Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church
The Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (commonly known as the Suomi Synod) was established in 1890.

The Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church of America was defined more by its Finnish ethnic origin than by any specific theological strain. In 1896, the church established Suomi College and Theological Seminary (now called Finlandia University
Finlandia University
Finlandia University is a university in Hancock, Michigan, United States, and the only private university in the Upper Peninsula. Founded in 1896 as Suomi College, it is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.-History:...

) in Hancock, Michigan
Hancock, Michigan
Hancock is a city in Houghton County; the northernmost in the U.S. state of Michigan, located on the Keweenaw Peninsula, or, depending on terminology, Copper Island. The population was 4,634 at the 2010 census...

. It was one of the Lutheran
Lutheranism is a major branch of Western Christianity that identifies with the theology of Martin Luther, a German reformer. Luther's efforts to reform the theology and practice of the church launched the Protestant Reformation...

 church bodies that merged into the Lutheran Church in America
Lutheran Church in America
The Lutheran Church in America was a U.S. and Canadian Lutheran church body that existed from 1962 to 1987. It was headquartered in New York City and its publishing house was Fortress Press....

 (LCA) in 1962. At that time, the FELC had 25,000 members in 79 congregations, and was the smallest of LCA's founding church bodies. The Lutheran Church in America was party to the merger that created the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is a mainline Protestant denomination headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. The ELCA officially came into existence on January 1, 1988, by the merging of three churches. As of December 31, 2009, it had 4,543,037 baptized members, with 2,527,941 of them...

in 1988.


  • J. K. Nikander 1890–1898
  • K. L. Tolonen 1898–1902
  • J. K. Nikander 1902–1919
  • John Wargelin 1919-1919
  • Alvar Rautalahti 1919–1922
  • Alfred Haapanen 1922–1950
  • John Wargelin 1950-1955
  • Raymond Waldemar Wargelin 1955–1962


  • Wolf, Edmund Jacob. The Lutherans in America; a story of struggle, progress, influence and marvelous growth (New York: J.A. Hill. 1889)
  • Bente, F. American Lutheranism Volume II (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House. 1919)
  • Nichol, Todd W. All These Lutherans (Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishers. 1986)

External links

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