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Doris Fischer - People of Faith

Doris Fischer and her husband Harold were long-time members of Faith Lutheran Church in Springfield, Illinois. Doris traces the history of Faith from its founding in 1946 to its consolidation with two other Springfield-based Lutheran congregations in 2015. All three congregations had long-serving pastors retiring in 2015, and were also experiencing a decline in membership. Doris speaks extensively about Pastor Wellington P. Witkop, who served as Faith's minister from 1956 to 1989, and Pastor Glen VanderKloot, who served as pastor from 1989 until 2015. She also discussed the various construction phases the church experienced in the 1950s through the 1970s.

Interview Links

Feature Excerpt

Two Pennies

Abstract

Interview Session 01 (Audio)

Early life, and the history of Faith Lutheran through mid-1970s

Interview Session 02 (Audio)

Photos

Caption

This is the home of Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Little, where the first worship service was held in February, 1946. The Littles were surprised when fifty people attend the first service.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

February, 1946

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

This photo of the charter members of Faith Lutheran Church in 1946 appeared in the bulletin celebrating the congregation’s 25th anniversary in 1971.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1946

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

This building served as the original church for the Faith congregation. It was purchased in 1949, and was located on the corner of Outer Park Drive and Whittier.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1949

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.)

Caption

The Faith congregation held a ground breaking ceremony in 1959 for a new church building. The first service in the new sanctuary was in 1960 on Palm Sunday.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1959

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.)

Caption

A drawing of the simple framed structure that served as the congregation’s initial worship place from 1946 to 1958.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1946

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith congregation gathers in the church sanctuary to celebrate the church’s major expansion which was completed in 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church signage in 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Witkop greeting a parishioner following a service in 1976. He served as pastor for thirty-three years, from 1956 to 1989.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The final addition of the church, which included classrooms, a new kitchen, an updated nursery and offices, was completed in 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith Lutheran Church’s youth Sunday School class in 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Assistant Pastor Schmitz in 1976. The congregation often had seminary students from Concordia Theological Seminary who helped with services. Concordia was a Missouri Synod Lutheran seminary, while Faith belonged to the Lutheran Church of America synod at that time.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith Lutheran Church Youth Choir, circa 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith Lutheran Church Senior Choir, circa 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1976

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church as it appeared in September, 1982. It was located at 2313 Whittier Avenue Springfield, Illinois.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

September, 1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Wellington P. Witkop, from the September, 1982 church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

September, 1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Witkop serving communion to congregants, circa 1982.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

circa 1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

A Faith Lutheran Church council meeting, circa 1982. The church council always took an active role in the leadership and management of the church.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

circa 1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith hand bell choir performs during a service in 1982. The congregation had a very strong musical tradition throughout its history.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith members gathered for an outdoor cookout, circa summer of 1982.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1982

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith congregants break bread in their expanded basement and kitchen area circa 1986. The addition was added in 1976.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1986

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Glen VanderKloot was known for the theatrical flair he often added to his sermons and other activities at Faith. He appears in character for an activity in the late 1990s.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1990's

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The Faith congregation updated the chancel area. This photo was from the Fall 1991 church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Fall 1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Glen A. VanderKloot served as minister for Faith Lutheran Church from 1989 until his retirement in 2015. This photo appeared in the 1991 church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

A Faith Lutheran Church Sunday School class circa 1991. Faith drew a youthful congregation at this stage of its history.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Circa 1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith’s youth choir performs during a Sunday service, circa 1991.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Circa 1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor VanderKloot greets parishioners following a service at Faith Lutheran Church, circa 1991.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Circa 1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Harold and Doris Fischer as they appeared in the 1991 edition of the Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1991

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor VanderKloot and the ‘Faith Players’ as they appeared in the 1998 church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

1998

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The congregation’s youth get ready for their annual Christmas pageant, circa 1998. The event was one of the highlights of the Christmas season.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Circa 1998

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Several Faith children enjoyed decorating pumpkins in October, 2012.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

October, 2012.

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Faith Lutheran Church sponsored a Fine Arts Camp for many summers, which was popular with children from the congregation as well as from the surrounding community. Summer, 2013.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

Summer, 2013

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

Pastor Glen A. VanderKloot in 2013, two years prior to his retirement after twenty-six years of service at Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

2013

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

Caption

The photo of Doris Fischer that appeared in Faith’s 2013 church directory.

Where:

Springfield, Illinois

When:

2013

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain.

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