In June, the Zion Berri and St Paul’s Barmera Lutheran churches amalgamated to become one new congregation worshipping in two places.
This follows a long history as these two churches were previously part of the Berri Barmera Lutheran Parish which was formed on 29th May 1960. In 1966, a realignment of the Riverland Lutheran churches resulted in the Barmera St Paul’s congregation joining with Moorook and New Residence congregations and Berri joining with Lyrup.
The members of Berri and Barmera have maintained a close relationship and following Pastor David Buck’s retirement from the Barmera New Residence parish in February this year, it was decided that after 53 years apart, Berri and Barmera congregations would again join and become the Berri Barmera Lutheran Church. This merger became official on June 3, following an Annual General Meeting and amalgamation service led by SA-NT Bishop David Altus. At this meeting, Pastor Dean Mills, who had previously served the Berri Parish since January 2016 was called to serve the newly formed congregation.
On Sunday 15 September, the Berri Barmera Lutheran Church celebrated the installation of Pastor Dean Mills as its minister. This service was led by Pastor Darrin Kohrt and was attended by members and people from the wider community. Following the message, the Barmera men’s choir sang and the service and was followed by a celebratory afternoon tea and time of fellowship.
The members of the newly formed congregation feel that God has certainly blessed us in the short time we have been together and look forward to working together to share God’s love with the people of Berri and Barmera.
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