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History of Holy Cross Church

Holy Cross Church - Early Congregation

 

Holy Cross Lutheran Church began in 1944. Pastor Edward Pieplow, pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church, Mt. Rainier, started holding services in the Greenbelt area. Under the guidance and direction of Pastor Pieplow and several vicars (including Vicar Edward Birner) the congregation grew and became organized as a congregation of the Southeastern District of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.  After completing his seminary education, Edward Birner was called back to the Greenbelt Mission and became the first full time pastor of Greenbelt Lutheran Church as it was then called.

 

Holy Cross First Location

 

 

 

A “temporary” unit was constructed in Greenbelt (22 Ridge Road – now the home of Greenridge) and served the congregation for many years. As the congregation grew, a larger site and church building was necessary. 

 

 

 

 

  Holy Cross Church Cornerstone with Pastor Birner

Holy Cross Church Breaking Ground

The congregation was fortunate to obtain property on Greenbelt Road

that had been cut off from Greenbelt National Park due to the construction of the beltway. Ground was broken in 1968 and the new church was dedicated in 1969.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Holy Cross Church Pastor Birner

 

 

 

Holy Cross Church was fortunate to have Pastor Birner serve the congregation his entire ministry. This stability was a blessing to the congregation especially during the late 1970’s and 1980’s when numerous changes were occurring in the surrounding communities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pastor Picture

 

 

In 1994, Pastor Birner retired. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the congregation called the Rev. Stephen H. Mentz of Palmetto, FL to be their new pastor.

 

 

 

 

 

Throughout its history, Holy Cross has been faithful in serving the community with the historic and Biblical teaching of the Lutheran Church:

Holy Cross Baptism

 

 

 

 

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God." Ephesians 2:8