Timeline of Trinity Lutheran Church

December 1, 1882
Norwegian Lutheran Trinity Church was founded
The founders and their families numbered 42.
December 15, 1882
Constitution adopted
This constitution remained in effect until 1909 when the congregation became known as Trinity Lutheran Church.
February 4, 1883
First Sunday school class was held
Four adults and six children were present. Within a few days so many more enrolled that by February 11 four more teachers were required.
July 6, 1884
First Service held in the first church
The building was a “bare bones” structure.
February 10, 1890
Women of Trinity granted the right to vote
This was far ahead of the passage of women’s suffrage in the 1920’s.
First mission Sunday
Mission and outreach have always been an important part of Trinity’s mission
August 4, 1895
First service in the second church 
The original building was moved to the east end of the original lot so that new church could be built in its place.
First organized choir introduced
This choir consisted of 16 to 18 young people interested in singing.
December 25, 1915
First service held in the third church
This building would seat 750 on the main floor and have a balcony.
November 1914
Trinity’s first parish paper is published
Titled “The Trinity Lutheran” this publication contained eight pages with three pages of ads in English, but the text was 50/50 English and Norwegian.
First pipe organ to serve the Trinity Congregation installed
It cost $4,500 and was a Votteler-Holtkamp organ, a gift of the Young People’s Society. It was completely destroyed with the church sanctuary in the fire on April 5, 1950.
March 21, 1919

Trinity and First English Lutheran, of Moorhead, merged to become Trinity Lutheran Congregation

The agreement stated “the official language… shall be the English language.”
October 23, 1920
Trinity’s second parish paper is published
Titled “The Trinity Messenger” with front page articles including “If Christ Came to Moorhead” and “Reformation Festival.”
First worship services broadcast on the radio
The initial radio broadcasts were discontinued due to the economy but were later resumed in 1938 at the request of congregation members.
November 1934
Trinity’s third parish paper is published
Titled “Trinity Lutheran Messenger” with front page articles including “God’s Pence” and “Three Days of Missionary Opportunity.”
April 1950
Trinity Lutheran Congregation becomes Trinity Lutheran Church of Moorhead
April 5, 1950
A fire erupts at the church
Pastor Jacobson prayed, “Father, all my strengths has been used; You’ll have to take over.” One man walked over to Jacobson, put his arm on his shoulder and said, “We’ll build it bigger and better.” And they did.
September 30, 1951
Cornerstone laid for the fourth church
Today’s church has contents from the churches built in 1884, 1895 and 1915. Seating 650 plus 300 in three galleries and 300 in the education building with the 78-foot tower, dating to 1898, is the base of a lighted cross that peaks at 102 feet.
First television Bible class airs
Bible study is an integral part of Trinity’s mission.
New pipe organ installed
This $40,000 pipe organ of 33 ranks was dedicated at the 75th Anniversary of Trinity, and was a unique organ for the area.
September 15, 1974
First contemporary service introduced
Palm Sunday 1981
Trinity hears the newly remodeled organ for the first time.
The organ continues to serve the congregation and community as it leads and inspires congregational worship, and serves as a teaching and recital instrument, both for the church and Concordia College.
Lost and Found Ministry founded
Thea Gullings, a member of Trinity, left a funds to Trinity to be used for a ministry to help the chemically dependent and their families.
January 20, 1991
First service in the newly built Christian Life Center
The first contemporary service was held in the Christian Life Center at 11:30 am and was called Worship, Too!
January 28, 1990
Trinity changes mission statement
This new mission statement stands today.
Small Group Ministry developed with the Trinity Foundation
The funds of the Trinity Foundation were used for research, training, salary for the SGM assistant, and materials.
September 14, 2005
First Taizé service held in the sanctuary
This type of worship is a deeply moving candlelight service of music, silence, scripture, prayer, and Holy Communion.
January 28, 2007
Trinity announces being debt free
At the annual meeting, Pastor Steve Wold announces that a member had walked into his office and asked how much was still owed on the mortgage. Wold responded, “$6,500.” The person wrote a check for that amount. Everyone at the final meeting of the first 125 years smiled as the symbolic Mortgage Burning took place.

Trinity has been served by the following senior pastors:

  • John H. Bruno (1884-1892)
  • Andreas A. Oefstedel (1892-1897)
  • Gustav A. Larsen (1897-1903)
  • John Peterson (1903-1913)
  • Martin Anderson (1914-1920)
  • Sigurd T. Sorenson (1919-1931)
  • Fredrik A. Schiotz (1932-1938)
  • Roy A. Harrisville, Sr. (1938-1947)
  • Erling R. Jacobson (1947-1954)
  • Oscar A. Anderson (1954-1963)
  • Paul A. Hanson (1964-1973)
  • David L. Anderson (1973-1985)
  • Richard J. Foss (1986-1992)
  • John Matthews (1993-1994)
  • David W. Preus (1994-1996)
  • Ann Svennungsen (1996-2003)
  • Ray Siegle (2003-2004)
  • Stephen Wold (2004-2011)
  • Simon G. Fensom (2013 – )

Trinity Archive and History Committee 
Lyle Nelson