Statement of Calling

We are Seekers, Leaders, Followers and Believers, committed to living and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ.

We believe in open communion – all are welcome!

We are seeking to be faithful servants of God, called to ease the pain, loneliness, and suffering of others in our community and our world.

We seek a joyful experience in following the Gospel by enjoying fun and fellowship with one another.

Welcoming Statement

MCCC affirms that every individual is a child of God and we recognize, celebrate and give thanks for the diverse spiritual gifts among us.  As followers of Jesus, we aspire to reflect his unconditional love and mirror his compassion to all people.  We encourage spiritual and intellectual inquiry and accept diversity of interpretation of scriptures and individual beliefs.  We welcome into the full life and ministry of the church people of every race, culture, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, place in journey of faith, and marital and economic status.

Our History

The Church of the Disciples of Christ at Mantua…

was formed at the schoolhouse in the south part of Mantua, January 27, 1827, on the principle of faith in Jesus Christ, the divine inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, and the New Testament as the rule of conduct and the book of discipline.
Thus reads the first entry in the original church record book, followed by the names of the nine charter members who separated from a local Baptist congregation to join the growing Restoration Movement of Thomas and Alexander Campbell. Mantua Center Christian Church is the oldest Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) congregation in Ohio, and the fourth oldest in the entire denomination. The present church building was erected in 1840, and has been in continuous use since (with additions in 1952 and 1993). The church looks today much as it did 165 years ago, inside and out, the plain look purposely maintained, simple and unadorned, consistent with the sensibilities of our pioneer founders.
In addition to playing an instrumental role in the founding of the Western Reserve Eclectic Institute in 1850 – now known as Hiram College – Mantua Center served as an incubator for four other local Disciple congregations that formed in the 1800’s (Hiram, Aurora, Shalersville, and Mantua Station).
A gifted young Hiram College student, circuit rider preacher, and later professor, James A. Garfield, preached on several occasions at Mantua Center in the 1850’s. Many other ministers affiliated with Hiram College have filled the pulpit over the years.
In 1923, the congregation voted to open her doors to members of any other denomination without making baptism a test of fellowship, thereby making MCCC a community church devoted to the unity of all Christians. To this day, we still celebrate the principles on which we were founded: “No creed but Christ, no book but the Bible.”

Historical Timeline

A Baptist congregation is formed in Nelson, called “Bethesda”- it is said to be the first “of any order” in Portage County.
The Church of Christ of Mantua is founded in a schoolhouse by nine charter members who formerly belonged to the Bethesda Baptist Church. This church was the fourth to be founded in the Restoration Movement, and the first formed in Ohio.
Thomas Campbell visits Mantua Center – at his suggestion, Zeb Rudolph and Darwin Atwater are “ordained and set apart as teachers.”
Members of the church who lived at some distance ask to leave Mantua Center to form new churches in Hiram, Shalersville, and Aurora.
A number of members of Mantua Center and the Hiram church were “lost” to Mormonism. Darwin Atwater is ordained as an Elder.
The congregation voted to raise money to build a “meeting house” – Seth Harmon, Darwin Atwater, and Phineas Jennings appointed as a building committee.
“The church, having completed their new meeting house at the Center of Mantua and nearly paid for it, opened it for public worship.”
The Western Reserve Eclectic Institute was formed in Hiram (later known as Hiram College) – its first “principal” was A.S. Hayden, Disciple minister, historian, and educator, who preached regularly at Mantua Center in the early years.
A young professor from The Eclectic Institute, James A. Garfield preaches for the first time at Mantua Center, and on other occasions between 1855 and 1860.
Frank and Perlea Derthick begin sitting together in the same pew. Previously, men and women sat in separate pews, with a divider between them. Ben Derthick later recalled that “considerable comment was aroused” when this first occurred, but it soon became a common practice.
The church sanctuary is extensively remodeled, partially funded by the local Free Will Baptist congregation. In return for their financial assistance, the Baptists are permitted half time use of the church for a period of ten years.
Darwin Atwater passes away. He was the last of the original church members and served as an Elder for 46 years.
The Christian Church at Mantua Station (now known as Hilltop) was organized with help from Mantua Center.
The church changes its name to “The Disciples of Christ at Mantua Center.”
The church is raised in order to manually dig out a useable basement.
The rostrum is raised and the roof slated.
The church voted to open her doors to members of other denominations without making baptism a test of fellowship.
Electric lights are installed in the church at a cost of $173.06.
In the midst of The Depression, due to declining membership and poor finances, the church nearly votes to close its doors and merge with Hilltop. The pastor, William Joel, elects to take a pay cut to $8.00 per Sunday – average Sunday attendance is 31 people.
Water is piped into the building through the efforts of Lucius Converse.
The church sends its first young member to summer youth conference.
The choir is reorganized through the efforts of Helen (Horton) Alger and Leone Krohn. The Christian Youth Fellowship (CYF) is also formed.
A new organ is dedicated, and the church pays for Leone Krohn to take lessons to become our organist. Indoor restrooms are also installed this year.
To accommodate the growth of the Sunday School program, Lucius Converse is elected to lead the building of an addition to the church, at a cost of $10,000.
Rev. Ben Derthick reads “A Look At Our Heritage” at the dedication of the new addition, coinciding with the 125th Anniversary of the founding of the church.
The church is incorporated and the name officially changed to “Mantua Center Christian Church.”
The parsonage is built on land donated by Elta Tinker. Its first occupant is Rev. Jackson Pyles and his family. He becomes the first full time minister in 50 years.
Mantua Center enters into an agreement with Hilltop Christian Church to share the services on a part time basis with their pastor, Rev. William Allen.
The church has a new aluminum steeple installed, paid for through memorial donations. Pew cushions are also purchased.
The Sesquicentennial Year – different celebrations are held throughout the year, highlighted by a two presentations of the original play “Bright Lives,” written by Jon Secaur, and performed by members of the church.
The Handbell Choir is formed after the purchase of a two-octave set of bells through memorial donations.
Ground is broken for another addition to the church, for the purpose of adding classrooms, restrooms, a nursery, and an office for the pastor and secretary.
A celebration is held to recognize Leone Krohn and Helen Alger for their combined 100 + years of service to the music ministry of the church.
A new organ is purchased and dedicated in February, replacing the organ purchased in 1947.
We celebrate our 175th anniversary, with an old-fashioned worship service and Sunday School program, potluck dinner, and “Centeseptiquinary Jeopardy.”
The church forms a committee to develop a Statement of Calling and Ministry Plan – to discern who we are as a congregation, and where God is calling us to go – in preparation for calling a new pastor.
Rev. Chad Delaney is called to serve as full time pastor.

Invitation to Give

Each week everyone has the opportunity to give a financial offering during the service. Please pray and discern what is right for you (see 1 Corinthians 9:7). Offerings given go to support our pastor, our building, and the mission ministries of the church.


AT MCCC, we practice Open Communion. The bread and the cup are symbols for the body and blood of Christ and ALL are invited to partake as the trays are passed.

Get Involved?

Find your way to become part of the life of our congregation! Outreach ministries, Bible study, music, and fellowship activities may be meaningful to you. Please talk to one of the pastors about ways to get involved or visit our Ministries page.


Children are always welcome at MCCC! If desired, there is a nursery downstairs for the little ones. For Kindergarten - 4th grade kids, there is Sunday School right after Worship's Children's Moment. We have 5th-8th Grade (Chi Rho) and 9th-12th Grade (CYF) Youth Groups.