St. John Lutheran Church was organized in August 1878, by 36 members who had a dream to build for Jesus Christ. The first church was built on a hill in the center of Reedsburg. The church family grew and in 1892 a tower was built on the church and a large bell placed within it. By 1928, the congregation had increased to a membership of nearly 700.
In the late fall of 1936 the congregation installed a new heating plant in the church and the Ladies Aid had just decorated the church basement when on Sunday morning, January 10, 1937, a fire broke out in the church and destroyed the building. Only a few things were saved including the church bell, the stone name plate above the entrance to the church, and the Baptismal Font, which we still use.
The congregation worshiped in the Badger Theatre until February 27, 1938, when the present church building was dedicated. The congregation grew during the 1940's and 1950's. By the late 1950's the congregational family numbered over 1,000. In 1960 an education unit and office space was added east of the church adding 25 classrooms for Sunday School. Through the years, many of these rooms have had to be used for many other things including offices, storage, youth room, etc.
On February 4, 1996, ground was broken for the addition of a new narthex area on the west side of the church building. The addition, which was dedicated on September 15, 1996 includes a narthex, brides room, choir room, quilting room, and large kitchen.
This church strives for simplicity in worship, doctrine and personal living. We respect diversity of thought and tradition, believing that freedom is essential in our journey toward truth. What binds us together is a common spirit of love for Jesus and the desire to seek and follow God's will for our life.
This congregation is an interdependent part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The government of this church is vested in its members, who exercise the right to control its affairs both temporal and spiritual.
To carry this out, the membership elects a Congregation Council of 12 members (on a rotating basis for terms of three years), who from themselves elect a president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer on a one-year basis. Six boards, formed by teams of volunteers, carry out the policies established by the Council. These boards are: Administration, Church in Society, Congregational Life, Education, Worship, and Youth and Family. Various committees function under the auspices of these boards.
Congregational Council 2019