernest and Daily Weiser had joined the congregation and were helpful in the building project for the new church building. (Rosalie Stricker and Mildred Weiser, current and former members of Divine Savior are their nieces.)

 

     In 1989, Divine Lutheran Savior Lutheran Church was formed by former members of Grace Lutheran who had a desire in their heart to have a lutheran church in their community.  A telephone campaign was conducted to contact all interested people in Devine and surrounding communities.  In 1990, Divine Savior began operation as a dual-parish congregation with St. Peter Lutheran Church in Pearsall, Texas.  Pastor Bruce Dees was called to serve both congregations.  He would conduct church services in Devine and then go to Pearsall to conduct their church service.

 

     In 1994, Divine Savior became an independent congregation and called Pastor David Londenberg as their first pastor.  In 1997, Pastor Londenberg returned to the mission field where he felt called to serve.

 

     In 2000, the congregation called Pastor Dale Brynestad.  This was his first assignment out of seminary.  Pastor Brynstad served Divine Savior until 2003.  As often happens, Pastor Brynstad received a call, and after prayerful consideration, accepted the call to another congregation in South Texas.

 

     In 2003, Divine Savior entered into a contractual agreement with Odis Doyal to serve as the pastor.  Odis had been a lay member of the congregation.  He signed up for the DELTO program (distance leading to ordination) that allowed him to serve as a lay minister and then as a vicar while taking the necessary courses to become an ordained pastor.  During June 2010, Odis Doyal was ordained as a pastor into the LCMS and accepted the call as pastor of Divine Savior.

 

     Divine Savior remembers with great fondness and appreciation all the pastors who filled in during the periods of time when the church had no pastor.  While it is impossible to list every pastor who served our congregation, we would like to recognize those who served regularly during times of vacancy.  They are listed in alphabetical order:

 

Pastor Norman Abbott

 

Pastor David Ebs

 

Pastor Louis Oetting

 

Pastor Louis Redmann

 

Pastor Edward Schneider

 

Pastor Ernest Schoenborn

 

Pastor Richard Snyder

 

Pastor Rudy Wendel

 

     Without these and other pastors who were willing to give their time and service, Divine Savior would not have been able to continue to function as a church receiving the Word and Sacrament on a regular basis.

 

     We are grateful for our past and the blessings that the Lord has provided for his people at Divine Savior.  We look forward to the future with hope, faith, and anticipation knowing the promise that the Lord gave his people in Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future."

 

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