Our History

The History Of Faith Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod
Sequim Washington

Faith Lutheran Church can trace its history back to 1937 when a group of twelve families who relocated to Sequim from North Dakota. They did not have a pastor but were able to secure a commitment for pastoral care from Rev. A. Eichmann who would traves from Mt. Vernon Washington to Sequim to hold services in the VFW Hall which at that time was held at the corner of Sequim Avenue and Washington Street.

The move to Port Angeles resulted in the church having a constitution and a name. St. Matthew’s. In January of 1939, Pastor Raymond Rimbach from Longview was installed as the first resident pastor. St. Mathew grew quickly and eventually the “Sequim Contingent” of St. Matthew once again held services in Sequim, renting the sanctuary of the Presbyterian Church for services. For the next 20 years, St. Matthew’s two-group arrangement continued.

That first service, took place on July 11, 1937 and 55 people attended. The decision was made three months later by this fledging group, to begin meeting in Port Angeles, a larger town, and a greater prospect for growth. Worship services were held in the local Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Our second pastor, Reverend Ralph Wegener was called and installed in 1952. Four years later, a permanent worship site was erected at our present location of 4th and Cedar Streets.

Faith Lutheran’s first building was a contemporary design and 24 feet wide and 60 feet long with a cross at either end of the building. The building was dedicated in 1957 An education wing was included with an office, study, storage room, a well-equipped kitchen, and restrooms. The large remaining room would be divided for Sunday School use. Ione Brueckner took the bench of the new organ and Ruth Mogan assisted in the music ministry each Sunday morning.

In the early 1960’s the worshipping group in Sequim was large enough to chart its own course as an independent congregation. On May 17, 1964 the group approved its own constitution and chose the name – Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church.

A few months later Candidate Daniel Parshall was installed as the new congregation’s first Pastor. A parsonage on Hendrickson Road was dedicated for the Pastor’s use.

During the decade of the 70’s, Sequim experienced rapid growth as well as the Faith Lutheran congregation. Pastor Parshall, in 1972 accepted a call to a Lutheran church in Portland.

By 1975, the congregation numbered 200 communicant members, and again consideration was given to expansion, but there was a problem; parking. In 1979, the congregation purchased the property to the west of the church and developed a lot.

In Early 1973, Pastor Walter Huth, his wife, and children moved to Sequim from North Dakota. Pastor Huth was a tireless Pastor and within months the church experiences another spurt in growth and in November of 1973 the congregation again decided to build a larger sanctuary.

The new 5,100 square foot sanctuary was completed in a little more than a year, with a seating capacity of 250 and overflow provisions for an additional 150 worshipers. In addition, the new building contained a nursery, a secretary’s office, a Pastor’s study, rest rooms.
Faith Lutheran also saw a growth in its music program. Under the direction of Pat Marcy, the vocal choir grew and a new bell choir was added to the ministry.

A new Pastoral Assistant; Reverend Rudolph Bloomquist was installed in at Faith Lutheran in 1976,

As Faith Lutheran continued in growth and religious programs, Pastor Bloomquist served the congregation until his departure in 1990.
In 1980 planning began for Luther Hall, and members of the congregation, again provided most of the labor. The new educational unit, approximately 3200 square feet, was dedicated in 1984.
Health issues prompted Pastor Huth to resign in the summer of 1987, and interim Pastor Alfred Beck served the congregation until Pastor Michael Kasting, from Akron Ohio, arrived and again Faith experienced growth, a second worship service was added along with expansion of the youth program. In 1984, the congregation had 384 communicant members.
In August of 1989, Faith Lutheran Church celebrated its 25th Anniversary.
Faith Lutheran continued to grow and in the early 90’s, property was purchased to the east of the church to start a Pre School.

In 1993, Pastor Steve Moser became Faith’s first Assistant Pastor and was responsible for the youth ministry, and the congregations’ goals of starting a preschool moved forward with the first classes held in 1994.

Pastor Moser accepted a call to a new congregation and in May of 1995,

In the Summer of 1995, Pastor Steve Eaton accepted a call as Assistant Pastor.

He assumed leadership of the congregation and six years later, in 2001, and continues in that role today.

