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P.A. Peterson Center for Health celebrates 70th anniversary at special worship service Sept. 11

September 8, 2011

Online Staff Report

Sept. 11, a special worship service is planned as part of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of P.A. Peterson Center for Health, a program of Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI) in Rockford.

P.A. Peterson, 1311 Parkview Ave., provides nursing and healthcare services for seniors, as well as rehabilitation for people of all ages.

“Celebrating Our Foundation” will begin at 3 p.m. with a 1941-style worship service — reflecting the year P.A. Peterson was founded — presided over by the Rev. Denver Bitner, D.Min., president/CEO of LSSI, and the Rev. Charles Olson, D.Min., chaplain at P.A. Peterson. Both will wear vestments from the era, and the liturgy and hymns featured in the service will also be of that vintage.

Light refreshments will be served after the service, which is being hosted by P.A. Peterson’s Barnabas Careivers.

P.A. Peterson Home — the facility’s original name — was established thanks to a gift from furniture manufacturer, industrialist and philanthropist Pehr August Peterson, who wished to establish a home for elderly people of Swedish ancestry. Initially, the home had 12 rooms for residents.

In the mid-1970s, because of LSSI’s reputation for delivering excellent services, the home became a program of the statewide human services agency, which serves people of all backgrounds and faiths.

Over time, the needs of seniors in the community changed, and today, P.A. Peterson offers sheltered care/assisted living, short-term rehabilitation services, outpatient rehabilitation, nursing care services and a memory care unit for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia-related conditions.

“As we celebrate 70 years of caring for seniors in the Rockford area, Mr. Peterson’s legacy of caring and helping others succeed is still the heart of our work here at P.A. Peterson Center and Lutheran Social Services of Illinois,” says Peggy Holt, administrator. “We are privileged to care for the 1,000-plus people that need our care each year. The celebratory worship service on September 11 will be a special opportunity to thank God, who has blessed this program and allowed us to serve our community throughout the years.”

“The staff and programs of P.A. Peterson are fully committed to providing the best of care to people who come to the center for services,” Bitner adds. “Today, P.A. Peterson’s healing impact extends far beyond the walls of the original home.”

For more information about the special service, contact Sue Cram at (815) 399-8832, ext. 4736, or at Sue.Cram@LSSI.org or visit www.PAPeterson.org.

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