A few years before our nation’s Revolutionary War and decades before Ohio became a state, Moravian missionaries led by Rev. David Zeisberger journeyed from Bethlehem Pennsylvania to the heavily forested Ohio territory to bring the Gospel of Christ to the Delaware Indians. By 1772, they had founded Ohio’s first village, Schoenbrunn (“beautiful spring”), in what is now Tuscarawas County, built the first Christian church and schoolhouse in the territory, and established Ohio’s first civil code. For more details, see the Ohio Historical Society’s website. Fewer than a dozen Moravian congregations became established in Ohio during the next two hundred years, all of them in Tuscarawas County.
In the late 1970s, a few Moravians and friends who had relocated around the Greater Columbus Metropolitan Area founded the Central Ohio Moravian Fellowship (COMF); this group met periodically to worship together and to share potluck meals. In 1978, the Moravian Church, Northern Province, established a GROW campaign to raise funds for homeland ministries and evangelism, and began a Decade of Development aimed at launching new churches. At that time, the COMF had formulated no plans to plant a new church, but it did fulfill its obligation to draw the denomination’s attention to Columbus as the province’s most rapidly growing metropolitan area. In response, denominational officials subsequently conducted two demographic surveys of the region: the first led by Rev. Edwin Sawyer; and the second led by Rev. Mervin Weidner. Based largely on the second of these studies, the denomination decided to start a new church in the Dublin area. They called Rev. Paul DeSchwinitz Couch to be the new church’s founding pastor, purchased a parsonage on Olde Sawmill Boulevard, and a church site on Sawmill Road. For a time, the fledgling church met at the Olde Sawmill Elementary School. It quickly grew to surpass the threshold of 75 members, so the new church was chartered, making it the newest Moravian congregation in the Eastern District of the Northern Province.
Several years later, the congregation cleared the trees and broke ground at the corner of Sawmill and Summitview Roads to construct the church’s current home. During the past quarter century, the church has been served by a number of other full-time Moravian pastors including: Rev. Kevin Frack, Rev. Dr. Darryl Bell, Rev. Dr. Steve Craver, Rev. Lance Fox, Rev. Jeff VanOrden, Rev. Jay Petrella and currently Rev. Trina Holmberg. A sister congregation, The Promise, was launched several years ago in neighboring Delaware County. Throughout our history, our congregation has always believed that we have been blessed in order to bless others. Therefore, over the years, our church facilities have welcomed and hosted many people from our community for worship services; community gardens; health fairs; piano recitals, concerts, and practice sessions for area musical groups; Bible School and Parents Morning Out programs; English-as-a-Second Language classes; and youth groups, AA, and civic association meetings, to name just a few. We’d love to have you visit us too.