Lord of Life Lutheran began in 1988 as a mission church sponsored by the SD District of the LCMS. Land was purchased in the southeast area of Sioux Falls due to its expected housing growth.
Pastor Bob Heckmann was called to serve as a missionary pastor and began his ministry in April, 1988. After canvassing the neighborhood, families began to worship together in the gymnasium at Sioux Falls Christian High School, beginning on September 25, 1988. With approximately 20 families attending worship, the construction of the current building began and the building was dedicated in 1989. Workers from Laborers for Christ assisted in the construction of the building. The original building ended at what is now the coat room.
Pastor Heckmann left the ministry to pursue a career in medicine. Pastor Dave Kuhnle was called and served as pastor until June, 1994. After Pastor Kuhnle accepted a call to the Council Bluffs area, the congregation called Pastor John Dawson who served as senior pastor from October, 1994-December 2008. On September 12, 2010, Pastor Wade Meyer was installed as Senior Pastor and Pastor Stephen Hartman was installed as a part-time Assistant Pastor. Pastor Steve served until June of 2014.
In November 2014 Pastor Chera Nemera was ordained and installed as the Pastor to Lord of Life's Afaan Oromo Ethiopian speaking congregation. You can read more about their ministry on our About Us section.
Due to the blessing of growth in membership, the congregation voted to add an education wing in 1996. Mills Construction, along with help from congregational members, built the education wing with financial assistance from the SD District. The education wing was dedicated in February of 1997.
From January 2000-August 2002 Pastor Joel Sund served as Family Life Pastor.
In 2002 Pastor John formed a Vision task force to work on helping Lord of Life carry out the Great Commission that God has given His church. From that Lord of Life's Vision and Mission statements were developed. The task force also helped determine future staff needs. In 2006 one of those needs was met by Vicar Josh Moldenhauer. A Vicar (Intern) is a seventh-year student who is studying to become a pastor. Having a vicarage program has helped Lord of Life to carry out the mission of reaching souls for Jesus Christ.
That mission has spread worldwide allowing our mission teams to grow through the years as we carried the Good News to places like Honduras; our first trip to Honduras was in 2001. Our members have also been privileged to travel to places like Mexico, Venezuela, Dominican Republic.
In this family the people are the MINISTERS and the pastors are the SHEPHERDS/ADMINISTRATORS.
“God gave...some to be pastors and teachers to prepare God’s people for works of ministry, so that the body of Christ may be built up...” Ephesians 4:11-12