Church History




We begin each service with the words, no matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here. The church proclaims a message of radical welcome, hospitality and grace.

This church has been faithful in sharing the good news of God’s love for all people from its beginnings as a Christian Education ministry to the neighboring community with the little white house and grown to be the home to numerous ministries including tutoring programs, Sunday School and youth programs, mission outreach through the monthly community meal and supporting mental health and sobriety recovery.

Whether the church is celebrating a special service including the anniversary Sunday this month, Christmas and Easter holiday services, annual blessing of the animal service or hosting concerts and elections, the message is clear that all are welcome and blessed by the ministry of Clague Road UCC. This church continues to expand the church’s mission through fundraisers for the church including trinket and treasure sale, bake sales, dinners and scouting events. The spiritual message that people remember is that this church is a place of welcome, openness, hospitality and grace. We pray that we can maintain a faithful witness and share the good news of God’s love for all people for the next one hundred years providing a nurturing home where all people can grow in faith and fellowship in this living and abiding church community.

Rev Mark Pemberton

As we celebrate 100 years of worshiping and serving on the same site at 3060 Clague Road, North Olmsted, Ohio, we invite all to worship with us on Sunday mornings and to enjoy reading our history. While not the oldest existing church in North Olmsted, we are the oldest on the same site.

In 1911 before the Village of North Olmsted was established those who lived in the area decided that they wanted a Sunday School for the children. There were other churches in what is now North Olmsted, but none near enough for walking. A small white district schoolhouse was located on the current site. The parents were able to work with the North Olmsted Schools to use the school on Sunday for the children. Mr. Serals was the SS Superintendent.

In 1917 as the United States entered World War I and the world prepared for the Spanish Influenza pandemic, the parents and friends of the Sunday School began to meet on Sunday Evenings in the schoolhouse.

1918 saw a war and pandemic which was affecting the whole world; the schoolhouse became available for auction. The Clague Road Religious Society purchased the building and land for $2035 with a mortgage of $1200. Services continued for those dedicated to worshipping together. A piano was added to the building to enhance worship through music.

The Society members began to discuss affiliating with a denomination. Those who were Lutherans decided to establish a church of their own, and thus, the English Lutheran Church of Fairview was formed in 1919. Those remaining continued with Pastors from Baldwin Wallace College and West Park.

At the Annual Meeting in January 1922 officers were elected. A committee was appointed to investigate affiliation with an organized denomination. The Congregational Church seemed to be the preferred choice. In early 1922 steps were taken to become a Congregational Church with the help of pastors and the support of the Congregational Church of North Olmsted on the west end of town at Lorain Road and Barton Road. That church was moved to the Olmsted Historical Society location at Frostville several years ago.

In February of 1922 forty-eight names were submitted as desirous of membership. In April 1922 the trustees of the Clague Road Religious Society and the newly formed trustees of the Clague Road Congregational Church met, and the property, funds, and Charter of the Religious Society were turned over to the Church.

April 16, 1922, which was Easter Sunday, the forty-eight charter members of the Clague Road Congregational Church named that as their official date of the organization of the Church. At the time there were 65 young scholars in the Sunday School.

Church services, activities, and Sunday School began with support from those who joined on Easter Sunday or throughout the beginning years. In 1925, the trustees decided that keys should be made to the white schoolhouse being used as the church. In March, the electric bill was $1.25; a ton of coal was $1.00. In September, they discussed building a basement on the property to be the start of a new church. An Oberlin College student was hired as minister from Friday night through Sunday for $10.00 per week. In 1926 a building drive was started to build the basement. Today, the original basement is part of Fellowship Hall which cost $8000 to build.

In June of 1926, Rev. John Kuyper, the minister of North Olmsted Congregational Church at Barton Road and Lorain Road (then called Butternut Ridge Road) was asked to also be a part time minister of Clague Road Congregational Church providing evening services. In June of 1926, ground was broken for the new church basement. In 1927 a building campaign, named the “Dime Campaign” was supported with supper and a business meeting on the first Tuesday of each month. It was decided to sell the white schoolhouse although it did not occur for years.