In addition to his responsibilities at Faith Lutheran, Pastor Eaton was also commissioned as a reserve Chaplin in the US Navy and served Navy and Coast Guard bases on the Olympic Peninsula. Pastor Eaton celebrated his 25th Anniversary in his ministry at Faith Lutheran in 2011

Deacon Tim Bruce, a retired Neuropsychologist joined the ministries at Faith Lutheran in 2001. Deacon Bruce trained for becoming a Deacon at the PSW District and attended Princeton and Fuller Seminaries. He has brought his skills and education to the community of Sequim and at Faith Lutheran, his Ministries include visiting local Nursing Homes, Sheriff’s Chaplaincy, Hospice and serving the homeless community.

Pastor Shawn Hazel was installed as Assistant Pastor in 2001. Plans for a new preschool facility were approved and a second parcel of property was purchased. The previous preschool building was demolished, and construction began on the new modern classrooms and recreation room.

In 2005, Pastor Roger Stites was installed as Assistant Pastor, and has led the preschool in its mission and has served Faith Lutheran’s Congregation for the past the congregation 18 years.

Together, Pastor Eaton and Pastor Stites continue to lead our congregation, performing baptisms, Holy Communion, worship services, lead our Preschool Mission, and additional expansion of Faith Lutheran along with our outreach programs, serving the Lord with gladness and using given talents to spread Christ’s message of forgiveness, hope, comfort, and love.

Please join us as we continue to grow as a congregation and in service to others.


Adapted from the ordinal story by Lawrence Kettle and as found in the Fiftieth Anniversary Booklet.

The alter in our Sanctuary has a very interesting and unique history. When the decision was made to build a new sanctuary, a committee meeting was held with architect Milton Sticker. In designing the church, a great deal of natural wood was used. The architect suggested that an alter could be made from a stump of a tree. It would need to be a special tree.
Lawrence Kettle, a member of Faith Lutheran worked in the logging industry and thought he could find just the right stump from which to fashion a circular alter.
The search for the stump took some time, but finally the perfect stump was located near La Push, Washington. It was the very large stump of a big spruce tree. Mr. Kettle borrowed a truck and made the drive to pick up his cargo. He was surprised to find the ‘stump’ was ten feet in diameter and eight feet long. With the overloaded truck, Mr. Kettle made the journey back to Sequim.
The architect provided the plans for the alter and felt it would be a beautiful addition to the new church. Now, all Faith Lutherans needed to do was find someone to make the alter. Finally, the architect convinced Lawrence Kettle that “he could do it.”
Having only a chain saw and a portable planer, made slow work for Mr. Kettle, but his persistence prevailed and four months later, the alter was finished.
The next day, while standing outside his garage he made his plans how to load the alter on a truck and how to install the heavy alter in the Sanctuary the following day.
Then he heard a loud “pop”. At first, he thought it was a rifle going off. He had no idea where the noise came from and gave it no more thought.
Later that afternoon, he went into his garage to look again at his four-month long project. He turned on the light and immediately saw a large crack going from the top of the alter to the bottom.
Later, Mr. Kettle learned that Spruce stumps, particularly one the size of the alter, can take five years for all the moisture to leave the wood. The stump was still too green. Over the next few months, the crack kept getting wider. Finally, the crack had to be filled with a block of matching wood. Although disappointed Lawrence Kettle was convinced that God had a plan for this tree from the day the seed fell to the ground. That seed would grow into an amazing Spruce tree. Part of that plan was that one day the strong stump end of this huge tree was to become the alter in Faith Lutheran, a very special alter.
From this spruce alter, God’s word would be read and preached, weddings would take place as well as memorial services. Over the years members have knelt and received the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ through Holy Communion, and each Sunday morning, those worshiping see the alter, and the Baptismal Font and Pulpit. The Communion Rail was crafted to match the natural wood of this special alter by Truman Welch. When a worshiper raises their eyes towards the heavens, they will see three crosses supported from the ceiling. These were crafted and constructed by Art Paul, who also made the emblems around the Communion Rail.
As Lawrence Kettle realized almost 60 years ago, this is a special Alter, crafted from a special tree. One can feel the power of God’s Creation as they kneel at the altar. This ‘tree stump’ is indeed a blessing to our congregation.

Significant Events and Dates in the History

Faith Lutheran Church

July 11, 1937 – The first Service was held for the congregation that was to become St. Matthews Lutheran Church in Sequim.

