50 Plus Years of Love, Faith & Service
St. Andrew's History
St. Andrew’s story begins in the summer of 1963. Henry Sundermann, a dedicated lay person, established a Missouri Synod Mission congregation in the Ridgefield area. That same year, the Atlantic District Mission board called the Reverend Thomas Park to lead the church and our history had begun. The first worship service was celebrated in Veteran’s Park School on December 15th 1963 with 125 in attendance and 53 children in the first Sunday School classes. In June of 1968, six and one half acres of land were purchased from Mr. and Mrs. George Blackford for the construction of a permanent church building. The congregation issued a call to Pastor John Kjoller of Resurrection Lutheran Church, Cairo, New York. His installation was held on September 15th, 1968. On St. Andrew's Day, November 30th, 1969, the new 5,900 square foot building, seating 275, was dedicated with two festival services. In 1983, the 2,600 square foot addition to the church building began, which now houses classrooms, a music room, and fellowship areas.
In 1978, after prayerful consideration, the congregation voted to become part of the Association of The Evangelical Lutheran Churches. In 1979 we withdrew from the Missouri Synod. Pastor Kjoller served us with distinction until his retirement on September 16th, 2001. In October 2004, Pastor Carla Meier was installed as our 3rd pastor to help carry out our vision.
“God calls us to become: connected to Christ, connected to each other, connected to community. “
To help us in this vision, in 2007 we called a second full-time pastor, Rev. Dr. H. Gaylon Barker, whose vision for St. Andrew’s is one of growth and outreach to the community. To help fulfill our vision we kicked off a building capital campaign in 2009, which resulted in the completion of a new sanctuary in July 2013. The first worship service in the new worship space was held Sunday, August 4, 2013. The new sanctuary was dedicated on Reformation Sunday, October 27, 2013.
We welcomed Pastor Beth Anderson November 2017.
Today, we're a welcoming, community-focused & growing congregation within the New England Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
The ELCA is the nation's fifth-largest Protestant denomination, with 4.8 million baptized members.
St. Andrew’s also serves as a hub of community services, hosting such diverse organizations as Alcoholics Anonymous, abilis, a yoga class, community education and discussion groups, and special music programs.