St. Luke Lutheran Church
"The vision of a new Lutheran church in north Spokane became a reality on June 6, 1954, under the guidance of mission start pastor, Warren Pechman, with 50 confirmed adults and 42 children. Charter members Oren and Margaret Peterson and Magna (Patterson) Knaggs are still attending St. Luke today. These first services were held at a store front at 10117 Pend Oreille Highway. This is now a Mexican restaurant on what has become the Newport Highway. The congregation grew quickly and the members valued their children’s Christian education, evidenced by the Sunday School growing to 113 students.
Original 1961 Church/Sanctuary
This building, the southern most building, which was once the sanctuary has now been divided into meeting rooms and the offices. In the original building the colored glass still on the northern wall of the building was repeated on southern wall.
The two aisles of padded church pews and straight backed chairs along the sides and back of the church sanctuary accommodate the Sunday morning congregation. A series of stained glass windows by former congregation member John Rancour brighten the north wall of the sanctuary.
"... the deceased architect Mr. Neraas (See Link 3.) should be mentioned as one who played a major part in the development of St Luke. He designed the first two stages of St Luke working closely with those of the various building committees. He most likely holds the record for the number of churches designed for all time." (REF.)
In 2006 a multipurpose room was built on the east end of the church complex. The large gym provides a place for basketball games, church banquets, and special worship services. The east wall serves is enhanced with three crosses sculpted by congregation member Dr. Nathan Stime. A kitchen runs across the south wall. Along the north wall is the choir room, and above it a youth loft open to gym.
Aluminum Sculpture Hands and Cross
The aluminum sculpture "Hands and Cross" was designed by congregation member Dr. Nathan Stime. " The 21 foot vertical height aluminum cross was elevated into its place on Good Friday afternoon 1998, the sky darkened at 4:30 pm as the congregation sang the hymn "Lift high the cross...." Clouds made it very dark as the lightening / thunder made everyone scatter into the church.... The clouds briefly opened to allow the sun display a magnificent rainbow over the cross and above the church... The amount of aluminum is 700 lbs, with steel inner supports adding another 700 lbs. Cement base with the inscribed Alpha and Omega on one side and INRI ("Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews") on the other side added another 30,000 lbs to its total weight." (REF.)
Dr. Stime also designed the three large crosses on the east wall of the multipurpose room. They are made of 7 foot long boards of Tiger Wood/Brazilian Koa. He brought the boards back from one of his many trips to Guatemala where as a doctor he accompanied Nazarene missionaries and then established a wood shop training school. The crosses were mounted in the fellowship hall in 2009, again on Good Friday.
For the last 11 years Pastor Jim Johnson has led this vital and dedicated congregation. During this time "the church has grown in worshipping numbers, facility size, staff composition and most important, range of ministries." (Sandy Randolph.)
Thank You: To Sandy Randolph, Church Administrator, and Jim Scollard,
Worship Coordinator, for information about the church and a tour.
Reference: E mails from Dr. Nathan Stime with information on the sculptures.
Photos: Taken in January 2012 by SW.
Link 1: http://www.stluke-lutheranchurch.org/
Link 2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesus,_King_of_the_Jews
Link 3: http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2007/dec/17/architect-donald-neraas-dies/