A builder of faithful and responsible lives for a stronger community

About Eidsvold Lutheran Church

Our Pastor

Pictures from Pastor Andrew Wendle's Installation Service

 

 

Grace and Peace to you, members and friends of Eidsvold Lutheran Church!

It is with great excitement and honor that I accept the invitation and the call of God to be the Pastor of Eidsvold Lutheran Church! I am humbled by the opportunity to be here in the beautiful Flathead Valley to work, serve and grow in Christ!

For the past nine years my family has called Hood River, Oregon home.   My wife, Linden, and I have three children. Will and Charis are twins and are 7 years-old while Anna will turn 3 in January. 

As for me, I am originally from Madison, Wisconsin. I was born and raised there and went to the University of Wisconsin. Go Badgers!  (And Packers!)  I went to seminary in Dubuque, Iowa at Wartburg Theological Seminary.  I am a voracious reader (of all kinds), I enjoy cooking, golfing, gardening and seek to be active in God’s beautiful world. Finally, I also was formed by my experiences at Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp in Colorado (including meeting my wife Linden there) and am excited to have such a rich ministry partner just 3 miles down the road in Flathead Lutheran Bible Camp.

In closing, I want to again say how thankful and humbled I am to serve as your Pastor. The honor of being entrusted with God’s work in a community like this one is something that remains fresh and new as does the challenge of being the church today.

We sit at a pivotal point in the history of not just the Lutheran church but of much of “mainline” Protestantism throughout the country today. Our challenge and opportunity is to figure out how to share our faith in Jesus Christ in new and relevant ways that speak to the world around us.

I’m excited to begin this journey here in Somers, Lakeside, the greater Kalispell area and look forward to the relationships we will build with each other, the community and all with whom we minister.

In Peace,
Pastor Andy

(p.s. I am writing a monthly article for the West Shore News. Click below to read my monthly submissions!)

West Shore News articles

April 2014 October 2013
May 2014 November 2013
  December 2013
  January 2014
  March 2014

Our History

Eidsvold Lutheran Church was established in 1904 in the years when many immigrants were arriving from various European countries.  Many Norwegian immigrants established themselves in Somers and founded a church which reminded them of their beloved "Eidsvold" in Norway.  It is the town in which they signed their Constitution in 1814.  "Eid" means a road passing around a waterfall and "Vollr" a meadow or field.  Thus, the name Eidsvold for a town surrounded by fjords, mountains and water.  It was a fitting name for this church situated near the lake in the beautiful Flathead Valley

Through the years, Eidsvold Lutheran Church has become a church home to people of all heritages and traditions welcoming people from many different places.

What do Lutherans believe?

Lutherans are Christians who accept the teachings of Martin Luther (1483 – 1546).  Luther was a German theologian who realized that there were significant differences between what he read in the Bible and the practices of the Roman Catholic church at that time.  On October 31, 1517, he posted a challenge on the door of Wittenberg University, titled “95 Theses” (to debate 95 theological issues).  His hope was that the church would reform its practice and preaching to be more consistent with the Word of God as contained in the Bible.

What started as an academic debate escalated into a distinct separation between the Roman Catholic church of the time and those who accepted Luther’s suggested reforms.   "Lutheran" became the name of the group that agreed with Luther’s convictions.

Today, nearly five centuries later, Lutherans still celebrate the Reformation on October 31 and still hold to the basic principles of Luther’s theological teachings, such as Grace alone, faith alone, Scripture alone.  These comprise the very essence of Lutheranism:

  • We are saved by the grace of God alone -- not by anything we do;
  • Our salvation is through faith alone -- a confident trust in God, who in Christ promises us forgiveness, life and salvation; and
  • The Bible is the norm for faith and life -- the true standard by which teachings and doctrines are to be judged.

Over the years, different Lutheran church bodies have been established and organized to meet the needs of Lutherans in communities and nations all over the world.  The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is the largest Lutheran group in North America, founded in 1988 when three North American Lutheran church bodies united: The American Lutheran Church, the Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches and the Lutheran Church in America.  Learn more about the History of the ELCA.

Lutherans are part of a reforming movement within the whole Christian church; as a part of practicing their faith, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and its predecessors have engaged in ecumenical dialogue with other church bodies for decades.  In fact, the ELCA has entered into cooperative "full communion" agreements (sharing common convictions about theology, mission and worship) with several other Protestant denominations, including

The United Church of Christ The ELCA has an ongoing dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church, and in 1999, representatives of the Lutheran World Federation and the Roman Catholic Church signed the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification.  This represented a historic consensus on key issues of faith and called for further dialogue and study together.  To learn more about these ecumenical relationships, visit Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Relations.  Lutheranism is a faith tradition that is open to all, regardless of background.