Here at Triumphant Lutheran Church, there is always something going on. There are Bible studies throughout the week, along with the once-every-other-week groups such as the Quilting Bees (which makes quilts for charity), Creative Blessings (a prayer shawl ministry), and Art Class (bring your projects to work on in a group setting). Other ministries include community outreach, Confirmation, Children's Chapel, youth activities, Choir, and Praise Band. On Wednesday evenings, join us for Wednesday Nite Live!, an evening of dinner, fellowship, and activities for all ages. Our youth group is very active with retreats, mission trips, lock-ins, camps, youth gatherings, Bible study, and much more! For more information on any of these groups, please see the drop-down menu above.
How did we get here? God has always had great things planned for Triumphant Lutheran Church and His disciples in Christ. The first indication that a Mission Church was planned for this area was when a sign appeared about February 1, 1979, on Nacogdoches Road approximately 1/4-mile south of FM 3009. It read: "Site of Future Lutheran Church." The New Braunfels newspaper announced the first meeting for all those interested in this venture to meet at Bracken Fire Station on February 17. All those present (about 35 people) were in favor of proceeding with the formation of a mission church in the Tri-County area. Soon, a call committee was formed and Pastor Nolan Sagebiel arrived on June 4, 1979, as Triumphant's first pastor. Enthusiastic response to home group meetings and home visitation prompted the establishment of worship services beginning July 15, 1979, with 135 in attendance at the Bracken Bowling Alley. Charter membership was closed December 23, 1979, with a total of 118 confirmed and 158 baptized members. In 2019, Triumphant celebrated 40 years of growing in Christ to serve others.
As this community of Christians grew in Word and number, and since we became an ALC congregation on October 21, 1979, the decision was made to start building a sanctuary. The present site was offered as a gift by Melvin and Nora Heimer. On June 15, 1980, work on the church building began, with dedication services taking place on February 22, 1981. God's many blessings and guiding hands have led us forward through the years. Pastor L.G. Wehman served from March 1, 1985 to December 31, 1994. Pastor Douglas J. Schoelles lead Triumphant from April 9, 1995 to May 31, 2002. Pastor Alan J. Watt served as Interim Pastor from June 2002 to May 2003. Rev. Mark Gruebmeyer served as Pastor from June 2003 to December 2007, and Rev. William Jon Irons was Pastor of Triumphant Lutheran Church from May of 2008 until July 2015. Pastor Ann Koopmann filled in as an interim pastor for a few months from August 2015 to February 2016 as we began the process of searching for our next permanent Pastor. Then, Rev. Brady Eggleston stepped in as Triumphant's Interim Pastor from March 2016 to August 2017 so we could complete the search process. On August 15, 2017, Rev. Jon Aaron Richter began duties as Triumphant's current Pastor. Deacon Chris St.Clair began as Triumphant's first Youth Director in 2010 and was consecrated as a Deacon in February 2017.
Over the years, our congregation has grown and Triumphant became an ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) in the 1990s. There have been several building programs over the years, such as expanding the Sanctuary, adding office space to the original worship building, building a Fellowship Hall and an Education Building, and adding more parking space.
Along with Sunday morning Christian education, the care of our children is a vital part of the ministry at Triumphant Lutheran Church. Our Mother's Day Out program was started in 1981 and served children from 9:00am - 2:00pm every Monday and Wednesday until Spring of 2020 when the COVID19 pandemic began. Triumphant Lutheran Preschool was launched in September 2001. Today, our accredited preschool serves children from age three to five with classes five days a week. The MDO and Preschool programs merged into one cohesive unit in the Fall of 2021.
In March 2020, Triumphant went to an online-only worship format due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the staff worked remotely, but the church was still the church! Online Bible studies were available and the congregation checked in with each other via Zoom in their various Care Groups. As lockdowns ended in the fall, we resumed in-person worship and continued the online recorded services as well. In June 2021, we switched from prerecording the services to livestreaming our early Sunday service. Service times also moved to 9am, 11am, and 5pm on Sundays. In July 2021, we were able to reintroduce communion at the rail instead of using communion kits at our seats.