Happenings

Sermons by Pastor Walter Snyder plus announcements, articles, videos, and anything else that doesn’t fit Ask the Pastor or the Luther Library.





25 January 2009

There She Is ... Miss (LCMS) America

Congratulations, Katie

Katie Stam, the newest Miss America is a Lutheran. Not only that, but an LCMS Lutheran. Furthermore, she’s the daughter of a church worker. Her mother, Tracy Stam, teaches 5th grade at Immanuel Lutheran School, Seymour, Indiana. During the talent segment, she sang Via Dolorosa, a song confessing Jesus Christ, His death, and His cleansing blood.


Katie received her crown and earned her prizes, including a $50,000 scholarship, on Saturday. After several days of competition in Las Vegas, retiring 2008 Miss America Kirsten Haglund crowned Katie at the conclusion of the TLC broadcast on Saturday night 24 January. There remains a further Lutheran connection: Haglund is a member of the Evangelical Covenant Church, a body that grew out of Swedish Lutheranism, Pietism, and the theology of the Great Awakening.

Anyhow, the news is especially interesting in our household since the Snyder part of my family hails from that part of Indiana. Great-grandpa George Schneider pulled a G. T. T., Americanizing our name along the way. (The jury remains out as to whether or not the change possibly related to the relocation of some of his Indiana neighbors’ cattle.) I don’t have the family tree in front of me, but I know that I’m kin to many of the Schneider, Peters — originally Peterschlingmann(!) — and related households in Vallonia, Brownstown, Seymour, and the rest of Jackson County.

By the way, if Seymour sounds familiar, that might be because John Mellencamp hails from there. He also grew up Lutheran but I have no idea if he remains part of the church. Maybe he can put together a little ditty about Katie and her crown from the front porch of his little pink house. Meanwhile, someone needs to amend The Lutherans Song, adding 2009 to “’89 and 1992’s Miss America.”

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