Grace Lutheran Church


Church History

In the fall of 1913...

Rev. Fred Kroencke, Lutheran Church of Our Savior and Rev. Theodore Moellering, Thrinity Lutheran Church, canvassed the Westwood-Cheviot community and invited all without church connections to worship with the little band of Missouri Synod Lutherans who had opened a mission church at Harrison and Cheviot Avenues.

In a meeting held on March 31, 1914, it was resolved to organize under the name of Westwood Evangelical Lutheran Church. Services were moved to an old dry goods building on Cheviot Avenue. As the mission church grew and demanded more time, a call was placed for its first full time minister. Rev. Rudolf Goetz accepted the call and was inducted into the office on November 29, 1914.

A permanent organization was effected on January 5, 1915, and renamed Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church of Cincinnati, Ohio. A Christian Day School opened on January 3, 1916, with four pupils and Rev. Goetz the teacher. A lot at the corner of Boudinot and Verdin Avenues was purchased from the Feltz estate on September 1, 1915, and later in 1922, an additional lot was added. Plans were adopted in February 1917, for a new “basement church”.  Work began on April 2nd, and the cornerstone was laid on June 10th.  The roofed-over structure was dedicated August 26, 1917. At the time of the dedication, Grace had 33 communicants and 71 souls on its roster, and an enrollment of 10 pupils in the Day School. Enrollment fluctuated between 20-30 pupils and on August 7, 1923, it was resolved to discontinue our Christian Day School until such time as better facilities could be provided.

Rev. Goetz served the congregation until February 14, 1924, at which time he accepted another call. Rev. W.C. Andres was called and served only until the fall of 1924. Rev. Paul Dannenfeldt filled in as vacancy pastor until Rev. Norman J. Sydow was installed on March 8, 1925.

Construction of the sanctuary began in April 1927, and was dedicated on November 27, 1927. The Day School reopened in September, 1928. The school grew and a new addition began in 1951; this building was dedicated on April 20, 1952. Three years later, the second story was erected.

Rev. Sydow expressed his desire to retire and a call was placed to Rev. Donald Heitner who was installed on May 21, 1967.  In mid-1975, our call for an Associate Pastor was accepted by Rev. Philip Dumke who was installed as sole pastor on September 5, 1982.  Still more expansion to our facilities occurred in the 1970’s, 1980’s and 1997.  Rev. Dumke resigned in January, 2001.  Rev. Lyle Rasch served as Vacancy Pastor until the Rev. Eric Linthicum was installed on July 14, 2002. In June 2006, Grace Christian Day School closed due to declining enrollment.  Rev. Linthicum accepted another call in October 2010, and Rev. Norman Rehmer served as Vacancy Pastor until October 2012.

Rev. Daniel Teller served from October 2012 through September 2015, at which time Rev. Everette Greene served as Vacancy Pastor until March 2016, when our current pastor, Rev. Greg Enterline accepted our call.