On November 13, 1928, a supper was held in the new basement for $.75 per person to thank all those who helped with the building which was then dedicated on November 18 at which time it was free of debt! The following year there were eight Sunday School classes meeting in the basement and schoolhouse. By 1936 there were 140 adult members.

Scouts met at the church with Mrs. David Douglas (wife of Mayor Douglas) leading the girls. Boy Schout Troup #204 was using the church in 1933 and has continually been sponsored by Clague Road Church since them.

In 1939 a home on Lorain Road was donated to the church by Dr. Sayle. It became the first parsonage in 1940 and was where the Kuypers lived. That house is located at 24279 Lorain Road. In 1941 a property at Columbia Road and Lorain Road was given to Clague Road Congregational Church by Mr. Gurney. It was sold and a new building fund was started with the $4,225 profit of the sale. A drive was started to add to the building fund with hopes of completion in June of 1943. World War II intervened as progress was made even though building materials were frozen due to the war effort.

During the war many of the men entered the service. Clague Road Church was a center for sewing for the Red Cross and missionary work. Despite the war, the church accepted the architect’s plans for building the church atop the foundation room that had served as the center of worship and service for many years. Plans were worked out during 1944-45 to move the frame white building from the center of the lot to the southwest corner of the lot to make room for the expanding new church at a cost of $350. Remodeling in the white building, the Sunday School, included redecorating, lowering the ceiling, installing gas heat and new fixtures. Ellen Burghardt, daughter of Rev. and Mrs. Kuyper, led the girls’ choir. White muslin robes were made by members of the church.

In May of 1944 members of the church were asked to raise $17,000 for the construction project; the Board of Homeland Missions gave $5,000 and a loan of $6,000. $9,000 was borrowed from the Congregational Union of Cleveland. Clearly, the new structure was soon to rise.

1945 brought the end of the war and the return of our service men and women. The North Olmsted Homecoming held at the North Olmsted Park on Lorain Road was held for the first time to honor our returning service men and women. A social was held at the church. Admission was 1 cent an inch for a person’s waistline measurement. Building materials for the church were still difficult to get due to wartime shortages, but on November 11,1945 ground was broken during the morning worship service. The cornerstone was laid by the Olmsted Falls Masonic Lodge on December 16, 1945. The first service in the unfinished new sanctuary was held on Easter Morning. Dedication of the new building was held in January 1947. That new building remains a part of the church in which we worship in 2022.

A fond farewell to the Kuypers was held in February 1947, He had held the ministerial position for 25 years, years when it moved from a little white school building to a church with a spire rising on Clague Road and visible to all who traveled Lorain Road. He was honored for the many efforts that he and his family had made for Clague Road Church.

Upon Rev. Kuyper’s move, Rev. Penn was called to be the minister. He and his family came to the church where he began his ministry on March 1, 1947. During his time at Clague Road Church many groups were formed including The Fireside Group, Mother’s Club, Church Council, Diaconate, Pilgrim Fellowship, Jolly Jr., Girls Scouts. Cub Scouts and Brownies.

The organ was installed during 1947-48. The fund to purchase the organ was led by Mrs. William Luffler (Martha Orr’s mother, Barbara Dowling’s grandmother). Choir robes were purchased. Other furniture, rugs and pews were installed bit by bit. Curtains, drapes, and a coat of paint made it a comfortable and welcoming worship space.

In January of 1948 the union of the Congregational and Evangelical and Reformed churches occurred. The Diaconate and Church Council met for the first time. Later that year the land behind the church was donated by Mrs. Frances Douglas in memory of her husband, David L. Douglass, Mayor of North Olmsted to be used as a park. There were 27 youth in the Junior Choir directed by Mrs. Burghardt. She was the daughter of Rev. Kuyper. She and her husband, Bob, were loyal members of the church until their deaths.

A parsonage at 23750 Gessner was purchased. The Penns moved into this “new” home. Among the active members of the church were Betty Stibbe, Russell Bierman, Robert Cutler, George and Elroy Christman, William Luffler, and Bob Packe along with many who supported the efforts of the church in their ministry to the community.

