Christ Church is a praying family of God seeking to walk in Jesus' love, as the Bible guides and the Spirit leads.
Christ Church was organized in 1837 and the cornerstone was laid on May, 23 1838. The church overlooks Lake Erie, across a park. Over the years many structural and cosmetic changes have been made. A steeple was erected is 1876, followed by a bell in 1881. The bell still calls parishioners to worship on Sunday mornings.
A major renovation occurred in 1963. An addition containing class rooms, kitchen, fellowship hall, offices, choir room, and meeting rooms was constructed. The church was modernized and the interior was reoriented to be entered from the new addition, In 1975 a new steeple was erected and the modern impressionistic stained glass window of the Living Christ was installed behind the altar. The church tastefully blends its historic character with a contemporary, uplifting feeling.
In 1977 a chapel and columbarium were added. In recent years the church was painted, the entrance was made handicap accessible, a library was added, pew cushions and kneelers were installed and the organ was renovated. As one of the oldest churches in the state, Christ Church is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Nineteen rectors have served Christ Church. Long pastorates have marked their tenure. The Rev. Eugene Smercina, who retired in October 2001, served for thirty-six years. In the early 1980's, during his pastorate, the life changed dramatically with the Cursillo Movement. The parish moved from a more traditional to a more evangelical orientation, while maintaining an inclusiveness that promotes diverse worship styles.
In 2003 Rev. Wanda Ray became the first female Rector. The church has gone through many phases but remains a Traditional Episcopal Church. We have celebrated 175 years and many changes have occurred including making Rev. Gene Smercina Rector Emeritus.
Rev. Wanda Ray retired July 30th 2014.
The Diocese of Ohio