Our History at a Glance


1836 Pastor August Kavel agrees to lead an emigrant group from Klemzig to Australia.
1838 On 3 March Gossner missionaries arrive in Moreton Bay, Queensland.
1838 Missionaries Schurmann & Teichelmann from the Dresden Missionary Society arrive in Adelaide to work with the Aborigines.
1838 A Lutheran group with Pastor Kavel arrives in South Australia aboard the Prince George in November.
1840s Missionary J H F Wohlers begins work amongst the Maoris on Ruapuke Island, southern New Zealand.
1841 Lutheran settlers under Pastor G D Fritzsche arrive in Adelaide.
1843 Upper Moutere area in New Zealand is settled by German migrants. North German Missionary Society pastors arrive soon afterwards.
1845 Pastor Fritzsche begins the first seminary at Lobethal.
1846 Combined synod meets at Bethany. A split occurs over doctrinal matters.
1848 Wendish settlers migrate to South Australia, many settling in the Barossa Valley.
1856 Victorian Synod is founded.
1856 The first formally constituted Lutheran congregation in Queensland is established at Zion's Hill.
1866 E Homann and J Goessling travel to Kilallpaninna to establish Bethesda Mission near Lake Eyre.
1866 A Lutheran congregation is formed in Sydney by Pastor M Goethe.
1868 Lutherans from the Barossa Valley trek overland to take up land in the Riverina area of New South Wales.
1876 A Teacher's College is opened at Hahndorf.
1877 Missionaries Schwarz & Kempe arrive at Hermannsburg in central Australia to work with the Aborigines.
1880 Pastors from Concordia Seminary in St Louis come to serve in Australia.
1885 Hope Vale mission is founded in north Queensland.
1886 Missionary Johann Flierl sails to New Guinea to begin mission work.
1890 Concordia College is established in Murtoa, Victoria.
1894 Missionary C F T Strehlow begins work at Hermannsburg.
1901 Pastor E Fischer is appointed to Western Australia to work as an itinerant preacher.
1901 Missionary C A Wiebusch arrives at Koonibba to minister to the Aborigines.
1905 Concordia College moves to Adelaide.
1913 The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Australia sets up the Lutheran Publishing House.
1914-18 Many German names are removed from Australian maps.
1914-18 German language instruction is forbidden in Victorian schools.
1914-18 Eight Lutheran pastors in Queensland are interned.
1914-18 Church newspapers in German are prohibited.
1917 Forty-nine Lutheran schools are closed by an act of the South Australian Parliament.
1921 The United Evangelical Lutheran Church synod is formed.
1923 Immanuel Seminary is established at North Adelaide.
1928 The UELCA sets up the Book Depot, its publications body.
1949 St Peter's Lutheran congregation is established in Hobart, Tasmania, after a wave of post war migration.
1966 The Synods combine to form the Lutheran Church in Australia. New Zealand congregations become a district of the newly formed LCA.
1967 The Lutheran Publishing House and the Book Depot combine publishing businesses - now called Openbook Publishers.
1968 The 2 seminaries amalgamate to become Luther Seminary at North Adelaide.
1987 Tract missions run by the Lutheran Laymen's League and the Openbook combine to form the Lutheran Tract Mission.
1991 Australian Lutheran World Service becomes the sole responsibility of the LCA under a newly formed Board. ALWS had previously operated under a joint arrangement between LWS/Geneva and the LCA.