Zion Lutheran Church - 100 Year History 1970-1984

Zion Lutheran Church History

First Hundred Years

Picture of Zion Lutheran Church window.

A Year Book

Zion Lutheran Church Finally Gets
Its Own Regular Pastor


         The decade of the 1970s opens with depression. There are more parsonage roof problems and more church painting problems. Synod President Huntley continues to work with the congregation in seeking a pastor.209

         In the 1970s and 1980s the LCW was deeply involved with annual bazaars.
210 Carolyn Moseley reported in the Luther League minutes that the pancake supper made $8.50. That year the Luther League elected Bobby Moseley, President; Ronnie Kubina, Vice President; and Irene Wigstrom, Secretary-Treasurer.211

         Pastor Martin was coming for communion. Caroline Moseley was recognized for her piano playing service covering many years. Mrs. Muriel Hallberg was playing on Sundays. There were organ problems again and now an organ repair. Mrs. Louise Lundberg and Ms. Shirley Stephens were playing piano. Zion Lutheran Church was supporting the William and Henson Boys Home in Tennessee.212

         During the 1970s the Lutheran Church Women were regularly involved in Lutheran World Relief.
213 Pastor Clarence Daniels, pastor of St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Mobile, began to preach regularly at Zion as a pulpit supply pastor. He was especially noted for singing the Lord's Prayer during the Sunday Service. When he and his wife Dorothy retired and moved to Florida, he asked Charles Jolliff to serve as a lay pastor at Zion.214

Picture of Pastor Clarence Daniels.
Back of photo reads: May 9, 1971, Pastor William Martin, Pastor C. B. Daniels, and Dr. Harvey Huntley. - Click to Enlarge.

         As Pastor Jolliff remembers it, Pastor Clarence Daniels retired in the early 1970s, but he was concerned about Zion Lutheran Church. He felt that St. Peter's was viable and able to recruit a pastor, but he was concerned that Zion would be unable to attract a pastor. Essentially, Pastor Daniels commissioned Charles Jolliff to pastor Zion Lutheran Church "with only one stipulation, that Christ be preached." He gave Pastor Jolliff his library and told the Zion Church Council that Charles Jolliff was to be its pastor. Congregational President Lawrence Moseley brought the matter to the Council and it concurred with Pastor Daniels' plan. Thus began the tenure of the longest serving pastor at Zion Lutheran Church.

         Jolliff's wife, Martha Meier Jolliff, had a German Lutheran background while Pastor Jolliff came from a Methodist background. She and Pastor Jolliff were soon immersed in the congregational activities. She was a Sunday School teacher. She and Ella Kubina constructed the paraments.


Click to enlarge.
         So, Pastor Clarence Daniels retires to Florida and ultimately donates his grand piano to the church. He was Pastor of St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Mobile and pulpit supply pastor often at Zion Lutheran Church. He is remembered particularly for his pastoral concerns for Zion and his determination that Charles Jolliff should serve as Lay Pastor at Zion, which Jolliff would do from 1971-1995.217

         There is some good news in 1971. There are nine active Luther League members meeting once a month at Zion. Mr. Lawrence Moseley--President, Mr. Kubina--Treasurer, Mr. Utter--Secretary, Mrs. Norman--Council Member, Mrs. Peggy Wharton--Council Member, and Mrs. Sandell--Council Member comprised the Church Council for this year.


         A year later, the Annual Meeting minutes reveal that the church has dealt with that pesky porch and the organ has been repaired again. Pastor Daniels reported at the meeting and was still serving the congregation one Sunday a month. The Church Council is little changed: Mr. Lawrence Moseley-- President, Mr. Kubina--Treasurer, Mrs. Sandell--Secretary, Mrs. Norman--Council Member, Mr. Shienert--Council Member, and Mr. Utter--Council Member.
Picture of Zion's Parsonage in 1972. Picture of Zion's Parsonage Garage in 1972.
Zion's Parsonage in 1972.
Click to Enlarge.
Zion's Parsonage Garage in 1972.
Click to Enlarge.

         The church roof was repaired. Mrs. Wharton's typewriter was repaired so she could do bulletins. At Pastor Clarence Daniels' suggestion, this is the year that Lay Pastor Charles Jolliff was contacted by Mr. Moseley. Charles Jolliff and Zion were familiar with one another, because he would accompany Pastor Daniels for Sunday morning worship monthly. Jolliff accepted the pastoral position. The parsonage was aging and plumbing problems presented.


