Good Shepherd Lutheran Church
1300 Beltline Road
Collinsville, Illinois  62234
(618) 344-3151

Home | About Us | Our Faith | The Word | Youth | Newsletter | Links | Calendar | Education | News

Good Shepherd History

Good Shepherd was organized as a mission congregation on November 12, 1958 by members of Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Collinsville, Illinois; Jerusalem Lutheran Church, Collinsville, Illinois; and St. John's Lutheran Church, Maryville, Illinois.  Rev. Alvin Kollman accepted a call as the first Pastor and was installed on March 2, 1959.  Initial membership was 79.  Services were conducted in a small house chapel adjacent to 13 acres on Beltline Road which the congregation had purchased.  Construction of the first sanctuary on the 13 acres was completed and the building was dedicated on June 16, 1963.  Initial seating was approximately 300.  Different building programs over the years added additional seating, office and classroom space.

In 1978 Rev. Kollman was called to serve as President of the Southern Illinois District of the Missouri Synod and the congregation called the Rev. Dennis Kastens who was installed on February 4, 1979.  Rev. Kastens presided over a period of significant growth and expansion at Good Shepherd.  Membership was increasing and the congregation decided to start its own Christian Day School.  In August of 1984, after much prayer and planning, Good Shepherd Lutheran School held its first classes.  The School grew rapidly and now has over 400 students in grades K - 8, with an additional 120 in Preschool and Daycare.  New building programs added additional classrooms and a gymnasium.    In 1985 Good Shepherd called seminarian Lester Seto from Concordia Seminary to serve as Associate Pastor.  He was installed on June 30, 1985.   Rev. Seto was the first native Hawaiian to become an ordained Missouri Synod minister.

Changes continued at Good Shepherd in the 1990's.  In 1990 Rev. Seto accepted a call in Vacaville, California.  The congregation then called Rev. Michael Walther as Associate Pastor.  Pastor Walther was installed on April 4, 1991.   In 1992, Rev. Kastens accepted a call in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  Rev. Walther was then called to serve as Senior Pastor.  The congregation thereafter called Rev. Bruce Osborne as Associate Pastor.  He was installed on March 28, 1993.

By 1994 it was becoming obvious that continued growth of the congregation and crowding in many of the services made a new, larger, sanctuary a priority.  The Master Plan Committee was reconstituted under the leadership of Richard Wallace and  began the meetings and work necessary to bring a new sanctuary to reality.  Following a great deal of work and prayers, and a successful capital fund drive known as Christ: Our Foundation, which raised over one million dollars, ground was broken for the sanctuary on July 30, 1997.  Construction extended over a period of nearly two years until March 1999 when the congregation first worshipped in the new sanctuary.  The sanctuary was formally dedicated on April 11, 1999 at a special afternoon dedication service.  The old sanctuary was then converted to much needed classroom space.  Click here to read the Sanctuary Dedication Program which contains a great deal of additional information about the sanctuary and all the people who contributed time, talent and money to bring it into existence.

In February, 1999 Rev. Osborne accepted a call to Mattoon, Illinois.  The congregation then called seminarian Peter Hoft from the 2000 graduating class at Concordia Seminary.  Rev. Hoft was ordained and installed on July 2, 2000.  Also in 1999 it was decided that the business affairs of the Church and School were becoming too complex and time-consuming to expect the pastor or lay volunteers to carry out.  Marty Hoffman, long time member and then Chairmen of the Board of Elders, was named Parish Administrator and began his duties on June 16, 1999.

In July, 2006 Rev. Hoft accepted a call to Eldridge, Iowa.  The congregation then extended a call to seminarian Paul Hemenway who had served his vicarage at Good Shepherd in 2005 - 2006.  Rev. Hemenway was ordained at his home congregation, Light of Christ Lutheran Church in Seattle, Washington on July 8, 2007.  He was thereafter installed at Good Shepherd on August 5, 2007.