What is our mission?
Our mission is to share the love of God with everyone. We reach out to our neighbor and show God’s love by:
- Worshipping together often
- Recounting God’s mighty deeds in Sunday School and Adult Bible Study
- Participating in the wider church, supporting missionaries and partnering with sister churches in the United States and abroad
- Responding to human need in our country by giving our time and treasure
- Providing for our neighbor’s need locally through Safe Net Ministries
- Visiting those who are lonely or sick
- Mentoring the young
Who are we?
Holy Trinity is a congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.Founded in 1914 by Slovak immigrants, Holy Trinity has served the Stafford area for over 100 years.
We are a community of believers in Jesus, who are called out of the world for the special purpose of serving God, sharing the Good News of Life in Christ. We strive to be a safe place of refuge for those who are in need, a people of joy in prayer and thanksgiving, and a community that strives for justice and reconciliation. We are a people who seek to forgive others the way we have been forgiven and we are friends who aspire to love one another the way Jesus loves us.
What do we believe?
With the universal Christian church, the Lutherans confess and respond to the love of the Triune God: the Father, Creator of all that exists, Jesus Christ, the Son, who became human to suffer and die for the sins of all human beings and to rise to life again in there ultimate victory over death and the devil; and the Holy Spirit, who creates faith through God’s Word and Sacraments. The three persons of the Trinity are coequal and coeternal, one God. We as a congregation take our name from this mystery of Who God is and we aspire to be of one mind and being, just as our God is one.
Being “Lutheran” means being truly catholic and truly evangelical—we honor and keep the Bible-based Tradition of worship of the early Christian church and we nourish a trusting knowledge of God that is grounded in the Good News of salvation, forgiveness, and wholeness in Christ as found in Holy Scripture alone.
The Bible-based teachings of Martin Luther and other reformers that inspired the reformation of the Catholic Church in the 16th century can be summarized in three short phrases: Grace alone. Faith alone. Scripture alone.
Grace alone: God loves everyone in the world, even though we are sinful, offending God and harming each other, and thus not deserving of God’s love. He sent Jesus, His Son, to love the unlovable and save the ungodly. Even when we forget or reject God and don’t seek Him, God lovingly reaches out to us.
Scripture alone: The bible is God’s infallible Word in which God reveals His Law and Gospel. The Law shows us our error and need for God’s help and presence in our lives. The Gospel tells the Good News that God offers forgiveness and new Life in Jesus Christ. It is the sole rule and norm for Christian teaching.
Faith alone: By His suffering and death, as the substitute for all the people of all time, Jesus purchased and won forgiveness and eternal life for them. Those who hear this Good News and believe and trust in Jesus have the eternal life that He offers. God creates faith in Christ and gives people forgiveness through Him.
A short history of our church in Stafford Springs, CT
Like most of our sister congregations in Connecticut, Holy Trinity began as a harbor for immigrant Lutherans and Reformed. Eastern Europeans looked for the trades which they practiced in the old country or for any work they could find in the factory system in Connecticut. Stafford Springs filled that bill for many families and they settled in the valley.The Tolland County Press, May 8,1902 reported a census of 17 Lutherans and 45 Bohemians in the Stafford/Willington area.
Occasional worship services were conducted in 1907 in a vacant Methodist Church on Moose Meadow Road, Willington, CT. The congregation was first Organized in 1914 by Pastor Ludwig Karlowski who led worship on weekdays until the congregation called Rev. John Murcek in 1917. On February 13,1922 the congregation purchased the former German Social Club and moved from Willington, CT to its present location on 104 West Main Street in Stafford Springs. On July 30,1927 the church was chartered as “Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Trinity Church-Augsburg Confession”. Then on July 18,1929 the church was Incorporated as Slovak Evangelical Lutheran Holy Trinity Church Augsburg Confession Incorporated.
An ethnic congregation of the Slovak tradition, the congregation added an English service during the pastorate of John Nosco from 1951 to 1953. The congregation joined the Slovak Zion Synod of the United Lutheran Church in 1955. In 1966 the congregation adopted a model constitution of the Lutheran Church in America and changed its name to Holy Trinity Lutheran Church.
In 1972 the church was expanded to add Sunday school classrooms, a parish hall, larger kitchen and expanded narthex. Under the leadership of Pastor Robert McGurn ( 1980-1988) a second renovation helped to expand the parish hall and the sanctuary to its present day look.