Making JESUS known   
                          is FIRST at First!


Our Mission:

The mission of First Presbyterian Church of Pataskala (FPCP) is “making JESUS known is FIRST at First,” as we love God, love others, and  magnify the name of Jesus Christ. The vision of FPCP is to “walk in the light of God,” as we glorify our God and Savior, Jesus Christ. This we do in the power of his name and authority as we follow his final directions after his resurrection and before his ascension into heaven. “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 18:19-20) Before his ascension, he also promised, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8). The power of the Holy Spirit poured out 10 days later on Pentecost enabled the first disciples to take the good news of Jesus that began in Jerusalem to the ends of the earth. 
In time the message of Jesus crossed the Atlantic ocean into North America. But when early settlers lost their focus on Christ, the Presbyterian minister Jonathan Edwards called people back to Christ and Scripture. Then through the power of the Holy Spirit, just as promised by Jesus to the early church, the church was again awakened. 
When the focus shifted away from Jesus and toward the pursuits of the industrial revolution, Presbyterian minister Charles Finney raised the call back to faith and spread the message into the mid-west. His time in Ohio inspired pastors and lay persons to gather together in prayer for the church to awaken again. One such prayer gathering in July of 1837 prompted the founding of FPCP as described below. Once the church was founded, weekly prayer gatherings in conjunction with other area churches continued  through 1924. 

 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. The Reverend 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 Reverend Howe over to South Fork Church in Pataskala. Then in 1841 The Reverend Timothy Howe 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 to ring out hope to the Pataskala community. After 37 years of dedicated service, in 1876 The Reverend Timothy Howe retired due to poor health
The cross atop the steeple was raised in 1991.
Illumination of the steeple and cross came to light in July of 2021, inspiring the vision and the mission for the hope of Christ that shines today and into the future. May FPCP be the nightlight of Pataskala, for Jesus tells his followers, “You are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14).
We at FPCP pray for you:
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13). Amen.