Worship Fortress Redeemed in Delmont
A flood of emotion filled the new nave, narthex and fellowship area at the rebuilt Zion Lutheran Church in Delmont on Saturday as hundreds gathered to celebrate.
After a tornado on Mother’s Day in 2015 leveled the historic landmark and damaged dozens of other homes and businesses in the Douglas County town, a steely resolve was needed to enable worship to continue on that site.
For the faithful, clinging to hope by what humans can accomplish is folly. God, the Creator gives his blessing as he sees fit with this a new building to serve as a reminder of His grace.
Rev. Scott Sailer, the President of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, South Dakota District invoked the Psalms in forging the new path for those who will worship at the facility. “From Zion, perfect in beauty, God shines forth.” (Psalm 50:2)
Congregation President Terry Klumb spoke at the dedication, providing a few details during the long task for the new Zion. One such note came from one of the subcontractors who had to make an emergency trip to Sheboygan, Wisconsin to transport the sanctuary’s light fixtures in order have them ready for the Saturday event.
Rev. Brian Bucklew who helped shepherd the flock through the difficult days since the storm felt a tinge of Easter in the room. He led the throng in the traditional Easter greeting, “Christ is risen.” The parishioners responded with the traditional response, “He is risen, indeed. Alleluia.”
The altar from the previous building was preserved along with the paraments that adorned the altar, pulpit and lectern. Though the building is worship-ready, plans are to add gradually add stained glass to the windows lining the north and south outer walls.
On a personal note, much time in my formative years was spent at the old church. A few dozen feet to the west a new era has begun. To God be the glory.