Welcome to the website of the Russellville Presbyterian Church (an Evangelical Presbyterian Church). We would invite you to get to know us by learning about our worship life, our music, and seeing us at work in fellowship and in mission service. Our church is located in the center of the Village of Russellville, Ohio. Our congregation has a long history (since 1817) of teaching the “Good News” of Jesus Christ.
Our Congregation is small, but we are striving to meet the needs of a hurting society, through teaching the Word in our Sunday School and serving the young people of our community. We have joint programs and worship with our sister churches on Easter Sunday at Sunrise Service, Memorial Day Service and we all get together and jointly present the Christmas Program and Vacation Bible School to the community. We also serve area Nursing Homes with weekly and monthly services. We co-op a Christmas Food Program as well as meeting other Community needs and requests.
We believe we are called to meet the needs of neighbors as God leads to be faithful stewards of all he has blessed us with. We invite you to join us. Come and join us to learn about us and be a part of our “Family”.
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Russellville Presbyterian Women
Dear friends, build yourself up in your most Holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in God's love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The Friendship Circle meets the second Tuesday August through May at 2:00 pm in the fellowship hall.
Our definition is a broad one. Every woman who is a follower of Jesus Christ has been designed and created by God for His kingdom purposes. (Ephesians 2.10)
We did not just come up with that on our own. Jesus was very clear about what it means to be a follower and all that it entails. When Jesus says that we are to “take up the cross”, we know that means that there is hard work to be done. But we also know that it will be done with the hope of glory that comes from having experienced His grace and love.
One of the things that makes being a woman in ministry energizing is discovering how diverse our lives and callings are.
- Women are not only guiding and shaping women’s ministries in our churches.
- We work in children’s ministries, assimilation, care ministries - both paid and as volunteers.
- We lead small groups.
- We start ministry initiatives in our communities, cities and far away places.
- We join in both short-term and long-term mission work.
- We study the scriptures.
- We pray.
- We teach.
- Some of us preach.
- We are intentional about being transformed to live and love like Jesus.
We see the great needs and longings in those around us and seek to develop the skills we need to minister effectively where God has placed us.
All the while, we uniquely reflect the image of God to those around us. (Genesis 1.26, 27)
We know the benefits and challenges of being a member of a larger church - as well as part of a smaller one. We are young, a bit older, married, single, professionals, homemakers, moms and students who have each been gifted in unique ways to follow God's call to us in the body of Christ.
Above all, we have the same Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. (I Corinthians 12.5)
Together may we join to serve, lead and love the Body of Christ in such a way that His glory is revealed among us.
We believe the mission of the church to be as Christ described it in Luke 4:18:
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed me, to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
We are mindful of our Lord's words when He said in John 9:4-5,
I must work the works of Him who sent me, while it is day; the night cometh when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
We believe that we are left in the world to carry on His work through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit of the living Lord until that night comes when we are all taken away and the world is left in darkness.
Our core beliefs are summarized in the Apostles' Creed.
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.
And in Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He arose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.
Joining Our Church
You are invited to learn more about the Christian Faith and the Russellville Presbyterian Church by attending our Inquirers/New Member Classes. These classes give specific information about the Church Community as well as providing an opportunity for you to get to know our staff, church leaders, and other prospective members.
Some Frequently Asked Questions . . .
Am I Obligated to Join if I Attend These Classes?
No. The classes allow you to learn more about us. If you decide not to join or to wait until a later date, your decision will be respected.
What If I Haven’t Been Baptized? What If I Was Baptized in Another Church?
The EPC Presbyterian Church recognizes all forms of baptism. We believe in one baptism and do not require re-baptism. If you have not been baptized, this will take place during the worship service the morning you join.
What If I am Unable to Attend All of the Classes in the Series?
While it is best to attend all the classes, so that you may learn as much as possible about the Russellville Presbyterian Church, many do join having missed one or two of the meetings.
What If I Am a Member of Another Church? What If I Have Never Attended Any Church?
You can become a member of Russellville Presbyterian Church no matter what your previous church involvement has been. There are four ways you may be received into membership:
- By Letter of Transfer from any church of which you are currently a member (our office will make the arrangements),
- By Reaffirmation of Faith by those who have not been active members in a church for some time,
- By Confession of Faith from those who have never been members of a church family, or
- By Affiliate Membership for those who wish to keep their membership in a home church.
Please contact (937) 377-4301 for more information about the church and membership.
History of Our Church
The work of the early church, before 1817, was in the hands of itinerant missionaries. According to the Beers History of Brown County 1883, “The first church in the township was built on the John Snedaker farm near Eagle Creek in the east part of the township, it was a small building 18x21 very unpretentious and ruddy finished. The house was built thru the united efforts of different denominations. The Presbyterians, being the most numerous in the community, was the principal occupant. The first preaching was by Rev. Reuben White of the Presbyterian persuasion. This church served as a place of worship until neighboring villages supplied better.”
The first account of a Presbyterian Church in Russellville was in 1817. This church was built of brick and is believed to have been located where the Church of Christ stands today.
A title search of records of the Brown County Auditor office shows that in 1829, John Lane transferred title of a parcel of land to the Presbyterian Church. The land is where the present church and manse are located. In 1830 a brick structure 40x70 was built on this property close to the street, facing south as does the present church. It was built of stone, probably in Meeting-house architecture. (The Red Oak Church is an example of this type of architecture.)
In 1865, there was a feeling that it was necessary to build a new church. The reason for a new church is not really clear, but probably because of excessive maintenance costs. After five years of planning, in 1870, under the guidance of Jesse Lockhard, the new church home was completed for a cost of $9000.
Several good men served as pastor of the “new brick church.” One was Walter Mitchell whose wife started the first missionary society.
There was long line of Lane Seminary students who ministered to the congregation. Among these was A. J. Harman who served the church well and who married Luella Conn, daughter of Elder Robert Conn.
Another student who occupied the pulpit was Charles Glazier. He accepted a position at Hanover College and later became an evangelistic singer. His wife organized the Priscilla Circle.
Rev. Pake served the church in 1926 when the manse was completed and the Pakes were the first occupants. Rev.Pake was followed by John C. Quinland and Rev. Martin of Georgetown. This was a time of spiritual and physical growth in the church
The depression years were difficult and the congregation, led by W.S. Harold struggled with financial issues. Rev. Harold resigned in 1937.
His successor was T.G.Holmes. Under his leadership the congregation gained new insights in their spiritual life and grew in material wealth.. In 1941 it was decided at a congregational meeting that it was necessary to build a new church. The old church was razed and the new structure built on that site. The cornerstone was laid October 19,1941. And the new church was dedicated on June 7,1942. The congregation worked hard to pay off the mortgage and the final payment and burning of the mortgage was November 26,1943.
In 1954 for the first time in 140 years the Russellville Presbyterian Church had its own minister. Rev. Elvin J. Crandell was ordained into the ministry and installed as pastor of the church. This was the first time in its history that the church was not linked to another church in sharing a minister. James Thomas, another seminary student followed Rev. Crandall. After finishing his seminary studies, Mr. Thomas was ordained and installed as pastor of the church. During his years at Russellville the Christian Education wing was completed.
From 1960 to the present time nine ministers and several student supplies have led the congregation. Through their guidance the congregation has remained strong, touching many lives.