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Two New Congregations In Our Synod Family

St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church Golden, Colorado

St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church is located just west of Denver in Golden, Colorado–settled in a valley between two table mesas on the east and the foothills of the Rockies on the west.

The congregation was formed in 1993, resulting in a merger of St. Luke of Denver and St. James of Golden. Both of these congregations were formed in the early 1940’s. Orval Krei was the first pastor of St. James, followed by Victor Schultz and then Herold Schulz. When St. Luke was established, Victor Tiefel was pastor. He faithfully shepherded the congregation for several decades, and at age 84 he is still serving as associate pastor in the newly formed congregation.

After World War II, St. James congregation purchased one of the chapels at Camp Hale in the Colorado Rockies, where soldiers trained for winter and alpine warfare. This was utilized in building the church where the congregation is presently worshiping in Golden. We say “presently” worshiping, because the congregation just sold the church property in July. As we are looking for a site and building a new place of worship, we have an arrangement to use our former church building for Sunday worship services, Lenten services, etc. at no charge for two years.

The current pastor of St. Paul’s is Delwyn Maas. Pastor Maas was born and raised in the Denver area, growing up in St. Luke’s congregation. He graduated from Immanuel Lutheran High School and Immanuel Lutheran College in Eau Claire. In 1980 he graduated from Colorado Lutheran Seminary in Denver. He and his wife Jody have three children: David (15), Timothy (11), and Heidi (8).

The congregations which merged into St. Paul’s have weathered many controversies over the years, not unlike many other confessional Lutheran congregations. Through those experiences the Holy Spirit granted the increase of faith and knowledge by compelling us to fervently study His Word. He has instilled within us a love for His Word so that we cherish it as a “pearl of great price.” Our one abiding goal has been faithfulness to God’s Word. This path has not always been an easy one. Truly, it has been sprinkled with many tears.

As difficult as it was to endure such events, the Lord of the Church never failed to sustain and prosper our congregation. He has now created a blessed union between us and the Church of the Lutheran Confession, with whom we share the goal of faithfulness to God’s Word. We count this fellowship as precious indeed! “But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin” (1 Jn. 1:7).

As we prepare for the next phase in the history of our congregation (new location, new building, new fellowship), we pray for the Lord to bestow His blessings on our sister congregations, and we ask them also to keep us in their prayers as we undertaken the tasks ahead of us.

St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church Colorado Springs, Colorado

Below the snow-capped visage of Pikes Peak lies the city of Colorado Springs, population 306,000. Here you can visit such places as NORAD, the Air Force Academy, and the training facility for the U.S. Olympic team. Colorado Springs is known as a very conservative community and there are many churches and religious organizations. For example, the headquarters for Focus on the Family is located here.

Among all these high-profiled localities, you can also find St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church. Here a congregation of faithful Lutherans gather together every Sunday afternoon at 3:30 for worship services.

Like many confessional Lutheran congregations, St. Matthew’s was born of controversy. having departed from WELS, their congregation had been independent for several years. In the early 1990’s a division arose within the congregation. The question was: “Does the authority to receive or remove members from the congregation reside with the congregation or solely with the pastor?” The pastor maintained that he had unilateral authority in this area. Many in the congregation disagreed, citing Matthew 18:17 and other passages to demonstrate that this responsibility and authority belong to the body and not to any individual.

The ensuing separation resulted in the formation of St. Matthew’s in 1991. Delwyn Maas has served as the pastor of this congregation since its inception. From his home in Golden it is about 80 miles to St. Matthew’s.

At the Convention last June, Pastor Maas spoke for St. Paul of Golden and St. Matthew of Colorado Springs when he said: “We rejoice that the Holy Spirit has created a scripturally based and therefore God-pleasing agreement between us.” After the Convention St. Matthew voted to apply for membership in the Church of the Lutheran Confession. The Lord has truly blessed our congregation through His precious Word, and we trust that He will enrich us further through the fellowship which He has created between us and the CLC.

Editor’s Note: It was at our request that Pastor Delwyn Maas submitted this information to introduce our readers to the congregations he is serving. We thank him. We implore the Lord to bless the work he and St. Paul and St. Matthew congregations are doing.