A brief History of
The seeds for this the first Evangelical
Lutheran congregation in Clinton County were sown by St. John’s New Minden as
they helped develop a preaching station in Hoffman (then known as Osnabrueck)
shortly after the New Minden congregation was formed in 1846. On
The congregation also started a school immediately after the first Pastor arrived. (His annual salary: $250.00). The School was taught by the pastor and was held in the church. In 1884 the first teacher Mr. Volkmann was hired to teach school during four months in the winter for $100. In 1889, a resolution was passed to engage a lady teacher, who could teach English, for a period of three months.
At the cost of $4600 the second of the three congregational
church buildings was dedicated on
In 1907 Pastor Brockmann , who served Trinity from
1890-1908, was elected to serve as the
first Southern Illinois District President.
However he was unable to serve because shortly after this election he
received and accepted the call to serve at
In 1912 the school was enlarged, and a second teacher was added. A new school was built in 1951, with additions of classrooms in 1960, and a gym in 1982.
In July 1918 the congregation resolved to begin English services “occasionally”. It was not until 1931, however, that regular monthly English services were held in the morning. Regular German services were ended in 1954. This caveat was noted in a July 1955 voter’s meeting. “German services were again brought up at this meeting, but were defeated. It was decided that anyone who desired to have German communion could receive it at home or at the parsonage.”
The third church building was dedicated on
Twelve Pastors have served Trinity, Hoffman in its 133 year history. The Rev. H.K. Scharlemann had the longest tenure, which was 35 years (1955-1993).
At the 125 anniversary of the congregations there were 650 baptized members, 535 communicant members, and 98 students in the school. Since the 1950’s those numbers for the congregation and school have remained steady, with minor fluctuations. Thanks be to God that for over 130 years God has used his Word and Sacraments to instill and enliven faith among the dear saints at Trinity Lutheran in Hoffman.