In 1952 a campaign, “Let Us Prepare to Grow”, to retire the church mortgage of $12,000 was started. In addition, the campaign planned to make the Church School rooms more attractive and adequate with repairs and new paint.

As membership continued to grow with the suburban growth of North Olmsted and Fairview Park, 81 new members joined in 1953; there were six active women’s circles; two worship sessions were held each Sunday morning and the church was self-supporting. In 1955, the mortgage was burned. Another fund-raising campaign was started to build an educational wing.

January 1956 a Warranty Deed from Herbert T. and Ruby Draudt for $10.00 for .3360 acres (north of the current church) was entered in Cuyahoga County. That same year, the Educational Wing which included the side and rear additions was planned. This required the dismantling of the Little White Building. This addition was dedicated in June of 1957.

After many meetings at the Congregational Church national headquarters in Cleveland the Congregational Christian Church and the Evangelical and Reformed Churches became the United Church of Christ keeping many of the cultures of the uniting churches. Today there are members who came to the UCC from one of the previous backgrounds.

Growth continued in the community as well as Clague Road UCC. In 1958 there were 84 new members; an Assistant Minister, Gary Neptune, served the church until 1961; another self-study was done; kitchen equipment was purchased. Reports note that the huge refrigerator was moved by members from the airport. Elroy Christman was selected as the 1959 North Olmsted Citizen of the Year starting a tradition of Clague Road members to receive this honor for their dedication and commitment and service to making North Olmsted a better place to live. The following year another member, George Christman, was named as Citizen of the Year. Twelve Citizen’s of the Year have been members of Clague Road Church. Named as Citizen of the Year since its beginning in 1954 have been Elroy Christman-1959, George Christman-1960, Don Packe-1967, Dee Christman-1972, Tony Hart-1974, Jeanne Flow-1978, Jack Boss-1984, Alice Holmok-1985, Ruth Love-1986, Glenn Vannoy-1998, Tom Herbster-1996.

In 1960 Clague Road Church officially became a part of the United Church of Christ. At that time the population of North Olmsted was 15,400 which was approximately a growth of 10,000 since 1950. Many new homes were being built in North Olmsted as well as our neighbor communities on the west side of Cleveland. The property to the north of the church was granted to the Clague Road Congregational Church for consideration of $10.00 by owners, Herbert, and Ruby Draudt.

The early 60’s saw many changes to Clague Road Church. The Assistant Minister resigned; a Youth Director was hired; Rev. Penn retired. There were 280 children registered in Sunday School. There was an average attendance of 180 children with the 22 teachers. Rev. Herb Reichert became the interim pastor. In 1962, Rev. James R. Cooper was called as minister. At that time membership was at 624 with Sunday School enrollment of 406. As a promise to Rev. Cooper, the Gessner parsonage was sold and in November 1963, the Coopers moved into the newly purchased parsonage on Stoneybrook Drive. It was purchased for $31,000.

Rev. Cooper resigned in 1966. Rev. Trump was called to become the minister. A property Development Committee was established to form another building committee as cracks were appearing in the Sanctuary. Joists were weakening. The committee met frequently to develop a plan. Contractors were interviewed. The groundbreaking of the rebuilding project was in Sept 1968 with the dedication held in September 1969. Fellowship Hall was extended. The proposed costs for this project were $219,000 which included $15,000 for a new organ, the organ that remains. Also included were new pews, new chancel, new walls, new ceiling, and new lighting. Members came from at least 8 communities. The population of North Olmsted grew from 15,400 in 1960 to over 30,000 in 1968.

The 70s saw Rev. Trump resigning. The Search Committee recommended that Rev. Robert Davis be called as our Minister. The congregation agreed, and he and his family moved to our parsonage in 1975. A group from Clague Road Church went to Cheyenne River Indian Reservation in South Dakota for a work group. The church participated in several Bicentennial projects including the making of a Bicentennial quilt. Coffee hour began after services in Fellowship Hall. The first Boutique was held in 1976.

