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Presbyterian Church (USA)

In Current Events

New Church in the Presbytery

Excitement, Celebration and Greater Community Service! That’s what happens when a 160-year-old church joins with a 60-year-old church to form a new congregation serving the Berea and Olmsted Falls communities.

Why would two strong churches join together?  When First Congregational sold their building in 2009 to Baldwin Wallace University, they began by considering whether they would build or buy a new building.  For the first four years, they

worshiped at the BW chapel. Then, for the past few years, they gathered at St. Andrew’s with each congregation worshipping separately and then coming together for coffee hour. Over that time, the two have grown to know and be comfortable with each other. They have similar theological perspectives and outreach goals, such as peace and justice issues, and feel a strong call to reach out to those in need in the community. By consolidating their efforts, much more can be accomplished as they strive to be a blessing to the community.  Rev. Gary Halstead and former Moderator of the Presbytery, Judy Mitchell are co-Moderators of the Governing Board.

As individual congregations, they founded community service organizations that many of our residents use such as Church Street Ministries, Second Mile Shop and Food Pantry, and the Berea Feeds Kids Summer Program. Together they founded the Academy for Dramatic Arts and Warrior’s Journey Home. In addition, they offer space to many community organizations like, AA, Al-Anon, TOPS, Recovery, OA and ILR (Institute for Learning in Retirement).

On May 15th, First Congregational UCC and St. Andrew’s Presbyterian joined to become Christ United Church. The St. Andrew’s building at 23114 West Rd., Olmsted Falls, has been renovated to house this new congregation. We are hosting a Community Open House on September 25th from 2:00 – 4:00, where light refreshments will be served as you see the renovations we have done and learn about our programs and missions both locally and worldwide.  A special presentation will be held at 3:00 to review the process by which we discerned that this path was what the Holy Spirit was calling the two churches to follow.

Christ United is located at 23114 West Rd., Olmsted Falls.  Pastor Rev. Gary Halstead will continue to lead the new congregation.  For more information, go to our Facebook page or www.ChristUnited.Church.  Our phone is 440-234-0150.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What kinds of grants & scholarships are offered by the Presbytery and its committees?  Click here.
  • What is per capita? Click here.
  • Where is the Presbytery Office? Click here.
  • What does our name, "Presbytery of the Western Reserve" (PWR) mean? Click here.
  • What committees are in the Presbytery? Click here.
  • How do you find a preacher for Sunday morning? Click here to download the Pulpit Supply list (for use by PWR Congregations only)

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