Our Story

On January 25, 1988, the Federation of Lutheran Churches of the Louisville area established a mission development committee. Mr. John Cromeans was chosen as its chairman. At its regular meeting held May 23, 1988, the Federation passed a resolution to begin work in the Shelbyville area. On June 27, 1988, the Indiana District - LCMS purchased a tract of land at the comer of Highway 53 and Old Seven Mile Pike.

A Bible Study group was begun October 5, 1988 at the Best Western Motel in Shelbyville. Rev. Robert Brockhoff assumed leadership of the group in February of 1989. Under his leadership, the first worship service was held on September 10, 1989 at the Catholic Church of the Annunciation in Shelbyville. Mr. Rod Shreve was its first president, Kathy Adams, secretary, and Diane Fraker, treasurer. It was on October 1, 1989, in a meeting after the Sunday worship, that the group chose the name Holy Cross Lutheran Church to be its permanent and formal name. Sunday School and Bible Class were begun on December 3, 1989 in the Education Building of the Catholic Church.

December 9, 1990 was Charter Sunday. This was the day 19 communicants and 5 baptized children/youth declared their intention to become Charter Members. It was on this day that Rev. David Dubbelde, the Indiana District's Congregational Outreach representative, presented the congregation with their Charter of Membership into the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod.

In 1992, Holy Cross decided to call a full-time worker by asking for a vicar. Henry H. Loppnow was assigned to Holy Cross to serve his vicarage here in Shelbyville. The congregation had 28 communicant members and 8 baptized at the time. And then, in the spring of 1993, Holy Cross extended a call to Vicar Loppnow to continue his work here at Holy Cross and serve them as their pastor. On August 1, 1993, the Rev. Henry H. Loppnow was ordained and installed as its first full-time pastor. This took place under a 40' x 60' tent on the church property with 250 people present.

In 1994, the church received a gift of $80,000 - $6,000 to be used for the operating fund and $74,000 to be placed into a building fund. On Mothers' Day of 1995, Holy Cross contracted with Harbour, Incorporated of Lexington, Kentucky to draw up plans for their own church home. That evening a telephone call was received from Calvary Lutheran Church, Indiana notifying Holy Cross that they were closing and that the monies from the sale of their building would be given to Holy Cross. These monies amounted to $207,000.

On November 24, 1996, Holy Cross held its Ground Breaking Service for its church building. After having received a full page of coverage in the local newspaper, another gift of $125,000 was given by someone here in Shelbyville, someone who had a Lutheran background as a child.

On May 1, 1997, the Laborers for Christ arrived to begin construction. The Laborers were Herb and Charlotte Traub, Georgetown, Indiana, foreman; John and Annetta Dellinger, Plain City, Ohio; Melvin and Betty Drath, Houston, Texas; Robert and Mariemma Nelson, Sequim Washington; Ken and Bea Smith, Independence, Kentucky; and Mike and Thelma McGee, Shelbyville, Kentucky (also members of Holy Cross).

On November 16, 1997, the members of Holy Cross dedicated their newly constructed building to the Glory of God. Because of the financial gifts received, it was debt free. It has an area of 5978 sq. ft. Its membership was 65 communicant members and 29 baptized members.

In January of 2004, Rev. Loppnow announced that he would be retiring as of August 31. His last message as pastor of Holy Cross would be preached on August 8, 2004. The membership of the church as of April 2004, was 144 communicants and 44 baptized members for a total of 188 members.

In August 2005, Rev. Daniel Guagenti was installed as full-time pastor at Holy Cross.  He had once been taught confirmation by Henry Loppnow, at Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer in Evansville, IN, before either were pastors.