         The Lutheran Church Women organized altar responsibilities, dividing up flower responsibilities for the altar on a monthly basis. The new Lay Pastor Jolliff was officially approved for giving communion at Zion under the authority of the Rev. Huntley. A new organ was purchased with trade in for $1750. The Baldwin County Historical Society met at church. A new parish record book was initiated by Lay Pastor Jolliff and Mrs. Sandell in 1973. (By 1995 when the book was surrendered at Jolliff's resignation, no entries had been made in the official record since 1973. Essentially, all record of births, deaths, baptisms, and marriages at Zion Lutheran Church had not been entered into the official permanent records of the church by either parish officer or pastor until they began again in 1995.) Because the LCA really did not recognize lay pastors per se, the congregation did what it would do each year until his resignation: Pastor Jolliff was asked to continue another year.220

         The first mention of long-time Lay Pastor Charles Jolliff appears in notes to the Annual Meeting of 1973 on January 7. He opened the meeting and gave his first report. Shirley Mateja continued as pianist. And there was real discussion about upgrading the organ. Pastor Jolliff committed to continue another year at the same rate as retired Pastor Clarence Daniels. Mrs. Peggy Wharton was doing the bulletins in 1973. The world was brighter, the light and railing being installed for the west side door. By formal meeting action the Swedish flag was to be displayed in the parish building, i.e., the Sunday School. Church officers for 1973 included little change, Mrs. Grace Kinard--Council Member replacing Mrs. Emma Norman.


         Although a number of Lutheran synods have recognized "lay pastor" as a specific church office at various times, the LCA was resistant to the term and reserved "pastor" for people "ordained." Zion consistently respected Charles Jolliff as its pastor throughout his tenure with Zion and designated him "pastor." By 1974 Pastor Jolliff had now obtained initial approval from the LCA Synod for giving communion at Zion. This was necessary because he was not ordained, being a layman.222

         The first formal motions to sell the parsonage were made after continuing and chronic parsonage problems relating to maintenance. Discussions arose concerning new LCA forms and constitution changes. The LCA Synod requested 16% of income from Zion Lutheran Church and nothing less than $600 per year. The LCW was involved in clothing drives and packing of old clothes for donations.

         At the January 6, 1974, Annual Meeting, Pastor Jolliff proposed to pastor for two years and then take a year off. Audit of the church books revealed $264.80 in Zion's account with another $153.98 in the Lutheran Church Women account, $137.93 in the Sunday School account, and $92.05 in the Luther League account. Pastor Jolliff initiated an adult Sunday School. Further repairs to church and parsonage were authorized. The minutes note that the pledge response was very good. Business from the previous year, i.e., display of the Swedish flag, had not yet been implemented. Services were set for 9:30 a.m. during Daylight Saving Time. Council officers were unchanged from 1973.


         The Annual Meeting minutes for 1975 give details concerning the rental of the parsonage. The parsonage had been leasing for $75 a month, but the rate was to increase to $110 a month with the next lease in 1975. The Altar Fair Linen cost $37.67. Shirley Mateja continued as organist. This is the first year that Pastor Jolliff is identified as "lay pastor" in congregational records. As in every year he served Zion Lutheran Church, the congregation "called" him for another contractual year. Pastor Jolliff advocated rebuilding of the Building Fund in 1975. A "Building Fund" had ceased to be an issue after the addition to the church in the 1960s. Under Pastor Jolliff's guidance, the congregation begins giving 16% of its small budget to Synod.225 In 2004 he remarked that he had been very impressed with the giving at Zion, at one time 24% of Zion's budget going to Synod, the highest giving ratio in the Synod at the time.226


         There were struggles with maintaining the parish. Pastor James Connelly, Assistant to the LCA Bishop, met with the church to discuss the future of the church. Sixteen members were present. They convinced Pastor Connelly that Zion Lutheran Church was viable with Lay Pastor Jolliff.227 Membership totaled 36 baptized and 28 confirmed. Sunday church attendance averaged 27.228 This year the LCW investigated helping the Retarded Children's School in Loxley. It continued its involvement with Lutheran World Relief. The LCW made Chrismons which have continued as part of Zion Lutheran Church's Christmas decorations to the present time.229

