Incarnation Lutheran Church, recognized as a beacon of hope in its neighborhood with a range of service, advocacy, and justice ministries, will conclude the celebration of its 95th anniversary with a festive church service on Sun., Nov. 18 at 9:30 a.m. at 3509 N. 15th Street in Milwaukee.
Having started with a tent service and picnic on Sun., July 8, the church’s 95th anniversary celebration will culminate with a service featuring Bishop Jeff Barrow of the Greater Milwaukee Synod. Dr. Dennis Jacobsen, Incarnation Lutheran Church pastor, will be the celebrant at the service that will feature performances by the Epiphany Praise Dance Team as well as the church’s combined choir.
The service will also include music by Al Johnson, one of the areas best-known trumpet players. Johnson earned a degree in music performance from Indiana University and he has toured with Count Basie, Maynard Ferguson, and others.
The church held its first service in a tent on the corner of 15th Street and Keefe Avenue (then called Davis Avenue) on July 8, 1917. The new congregation moved to a frame chapel in November of 1917, with the cornerstone for the current limestone church building laid on October 29, 1922. The congregation moved into the building on September 9, 1923.
For the past 95 years, Incarnation Lutheran Church has maintained an active presence in the community. Through major changes in the surrounding area, city, and country, the church has maintained its motto – “God Help us to be a Church that Cares.” In addition to providing a place of worship for its members and anyone who wants to participate, the church runs Bread of Hope, offering food, clothing, and spiritual support to those in need. In addition, the church operates a “God Bless the Kids Spot,” a weekly afterschool program for children in the neighborhood.
The church works with neighborhood groups to support projects through the “Holy Ground” program and with the broader community through the Milwaukee Inner-city Congregations Allied for Hope (MICAH), a group that Incarnation Lutheran Church helped found in 1988.