La Casa de Christo Lutheran Church celebrates 40th anniversary

In 1973, newly ordained Lutheran pastor Andrew Garman and his wife, Diane, were driving from California to Littleton, Colo., where he was to serve his pastoral apprenticeship.

Pastor Andrew Garman

Pastor Andrew Garman

The native Californians passed through Phoenix in August, and it was characteristically hot and humid. After experiencing the desert heat, the Garmans agreed that they would never move to Arizona.

Nine months later, Pastor Garman was asked to start a mission congregation – in Phoenix. “You never tell God never,” he said.

The church that he started – La Casa de Cristo Lutheran Church, 6300 E. Bell Road, Scottsdale – will celebrate its 40th anniversary on Sunday, April 26, with special worship services at 8, 9:15 and 10:30 a.m.

From 4 to 7 p.m. that day, Ross Bridgeman, who grew up in the church and now has a music career in Los Angeles, and his group, the Bridgemen, will perform at the church. There also will be food trucks, games and other activities at the afternoon celebration.

Pastor Garman held the first services for La Casa de Cristo in his home. The church then began meeting at Desert Shadows Elementary School, and in 1979 opened a new campus on Thunderbird Road.

In 1997 the church moved to its present 20-acre campus on Bell Road.
For more information about the church and its ministries, and the anniversary celebration, go to

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