Holy Spirit had its beginning in July of 1984 when Rev. Bob Linder began knocking on doors in the northwest part of Las Vegas with the hopes of starting a new congregation of the Lutheran Church in America (LCA). By October a group of 75 people had begun worshipping at an old cowboy restaurant and bar on Ann Road called “Los Rancheros”. Some of our old-timers can remember clearing off the beer bottles and ashtrays as they prepared to worship on Sundays!
On Easter Sunday, 1986, the congregation broke ground and worshipped outdoors at the present site, 6670 W. Cheyenne Avenue. Holy Spirit grew rapidly and by Thanksgiving of 1987 the first building was completed in time for worship. Also in 1987, the LCA joined together with two other Lutheran groups to form the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), and Holy Spirit remains part of this group.
Pastor Linder moved on to begin another congregation in 1993. An interim pastor served the congregation for about a year until, in the fall of 1994 our current pastor, Rev. Paul Hansen, arrived. Pastor Paul and his wife, Elaine, both grew up in Minnesota but had lived in California and Arizona before moving to Las Vegas with their two young children.
In 1996 the first “contemporary” worship (more informal with the use of piano and guitar rather than organ) began with the musical help of Bill and Kathy Walker. In 1998 an addition to the building was completed to provide much needed classroom space. Holy Spirit added its first Associate Pastor, Rev. Raquel Tally, in 1999, to give leadership to our Youth and Family ministry. She moved on after a couple of years, but Rev. Kristen Skaff Brechler joined the staff in 2001. Our Ministry Coordinator, Devra Betts joined us in 2000. She recruits, trains and supports small group leaders, as well as assisting various team leaders. She also helps to encourage members new to the congregation in finding meaningful ways to be involved in the life of the congregation.
In 2002 a second addition to the building was completed, providing an expanded fellowship hall and kitchen, a new music room, a sacristy and additional office space. Tim Beasley joined us in 2004, as our first full-time Music Minister. Rev. Ryan Rouse led us in Youth and Family Ministry from September 2007 to January 2012 and Rev. Dr. Stan Jurgenson led our Visitation ministry until spring of 2013.
Holy Spirit adopted a new Strategic Plan in 2010 and began participation in the Missional Leadership Academy. Both are attempts to help us re-tool for ministry to people in the surrounding neighborhoods that are transitioning from a strictly suburban setting to a more multi-cultural, urban/suburban setting. We are excited about what God is doing with us and through us!