St. John's Lutheran Church
Missouri Synod
History
 
 
St. Johannes Evangelical Lutheran Church (now known as St. John’s Lutheran Church) was organized on March 3, 1864, and met for a time in private homes. The first minister was the Reverend H. E. Evers.
 
In 1868, Reverend Henken was called and served the congregation for twelve years. During his pastorate some of the most important steps of the young congregation were taken. In 1869 the congregation purchased the old school property of Burr Oak Township at the corner of Fifth and Main to serve as the house of worship. Some time later a parsonage was built. In the course of time the old school became unsuitable for use as a church and in 1877 the decision was made to build a new church building that was dedicated later the same year. That building is as shown at the bottom of this page.   
 
Until 1892, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Colon and Burr Oak were one congregation. At that time Colon built its own church. At about the same time the use of the English language was first introduced in the services. In 1918 the official language of the Lutheran church was changed to English.
 
In 1907 the Reverend Paul Norrze came and served the congregation for more than 18 years, the longest pastorate in the history of the congregation. Many important events took place during these years, a large addition was added to the parsonage, the voting membership reached 50, the congregation celebrated its Golden Jubilee, the church bell was purchased the parish hall was purchased and remodeled.
 
During the pastorate of the Reverend E.A. Zeile the congregation felt the need for more adequate space for Sunday school and other activities. Rather than remodel the League Hall (now the Grange Hall), it was decided to put the present fellowship hall underneath the church building. To do this work the entire building was raised and placed on large supporting jacks and the congregation continued to use the building was the work was completed. In the next few years, the 90th anniversary celebration of the congregation took place and the League Hall was sold to the Burr Oak Grange.  
 
In 1964 it was felt advisable to renovate the church and relieve increasingly crowded conditions for the Sunday school and parish activities. No definite action was taken until 1964 when the entire interior of the building was remodeled and expansion of the east side entrance completed. This project was undertaken with conjunction with the Centennial celebration of the congregation. At that time the congregation numbered 305 baptized members and 205 communicant members. 
 
In 1976 the congregation was served by the Reverend Gene Kangas.
 
(Facts provided by Burr Oak Patchwork Portrait, Vol. 1)