“It is not permitted to comb or arrange the hair during the worship.”

Pastor Killian often had his hands full with conflicts within his congregation over theology, language (German vs. Wendish), and of course, personal matters.

Besides those, it seems that the English-speaking Texans in the area didn’t know what to make of the worship of the newcomers, or how to behave in church. The following rules, which Kilian suggested be posted in the two stores in Serbin, give some insight into what sort of trouble he was having from the Amerikanisch rabble:

  1. It is forbidden that men should wear their hats during the worship.
  2. It is not permitted for anyone to smoke a pipe or chew tobacco in the church.
  3. It is forbidden that anyone should carry six-shooters or any other weapon into the church.
  4. It is not permitted that anyone leave the church during the worship.
  5. It is not permitted in coming in or leaving the church to walk noisily or to make a disturbance.
  6. It is not permitted that anyone speak aloud in the church or near the church during the services.
  7. It is not permitted that anyone should laugh in the church.
  8. It is not permitted to laugh as though in sport in front of the windows or the church doors.
  9. It is not permitted to comb or arrange the hair during the worship.
  10. It is also forbidden to enter into the parsonage without permission, while the pastor is in the church.

I guess they didn’t have a grandmother like mine who took swift action when a fellow wearing a hat entered a building.

(The rules above were found in the second of a four-part series posted on texaswendish.org regarding the history of St. Peter’s and St. Paul’s Lutheran Churches in Serbin)

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