During 1901 and 1902 Trinity Church was remodeled and enlarged, giving i t five windows along each side instead of three, at a cost of $1883.28, and additional land to make an open road into Trinty was purchased for $300 per acre. In 1902 the congregation voted "to participate in the Louisiana Purchase Exposition with a school exhibit, teacher Hilgartner to make the arrangements".
Pastor Kuegele's 25th anniversary was celebrated April 24, 1904, with the sermon and address delivered by Pastor Kaiser of Baltimore . In1909 a new parsonage was built at Trinity, Eutzler Bros. giving a turnkey bid of $3250.
In the congregation's minutes of January 8, 1910 we read that a motion carried to "grant privilege to the Ladies of the congregation to organize an aid Society" and on February 17th the ladies met to organize, Mrs. E. L. Eakle being elected President; Mrs. R. N. Page, Vice-President; Miss Nettie Coiner, Secretary; and Mrs. Casper S. Coiner, Treasurer.
In 1912 an iron fence was recommended for the cemetery and a wooden one at the parsonage for a total cost of $1,126.42.
Pastor Kuegele preached occasionally in Pocahontas County , Clover Lick, and Pendleton Co., W. Va. He became seriously ill with pneumonia in Charlottesville when returning from North Carolina in 1914 and was cared for by Pastor Crouse and his daughter. That same year Sunday School was revived, in place of the Catechetical lectures on Sunday mornings. Mr. Arthur Coyner was the first Superintendent, while Theodore Coyner, Harry Coiner and Miss Loula Coyner taught the two Bible classes and a children's class.
Pastor Kuegele, who had resisted accepting this congregation's call because he preferred to continue preaching in German, became a pioneer in English work. Many of his sermons were first published in the Lutheran Witness and then in book form, his sermons serving as a model or guide for men just entering the ministry and older German men faced with the necessity of preaching in English. (A list of his books is appended.) The entire stock of the books "Country Sermons" together with the plates was destroyed in a fire at the Lang Printery in Baltimore , a personal loss to the author and also to the English Synod which had been receiving benefit from the sale of the books.
During his years at Coyner's congregation Pastor Kuegele declined calls to Conover , NC , and Winfield , Kansas , at the congregation's request. He died April 1, 1916, at the age of 70, and is buried in Trinity cemetery, as are his wife Meta who died eight months later, and five members of their family. The congregation marked his grave with an imposing monument and placed a memorial window above the altar in Trinity Church .
Mr. E. J. Buerger, a student at Concordia Seminary, had come to serve as assistant during Pastor Kuegele's illness, taught Bethany School , and continued to serve until another Pastor arrived.
1916 Back to top
The Rev. E. J. Friedrich accepted the calI of the congregation and in October of 1916 was instalIed as Pastor. He graduated from Concordia ColIege, Fort Wayne in 1908 and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis in 1912, serving as assistant Pastor in his father's parish in St. Charles , Mo. , until 1916. He married Dorothy MilIer of Vandalia , Mo. , and they had two sons, Julius and Eugene.
World War I drew eight young men of the congregation into the military services of their country and all returned safely. The ladies of the congregation became involved in Red Cross work and relief work for French and Belgium children. After having a pipe organ instalIed at Trinity in 1915, the ladies had an acetylene plant placed at the Trinity parsonage.
In 1917 the young people met at the C. J. Barger home to form an organization, and at the next meeting elected Harry Coiner, president; Wilbur Coyner, vice-president; Edgar Buerger, Secretary; Frank Leonard, treasurer. Three years later the society became a member of the International Walther League.
After the Friedrichs had lived in the Trinity parsonage about two years, it was decided to buy the house at 712 Fourteenth Street in Waynesboro for $4600, to be used as a parsonage. The Friedrich family occupied it in 1918, the Trinity parsonage becoming the home of the caretaker of the cemetery.
The use of the individual communion cups was introduced in 1919 and has continued to, the present time. That same year it was voted to "investigate the best interest of the congregation as to moving to Waynesboro and three months later (February 1920) it was agreed to buy five lots at the corner of Main and Maple for $6750. Also in 1920, the Ladies' Aid purchased a new altar for Trinity and sent the old altar, chairs, and one of our communion sets to the mission in Norfolk .
