In the book of Revelation John writes letters to the seven churches in Asia. He writes to Sardis Church in Turkey in Chapter 3 of that book. From that church in Turkey, Sardis Lutheran Church in the Vale community of Catawba County was named by those who first joined hands and hearts to form a worshipping community in this place. The Rev. J. A. Fox organized Sardis congregation and it was received into the Tennessee Synod on the 19 of November, 1867. In 1921 the Tennessee Synod and the UnitedEvangelical Lutheran Synod of North Carolina of the United Lutheran Church in America (ULCA) united bringing Sardis into the ULCA. Consequent mergers brought Sardis into the Lutheran Church in America (LCA) and most recently into the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
Sardis congregation has been housed in three buildings. The first, of hand-hewn framing and hand-dressed weatherboard applied vertically, was dedicated March 30, 1867. The second building, also of wood, was built about 1891 while Rev. J. P. Miller was pastor. Builders were Adly Huffman and Alfred Baker. Ground breaking for the present brick structure was held on August 28, 1955 and completed during the pastorate of Rev. J. L. Morgan. The church was built on land given by Mr. C. T. Fulbright.
The construction of the educational building and kitchen along with renovations tojoin the two buildings were carried out in 1968 under the leadership of Pastor Iverson M. Brendle, Jr. Sardis belonged to a parish consisting of Trinity and Cedar Grove in Vale, and Sardis, until 1950. In 1950 Sardis was placed in a pastorate with Salem, Lincolnton. This arrangement prevailed through 1953 and Sardis became self-supporting on January 1, 1954.
Through the years additional property has been given for cemetery use, the driveways have been paved, and major improvements have been made to the heating and air conditioning systems.
Sardis has traditionally had strong programs for men, women, and youth of all ages. Dedicated and able leaders and teachers teach and lead an active Sunday School program.
The people of Sardis Church, empowered and under girded by the gospel, stand ready to meet the challenges of Christian living today and in the new century coming upon us.
1950-1953 Wade D Yount
1954-1957 John L Morgan
1958-1960 Charlie L Hoyle
1961-1962 Lawrence E Yount
1963-1974 Iverson M Brendle Jr
1975-1985 Homer E Fry
1986-1990 James B White
1991-1998 Harvey L Blume
1999-2007 Robert F. Howard
2008-2014 Anna H. Merritt
2016 - Present Adrienne Martin
Sardis Lutheran Church founded in 1867