Suntree’s Advent Lutheran Church Installing Pipe Organ
By Space Coast Daily // November 8, 2012
Instrument Costs $350,000
BREVARD COUNTY • SUNTREE, FLORIDA – The buzz of power tools at Advent Lutheran Church in Suntree will soon give way to the long-awaited swell of an American-made pipe organ.
Made by the family-owned A.E. Schlueter Company in Lithonia Ga., the enormous pipe organ will boast 2,196 pipes and 36 ranks.
Installation of the $350,000 instrument is expected to take the remainder of November to complete.
Funded entirely through special donations, pledges sufficient to cover the cost of the pipe organ were collected over a two-month period in 2011.
Planning for the new pipe organ began with the 2003 construction of the new church sanctuary.
The new pipe organ has been a cherished dream of the congregation for more than a decade.
Advent Lutheran Church in Suntree was constructed in 1982 and in 2003 a new sanctuary was designed and built with the intent of one day adding a pipe organ.
When Pastor David Jahn arrived in 2009, he immediately realized how important the pipe organ was to his new flock.
“People started asking me almost as soon as I walked in the door about the pipe organ and when we were going to get it,” said Jahn. “So, we set up a ‘pipe organ task force’ to research the costs involved and do an informal feasibility study.”
In the space of a few months, the task force visited churches with pipe organs all over Florida, listened to presentations from five organ builders and evaluated the pros and cons of various options before deciding on a pipe organ from the A.E. Schlueter Company.
Pastor Jahn said the decision to move forward was based on several factors, including the certainty that pipe organ music would intensify the traditional worship service and attract music enthusiasts from Brevard’s arts-rich environment.
“Beauty and art glorifies God. And there is such good news in the gospel,” he said. “We are hopeful that, through the beauty of the pipe organ, visitors and congregants alike will reconnect with the gospel in a new and powerful way.”
A dedication and grand organ concert by Peter Beardsley of Massachusetts is planned for Jan. 20, 2013, with more details forthcoming.
A series of sacred and seasonal, “mini concerts” by local organists are planned for each Wednesday in December at noon.
Advent Lutheran Church is at 7550 N. Wickham Road in Suntree.
For more information, call 321-259-8515.