At the beginning of World War I, a group of Lutheran pacifists found their way to Santa Fe. Their objection to that war followed a long history of their Christian social consciousness based on the teachings of the gospel. In the fall of 1914, the first recorded Lutheran worship services in Santa Fe took place, with five adults in attendance. This initial service and subsequent services were conducted by Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod traveling missionary Rev. Carl F. Schmid, pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Albuquerque.
Building a Church in Santa Fe
Regular weekly services for the Immanuel Lutheran church began in 1915, including afternoon services for inmates and staff conducted at the state penitentiary. Although the church began with great enthusiasm, services held between 1915 and1929 became intermittent. It wasn’t until the early 1930s that regular weekly services, sponsored by the permanent founding members of the congregation, resumed. Consistency and growth finally produced a congregation that was incorporated in 1938, with weekly services held in the member’s homes. From 1940 to 1948, the congregation rented facilities for Sunday and midweek activities in Sena Plaza, on Palace Avenue.
The Growth of the Lutheran Church
In the late 1950s, the first mission of the Rocky Mountain Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America began a property search to build the Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church. In 1964 they purchased a six-acre plot that was originally part of the Spanish land grant of Sebastian De Vargas. On June 19, 1966, they held a formal dedication and currently reside on Arroyo Chamiso. Later, the Rocky Mountain synod built a second church, Christ of the Servant, on Legacy Court off of Rodeo Road.