In July of 1984, then Director of Music, Dennis W. Reppen, wrote letters to a number of organ builders. He stated that St. Mark's planned to build a new sanctuary for which a new pipe organ would be purchased. The late Mr. Reppen then moved to House of Hope Presbyterian where he was associate organist and carilloneur.

Mr. Robert Murphy came to St. Mark's in 1986 as Director of Music. In addition to his fine talent for directing, he is a very competent organist and was of course interested in procuring a new pipe organ for the new church.

The organ committee resumed activities with Dorthea Jirsa as Chairperson. After what seemed like endless deliberations, meetings, and visiting organs, the committee selected Levsen Organ
Company of Buffalo, Iowa to build their new pipe organ. An instrument of 41 ranks and 3 manuals was designed and proposed. However, in building the new 700 seat sanctuary, so much of the
congregational financial resources were used it was necessary to scale back the organ to 21 ranks, 2 manuals. Nearly a decade later now, the new sanctuary has been completed and the new pipe organ installed and dedicated.

The organ was built to eventually be expanded to the original 41 Rank design. A 3 manual console shell was filled the 2 manuals and can be pivoted 360 degrees to accommodate an organist-choir
director. The pedestal of the organ was arranged to hold the choir organ and additional space was provided in the design to allow for the completed 41 ranks.

The tonal resources of the organ are scaled in the American Classical tradition. The Principal chorus and other stops were scaled large to eventually become a part of the much larger organ.
The voicing procedure utilized on site voiced sample pipes with tonal finishing, after installation, by Tim Bovard and Rod Levsen Sr. of Levsen Organ Company. The metal Flues, including the Facade pipes, were made by A. R. Schopp & Sons, Inc. The wood pipes were made by Levsen Organ Company and the reeds were done by Trivo Co., Inc. An all electric action with micro processor control system was used for prompt very precise key and pedal action. Many new features accompany this new control system.

On March 14, 1993, the new organ was formally dedicated in a 2 service musical extravaganza. A 19 piece chamber orchestra, handbell choir, and 40 voice choir participated in the all music services directed by Robert Murphy. Three organists played during the services: Dorthea Jirsa and Barbara Rossow, the regular organists and guest organist Dennis Reppen.

Mr. Lee J. Afdahl, Music Director and Organist at First Presbyterian Church, Rochester, Minnesota played an exciting evening dedication concert. Mr. Afdahl, a native of Baldwin, Wisconsin, studied with William Kuhlman of Luther College; Robert Glasgow of the University of Michigan and Richard Enright of Northwestern University. He has served as organist for Lutheran churches in Minnesota and Methodist churches in Michigan. He is also well known and liked as a recitalist throughout the Upper Midwest.

The completion of this new pipe organ would not have been possible without the untiring efforts of Betty and Gordon Lundberg. They are longtime choir members and co-chair of the ad hoc fund raising committee. They were determined that the beautiful new sanctuary be blessed with a suitable pipe organ.

Levsen Organ Company
Buffalo, Iowa




8' Principal                         6l Pipes
8' Holzgedeckt                  61 Pipes
8' Erzähler                                Swell
8' Erzähler Celeste                 Swell
4' Octave                              61 Pipes
4' Koppelflöte                     61 Pipes
2' Fifteenth                          61 Pipes
III - IV Fourniture             226 Pipes
8' Trompette                             Swell


8' Rohrflöte                         61 Pipes
8' Erzähler                           61 Pipes
8' Erzähler Celeste             49 Pipes
4' Gemshorn                        61 Pipes
4' Rohrflöte                          12 Pipes
2 2/3' Nasard                     61 Pipes
2 ' Flockflöte                        61 Pipes
1 3/5' Tierce                        61 Pipes
1 2/3' Quinte                       12 Pipes
16' Contra Trompette         12 Pipes
8' Trompette                         61 Pipes
4' Clarion                              12 Pipes


32' Resultant                       32 Notes
16' Subbass                           32 Pipes
16' Lieblich Gedeckt          32 Notes
8' Principal                           32 Pipes
8' Pommer                             32 Pipes
4' Choral Bass                      32 Pipes
III Wired Mixture                32 Notes
16' Contra Trompette               Swell
8' Trompette                                Swell
4' Clarion                                     Swell


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Levsen Organ Company  ·  PO Box 542 Buffalo, Iowa  52728  ·  (800) 397-1242  ·  FAX (563) 381-1257  ·  LevsenOrg@aol.com