In 1923 a great step was taken when it was decided to move to Waynesboro . Old Bethany was in need of extensive repairs, so it was torn down, and the carpet given to the church in Charlottesville . The Bethany church property was sold to Mr. B. C. Hopeman for $4500, becoming part of the Hopeman estate, later managed by Wilbur Coyner and then by Norman Coyner.
Despite the considerable opposition to forsaking the old Bethany Hill site, work was begun on the new Bethany Church in the Fall of 1923, and the cornerstone of the old church was laid at the new church on Palm Sunday, April 13, 1924.
Pastor Friedrich accepted the call to St. Paul ’s Church, Cleveland , Ohio , in 1923, and at the close of his seven year's ministry the congregation adopted the following resolution:
“Whereas, We are on the eve of a final separation of pastor and people, Be it resolved that we hereby express our sorrow and ask God's blessing on him, his family, and his labors in the field to which he goes, and may God give us strength to remember and practice the good things he has taught us".
After serving in Cleveland for seven years, Pastor Friedrich joined the faculty of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis , in 1930; served as the 4th vice-president of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, and was the Superintendent of the Lutheran Sanitorium, Wheatridge , Colorado from 1940 till his retirement in 1958.
During the vacancy in the Fall and Winter of 1923, the Rev. George Thomas, of Baltimore , and others ministered to the congregation.
The Rev. Herbert E. Plehn, of Buffalo , New York , accepted the congregation's call and was installed on the second Sunday in January, 1924, the Rev. 0. A. Sauer of Richmond preaching.
Pastor Plehn was born in Toledo , Ohio , attended Concordia, Fort Wayne and the St. Louis Seminary, graduating in 1912. He served congregations in Saskatchewan , Canada , and Wauseon , Ohio , and as Camp Pastor 1916-18 before going to Nazareth Church in Buffalo . He married Ruth Pieper in 1918 and 3 daughters (Marianne, Ruth and Barbara) , and 2 sons (Herbert and Roland) were born to them. Pastor Plehn continued on the Bethany building committee in Pastor Friedrich's place, along with David T. Coiner, Chairman; E. W. Barger, E. L. Eakle, Frank F. Freed and Godfrey Coiner. Finance Committee: James Bolick, Theodore Coyner and Harry Coiner.
After two years of steady work the church was completed at a cost of $63,000. The Sunday evening sermon was preached by the Rev. 0.C. Kreinheder, who later served as President of Valparaiso Lutheran University. (Dr. Kreinheder had taught at Bethany School , married Hannah Coiner, and is buried at Trinity Cemetery ).
In October, 1925, it was voted to permit the minister to wear a clerical robe in the new church, but the robe was not worn at Trinity.
Through the efforts of Senior Walther Leaguers, Pauline Coiner, Frank Leonard and Mrs. E. L. Leonard, a Junior Walther League was organized in 1925, with Rudolph Freed, president; Fillmore Coyner, vice-president; Josephine Coiner, Secretary; Russell Coyner, treasurer; Lillian Coiner and Hawsie Weaver, entertainment committee. In June of that year the Senior and Junior Walther League Societies were host to the Eastern District Convention, housing the guests in Fishburne and Fairfax Hall dormitories, paying all food and other expenses, with an outlay of about $1000.
Bethany School , which had been closed in 1923, was re-opened at the new Bethany in the fall of 1926, with Miss Elizabeth Mennen of North Carolina teaching all grades in the room which now houses the library. Trinity School also re-opened in 1926, taught by Miss Annie Laurie Page.
That same year it was voted to have 6 communions each year, and the envelope system for receiving church offerings was adopted.
Three years after Bethany Church was moved to Waynesboro , a one room school building was added, and dedicated the second Sunday in October, 1928.
At the meeting held October 28, 1928, Pastor Plehn was released to accept the call to St. Matthew's Congregation, Rochester , N.Y. , which he served until 1960, when he became Missionary-at-large in the Southeastern District. While in Waynesboro he served as Visitor of the English District.
Until a successor arrived, Mr. Walter Nau, a vicar from Concordia Seminary, who had been teaching Bethany School , conducted the services.