in the beginning

Picture East Northport as it was in 1914---flat, open farms, animals, horse and carriage on dirt roads with a few houses scattered about. Lutheran families had to travel to St. Peter's Huntington Station, for church and Sunday School worship. On February 13, 1914 women gathered together in the home on Mr. and Mrs. Herman Richter with a desire to establish a Lutheran Church in the East Northport area. Many men became interested and on March 11th, joined the ladies when 96 people gathered together at the East Northport Firehouse.  Four days later the first worship service was led by Pastor Dr. Hugo Hoffman from St. Paul’s Lutheran Church of Brooklyn. The first official meeting of the congregation was held after a worship service on March 29.  At that time a vote was taken to

name the new church St. Paul’s of East Northport in honor of the support given to us by our sister church in Brooklyn.   Seventy-nine persons attended this meeting.  The collection for the day amounted to $5.84. 

     From March through April 1914 a group of men met weekly to draft a Constitution to guide us as we established our new church.  Officers of the congregation were elected, terms and responsibilities of these officers was documented.  On April 29th a meeting was called for the Matter of Incorporation.  These papers had to be registered in Riverhead under “The Religious Corporation Law of the State”. Once these matters of importance were in place, Rev. George Schorling was called to be our first pastor. While discussing means and ways to support St. Paul’s, the officers decided that the pastor’s salary would be $60.00 a month, and due to a lack of funds, requested that the Synod pay half or more. They continued to hold our worship services and meetings at the East Northport Firehouse with St. Paul’s paying $8.00 a month for use of this space.  

beauty in the church

Stained glass windows

The windows in our Santuary and Narthex were designed by Benoit D. Gilsoul. Benoit was born in 1913 in Nmaur, Belgium. He was a well known artist in his own country and emigrated to the United States in 1959 on a grant from the Belgium government. He originally came to study art in the United States, but decided to stay and became a citizen of the United Stated in 1967. He designed, created and executed sculpture and faceted glass for Churches and Synagogues all over the country until his death in the year 2000. One of his well-known pieces is in the United Nations overlooking the United Nations Plaza. Among his many religious endeavors in the United States he created a bronze sculpture of "Christ in the City" which featured a background of New York City. The sculpture faces Madison Square Garden.

    St. Paul's Sanctuary windows were created in thick Faceted Glass, cast in Epoxy Matrix by Helmut Schardt in his studio in East Northport. Accents were added after casting by striking the glass to cause the light to refract. Mr. Schardt had the privilege to work with Mr. Gilsoul for over forty years.

Our Chapel windows depict the symbols of our faith. They were created by artisans painting on glass that is then fired in a kiln at a high temperature. The painted glass pieces are then joined by solder with Lead Came. This process is much closer to the process used in the Middle Ages to create stained glass windows for Churches throughout Europe. The same process was used on the new windows in the Historian's Room.

   Profound thanks are gratefully expressed to all who gave the gifts of these windows to the Glory of God. They have been an important part of our worship experiences in this our church home.