St. Michael's Lutheran -Hope Lutheran Church
Faith Lutheran's 100th Anniversary

        St. Michael’s Lutheran Church – Hope Lutheran Church [Hawks, MI]

                         Faith Lutheran in Hawks celebrates 100th anniversary
Faith Lutheran Church in Hawks celebrated its 100th anniversary with a special service
Sunday. The Rev. Harry White served as guest speaker and a former member, the Rev. Michael
Schaedig, who now serves as a pastor in Harrison, was lector, while the current
pastor, the Rev. Jack Ferguson, served as liturgist at the service. Faith came
to be when two Lutheran churches in Hawks combined in 1970. Hope Lutheran,
affiliated with the American Lutheran Synod, and St. Michael Lutheran Church, a member
of the Missouri Lutheran Synod, merged to form Faith Lutheran. With the help of
Pastor John Ferne of Hope and Pastor Harry White of St. Michael, the old St. Michael
building was renovated and enlarged to accommodate the larger congregation. Hope Church,
vacated after the merger and later burned in 1973, has an interesting history.
IN THE FALL of 1880, the Rev. Christian Schwan, a traveling minister, began making stops
in Hawks every three or four weeks. He conducted services in the Trapp Schoolhouse
and later in the Kranzo living room. A single man all his life, he stayed in the
homes of parishioners as he made the rounds between Metz, Hagensville, Alpena, Hawks,
Cheboygan, Ritzville and his home base of Moltke. In 1904, the group named itself
Hope Congregation and in 1905 began construction of a church on land owned by
William Sorget. Dedicated in 1908, the new church served the congregation for more than
60 years. Pastors to serve at Hope Lutheran included Christian Schwan (1880-1897);
Leonard Schmidt (1897-1938); Herbert Dimke (1938-1940); Carl Althoff (1940-1946); Oscar
Bertram, supply pastor, (1946-1947); Oscar Braunschweig (1947-1951); Leonard Schmidt,
supply pastor (1951-1952), Jesse Essinger (1952-1956); William Scherer (1956-1964);
Harry Jaeger (1964-1969); and John Ferne (1969-1970). According to Hope’s anniversary book in 1955, its longest serving minister had second
thoughts about staying in the wild north country. Sent from Neuendettelsau, Germany to do
mission work in America, he asked his superiors for a transfer after one year at
Hawks. He said the hardships of the winter were too much for him, not to mention a paltry
salary of less than $100 per year, paid annually. His superiors wrote back that
this was his field and they were sure that “the people would feel honored to bury
their pastor.” Pastor Schmidt took this to heart as he served his entire parish
ministry at Hawks before retiring at age 63. Just A few hundred feet to the south, St. Michael Lutheran Church had its start as part of
St. Michael Lutheran in Belknap. Around the turn of the century Missouri Synod
Lutherans made the journey to St. Michael in Belknap for worship. Desiring a closer location
to attend church, they constructed a chapel on two acres of land donated by
August Elowsky and Ferdinand Dettloff. On December 10, 1910, Hawks became an independent
congregation but was still served by the Belknap pastor. Those men who served as pastor of St. Michael in Hawks were: Harry Essig (1906-1913); Karl
W. Schoenow (1913-1919); Louis Heinecke (1919-1925); Arthur Wacker (1925-1929);
William Schoenow (1929-1937); Otto Koenig (1937-1954); Herman Heinecke (1955-1963); and
Harry White (1965-1970). From its founding until 1925, St. Michael in Belknap and St. Michael
in Hawks had the same minister. From 1925 until 1963 one minister served St. Paul Lutheran
in Posen and St. Michael in Hawks. A series of vacancy pastors served the congregation
from 1963-1965. In 1965 Pastor White, who was serving St. Michael in Belknap,
was asked to serve St. Michael in Hawks. FOLLOWING The merger of Hope and St. Michael Hawks, Rev. White served until 1977. When
Pastor White took a call to Harbor Beach, Pastor Raymond Prough, pastor of Holy Cross
Lutheran in Onaway, served as vacancy pastor. In 1979 he accepted a call to serve the dual
parish of Holy Cross and Faith staying at that post until 1992. Pastor Chris Rasper
served in that capacity from 1992 until he resigned in 1999. Karl Neff filled in as interim
pastor until the congregation, no longer a dual parish with Holy Cross, called
the Rev. Jack Ferguson in 2000. CHOIRS FROM St. John Lutheran, Rogers City, Peace Lutheran, Rogers City, and Faith Lutheran
provided special music at the service.

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