Hope Lutheran is a member of the Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod. The Lutheran Church is a confessional movement within the Christian Church, begun in the 1500s, that includes more than 50 million members worldwide. The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, of which Hope is a member congregation, has about 2.5 million members. It is the second largest Lutheran denomination in the United States, and is known for maintaining a faithful witness to God's word.
A Brief History of Hope
1954 --- Sunday School started February 4, in American
Legion Hall under sponsor ship of Concordia Lutheran Church, Azusa. First
Sunday school Super intendment, Mr. Howard Boltz.
1955 --- Preaching services started on Feb. 27 with
Pastor A. G. Wahl serving as preacher. 70 people attended. Pastor Wahl canvassed
Five acres were purchased on East Foothill and Loraine for $35,000 by the Southern
California District of the Lutheran Church-Mo. Synod in the spring of ’55.
Pastor and Mrs. Kenneth Molnar came to Glendora in June. Pastor Molnar was
ordained and commissioned to serve the Glendora Mission Field on July 10, 1955.
the month of August the name “Hope Lutheran Church of Glendora” was chosen for
the new mission.
Hope Lutheran Church was formally organized on September 21, 1955.
1956 ---The first
confirmation class (children) was received into membership on May 20, 1956.
--- In August Pastor Molnar was called and installed
as Pastor of Hope Lutheran Church – no longer 'missionary at large’ for the Southern
1957 --- Ground breaking for first unit of
Church plant. October 20, 1957. The building was designed by William Wilke.
Hugo Neitsch was the builder.
1958 --- First service held in the still uncompleted church
on June 29 when a class of eight juniors was confirmed.
--- The chapel and education unit were
formally dedicated on Sunday, September 21, 1958, the Rev. Luther Schwartzkopf
of San Bernardino delivering the message.
1960 --- In January the
decision was made to open a Christian Day School.
--- Mr. Donald L. Simpson was called as first
principal of Hope Lutheran School, beginning his work in July, 1960. Miss
Shirley Mosshemmer began her teaching duties in September, 1960, in charge of
the primary grades.
1967 --- In January the
necessity of a third classroom was seen and plans for opening it began.
--- Ground was broken for educational unit
(two classrooms, six Sunday school rooms) in June, 1961. Work began on July 1.
Miss Norma Dodge added to staff in August.
1962 --- Mr. Jess Thomas, graduate of Concordia,
Seward, Nebraska, arrived in August to replace Miss Dodge. Installed in September
to teach grades 3-5 and direct youth work.
Work ceased on new education building, awaiting re-financing.
1963 --- Pastor Molnar Completed 7 ½ years of work as
first pastor of Hope, accepting call to San Antonio, Texas, Preaching farewell
sermon on last Sunday of February.
--- Pastor Harry F. Miller of Santa Rose,
California, called as new pastor at meeting on March 17, accepts call and is
installed on May 26.
Work resumed on education building, October, 1963.
1964 --- Dedication of
educational building, March 1, 1964.
1965 --- Hope celebrated
10th anniversary in October with District President Behnken speaker.
1966 --- Jess Thomas terminates service as teacher and
youth director at Hope, is succeeded by Thomas Mueller.
--- Building Committee appointed with Bob
Trent, chairman; Dennis Wehmueller of Los Angeles engaged as architect.
1967 --- Largest class of
juniors confirmed: 25 in all.
opened with Marion Hillman, teacher.
Building Crusade conducted to underwrite building of new sanctuary.
1968 --- Decision to “go ahead”
with building of new sanctuary made by congregation in spring of year.
Ground breaking on First Sunday in Advent, December 1, 1968.
1969 --- Cornerstone
laying, April 13, 1969.
Dedication of new sanctuary, August 17, 1969.