         The Annual Meeting of 1976 revealed that moneys were coming into the church. The general operations fund for the church had an audited $577.96, the new Building Fund had $555.80, the church's Savings and Loan account had $3911.15, and the Baldwin National Bank account registered $599.94. And there was more, a special fund of $500. Congregational business noted that Mr. Norman had been active in odd jobs at church, that Pastor Nelson had provided psalms for the year, that Shirley Mateja was doing bulletins and organ, and that Pastor Jolliff was reappointed another year. Now years into the LCA, the church was working on a new constitution. Church Council officers included: Mr. Lawrence Moseley- -President, Mr. Victor Kubina--Treasurer, Mrs. Carl Youngren--Secretary, Mrs. Peggy Wharton-- Council Member, Mrs. Grace Kinard--Council Member, and Mr. Carl Youngren--Council Member.


         In the Annual Meeting of 1977, changes in activities begin to be noted. Pastor Jolliff's contract is again renewed. There have been 17 extra services in the past year. And the church has added two new members. The nave of the church has become a focus for renovation and bids for painting and paneling the interior of church have been sought. Mrs. Charlotte Zander has replaced Mr. Carl Youngren as Council Member.231

         Many people may remember the Arab Oil Embargo of the late 1970s. At a Special Congregational Meeting on July 3, President Lawrence Moseley was authorized to bargain concerning the mineral rights underlying the church property. The church became interested in outreach activities and participated in the "Strength for Mission" meeting at St. Peter's in Mobile. Pastor Rutrough and Mr. Respius from Christus Victor Lutheran in Ocean Springs, MS, were to be consultants interacting with Zion for this program by September. In late November, the congregation was seeking two more members for the "Strength for Mission" appeal.


         At the Annual Meeting for 1978 the total audited income for 1977 was reported at $6,765.91. Pastor Jolliff's call was renewed. The church had 26 special services in 1977. That was generally good news, but the bad news? Only two young people remained in Zion's Sunday School. The stipend for Synod support was raised to 18% of church income. Mrs. Marie Hauge became a new Council Member this year. By the end of 1978, the church was looking at having to replace the church roof for $10,000. It began getting serious about selling its Hammond spinet organ.233 On an interesting note level, the LCW dealt with flea problems in the parsonage.234
Confirmation class of 1978.
(l to r) Ronald Kubina, Pastor Charles Jolliff, Gary Kubina.
Photo front reads: Ronald and Gary Kubina Confirmed by Dr. Troutman, July 4, 1976. Back reads: March 26, 1978.
- Click to enlarge.

         A number of altar renovations have occurred throughout the history of the church. The Christ figure painting residing over the altar since the 60th Anniversary of the church was moved to the side wall of the sanctuary and a gold motif was implemented above the altar in 1978.


         The LCW began to run church ads for Pastor Charles Jolliff. A new organ was dedicated and a new roof was placed on the church. Zion Lutheran Church had a summer intern. This student pastor was Richard Boger and he would preach every other Sunday during the summer.236 This was about the time that Charlotte Zander and the LCW hosted a South American missionary on furlough.237

         The 1979 Annual Meeting minutes are sobering. There is a deficit of $1741.45 which is tied to painting, parsonage rewiring, and plumbing repair. Mrs. Mateja continued as organist and Pastor Jolliff continued under his annual call. Four new members were added during 1978. The Agees donated a used organ. And the church roof? No pun intended, costs were still up in the air.

         The parsonage rental was increased to $175 a month. Victor Kubina did a careful evaluation of parsonage operational costs and determined that, even with rent after a number of years, there remained only $100 profit for all the grief in renting that parsonage. The church therefore determined to sell the parsonage to be moved for $6110, the funds to be invested with Merrill Lynch. Savings were to be moved to Merrill Lynch as well for a total investment of $19,000. Remember 1979 and Hurricane Frederick? The church lost a window and needed interior painting. The sanctuary was to be painted for $800. All high windows were to be reputtied by Central Glass Company. As for the parsonage, Pastor Jolliff was to get its last vestige, the clothes poles that went with parsonage before it was removed.

