St. John's members have seen so many changes over the congregation's long history.  From horse and buggy to the automobile and airplane, from lantern light and telegraphs to electricity and the internet; so much has changed.  But over that long history the core teachings and beliefs have not changed.  We still focus on preaching and teaching God's forgiveness to ourselves, our children, and our community.

Members gather to dedicate the old Church building in 1914.

Our Story

St. John's was officially organized on March 8, 1891, when 12  families of Lutherans met and decided to start a confessional Lutheran church in Lake Benton. St. John's formed a parish with the Lutheran churches in Elkton and Ward, SD.  In 1896, a new parish was formed by St. John's with Immanuel of Verdi Township and St. James of Holland.  In 1898 the congregation in Drammon Township joined the parish. The congregation  first held divine services in a member's home,  and later in the city hall,  until they secured the use of the Congregational Church building in town.  In 1901 the congregation became a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Minnesota.

When the Congregational Church disbanded, St. John's purchased and renovated the property and dedicated the newly acquired church edifice on August 2, 1914. In 1917, the Minnesota Synod of which St. John's was a member became a part of the Joint Synod of Wisconsin and other States, today known as the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod.  

In 1956, the old church building was torn down and a new church constructed and dedicated in 1957. In April  of 1969, the Immanuel Congregation of Verdi Township disbanded and untited in membership with St. John's forming one parish.  To preserve the memory of Immanuel Lutheran a memorial was constructed in the Immanuel Cemetery on the site where the church was formerly located.


St. John's has been served by many faithful pastors:

Rev. J. Albrecht 1891-1892
Rev. G.H. Schoemperlen 1892-1895
Rev. J Dammann 1895-1900
Rev. G.A. Kuhn 1900-1907
Rev. A. Kuhn 1900-1907
Rev. T. Engel 1907-1916
Rev. A. Werr 1916-1922
Rev. P.W. Spaude 1922-1946
Rev. A.H. Birner 1947-1958
Rev. B Frohmader 1958 (Vacancy)
Rev. G. Birkholz 1958-1970
Rev. Bittorf 1970 (Vacancy)
Rev. L. Meyer 1970-1977
Rev. P. Alliet 1977-1989
Rev. T. Kutz 1989 (Vacancy)
Rev. D. Windsperger 1989-2012
Rev. R. Schmidt 2012 (Vacancy)
Rev. Joel McKenney 2012-2016
Rev. Peter J. Naumann 2016 (Vacancy)
Rev. Dave Furno 2017-