St. Lukes Lutheran School

Like A Mustard Seed

Like A Mustard Seed:  A Century of Faith is a 300+ page book detailing the great faithfulness of God in building His kingdom through the work of His church in Oviedo, FL.  Order your copy today by visiting the church office or online (shipping available)!

St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, Oviedo, FL, commemorated the Centennial Anniversary of its founding (March 17, 1912) with a full year of special celebrations, worship services and servant events in 2012.   The celebrations, videos and permanent displays created new awareness and interest in St. Luke’s origins and rich heritage. But it was “His-story” the congregation most wanted to share: the story of how God had worked through a small group of Slovak immigrants to fulfill His own divine purposes.

Several hundred historic photographs and documents had been already been digitized. These images would be used in the creation of a “pictorial history book,” which could now be enjoyed by St. Luke’s families for generations to come and which could be made available to the larger community, as well. 

This newly published volume is, in many ways, a sequel to an earlier book (1982) detailing the origins of Slavia, the community established in Florida in 1911 by the Slovak settlers. Written by Dr. Paul Wehr, this book  (now out of print) described the difficult struggles the founding families faced when they arrived in a new and alien environment and it traced the development of the congregation they then chartered until the arrival of its first permanent pastor (Rev. Stephen M. Tuhy) some 22 years later. 

The excellent research done by Paul Wehr for Like a Mustard Seed: The Slavia Settlement, as well as the prodigious work he did in documenting an additional 50 years (1934-1983) of the history of St. Luke’s Church and School (an unpublished manuscript he generously gifted to the church) provided the backbone for the new volume.

By the Centennial Year, another 30 years had elapsed and there were three more decades of history to be researched and recorded. It was definitely time for another book to be written!

Paul Wehr (by now, an octogenarian), along with Judy Duda, unofficial archivist for the church for several years, and Prof. Alicia Duffy, a St. Luke’s member who teaches History at UCF… served as the team of co-authors which began its work on Like a Mustard Seed: A Century of Faith in 2010. A five-year “labor of love,” the book was finally published in autumn, 2016. 

The new 9” x 12”, hardbound volume contains 320 pages and more than 1,000 photos.  The colorful laminated cover features an original watercolor painting commissioned by the church in honor of the 100th anniversary, while the end pages feature a collage originally painted for the cover of the “first Mustard Seed book,” some 35 years ago.

Both volumes are based on the metaphor of the grain of mustard seed (Luke 13:18-19), offering thanks and praise for how the Lord has blessed the congregation, enabling its ministries to blossom and grow over the past century.  Included in the book, of course, are many references to the important role the SELC Synod/District has played in nurturing and supporting that growth.

A Snapshot view of our history

Watch here for the release of our digital version at Central Florida Memories for a complete list of photos and articles in digital form.