The Needlework Guild made several sets of paraments and banners for the sanctuary which are used today. In 1983 the budget was $84,265. August 1986 saw the resignation of Rev. Davis as he and Jean moved to California to be near their sons. A sad farewell reception was held as Bob and Jean were honored. Rev. Voll became our interim minister, and a Search Committee was formed.

After a Search Committee worked to find a new minister for Clague Road Church, Rev. Bradley Donahue was selected and hired following a congregational vote in 1987. During his tenure Clague Road Church became one of the first churches in the area to have a Parish Nurse through a new program started by Fairview General Hospital. Rev. Donahue resigned in 1995. Rev. Ed Lincoln was appointed as the interim minister. He and his wife, Pat, served the church until Pastors Cathy and Jim Stentzel came to us as Co-Pastors in 1997. This was the year that the mortgage was burned. They initiated a series of Leadership Retreats where Board and Chairs members met for Bible study, discussion, fun, fellowship, and worship. Plans for the upcoming years were discussed. Vacation Church School has always been a part of the youth program at Clague Road Church. A new dimension was added with the Blessing of the Animals, a tradition that continues. A Men’s Group and a Women’s Group were started and met each month for conversation and fellowship.

Projects that occurred at or through Clague Road Church included Kid’s Night Out, Support of Community Corners, Interfaith Hospitality Network, Donations of items for the Battered Women’s Shelter, Adopt-a-Family, Support of the North Olmsted After Prom, Men’s Group Work Camp, We Care Ministry, Bloodmobile, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, AA, Recovery, Deaf and Deaf Blind, and election site.

Pat Bowers was hired as the Director of Music Ministries and played the Carillion as part of the annual National Bell Ringing Ceremony on the fourth of July. In 1999 Wednesday, evening services were held in the Pavilion. A major fund-raising campaign called RACCI – Roofing and Air Conditioning Capital Improvement – began with great excitement in 2000. The campaign was successful in short time, and today we benefit from both the roof and the air conditioning. Visitors were given a loaf of homemade bread each Sunday thanks to Martha Orr. The 70th Anniversary of Boy Scout Troop #204 was celebrated with a pancake breakfast. Parish Nurse Arlene Holmes resigned after her nine years at Clague Road Church.

On October 13, 2002, Clague Road Church invited members, former members, and friends to celebrate the 80th anniversary of CRC. A PowerPoint about the history of the church and congregation was shown. A luncheon was served.

In 2004 a committee presented preliminary concept drawings for a proposed gathering area and sanctuary renovations. The goal was to create an open and affirming church accessible to all. Additional information was included about adding an elevator to meet ADA requirements in support of those who need it. It was eventually determined by congregational vote that we were not able to do this. The final Boutique was held. Over the 18 years the United Creative Circle made $110.000 which was used to support church needs and local missions. Like many churches, the ladies of the church have worked long and hard to support their churches. We are grateful to those who have contributed so long and tirelessly to this important work. The congregation voted in favor of an alternative building/renovation project.

The Stentzels retired to Florida in 2005 after a reception of gratitude for their ministry. Rev. Ellen Marsey became the Interim Minister. After a committee review of possible new hymnal to replace The Pilgrim Hymnal, The Chalice Hymnal was selected by the congregation. A catered lunch and program followed the worship service with guests from the city and area churches. Pat Bowers retired as Director of Music Ministries. Michael Farmers accepted the position and started in March 2003. A new chair lift was installed to make accessibility safer. In October, the Men’s Group sponsored a successful “Great Chili Cook-Off”.

2005 saw the Deaf and Deaf-Blind Committee on Human Relations renting a room in the lower level for their business office. During the year a survey was done to determine the priorities for renovation with adding a lift and parking lot renovations as the most needed. The Outreach Committee sponsored a Cabbage Roll dinner for members, friends, and guests. Rev. Ellen Marsey was called as the Intentional Interim Minister. The parsonage on Stoneybrook was sold.

