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History

Since 1875, the strength of Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church has been its devotion to Christ and the mission we do in his name. We strive to be a spiritual resource and a voice for justice and Christian peace in the Watertown area. Our building is one of our most important resources for ministry. 

On January 24, 1875, nine people formed what was then known as the German Evangelical Lutheran Immanuel Congregation of the Watertown Community, our present day Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church. Before the end of that year, Immanuel’s membership records included 28 names. The congregation rented the Welsh Church to hold services and bought a parsonage, which did double duty as a school house. On October 29, 1876, the first church building was dedicated on the present church site and served Immanuel for almost 76 years.

Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church has enjoyed a reputation in the Watertown area as a welcoming, accepting community of faith that serves and ministers to the Watertown community and beyond. Immanuel continues to be the site for many community outreach programs including the Watertown Food Pantry, PEP (Personal Essentials Pantry), Hometown Missions and the Thursday Night Bread & Roses meal and its reputable music ministry continues to gain recognition with its new Music at Immanuel Concert Series.

Immanuel prides itself on celebrating God’s grace in Jesus Christ, accepting all unconditionally, and growing in God’s call to serve the world.

This congregation faithfully works and worships year round, but we really shine at Christmas time. Our name comes from the story of Jesus’ birth in the Gospel of Matthew (Matthew 1.23) (except we use the Hebrew spelling from the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 7.14)). We don’t know whether the name was chosen because we treasure the fact that Jesus was born and make a big deal of it at Christmas or the other way around. Either way, “Immanuel” means “God is with us” and that gives us Joy. You be the judge about how well we celebrate it!