Hoffnungstal Odessa Parish History
From “A historical statistical treatise taken from the
Central Committee of the Assistance Office of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Russia
From the St Petersburg and Moscow Consistory
Published by J. Watfar, Ssadowaja 55, St Petersburg. 1909. Translated by Ed Schulz. Used with permission
The origin of the Hoffnungstal Parish comes from those who established the German colony of the same name in the years 1818 and 1819 with assistance from the Crown of Württemberg emigrants in the Tiraspol District. It is built on a site used by Bulgarian settlers in the completely deteriorated village of Zebrikowo and is on a large land complex which was under the direction of the Crown. As immigrants they were entitled to choose a separate community with spiritual leaders from their midst but as confirmed by the parish administration. In October 1837 Hoffnungstal retained their first ordained pastor, Wilhelm Pöschel, and from this time forward a person can speak of Hoffnungstal as an Evangelical-Lutheran Parish. But the parish remained independent. Pastor Pöschel obtained a large salary for his organization of the church and educational system. Until now church services were held in private homes, where children also received their instruction. In the years 1840-42 a stone church was built on a large parcel in the middle of the colony and in the year 1848 a schoolhouse was built. Following this the parish had considerable growth. Hoffnungsfeld, a daughter colony of Hoffnungstal, was established on purchased land in the year 1858. In the 60th year (1860) Eigenfeld was established. As a result of this, two leased land areas had to be returned by Hoffnungstal to the Crown, namely Seebach and Nesselrode. Pastor G Becker who followed Pastor Pöschel established a private institute in the proximity of Hoffnungstal to develop strong and vigorous training programs for the school in the First Provost District. Unfortunately, this institute existed only four years before it closed. In 1870 the present Consistory in Hoffnungstal was built. “On 7 April 1888 and during the vacancy after Pastor Becker left, the Hoffnungstal Parish received an order from the Interior Ministry of the St Petersburg Evangelical Lutheran Consistory which revoked all standing privileges as an independent congregation. “In recent times the Hoffnungstal Parish has had more changes. In the year 1890 the Colony Makarowka became part of the Parish. In the 1890’s the Colonies of Neu Glückstal and Neu Beresina, which up to the present belonged to the Glückstal Parish, and a settlers complex on Gutsland, Schirajewo, became part of the parish. In the new century the leased land Colony of Gross-Fontal and smaller leased land villages and chutors became part of the parish. In 1905 the Colony of Neu-Glückstal built a stone church.
A list of the founding families including some historical detail about the settlement of the Hoffnungstal colony can be found here.
Further history of the Parishes and the villages can be found in the following articles in the HOP newsletter:
- History of the Parish; Feb 1995;pg 8
- History of the Parish; Oct 2003;pg 13
- History of the Birsula area colonies; Oct 1995;pg 3
- Trek 403 (Evacuation of Hoffnungstal settlers at the end of WW II)