Tales from the Archive

Tales from the Archives is a presentation from the Archives at St. Paul's

Contributions of items of significance to the Church History or contributions of stories are welcome and encouraged. Please submit by the 20th of the moth for publication the first Sunday of the following month. It is the goal of the Archive to preserve the church history and make selected portions of it known to the congregation from time to time.

November 22nd

Celebrating 200 years of Silent Night (1818—2018)

"Celebrating 200 years of Silent Night"

For December, I thought it would be appropriate to look at one of the traditions here at St. Paul’s which is to sing Silent Night by candle light.   I was delighted that this favorite has been around almost 50 years longer than St. Paul’s (coming up on 150). 




Arthur-  Joseph  Mohr (young Assistant Priest of Oberndorf's St. Nikola church)  

Composer– Franz Xaver  Gruber(Organist friend and teacher in near by Arnsdorf of Joseph Mohr) 

Country of Origin—Austria in Oberndorf near Salzburg. 

Original form—Poem written by Joseph Mohr around 1816

1st Performance—December 24, 1818. 


Many believe the Silent Night was born out of necessity.  

“The organ was defective and the mouse was to blame” 

Truthfulness: 0 %

What is actually true is that although the organ was playable, it was also in dire need of repair. In the following year, organ builder Carl Mauracher from the Zillertal valley was called to Oberndorf in order to examine the instrument. 

Joseph Mohr and Franz Xaver Gruber could have decided to perform the song with the guitar from the very beginning, as they planned on singing the song after the Christmas mass in front of the nativity scene  

The song “Silent Night” 

The original poem and its six stanzas. 


Silent night! Holy night!

All are sleeping, alone and awake

Only the intimate holy pair,

Lovely boy with curly hair,

Sleep in heavenly peace!

Sleep in heavenly peace! 


Silent night! Holy night!

Son of God, O how he laughs

Love from your divine mouth,

Then it hits us – the hour of salvation.

Jesus at your birth!

Jesus at your birth! 


Silent night! Holy night!

Which brought salvation to the world,

From Heaven’s golden heights,

Mercy’s abundance was made visible to us:

Jesus in human form,

Jesus in human form. 


Silent night! Holy night!

Where on this day all power

of fatherly love poured forth

And like a brother lovingly embraced

Jesus the peoples of the world,

Jesus the peoples of the world. 


Silent night! Holy night!

Already long ago planned for us,

When the Lord frees from wrath

Since the beginning of ancient times

A salvation promised for the whole world.

A salvation promised for the whole world. 


Silent night! Holy night!

To shepherds it was first made known

By the angel, Alleluia;

Sounding forth loudly far and near:

Jesus the Savior is here!

Jesus the Savior is here! 


As you may know the world of 1792 to 1816 was not unlike our own, wars, political unrest, natural disasters and crime were common place . The world had survived Napoleon and was recovering!


Perhaps, the world is once again ready for Silent Night and there is hope for peace and good will for our time! 

Respectfully submitted,

Kerry Griffin



St. Paul's Original Building

August 6, 1871 - The "new" (today know as the wooden ) church was dedicated by Pastor Mengert and Dr. Wiliian Ebeling of Catonsville. From this date forward the congregation became known as, 

"St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church."

The "wooden" church was moved (I believe it is still in use a Real Estate Office) to Savage, MD from our present location on Rt. 216 and the stone church we have today was constructed during 1932 and dedicated on January 1, 1933.

Featured Items

The Banners of St. Paul's

A Brief History and Inventory of the Banners at St. Paul's Lutheran Church

The purpose of this photo Gallery is to document the variety of banners that enhance our worship here at St. Paul's through countless hours, talent and treasure of all those who have contributed to make them possible.

The banners contained here in take us through the Church year: Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Pentecost and the sacraments of marriage and baptism as well as the rite of confirmation.

Although Church banners are not new to the St. Paul's they do more than just decorate, many are based upon passage's from the Bible and God's creation and remind us of His word and the beauty of creation as well as marking important milestone in St. Paul's congregation's life.

Most of St. Paul's banners are hand sewn and one their creators, Sandy August is particularly fond of adding a ribbon. Make note of the special fabric used in some of them, such as the Advent banners. The photos may not do them justice but they have an unusual impression in them similar to a watermark on paper.

Please browse by clicking the forward arrow ">" or the backward "<" arrow on the image below.  There are at present about 60 in the collection.

The Stained Glass of St. Paul's

I happened upon a 2009 Booklet about the Stained Glass of St. Paul's and the meaning of each of the various windows at St. Paul's written I believe by Prue Ronneberg and I was inspired to re-do the booklet in a larger format and update it to present 2017. Below is the resulting story.

St. Paul's Today

Come and check out our various vibrant ministries and fun and engaging groups including: Monthly Youth Activities, Monthly Men's Group, Monthly Women's Group, Monthly Seniors Lunch Group, Handbell Ringers, Traditional Adult Choir, Contemporary Youth Band, Weekly Adult and Children's Sunday School and many more ministries...