From 1840 to today
Founded in 1840, St. Paul Lutheran was the first German Lutheran congregation in New Orleans. The historic church complex is located on the corner of Port and Burgundy Streets in the Faubourg Marigny. Today, the congregation of St. Paul is a tight-knit community of believers with a passion for God’s word.
Fellowship and Community
The congregation of St. Paul is currently involved in community service missions including fellowship, running a community food pantry and more.
The congregation hosts yearly events such as Oktoberfest, Friendship Sunday, Summer Family Fun Nights, Christmas Concert, Blessing of the Backpacks for the beginning of the school year, and blessing of the pets, Men’s Club and more.
In 2020, a food pantry ministry was started. Anyone in need can shop for canned goods and hygiene basics. Additionally, the youth group and adult groups come together to do community service throughout the year.
St. Paul Founding and Early Days
Rev. Christian Sans was born in the Kingdom of Westphalia, Prussia in 1813 and received his theological education in his native province. In the spring of 1840, he left Prussia to establish a German Protestant congregation in New Orleans. The first worship service was held at the old Phoenix Fire Company’s endive house on Chartres Street between Clouet and Louisa on August 2nd. On April 20, 1843, the lot on the corner of what is now Port & Burgundy Streets was purchased for $300 and a sanctuary was built shortly thereafter.A Christian Day school was founded in 1840 and ran until 2017.
On April 29, 1860, The original sanctuary building was burned in a wide-spread fire. A larger sanctuary was rebuilt on the site and dedicated on December 16, 1860. This sanctuary featured a gorgeous pipe organ.
Civil War and Reconstruction Era
During the years of 1861- 1865, the city of New Orleans suffered greatly. The congregation at St. Paul continued to worship and serve the community. After the Civil War in 1866, St. Paul began providing support for many orphans in the city, and organized a Sunday school and in 1881, the congregation was able to support the start of an orphanage.
On February 5, 1889, St. Paul Church burned down again to the foundation. The building was rebuilt and rededicated on September 15, 1889; and has been in use ever since.
St. Paul in the 20th Century and Today
St. Paul was a thriving congregation throughout the 20th century. In 1924, the campus expanded with the addition of the school building. The sanctuary enjoyed multiple renovations and modernizations throughout the decade including a new pipe organ that is still used every Sunday.
Port and Burgundy
The history of St. Paul is robust. It is captured in the book “Port & Burgundy” by congregation member Kevin Bozant. To receive your own copy of this book, please call the church office at 504-945-3741 or fill out our online contact form.