Nativity Evangelical Lutheran Church

2106 Edgmont Avenue
(22nd & Edgmont Ave.)
Chester, PA 19013

Phone: (610) 874-9294

Church closed Sunday June 27, 2005 after 85 years of service.

Former Pastors  |  Church History  |   Membership Directory

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Former Pastors: Rev. J. J. Brubeck (1919-23)
Rev. Robert D. Roeder (1923-30)
Rev. Carl F. Yeager (1931-38)
Rev. Frederic H. Eidam (1938-52)
Dr. Edgar T. Chrisemer (1952-56)
Rev. Harry M. Hoffman (1957-61)
Rev. Francis J. Heine (1961-67)
Rev. Howard W. Weidemoyer (1968-)


Church History: The following historical sketch is from the Nativity Lutheran Church 50th Anniversary Book, 1919-1969:

Nativity is a daughter congregation of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, which was originally located at 3rd and Kerlin Streets.  Holy Trinity is now located on Providence Road in Nether Providence.

In 1919, the Rev. John W. Hauser, Pastor of Holy Trinity, released the 44 members of his congregation who lived north of 12th Street, to organize a new Lutheran congregation in the growing northern section of Chester.  Pastor Hauser served as advisor to the group and chaired the initial meetings.

The first meeting to organize the new Mission was held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. John Nessenthaler, 2514 Edgmont Ave., March 24, 1919.  The Superintendent of the Board of Home Missions outlined the necessary steps and indicated the financial assistance the Board would provide.  The group agreed to assume the remaining mortgage of $4,500 on the lot purchased by the Holy Trinity at 22nd and Edgmont Avenue at the original cost of $6,500.

On April 14, the name of "Nativity Evangelical Lutheran Church" was adopted and the charter opened for members.

The first Church Council was elected on April 28.   Two present members served on that Council: Messrs. A. Robb Cochran and Joseph Howe.  The Constitution was also adopted at this meeting.

Pastor J. J. Brubeck (1919-23) was called as the first pastor of Nativity and he assumed his duties on October 1.  He conducted the first Service of the new Mission on October 12, at the Nessenthaler home with 36 persons in attendance.  Three days later the ground was broken to build the basement of the church, which eventually cost $10,760.

In January 1920, the Sunday School was organized.   The Charter Membership was closed with 58 Charter Members.

Under the leadership of its second pastor, the Rev. Robert D. Roeder (1923-30), the present parsonage at 30 East 23rd Street was purchased in 1924 ($7,500) and the Sanctuary of the church was built in 1929 at a total cost of $18,500.

Debt reduction, further development of program and increased membership were the chief contributions through the leadership of Nativity's third Pastor, Carl F. Yeager (1931-38).

Under the leadership of Nativity's fourth pastor, Pastor Frederic H. Eidam (1938-52), the property along 21st Street, and a portion of Howard Street, was purchased in 1947 at a cost of $2,500.  In 1949 the congregation celebrated its 30th Anniversary with all obligations "Paid in Full."  In 1951, an new Allen organ was purchased.

During Nativity's fifth pastor's ministry, Dr. Edgar T. Chrisemer (1952-56), Nativity witnessed two of her sons ordained into the ministry in 1953.  The two sons are: William A. Davis and James M. Slack.

The Rev. Harry M. Hoffman (1957-61) was Nativity's sixth pastor.  Under his leadership, the basement and sanctuary were enlarged 37 feet.   A new kitchen, boiler room, sacristy and tool shed were also added for a total cost of $110,000.  Nativity's membership reached her peak during Pastor Hoffman's ministry.  Her baptized membership reached the 600 mark and confirmed membership reached the 400 mark.

Nativity's seventh pastor was Pastor Francis J. Heine (1961-67).  During his pastorate many of the stained glass Memorial windows were installed and the original mortgage of $60,000 for the 1958 building program was greatly reduced.

Nativity's eighth pastor, Howard W. Weidemoyer (1968-) arrived in time to initiate the Parking Lot Program and the Golden Jubilee Programs.

Note: Church closed Sunday June 27, 2005 after 85 years of service.

2000, 2001, 2005 John A. Bullock III.

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This page last updated 02/24/07