In 2008, Zion Lutheran Church was devastated by Hurricane Ike. The congregation decided to make necessary repairs and reopened in November 2009, with renewed resolve to serve the community. Even with this resolve and new identity, the congregation could not survive on its own. In a desire to see that the property, their hard work and the their commitment for continued ministry would not go to waste, Zion members met with Bishop Mike Rinehart, members of the community and Lutherhill staff to talk about the future of Zion. In the fall of 2011 the congregation unanimously voted to donate all its assets to Lutherhill Ministries for the purpose of opening a retreat center on Galveston Island. Anthony Grizzaffi, the president of Zion, said at the Gulf Coast Synod Assembly in May 2012: “be generous with the ministry of Jesus Christ, give it to everyone you can. It will change your message, it will change your congregation, and it will transform your faith. Be generous.”
The Lutherhill Board of Directors and staff are thankful for the generosity of the Zion congregation and are excited about the new ministry of the Zion Retreat Center in Galveston.
The vision for Zion is to renovate the existing facility into an eight bedroom retreat center with a large group gathering area, kitchen and dining facility. The programming vision is to host retreats year round, summer camps (youth, families), and host service groups.
We are now in the process of raising funds for the Zion Retreat Center.
The architectural firm Lancaster and Associates in The Woodlands, Texas has completed plans for the retreat center and the construction firm, Alta Vista of Galveston, Texas has agreed to be our contractor for the project.
If you have any questions or would like to donate to this amazing new opportunity for Lutherhill Ministries, please contact Matt Kindsvatter, Executive Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-266-4613.