Our Mission

The mission of First Presbyterian Church Community is to love God, to love others, and to magnify the name of Jesus Christ. The vision of our church is to glorify our God and Savior, Jesus Christ, to make true disciples throughout all the nations by means of missionary activity and support, to minister the ordinances, to edify believers, and to do all that is sovereignly possible and biblically permissible to magnify the name of Jesus.

 

 The History of our Church . . . Spanning Three Centuries 

First Presbyterian Church of Pataskala began in a barn November 11, 1837 with 19 persons meeting for worship together. The names of those who gathered are: Hall and Eliza Robertson; William and Christina Baird; Isaac and Jane Condit; Orson and Harriet Smith; Samuel S. and Peabody Atkinson; John Frayzier; James C. Condit; Joseph and Marjery Baird; and Mrs. Rebecca Niblow. They called it South Fork Presbyterian Church. Henry Little and Jonathan Cable conducted the service. Rev. Charles Putnam was also present.

They met in various places after that, most often in a schoolhouse on Old Mud Pike (Route 16). It was there that S.S. Dobbin was elected and installed as the first elder of the church. The small congregation began to think of hiring a minister of their own, choosing Timothy W. Howe. For eleven years their services were held in the old United Brethern House in Etna. They followed Rev. Howe over to South Fork Church in Pataskala and in 1841 he was permanently installed as their ordained minister.

In 1852 a house of worship was finally completed in a beautiful, wooded area across the road from where the Pataskala Cemetery is now located. Final cost of the building was $800. In April of 1864 the church was given permission by the Presbytery of Newark to change its name to the Pataskala Presbyterian Church. For nearly 16 years, members met at the creek bank church (nick named this since it was by the creek). Then the roof began to fail and it became unsafe. Members were invited to temporarily use the Methodist Church while the now 70 member congregation made plans to build a new place of worship.

During February of 1869 Jesse Horn, Timothy Cooley, and Joseph Atkinson were appointed as a building committee. They purchased a lot from Jacob Joseph for $650. The building was to be of brick, 40 by 60 feet. The final cost was approx. $5,000. The new church was dedicated to God in Oct. 1870, with an inspiring service. The steeple bell arrived in 1873 and serves the community to this day.

After 37 years of dedicated service, The Rev. Timothy Howe retired due to poor health.  Since 1837, twenty-six pastors have Celebrated God’s Grace serving this church, with Rev. Dennis R. Witt the most recent.  Rev. Witt joined us in November of 2000 and was here until his passing inSeptember of 2014. We are currently searching for our 27th pastor with great hopes in the new year.