History of Immanuel

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Immanuel Lutheran Church is a newly formed Lutheran Church in Sumter, SC. We celebrated our first worship service on Sunday March 13, 2011. On Sunday March 20th, organizing members adopted the name “Immanuel Lutheran Church.” It means “God with us”.

Immanuel Lutheran started as an Independent Lutheran denomination. The organizing members spent several months studying four different Lutheran denominations including Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS), Lutheran Congregations in Mission For Christ (LCMC), North American Lutheran Church (NALC) and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS). During this study period, Immanuel Lutheran was served by Pastors from North and South Carolina representing the four different Lutheran denominations. On July 27, 2011 at a congregational meeting a vote was held and by a two thirds majority Immanuel Lutheran became affiliated with the NALC denomination.


We didn't have a Pastor, so each week we were served with either a retired Pastor who joined the NALC or Seminary students studing to be NALC Pastors. Later, a LCMC Pastor agreed to be our Vice Pastor to serve the needs of the congregation and conduct Bible studies every other Wednesday evening. Since Pastor Aurand had a congregation in Newberry, SC, we continued with our roster of Pastors for Sunday worship.

During the first five months, Sunday Worship Services and midweek Bible studies were held at the Christian Golfers’ Association Building, 1285 Clara Louise Kellogg Drive in Sumter. In June, Immanuel Lutheran Church was invited by St. John United Methodist Church to share their facilities at 136 Poinsett Drive. The details, including a new address for Immanuel, were worked out between the congregations and Immanuel Lutheran celebrated their first Sunday worship service at 140 Poinsett Drive on August 7, 2011. What a wonderful opportunity for growth for both church families! This change in venue meant that Immanuel’s Sunday Worship Service would change to 9:00 AM so we didn’t interfere with the already established schedule of St. John’s. Moving to this facility also allowed Immanuel Lutheran room to offer Sunday School classes at 10:30 AM for Preschool, Elementary, Middle/High and Adult.

In April of 2013 we were notified of a Pastor who would be willing to lead Immanuel part time. The call process began and on August 25, 2013 Pastor Gary Blobaum became the Sheppard of Immanuel Lutheran Church.

God is truly with us.