Resurrection Lutheran Church
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The History of Resurrection Lutheran

In November 1988, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) appointed the Reverend Jeffrey C. Ruby to serve as church developer in Spotsylvania County. Pastor Jeff knocked on about 2,500 doors over the next several months, finally receiving a sufficiently positive response to start gathering a new congregation.

Our first worship service was held at Battlefield Elementary School on February 26, 1989. It snowed! The service was attended by approximately 60 people, plus the choir of Christ Lutheran Church of Fredericksburg. We continued to worship at Battlefield Elementary for approximately ten months, until the new school superintendent decided we were in violation of the separation of church and state. By that point, however, the congregation was legally organized as a congregation of the Virginia Synod, ELCA, on September 23, 1989.

We then moved our worship location to a banquet room in the Howard Johnson's Motel on Route 1, and nicknamed ourselves the "Church of the HoJo". Needless to say, this arrangement was less than ideal.

Seven months later, we found a new permanently temporary home at the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) Junior Academy on Route 3, west of Fredericksburg. [We changed the church's nickname to "Our Lady of the Perpetual Foul Shot", in recognition of the basketball hoops that adorned the gymnasium where we worshipped.]

The picture below shows our congregation at worship in the SDA gym. This location proved to be a good one, and we continued to worship in this facility until April 29, 1997, when our own church building was dedicated.

Our relocation was a long and somewhat trying experience. Early in our church's history, we purchased a plot of just over 3 acres on Route 3. We subsequently learned that, as a result of restrictions imposed by the Chesapeake Bay watershed regulations, this property would not be sufficient for our needs. Later, we were able to acquire the current church property (of just over 7 acres) at 6170 Plank Road, a few miles further west in Spotsylvania County. These pictures were taken during the groundbreaking ceremonies in the summer of 1996, and as construction drew to a close in early 1997.

Our congregation has been served by several previous pastors. Pastor Ruby, our Pastor/Developer, accepted a call to serve a congregation in Phoenix, AZ, in March 1992. The Reverend Alan J. Rider served from September 1992 to September 1994. The Reverend V. Paul Conradt-Eberlin served at Resurrection Lutheran Church from August 1995, through a period of strong growth (and the building program). In March 2000, Pastor Conradt-Eberlin accepted a call to develop a mission church in the Richmond, VA, area.

After several months of prayerful planning and searching, the congregation called the Reverend James C. Kniseley and the Reverend Carol H. Kniseley to serve as Co-Pastors of Resurrection Lutheran Church. They accepted the call in October 2000 and arrived in Fredericksburg in time to lead our services on the first Sunday in Advent on December 3, 2000. The official installation of Pastor Jim and Pastor Carol was held on February 11, 2001.

In 2003, we began a 10 year plan in response to God's call to grow and expand our capacity for ministry. In 2004 we began planning to expand our facilities, and broke ground for our new 13,000 sq ft addition in March of 2007, which was completed in February 2009. See the archived Building Page for more details. Our congregation is now comprised of more than 300 members. We have established a World Mission Support Team in 2005, a Health Ministry in 2006, and reestablished the preschool in 2008. We celebrated our 20th Anniversary of September 13th, 2009. See our Photo page for archived images of our past.

In 2015, Pastors Jim and Carol Kniseley retired, and we entered a period of discernment in calling a new pastor to shepherd our flock. Pastor Tim Waltonen was assigned by Bishop Mauney to serve as our Interim Pastor during this time. Pastor Tim has served well and faithfully, guiding us through this time of expectation and preparation. On the 5th of March 2017, The Rev Heidi Moore was installed by our Germanna Conference Dean, The Reverend Sandy Wisco, as Pastor of Resurrection. Welcome Pastor Heidi!

We continue to reach out to the community in the name of Jesus, seeking to fulfill our mission and vision: 

Our Mission:
"Marked with the cross of Christ forever, we are claimed, gathered, and sent -- for the sake of the world."

Our Vision:
"Resurrection Lutheran Church is a Christ-centered family of believers, so deeply and confidently rooted in the Gospel of God's grace, that we are free to give our lives joyfully in witness and service to those whom God has brought into our lives: within our congregation, our community, and our world."
That Christ may be seen!

God has blessed our church body in many ways, and we desire to share that blessing with the community. We hope that you will join us, and help make history with us in the future!

 


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