Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Nappanee Big Bell

As many of you know, St John's Lutheran in Nappanee closed their church in July after over 100 years in operation.  The congregation voted to give their church building and parsonage to LOMIK.  Both of those buildings are now for sale and part of the proceeds will be used to establish a lasting legacy to the ministry of St. John's  at Camp Lutherwald.

On September 12, 2011 the bell was removed from the church in Nappanee and will be given a permanent home at Lutherwald.

Bob Bosserman led the assembled group in prayer before the bell was removed.
Yes, that's Lutherwald's own Don Bernard entering the belfry to assist with the removal.

Larry Garber, the master planner of this project, guides the bell through the access hole in the tower.

The wheel and frame had to be removed in the belfry to allow the bell to be lowered through the opening.

Don operated the chain driven hoist device from the top that lowered the 36", 1000 lb. bell to the ground.
Louie Bolenbacher, a member of St. John's since 1955 poses for a picture with the bell.

A pontoon trailer was backed into the church entry in order to remove the bell from the church. 
 Once the bell was outside the church, it was lifted off the trailer by using a large tree branch to anchor the lifting device. 

Church ladies then assisted in lowering the bell onto Larry's truck for transport to Lutherwald after a good sandblasting!