February 2, 1941 – Four years later, the ‘Sequim’ contingency of Lutherans returned to Sequim and started Worship in the Presbyterian Church.

February 19, 1956, A building committee was formed and authorized to spend $13,127.00 to build a church. Additional Building Fund Pledges amounted to $68,797.00.

June 2, 1957 What was missing from the new church (besides pews) was an organ. One was purchased for $1200.00.

August 2, 1964 – Reverend Daniel Parshall was installed as served the congregation faithfully as its first resident Pastor for the next eight years.

February 7, 1973 – Pastor Walter Huth was installed as the second pastor in the new Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church. The church continued to grow and on September 8, 1974, the congregation held another groundbreaking celebration for a new Sanctuary. Eight months later, the new Sanctuary is dedicated. The following year, Reverend Rudolph Bloomquist became the Pastoral Assistant.

July 17, 1983 – The past decade has blessed Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church with many new members.

July 17, 1983 – Another building project was approved and ground was broken for Luther Hall. Ten months later, (May 20, 1984) Luther Hall was dedicated. Again, as with previous building projects, most of the labor was provided by volunteers from the congregation.

December 15, 1985 Faith Lutheran installed its first Vicar, Dale Bahl’s arrived and served one year. In 1987, Pastor Walter Huth resigned due to ill health. Reverend Oswald Wegener served as interim pastor. Two years later, Reverend Alfred Beck also served as Interim Pastor.

February 26, 1990 – Voters approved the purchase of the property to the East of the Church. Alan Hubbard is the second Vicar called to Faith and is installed for the next 12 months.

The following year, was again a time of growth and a Building Expansion Committee is formed. Vicar Hubbard leaves and Vicar Joel Kaiser is installed in his place, and the original organ was replaced with a new one and a special recital was held.

May 1, 1995 – Associate Pastor Moser has accepted a new call and the search starts for a new Associate Pastor. Reverend Steve Eaton accepts the call and arrives during the Summer of 1995, and was installed on August 6, 1995.

2001 – Reverend Eaton becomes Senior Pastor, and Shawn Hazes is installed as Associate Pastor.

May, 2005 – Final drawings and cost estimates are in for the new preschool. Plans for a new parking lot are also approved by the congregation. With much work to do, the Reverend Roger Stites is called and installed as Associate Pastor.

The next several years are busy, new programs such as Kids for Christ is organized, new hymnals arrive, and two new crosses are installed on the top of the church.

Over the next decade, Faith continued to add additional members, developed new missions for the future, served the community and watched the expansion of the Preschool at Faith.

In 2024, our members will once again join and celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Faith Lutheran Church.

January 15, 1939 – Reverend Raymond Rimbach was installed as pastor of St. Matthew’s.

March 17, 1948, a new site was purchased by the church for $750.00. In 1952, Pastor Ralph Wegener was installed as the first pastor of S.t Matthews Sequim.

March 18, 1956 A groundbreaking ceremony was held by St. Matthews in Sequim. One year later, the Sequim Church was dedicated and the building was complete – except for the pews. The total cost for building, using mainly members in the construction was $16,785.

May 17, 1964 A very important day! The Congregation adopted its own constitution and formally and officially changed its name to Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church.

April 18, 1988 – Pastor Michael Kasting and his family arrived in Sequim to become lead pastor of the congregation. A second service was added a short time later and Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church grew to 384 communicant souls.

August of 1989 marked the 25th anniversary of the congregation.

August of 1989 marked the 25th anniversary of the congregation.

October 25, 1993 – The Church Council approves a recommendation to the voters to start a preschool program – ‘If there is a large enough enrollment.”

September 1994 – Faith Lutheran Preschool opens its doors and the first preschool class is enrolled.

June 1997 – Pastor Eaton is commissioned as a reserve Chaplain in the United States Navy, serving military families in the area.

July 2002 – A second parcel of land adjacent to the church is purchased enabling the church to expand and build a new preschool facility.

In February of 2006, the old preschool is demolished and the following month, the new foundation is poured and construction begins.

September, 2006 – the new facility is ready to welcome students.

2011 – Pastor Steve Eaton celebrates his 25th anniversary in the ministry.

2014 – Faith Lutheran Church celebrates its 50th Anniversary.

Many of those and other activities are identified and included on our Web Site. We encourage you to explore Faithlutheransequim.org to learn more about our worship and activities.