Blue Point

St Paul Ev. Lutheran Church at "Blue Point"? If you searched the internet and found our website, you are probably wondering why the phrase "Blue Point"? No, we do not serve special oyster platters or anything like that. One reason we keep the designation, given to us long ago, (see below), is that there is another St Paul Lutheran Church in Altamont, associated with the ELCA. We are a church of the LCMS, and so the designation has helped to keep the mail going the right direction. But there are other reasons why the name Blue Point sticks. In a short history of the townships of Effingham county Kevin Perkins, of Beecher City, Illinois, writes,

Moccasin Creek Township is made up of mostly prairie and was avoided by the early settlers until the 1840's.   It takes it name from Moccasin Creek which flows through it.   Griffen Tipsword had named the creek moccasin because of the many moccasin footprints he found in the sand along the creek bank.  Wolf Creek, which also flows through Moccasin Creek Township, was so named by Tipsword because of the wolves that he found there.   I also would like to point out that the term "Creek" has been dropped from Moccasin Creek.  I have found no solid evidence of this date but it must have been around the early 1880's time period.  In Perrin's History of 1883 he has dropped the term Creek from Moccasin and yet on the map at the front pieces Moccasin as well as Bishop Creek is clearly labeled.  I believe Perrin used the 1873 map of Effingham County for his book. The Springfield Division of the Baltimore and Ohio (which is now gone) entered the township from the North along with the former C&E.I. Railroad  and would converge upon the little hamlet of Moccasin and pass out to the south end of the township.     Also, the Chicago and Paducah Railroad later the Wabash Railroad enters the township in section 13 and travels southwest into Altamont.  It was removed in sometime in the 1920's.   Moccasin the village lies in Sections 9 and 16 in Moccasin Creek Township.  John Maguire surveyed it on April 26, 1872 for Benjamin Jones, Joseph Yarnall and J. H. Miller who owned the land.  Most of the business moved to Moccasin from the town of Boo Hoo, which was, located a half-mile west of present Moccasin.   When the B&O came through most of Boo Hoo was skidded into Moccasin.  In its heyday Moccasin once boasted a three-year high school located east of the Union Pacific tracks (former C&E.I.) on the north side of the Moccasin Road. 

The other town is Blue Point or sometimes it called the Blue Point Lutheran Community.   It was located in the southwest corner of Section 24 of the township.    It was founded along the old Chicago and Paducah Railroad and was a shipping point for livestock and grain.  At one time it had a cold beer storage Plant that shipped a carload of beer a week.  All that remains is the St. Paul Blue Point Lutheran Church. 

This gives you a little bit of information about the area in which the church existed, since 1869. You may not have found many oysters here, but could have found a cold glass of beer. Things are different today, (no train station, beer cooler, just grain field and a hog farm), but one of the things that is the same, is our faith, which has been handed down by the apostles and prophets. Luther beautifully summarizes this, as he describes the shield or rose of the Lutheranism

The Luther Rose, also known as the Luther Seal, is easily the most recognized symbol for Lutheranism, and for good reason. Martin Luther personally oversaw the creation of this symbol. It provides a beautiful summary of his faith, a faith that is common to all Christians, of every place and every time. Here is how Luther explained the meaning of his seal:

Luther's rose

Grace and peace from the Lord. As you desire to know whether my painted seal, which you sent to me, has hit the mark, I shall answer most amiably and tell you my original thoughts and reason about why my seal is a symbol of my theology. The first should be a black cross in a heart, which retains its natural color, so that I myself would be reminded that faith in the Crucified saves us. For one who believes from the heart will be justified" (Rom. 10:10). Although it is indeed a black cross, which mortifies and which should also cause pain, it leaves the heart in its natural color. It does not corrupt nature, that is, it does not kill but keeps alive. "The just shall live by faith" (Rom. 1:17) but by faith in the crucified. Such a heart should stand in the middle of a white rose, to show that faith gives joy, comfort, and peace. In other words, it places the believer into a white, joyous rose, for this faith does not give peace and joy like the world gives (John 14:27). That is why the rose should be white and not red, for white is the color of the spirits and the angels (cf. Matthew 28:3; John 20:12). Such a rose should stand in a sky-blue field, symbolizing that such joy in spirit and faith is a beginning of the heavenly future joy, which begins already, but is grasped in hope, not yet revealed. And around this field is a golden ring, symbolizing that such blessedness in Heaven lasts forever and has no end. Such blessedness is exquisite, beyond all joy and goods, just as gold is the most valuable, most precious and best metal.This is my
compendium theoligae [summary of theology]. I have wanted to show it to you in good friendship, hoping for your appreciation. May Christ, our beloved Lord, be with your spirit until the life hereafter. Amen." *

* Martin Luther, Letter to Lazarus Spengler, July 8, 1530, as included in the translation by Amy Marga from "Luthers Siegel: Eine elementare Deutung seiner Theologie," in Luther 67 (1996):66–87. Translation printed in Lutheran Quarterly, Vol. XIV, Num. 4, Winter 2000, pg. 409-410. The text used for this translation is from Johannes Schilling, Briefe, Auswah, Ubersetzung und Erlauterungen in Vol. 6 of Ausgewaehlte Schriften/MartinLuther. The text of Luther's letter is also found in the Weimar edition of Luther's Works, Briefe Vol. 5:444f and in English translation in Luther's Works: American Edition, Vol. 49:356-359).