In 2006, Laura Shultze was hired as Director of Music Ministries. She led the chancel choir and the bell choir as well as all music throughout the services. 20 parking places in the upper parking lot were rented as occasional week parking spots for Cornerstone Plaza next door to the church. In 2007 a lift was added to the exterior of the building to the left of the main sanctuary entrance with entrance to the ground level and exits there, at the sanctuary level and the Fellowship Hall level. Memorial funds, donated by Alice and Ed Holmok, were used to purchase the lift at a cost of $34,154. Safe Church Policy was approved by Congregational vote. In December 2007 Rev. Katie Kone was unanimously approved as the new settled pastor at Clague Road UCC. She and her family were welcomed with a reception in Fellowship Hall after she led the worship service. The dedication of the electric lift acknowledged the generous gift from long time members and friends, Alice and Ed Holmok.

2008 saw the 3rd annual Gathering of Grace, an afternoon of music and worship attended by members, friends, and guests. The Men’s Group sponsored a successful Spaghetti Dinner. The Christian Outreach Committee sponsored two fundraiser dinners to support their missions. The Sauerkraut and Cabbage Roll dinners were enjoyed by many.

In 2009 three new groups formed. Beginning this year were the Spirited Women’s Group, the Youth Group, and God’s Squad. Rev. Katie Kone’s Ordination was held in Louisville in her home church with her family and members of Clague Road UCC attending. Later in the year she was installed as the pastor of Clague Road UCC by representatives from the Western Reserve Association. A reception was held afterwards. The Outreach Team sponsored the collection of school supplies for local students as well as for distribution by Community Corners. A souper Bowl Sunday to support the planned mission trip was held.

Free Community Dinners were started by Clague Road Church and Church of the Redeemer, a sister UCC church in Westlake in 2010 in our Fellowship Hall with planning, cooking, serving, and socializing by members of the churches. Meals are served the last Saturday of each month. Attendance was often near 100 with socializing occurring between guests and church members. Music was provided along with delicious food. The Community Dinner at Clague Road Church is celebrating 10 years of service to the community. The Christian Education Committee sponsored a pie sale on Pi Day. Bruce Ferenz donated a keyboard and amplifier for use in services. Hand rhythm instruments and drums were added to the music department. Drum circles were added to worship, occasionally. In the fall nut rolls and pumpkin rolls were made and sold by the United Creative Circle.

A new adventure for Clague Road Church was a festive Fat Saturday Dinner in 2011 in preparation for Mardi Gras. Spectacular decorations, entertainment and specially prepared food including flaming banana Fosters was enjoyed by all. Other events of 2011 were an Eagle Court of Honor, the installation of a security system, and the publication of a pictorial directory. Clague Road UCC was selected as a site to distribute lunches through the summer free lunch program for North Olmsted children. Members helped with this program. Over 1600 origami peace cranes were made by enthusiastic members to decorate the sanctuary. Most were then donated to Oshkosh B’ Gosh who donated a piece of clothing to benefit the survivors of the tsunami in Japan for each crane. The Boy Scouts purchased, installed, and dedicated a Peace Pole in the side front garden. The Bible on the Lectern was repaired for use in worship. We began a relationship with Balanced Assets Management for investments. Marigolds were given to mothers on Mother’s Day by the children and youth. On Father’s Day they presented fathers with donuts. A bike night was held in the parking lot. The Bible Study Group read the entire Bible through the 2011-2012 year. Two sheep were purchased for the Heifer project.

In 2012 the children and youth made paraments for the alter by hand printing green fabric and presented them to the congregation. At the same time a stole made by them was presented to Pastor Katie. A program was offered to parents, children and youth who wished to participate in communion during worship. It was well attended and appreciated. Our children began to participate and understand communion where they could take bread, teddy grahams or crackers.

In March of 2013, Rev. Katie Kone resigned so that her family could move back to Louisville to be closer to family. A committee was named by the Church Council to investigate direction. It was first called the committee. At Rev. Kone’s suggestion, it was named Thee Committee. Clague Road UCC and Church of the Redeemer UCC became a part of the Cleveland Food Bank to support the monthly Community Dinners. The rental house was updated and was rented.

