Soulard church celebrates return of pipe organ

ST. LOUIS (KPLR) – Sunday, a historic Lutheran church debuted its revamped organ, one of the largest in St Louis, and reporter Shawndrea Thomas was there; on Easter Sunday at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Soulard.

There was prayer and song, all of it accompanied by a new and improved 3200 pipe organ. Seven years, $1 million dollar later it makes its debut. It was built with a combination of old and new organ pipes to create a cathedral music ministry. It’s one of the largest in St. Louis.

Cynthia Kershaw, Parishioner: “The new organ is awesome just awesome. Not sure if you heard the other organ we miss it but it has history, the new organ is just great.”

While it looks a bit complicated, music director Wess Kassulke says it’s all worth it. The 52 rank Schantz Organ was done in 2 phases and built by a company in Ohio. The new organ will get tuned every 6 months.

Wes Kassulke, Music Director: “They revitalized it many things were not working and it was using technology from the 30’s.

“This has been a beautiful revitalization just like the revitalization of Soulard.”

“We’ve got pipes from 1864, 1898 and 1928 all with the new pipes.”

The 750 member congregation is marking its 175th anniversary, and while the old organ may be gone in some ways.

The life of the church will stay the same.

Wes Kassulke, Music Director: “They can leave here feeling wonderful I know I do.”

“Music in St. Louis and the pipe organ are still very vital and alive.”

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Email: shawndrea.thomas@tvstl.com

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