         The Jolliff family donated a number of items over the years to Zion Lutheran Church as well. The crèche used as a Christmas decoration was constructed by Pastor Jolliff's father, E. Crowith Jolliff, and donated in 1979. The crèche figures had been procured by Mrs. Jolliff, and the set-up has been used in Christmas celebrations since that time.


         Beginning in the 1980s Zion Lutheran Church began using air conditioning units in windows with ceiling fans during the summers. The LCW again invested time in making Chrismons this year.241 At the Annual Meeting of 1980 this Church Council was elected: Mr. Lawrence Moseley--President, Mr. Victor Kubina--Treasurer, Mrs. Shirley Mateja--Secretary, Mr. Ernest Burnett--Council Member, Mrs. Marie Hauge--Council Member, and Mr. Oscar Hauge--Council Member. At the first Council meeting on January 13, however, it is apparent that Pastor Jolliff is functioning as President and Mr. Moseley is Vice President.242

         The Council recognized that there was a need to update the church constitution, but other concerns took priority. There was a leak in the bell tower where it abutted the church and the wood had rotted. Again, the church needed paint. Mr. Troy James agreed to apply oil paint to the church, but the congregation would do the garage. There was an attempt to paint the cross on the steeple, but the truck crane brought in for the purpose could not reach it. Another organ was for sale.

         The Zion congregation met with St. Paul's Lutheran Church of Mobile to celebrate its 50th Anniversary on November 23 at 11 a.m. worship.

         This is the year that the Council acknowledged the ceramic Christmas figurines donated by Joy Mary Mills, a friend of Martha Jolliff. We still (2004) use them! They were fabricated by Mary Mills ("Joy" probably a nick-name) in Brevard, NC, and fired in her kiln. She was a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church there. Mr. "Slats" Bye fixed rotten wood on the external widows and recaulked them. The church gave the Town of Silverhill a $100 check for the loan of its backhoe for cleaning up the parsonage lot. John Roucheve donated his time to run the backhoe.

Zion Lutheran Church
Retires Its Parsonage,
Renovates Former Parsonage Garage

         Zion Lutheran Church continued to "modernize" in the 1980s. With the issues of fans and air conditioning in 1980 resolved, attention focused on interior needs. In 1981 carpeting was added, apparently to the chancel first because we know that most of the nave was not carpeted until several years later. The parsonage had been a mixed blessing for a number of years as upkeep appeared to be a constant problem. That parsonage was removed from the church campus and was re-sited in Rosinton. Some 102 yards of topsoil were brought in to level the campus.245

         At the Annual Meeting of 1981, Pastor Jolliff's contract was renewed again and he was recognized for outstanding work. The Church Council was unchanged. At a Special Congregational Meeting on March 1, the congregation established "associate membership" within the congregation. The definition of "quorum" was defined as "half the voting membership," and the Church Council was empowered to spend up to $500 without congregational approval of expenditure. The remaining stumps around the former parsonage were ground down by Riviera Electric. The floor of the fellowship Annex area in the back of the church was repaired, but again it was noted that the walls and interior ceiling of the church needed repair. The congregation evaluated covering of the fellowship room with new siding and moved to get vinyl siding by Don Cooper for $653. Mr. Cooper was authorized to replace those earlier-repaired windows for $38 each.
246 The congregation celebrated its 75th Anniversary in the Fall.
Picture of Zion's 75th Anniversary.
A number of congregations joined with the people of Zion to celebrate its 75th Anniversary.


         The LCW remained active in sewing. It traded in its old sewing machines to keep its ministry current. The LCW supported the Whitten Center for Women.247 The Annual Meeting of 1982 minutes revealed that five new members joined the church in 1981. The Jolliff and Mateja contracts were renewed. Communion bread was now being baked within the congregation with Lillian Moseley taking on the responsibility for 1982. Long-time Council member Lawrence Moseley completed his 25th year on Council. The Church Council consisted of Mr. Lawrence Moseley--Council Member, Mr. Victor Kubina--Treasurer, Mrs. Shirley Mateja--Secretary, Mr. Ernest Burnett-- President, Mrs. Eleanor Nitteberg--Council Member, and Mr. Oscar Hauge--Council Member. Pastor Carlos Jackson was authorized to use Zion's facilities to develop an "Open Bible Church." Yard care was occasionally alluded to over the years, and in 1982 Eleanor Nitteberg and Oscar Hauge were mowing the lawn. It is 1982 when there is investigation concerning covering the wooden floor in the sanctuary. Reputtying of windows and stained glass windows were discussed, and of course, the outdoor church sign needed paint. Zion's Synodical giving was at a 19.5% level.248