In 2014 Rev. Jim Link acted as a pulpit supply minister in September. In October he became the official part-time Interim Minister. We welcomed him and his family. Thee Committee recommended that we add to our welcoming statement during worship that we are Living, Teaching, and Sharing God’s Love. After study and reflection, it was proposed that we become a gift-based ministry. New names and duties were given to the former Boards and Committees which became teams with duties determined by the gifts available. In July Clague Road UCC was accepted into New Beginnings project sponsored by the Association. Seven members of the congregation attended trainings and throughout the coming year held meetings and seminars with the goal of discerning “who we are and where do we want to go”. The results of the work led to a more focused view of our work within the church and our surrounding community.

In 2014, the Church Council became the Leadership Team. Five ministry teams were formed. Initially, the teams were as follows: Reaching Out, Caring for Each Other, Christian Education, Building and Grounds, and Worship. It was reported that the Men’s Group had been meeting for 15 years, often at church, but also in homes at times. A new roof was placed over the Sanctuary.

New Beginnings continued with the group consensus process during 2015. Radiant Church began renting our Sanctuary on Saturday evenings. Their rent added greatly to the yearly budget. After work on the Constitution and Ways of Work, the Search Committee was appointed and began to follow the procedures for searching for a settled minister. The group developed a church profile, worked with the Association, and read submitted profiles of those interested in the part-time position.

Sponsored activities throughout the years included Vacation Bible School, Annual Labor Day Camping trip at Pilgrim Hill, Camps at Pilgrim Hills and Temple Hills Church camps, social events and trips within the greater Cleveland area, mission trips, trips to Europe, two guided trips to Gettysburg, community choir concerts, membership in North Olmsted Community Council and participation in the annual Homecoming parade and midway, knitting scarves for donation, and a blanket project for those in need.

In 2015, Boy Scout Troop 204 at Clague Road Church celebrated 85 years of affiliation, one of the oldest troops in Cuyahoga County. Throughout the years, Clague Road UCC has sponsored this group. They have helped the workings of the church in many ways. They have done yard work, completed Eagle Scout projects involving the church facilities, moved tables, helped at church events, cooked, and served an annual pancake breakfast for the congregation and been available when we asked them for help. In addition to Troop 204, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, and Daisy Scouts have met at the church.

In 2016, a new Constitution, Bylaws, and Ways of Work were presented to the congregation and approved in a Congregational Meeting.

On January 22, 2017, The Search Committee announced that they were presenting Rev. Mark Pemberton for an official call as our part-time settled minister. After several times when he served as a pulpit supply minister for Clague Road UCC, it was like a welcoming return when he presided over the worship service. After the service, the congregational meeting was called. Rev. Mark was unanimously approved. He became our minister in March. Rev. Jim Link continued to serve until March. A reception was held for Rev. Link and his family as we said a fond good-by. Rev. Mark and Pastor Jim are friends, so we continue to see Pastor Jim at Clague Road events. A welcoming reception was held for Rev. Mark in March.

In 2017 the United Creative Circle contributed $10,225 toward church expenses. This group through their fund-raising efforts have supported many projects throughout the years. Election Day bake sales, craft and boutique sales, rummage sales. Trinket and Treasure sales are among the many activities that they have sponsored. In January at the annual meeting, the revised Constitution and By-Laws were approved.

The following year, the “Ways of Work” (WOW) committee completed a procedural manual describing the details for implementing the Constitution and By-Laws to carry out the work of the church.

In 2019 Laura Shutze resigned after 13 years as Director of Music Ministries. After a reception and fond farewell, a search committee was formed to find a new person. Laura’s care and joy for Clague Road Church was missed. Not only did she provide music on all church sponsored events, she and her husband, Otto, went on mission trips, supported, and cooked at the community meals, and worked to maintain the aging organ. Annemarie Shaughnessy began as the Director of Music Ministries.

