Sunday May 7th was a festive celebration at Four Mile Lutheran Church in rural Prarieville, TX (about 45 miles southeast of DFW). We gathered to celebrate 175 years of continuous Lutheran worship in that place. Founded in 1848 this makes it the oldest Lutheran community in Texas. A fact that the official histories have often overlooked, favoring the claims of First Lutheran, Galveston which dates its founded to 1850.
It is highly likely that some of that overlooking of 4 Mile owes itself to its ethnic heritage and relatively small size. Founded by a small group of Norwegian settlers it has more easily been overlooked. However, we remembered and celebrated those people of faith who came looking, as all immigrants do, for opportunity and hope.
We also had a moment of historical significance as we commemorated two new badges on the grace of Henrietta Waldt Reierson. She was married to the leader of the settlers, bore seven children, ultimately dying Jan 7, 1851 during the birth of her last child. She was buried in the 4 Mile Cemetary and in so doing became the first settler to be buried in the newly established Van Zandt County.
A day of heritage while also remembering the future. 4 Mile is still a small community but they are dedicated to their future, continuing to serve their neighbors, and worship as Lutheran Christians. Grateful for this opportunity to share our heritage of faith together. #NTNL #4Mile #InMissionTogether