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History of West Chester Presbyterian Church
We are the oldest continuing fellowship of believers in West Chester Township (formerly Union Township). In 1830, Jeremiah Day and Enoch Conover helped establish a New Light Presbyterian Church in West Chester and members met in homes until 1842 when a new wood frame building was erected on our current church site. In 1868, the New Lights disbanded and the church was closed.
Rev. Holtsinger was a circuit-riding preacher in Sharonville and Bethany, and passed by our West Chester building every week. On February 16, 1869, with the leadership of Rev. Holtsinger, 23 people formally organized the West Chester Branch of the Sharonville Cumberland Presbyterian Church in that 38’ by 40' wood frame church.
In 1880, a new building was erected after tearing down the old church. The building was made from brick prepared and fired on site. The cost of the new structure was $3,300 plus an additional $350 for the bell in the tower that still rings today.
In 1946 a new flat-roofed fellowship hall was built behind the sanctuary and an additional small room was built on the south side of the building, which became known as the “green room”. Prior to these additions, all activities were held in the sanctuary including multiple Sunday School classes at the same time! During these years, church life was the center of community activity. Our church held huge turkey dinners, put on plays and musicals at Old Union School, and had an orchestra.
In 1961 a new “education wing” which included a church office and restrooms was constructed. It ended at the fire doors in the hallway. The restrooms were located where the church library is currently.
As the West Chester area grew in the 1980s, we realized we needed more space for “family” activities. The “new” Fellowship Hall was built including new restrooms and a large kitchen. The choir performed several “dinner-theatre” style musicals in this new facility. For many years the church hosted a Lenten series of classes with dinners every Thursday evening during Lent. Volleyball and basketball teams have enjoyed our facility and we have been an able staging ground for Reach Out Lakota back-to-school preparations.
In 1985 we purchased a new Allen digital organ to replace the 1949 Hammond organ called the James G. Miller Memorial organ.
1993 - We began construction of our “new” sanctuary.
1996 - The covered bridge to our additional parking area was completed.
In early 2000’s - Our Community Suppers began.
2013 - We paid off our building construction debt!
2016 - We added our projection system in the sanctuary to enhance worship.
2019 - We celebrate 150 years as a congregation!
2020 - We started live streaming our worship services.
Throughout recent years we have done a church-wide campaign 40 Days of Purpose that encouraged the development of our Community Suppers, a very informative course called “Before the Need Arises” dealing with death, and a 13-week Financial Peace University training us how to be debt free and responsible stewards of our resources.
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD!” -Psalm 122:1