In March of 2020 due to the CO-VID 19 pandemic, we shut down the church with Governor DeWine’s “stay at home” mandate. Within days, the entire country went into a pandemic mode and created ways to stay at home while working, worshipping, shopping, and living a new and different life. Zoom meetings started to be the norm. Conference calls between leadership and teams occurred frequently. Rev. Mark started to write daily devotionals which were recorded on Facebook live. He contacted many members and friends via phone and computer. A decision was made to do more. Rev. Mark, Annie, Barb Dowling, and the liturgist for the week began with weekly services held in the church with no attendees, and then posted weekly on Facebook. In the summer, parking lot services began and were also recorded to post on Facebook and You Tube. A parking lot service was held on Christmas Eve. Rev. Mark spoke from the lower level of the Narthex. Attendees listened to the service on the radio in their car while snow came down. It was an amazing and different Christmas Eve service, but one that will remain as a part of the pandemic experience.

Mother’s Day 2021 became day one of our return to our church for services. Special precautions were taken following pandemic protocols which continued to be in place for many months. Annie Shaughnessy began her maternity leave. Annie continued to record all the music for the services which were played using computer technology, The Chancel Choir and the Bell Choir were discontinued during Annie’s absence. Annie was not able to return to direct the choir as her responsibilities to her family prevented her presence. We do miss her.

In the fall of 2022, we were pleased to hire Dallas Young as an Interim Organist and Choir Director. He served us previously in the 70s and 80s. His expertise is much appreciated as we search for a settled Director of Music Ministries. The choir and bells continue to provide music each week.

2022 is our year of celebration of 100 years as a Congregational Church, then United Church of Christ, on the same site in North Olmsted. We are the oldest church in North Olmsted on the same site and are proud to continue to serve our community, friends, and members. A birthday party was held on Easter Sunday as we began the official Centennial. Throughout the year we have continued to celebrate. The youth created a replica of the first Sunday School which was our beginning, A fine Arts Series was sponsored by Clague Road Church. In July the Cassel sisters presented a Celli concert enjoyed by many. Pat McGuire, an Irish singer, and guitar player entertained friends and members. After our community celebration on October 16, on October 30. Mary Beth Ions, violinist and entertainer, amazed us with her talent. We plan to sponsor a community choir concert in the winter.

The Centennial Service and Dinner, held on October 16, was attended by Association representatives, area ministers, the mayor of North Olmsted, community representatives, former and current staff members. former members, current members, and friends. Guests were treated to a special worship service and a reception and dinner. The newly named Centennial Room was filled with mementoes and pictures of our 100 years. The eleven North Olmsted Citizens of the Year were pictured. A timeline located on the hall wall and wrapping around into Fellowship Hall was available for all to read.

The work of the church continues as we serve our community and our members and friends. We are proud to list those ministries we continue in 2022. We provide space for Honest Desire, DBMH Support Group, Daisy Scouts, and Elections. We sponsor Boy Scouts #204. We provide a free Community Meal monthly with over 100 meals served each time. We are members of North Olmsted Community Council. We support the Ox-Cart Food Pantry and the Adopt a Family. We donate clothing to various agencies in need and other items to Easter Seals, Volunteers of America, Habitat for Humanity, and Common Threads. Annually, Blessing of the Animals, Trinket and Treasure, Election Bake Sales, Boutique sales, Heifer project, Socks and Mittens at Christmas, blankets for comfort and need, coat ministry, and Handmade scarves for winter needs. We foster fellowship through Men’s group, Bible Study, Book Group, knitting group, and the United Creative Circle for family and friends.

Throughout the decades members and friends of Clague Road Church have continued their faithful service to support the teachings of Jesus: seek justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with our God. Together we are living, teaching, and sharing God’s love.

Eternal God, we offer thanksgiving and praise to you for those who responded to your call to establish this church. We thank you for the continuing ministry and mission of this church through 100 years. We thank you for all that our church has meant to its members, to those its ministry has touched, and to other churches. In tender memory, we rejoice at the inspiration which has been found here, through the preaching of your word, through the singing of hymns to your praise through the sharing of life-sustaining sacraments, and through our service and friendship. Look upon us to preserve the best of our past and to be open to new vision, so that Clague Road Church may long continue to be a sign of your Spirit and a witness to Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen

Rev. Richard F. Beck, July 24, 2022