         Remodeling was happening again. At the Annual Meeting of 1983, it was decided to sell the old windows. The usual reappointments of Mrs. Mateja and Pastor Jolliff were made and a Special Meeting was scheduled to discuss carpeting. Thinking of outreach in the 80s? A revival meeting was scheduled for February 21-23. Mrs. Henri Etta Burnett replaced Mr. Hauge as Council Member. When Don Cooper was replacing the boards in the sanctuary floor, he discovered much fungus. A vapor barrier needed to be placed under the whole church and the damaged area needed to be treated for damage. Windows on the front and back had to be replaced or rebuilt, a project beyond just repair and caulking.249

         The church discussed Peacock family support. Gretchen Peacock was taken on as interim organist while Shirley Mateja took maternity leave. The congregation acknowledged by letter to Bishop Troutman its acceptance of Pastor D'Aunay as vice pastor, but interestingly enough asked what the duties of a vice pastor were. At a Special Meeting in June, there was discussion about support for the Seminarian Peacock family. Their rent was $155 per month. The congregation agreed to cover $140 of it and the Lutheran Church Women, $25 more. Bishop Troutman responded to the church's letter, outlining the duties of vice pastor. At the same time, he arranged for the Rev. Henry Williams to come to Zion to talk about stewardship. The front of church now needed painting. In preparing for 1984, the organist salary was to be raised to $50 a month and the pastor's salary to $4000 per year.

         Pastor Jolliff offered some background on the Peacock family in an interview in 2004. William Peacock was a native of Mobile who married Gretchen Almer, daughter of Pastor Carl Almer from St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Mobile. Bill was a musician and Gretchen was an organist. Bill felt a call from music education into the ministry and went to Southern Seminary. They had several children at the time. Zion paid their rent while they were at seminary and Bill was ordained at Zion upon graduation.

         The LCW was involved with Heritage Festival in 1983.
252 As noted, it took on Seminarian William Peacock (1983-1985) as a responsibility and continued to support the seminary family. Presumably with LCW input, the church became interested in supporting the Immigrant and Refugee Service.


         It was at the Annual Meeting of 1984 that Zion decided to carpet the floor of the nave. The Lutheran Church Women would provide $1516 and the Council another $500. In late spring the church would look at buying a suitable vacuum cleaner for between $400 and $500. The record shows another renewal of the annual commitment of Pastor Jolliff and Mrs. Mateja. Four new members were taken in by baptism in the preceding year. Henri Etta Burnett was doing bulletins. At the time of this year book compilation, Henri is at it again. Lawrence Moseley was given a hymnal in appreciation for 27 years on the Zion Church Council. Ceiling fans were a topic of discussion. Who was on the Church Council in 1984? The names are familiar: Mr. Lawrence Moseley--President, Mr. Victor Kubina--Treasurer, Mrs. Henri Etta Burnett--Secretary, Mr. Ernest Burnett--Council Member, Mrs. Eleanor Nitteberg--Council Member, and Mrs. Alice Seymour--Council Member. Oscar Hauge would replace Alice in July. Wesley Ellis was printing bulletins. Zion made a donation to Our Savior Lutheran Church of Mobile in memory of the Rev. Ward S. Ynker for many kindnesses and services performed for Zion. Zion met at Christus Victor in Ocean Springs, MS, for an area meeting with Pastor Charles Jolliff and Ernie and Henri Burnett serving as delegates.253

         On a Synod level in 1984, the Zion Council met with St. Paul's and St. Peter's of Mobile to discuss Synod covenants. Pastor Rutrough was to meet with the Zion Council. Remember the offer of radio time a number of years before this? Zion looked at Lenten advertisement costs on radio in late 1984. And yes, the recurrent concerns for upkeep included more estimates for sanding and painting the church in the last Council meeting of the year.
254 As for the LCW, the sewing activity continued with five quilts being sent to Lutheran World Relief.255 On a negative and sad note, despite the attention to the church grounds and the physical church building, changing attendance patterns resulted in the end of Sunday School.256

Continue on to Zion Lutheran History Page 4, Years 1985-2005.