Our History

Our School is owned and operated by Lutheran Church and School of Messiah. The chief administrator of the school is the Principal, who is directly responsible to the Board of Education of this congregation. The Board of Education works under the Church Council and is responsible to the General Assembly, which is the chief governing body of Messiah.
Lutheran Church Missouri Synod Education Facilities – The School is one of 1173 Lutheran pre-schools, 804 elementary schools, 91 high schools, 225 Campus ministries, 10 universities and 2 seminaries owned and operated by Missouri Synod congregations, associations of Lutherans, or the Synod itself, throughout the United States.

Lutheran Church and School of Messiah’s history began In 1923 when the Colorado District Mission Board sent Pastor Kreutz to look things over in the area around Glenwood Springs, Colo. They called it an “exploration trip.” The Board brought in Pastor John Knippenberg in 1928 to assist with the mission work in the Glenwood Springs, Rifle, Aspen, Grand Junction areas. Upon his arrival in Colorado from California in 1928, Pastor Knippenberg wrote: “I arrived in Glenwood Springs by train from California on Aug. 25, 1928, a Saturday, and was installed early in the afternoon on the following day … The circumstances were very unusual to say the least. Most of the people attending were originally from Germany and originally Lutheran. (Thierfelder, Thomas, “Changes in the Roaring Fork Valley,” Peaks and Valleys, Rocky Mountain District).

The Church began with its first meeting in the home of Mr. and Mrs. Al Nestler on June 4, 1929. It’s First service was held Nov. 8, 1931 in Labor Temple at 541 Rood Ave. Subsequent to the Colorado Mission Board efforts, Pastor Knippenberg was called to serve as Messiah’s first pastor in 1933.

First Sanctuary Building
During the service of Pastor Martin E. Meyer a sanctuary building was secured . A surplus chapel was obtained in 1946, after WWII, from Camp Hale CO, home of the 10th Mountain Division. This served as Messiah’s sanctuary from 1946 to 1967. (Military use of Camp Hale included the 10th Mountain Division, the 38th Regimental Combat Team, 99th Infantry Battalion, and soldiers from Fort Carson conducting mountain and winter warfare training exercises from 1942 to 1965. “Camp Hale Site History,” http://www.camphale.org)

New Sanctuary Completed

The surplus sanctuary building that had served for the ministry to the Lord’s flock at Messiah was replaced during the service of Pastor Bernard Staake. Construction of a new sanctuary was completed in 1967.

In 1978, during the service of Pastor Marcus Lang, an educational wing consisting of a gymnasium and four classrooms was added and Lutheran School of Messiah was opened in 1979. The church was now officially named Lutheran Church and School of Messiah.

A volunteer-led preschool and pre-kindergarten was opened by the congregation in the fall of 1983 expressly to “teach our children about Jesus.” It operated as a separate volunteer-led program for 24 years. It has not been a part of the K-8 Christian day school. In 2007 the first full time director was hired. At that time it officially became a part of the school.

On September 11, 1989, during the time that John Meyers and Timothy Puls were pastors and Corky Miller was principal of the school, an arsonist started fires at five church locations in Grand Junction. The sanctuary of Lutheran Church and School of Messiah was destroyed, and the office suite, library, gymnasium, and classrooms were un-usable. The school continued its operations at the Salvation Army building while the sanctuary was rebuilt and buildings were restored.

In 1990 the new sanctuary and fellowship hall were completed. The main office suite, library, and gymnasium were restored, having survived the fire. The second education wing was added in 1992 which included 5 additional classrooms and a teachers’ workroom.