March 17, 2016
March 12, 2016 will long be remembered as the day when Lutheranch took a giant step forward in ministry with the dedication of the Stender Campus, the Lake Stender Worship Area and St. Timothy Outdoor Chapel. Bishop H. Julian Gordy presided at the dedication, along with Bishop Herman Yoos, South Carolina Synod and the Rev. Darrel Peterson, Marietta, GA.The Lake Stender Worship Area was named in memory of the Rev. William Harold and Roberta MacDougalStender (right). Pastor Stender’s ministry began in South Carolina at which time the family started attending family camp at Lutheridge. Pastor Stender later served at Emmanuel, Atlanta and was responsible for integrating the congregation during the Civil Rights era. Upon retirement they joined Redeemer, Atlanta. The Stender family (left) was represented at the dedication by Bill Stender, Jr., Ellen Chorba, Bobbi (Stender) and Ed Butler, and Bobbi’s pastor, the Rev. John Rossing, Dalton, GA. Anne Elise Falgout, a third Stender sibling from Louisiana was unable to be present because of severe flooding in her state.The Stender Campus, that comprises approx. 80 acres that is currently under development, was also named in memory of the Rev. William Harold and Roberta MacDougal Stender. Naming privileges were awarded by the Board of Trustees in recognition of Bill Stender Jr.’s refinancing the debt on the property that will ultimately save the ministry $2 million in interest. An artist’s rendering depicts the archway entrance to Lutheranch (right) that will mark the new entrance to the site. Those present for the dedication were awestruck at the beauty of the St. Timothy Outdoor Chapel that was designed by NovusWay’s Vice-President of Site and Facilities, Craig Rieger. Rieger and his staff also undertook construction with assistance from Ed Buehler, the “volunteer” Volunteer Coordinator along with Pat Rutherford and Howard Helms. Several volunteers from Grace, Carrollton helped including Paul Scheufler, Bob Adams, Jim Dathe, Shane Dathe and John Larson along with David Troutman from South Carolina. St. Timothy church made a gift to name the “great room” in the new retreat center, along with the altar that is featured in the outdoor chapel. Mrs. Arolue Flemmen-Prater, who made the gift to fund the chapel was present for the dedication with her husband Ron, along with many other members of St. Timothy that are pictured (left). Keith Johnson, NovusWay Executive Director indicated that this won’t be the last dedication at Lutheranch; “Construction should begin in June 2016, or when construction documents for the retreat center are completed, and if all goes as planned the McKanna-Sandrock Retreat Center will be dedicated on Saturday, March 11, 2017. A “symbolic” groundbreaking is planned on May 28, 2016 at the Southeastern Synod Assembly in Birmingham. Assembly participants are invited to tour Lutheranch on Sunday afternoon, May 29, 2016 as they return home.” Johnson concluded his remarks by indicating that $609,000 is still need to fully fund the center. If you would like to help “complete the dream” for Lutheranch, you are encouraged to contact Keith Trout, Development Director at ktrout@NovusWay.com, or 864-313-1453.