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Our Church History

In 1892, a small group of Lutherans acquired property in Holland, Iowa, upon which they would build the first Lutheran Church in this area. They called themselves the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church. The congregation was mostly of German descent. Their church building was a wood frame structure with a towering steeple. In the base of the steeple, there hung a huge bell. The ring of this bell could be heard each Sunday morning for miles around. But the greatest thrill came each December 31st at 12 o’clock midnight when it was used to ring out the old year and to ring in the new.

In 1945, a small group of Lutherans began meetings for worship in Grundy Center. Since they didn’t have a church building, they held services in the County Courthouse. They were under the pastoral care of Rev. George Dirks of Salem Lutheran Church, rural Parkersburg. During the following year, on November 7, 1946, this group united with the Holland parish to form a new congregation, American Lutheran Church.

In the following months, the combined congregation held worship services in Holland. Rev. Paul Eilers of Independence was secured as the pastor of the budding congregation. One year later, in November of 1947, Rev. Kenneth Franzen became the congregation’s first resident pastor.


After much consideration it was decided to build a new church. The church would be built in Grundy Center. During the building process the pitfalls and stumbling blocks were never ending. After months and months of waiting, the project was finally completed. The service of dedication was held on September 25, 1949. At that time the membership role stood at 109.

To read more about our church history from then until present day, click here.

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