Lutheran Homes of South Carolina is an institutional social ministry of the South Carolina Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
While it was established in 1989, Lutheran Homes of South Carolina traces its roots to the beginning of the Lowman Home, which was founded in 1911, when Melissa Rauch Lowman, following the death of her husband, offered her 800+ acre family farm as a gift to the Lutheran Church in the southeast in exchange for taking care of her three developmentally-disabled children for the rest of their lives. Lowman Home was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1924 and gained tax exempt status in 1942. Over time, Lowman Home began to focus its ministry on older adults rather than the developmentally disabled. On March 5, 1990, Lowman Home amended its Certificate of Incorporation to change its name to Lutheran Homes of South Carolina, Inc.
Shortly after that in 1991, the Franke Home, a ministry of the downtown Charleston Lutheran Congregations merged into Lutheran Homes and subsequently relocated to Mount Pleasant.
In the 1990’s Lutheran Homes embarked on an aggressive expansion plan that added Trinity on Laurens in Aiken in 1997, Rice Estate in northeast Columbia in 1999, and RoseCrest in Inman in 2001 bringing the total number of retirement communities to five. Later, the name of the Franke Home was changed to Franke at Seaside and the name of Lowman Home was changed to the Heritage at Lowman.
Lutheran Homes of South Carolina began serving older adults beyond its retirement communities in 1995 when it established Lutheran Hospice. Today, Lutheran Hospice serves hospice patients and their families in the Upstate, Midlands, and Lowcountry.
BeWell Home Services began serving older adults who wish to age in place in their own homes in 1996. It too has offices in the Upstate, Midlands, and Lowcountry as well as in Aiken.
BeWell@Home, a program which helps older adults plan for their future care needs, began in 2016. This statewide program is the first of its kind in South Carolina.
All nine of these ministries operate under the Lutheran Homes of South Carolina care continuum.