Founded in 1960 by the NC Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to provide for frail seniors, LSA established its first ministry, a Hickory, NC nursing home, in 1962. Soon its services would expand to include both frail and active seniors. Today, as LSC, the organization operates independent living, rehabilitation, assisted living, adult day services, and geriatric care management in addition to skilled nursing care. LSC also collaborates with a number of other senior services organization to provide services to seniors in whatever place they call home.
Established in 2012, Lutheran Services Carolinas (LSC) represents the coming together of two Carolina social ministry organizations Lutheran Services for the Aging (LSA) and Lutheran Family Services of the Carolinas (LFS) that affiliated in 2011.
With roots stretching back to the 1880’s, Lutheran Family Services in the Carolinas was established in 1976 as the NC Division of the Lutheran Children’s Home and in 1991, with the blessing of the NC and SC Synods, adopted the name Lutheran Family Services in the Carolinas. Today, as LSC, the organization serves the people of North and South Carolina through foster care and adoption services, residential services for adults and children at risk or with special needs, counseling and psychiatric services, transitional housing, veterans services, disaster response services, and refugee resettlement.
1888 – North and South Carolina Lutherans join with three other synods to establish the Lutheran Orphanage of the South in Salem, Virginia. The effort followed a wave of faith-based efforts to reach out to widows and orphans of the U.S. Civil War.
1930s – The Salem orphanage expands its campus and assumes the name Lutheran Children’s Home of the South. During the Great Depression, 144 children reside there.
1960 – North Carolina Lutheran Homes is established by the NC Synod to meet the needs of older adults and in 1962 opens its first ministry, Lutheran Home Hickory. Its second ministry, Lutheran Home Albemarle would open in 1971 followed by Lutheran Home Salisbury in 1976.
1960 – The synods begin to withdraw support from the Children’s Home in an effort to establish programs for children in their own territories.
1972 – Lutheran Social Ministry Agency of Greater Columbia, SC launches a children’s ministry.
1974 – While continuing its support of the Lutheran Children’s Home, an NC Synod study commission recommends pursuing an affiliated children’s services program in NC. In 1976, the board of Lutheran Children’s Home establishes an NC Division and the first Lutheran Family Services (LFS) office is set up in the basement of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Raleigh, NC.
1978 – North Carolina Lutheran Homes and St. Andrews and Bethany Lutheran Churches cooperate to build and administer Lutherhaus, a federally-subsidized apartment complex for low-income and handicapped individuals in Hickory. The complex opens in 1980.
1979 – LFS begins working with Lutheran churches in North Carolina to resettle the Montagnards, a process that continues for many years.
1981 – The North Carolina Synod opened a division of the Children’s Home in Raleigh, N.C., in 1976 for the purpose of developing services for families and children in North Carolina. Articles of Incorporation for Lutheran Family Services were filed September 15, 1980.
1986 – The NC Synod approves broadening the nursing home ministry. North Carolina Lutheran Homes is renamed Lutheran Services for the Aging (LSA).
1987 – LFS is accredited by the Council on Accreditation, and the agency’s services expand to include foster care and refugee and immigration services.
1991 – The NC and SC Synods approve creation of Lutheran Family Services in the Carolinas to renew the social ministry partnership between the two states.
1991 – LSA opens Crescent View Retirement Community, a rental retirement community in the Blue Ridge Mountains at Arden.
1993 – Trinity Oaks Retirement Community opens in Salisbury. With Lutheran Home at Trinity Oaks, the campus becomes the ministry’s first continuing care retirement community.
1994 – Abundant Living Adult Day Care Center, Salisbury, comes under the LSA umbrella.
1997 – In March, complete union is achieved when Lutheran Social Services of Central South Carolina joins forces with Lutheran Family Services in the Carolinas.
2000 – The new Lutheran Home – Hickory opens. Included in the new building is Shepherd House, a special area for Alzheimer’s care. In 2001, Dogwood Gardens, an assisted living facility, is erected on the site of the old Lutheran Home – Hickory.
2001 – Lutheran Home – Hickory West and Lutheran Home – Winston-Salem become part of LSA through a lease-purchase agreement. The homes are purchased in 2006.
2005 – LSA purchases a building at 1416 South Boundary Street, Salisbury and in 2007, both LSA Management and Abundant Living Adult Day Services move into the renovated space.
2007 – Lutheran Home at Trinity Oaks opens the Virginia Casey Center, dedicated to the care of people with Alzheimer’s disease and memory impairment.
2008 – The purchase of Elms at Tanglewood, an assisted living residence serving elders in Clemmons, North Carolina, is completed at the end of 2008.
2009 – LSA begins providing geriatric care management services on a contract basis in limited areas of the state.
2010 – LSA kicks off its $5,000,000 Keeping the Promise capital campaign to help support the construction of four nursing homes (Wilmington, Winston-Salem, Hickory, and Clemmons), major renovations at existing homes, and the creation of a comprehensive program of at-home and community based services.
2010 – After years of effort to establish services for seniors in New Hanover County, construction begins on Trinity Grove, a 100-bed contemporary neighborhood-style skilled care nursing home in Wilmington. It is completed in June 2011.
2011 – Construction begins on Trinity Glen, a skilled care nursing home that will replace 117 of the Lutheran Home Winston-Salem beds. The home is completed in June of 2012. Trinity Elms in Clemmons will replace the other 110 Lutheran Home beds in 2014.
2011 – After a yearlong effort and with the blessing of the NC and SC Synods, LSA and LFS become affiliate social ministries. They will continue to operate as separate corporations with separate boards that are made up of the same individuals.
2012 – In June of 2012, LSA and LFS unite their ministries under the name Lutheran Services Carolinas. The introduction of the new name also includes new names for the Lutheran Homes: Lutheran Home Hickory becomes Trinity Village, Lutheran Home Albemarle becomes Trinity Place, and Lutheran Home at Trinity Oaks becomes simply Trinity Oaks.
2012 – Trinity Glen, the replacement home for Lutheran Home Winston-Salem, opens and hundreds of community volunteers participate in transferring residents to their new home.
2012 – LSC expands its community-based services by launching its own geriatric care management program.
2013 – Trinity Ridge, the replacement home for Lutheran Home Hickory West, is completed and hundreds of staff members and volunteers join together to transfer residents to their new home.
2014 – Trinity Elms health and rehab opens in Clemmons, N.C.
2016 – The Building Independence project, a partnership between LSC, Habitat for Humanity, and The Serving Cup, completes the building of three homes for developmentally disabled adults in Raleigh.
2018 – Independent living apartments open on the campus of Trinity Elms in Clemmons.
2019 – Trinity Landing, a senior living community in Wilmington, breaks ground.
2020 – LSC joins two NC PACE programs as partner members: PACE of the Triad and PACE of the Southern Piedmont.