History of St. Mark's
Because there was a need and because there was a dream, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church was born. St. Mark’s was a mission congregation of the Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church. Land was purchased in 1952 in the expanding southwest part of Sioux Falls, where corn fields had not yet given way to paved roads, trees or neighborhood homes. With the generous support of Augustana Lutheran Church (8th St. and Prairie Ave.) in Sioux Falls and the other Swedish-background churches of the Sioux Falls District, St. Mark’s embarked upon its ministry.
The congregation’s organizational meeting was held on November 29, 1954. Its first pastor was the Reverend Dallas Young. Worship services were held in the chapel of Bethany Lutheran Home until the church’s first unit was completed in 1958. St. Mark’s joined the other churches of the Sioux Falls District as a part-owner of Bethany Home.
In 1962, St. Mark’s became part of the newly merged Lutheran Church in America (LCA). In 1975, the congregation constructed its distinctive pyramid-shaped sanctuary and expanded its Sunday School, office, and lower-level space. In 1988, along with the LCA, St. Mark’s became part of the newly formed Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
In September 2000, the church dedicated its latest building addition. On October 30 & 31, 2004, St. Mark’s celebrated its 50th anniversary with all six of its former pastors present. St. Mark’s hosted a Sudanese congregation from 2000 to 2010.
St. Mark's pastors and their terms of service:
Rev. Dallas Young -- 1954-1959
Rev. Lloyd E. Stivers -- 1960-1969
Rev. Darrel Peterson -- 1970-1977
Rev. Luther Anderson -- 1978-1983
Rev. Norman Shomper -- 1983-1987
Rev. Dennis Tranberg -- 1988-2001
Rev. Dennis Hansen -- 2001-2007
Rev. Lori L. Hope -- 2008-present
St. Mark’s continues to be known as a vibrant, open, mission-minded, and welcoming congregation. We are especially committed to our neighborhood history and relationship with Bethany Home and LifeScape. From its inception long before ADA requirements, St. Mark's was determined to be fully accessible in its design. Another treasured building feature is the expansive clear glass sanctuary windows which enable us to see and be seen by the world outside.